The Minister of Fisheries and Oceans Loyola Hearn is quick to shoot accusations and mis-information from the hip without pausing to think. But how would he do in a face to face debate with the man he loves to hate.

Captain Paul Watson, Founder and President of Sea Shepherd Conservation Society today issued a challenge to Mr. Hearn. "You defend the seal killers and I'll defend the seals, face to face, in public."

"Mr. Hearn described me as gutless," said Watson. "It's easy to call people names but he should demonstrate that he has the 'guts' to debate me in public. My bet is he will hide behind some sort of excuse that he won't dignify me with a debate which means in other words that likes to take his shots from behind."

Captain Watson said he would be willing to debate Newfoundland Premier Danny Williams. "In fact, I'll even take the two of them on together if they feel the need to support each other."

Captain Watson debated Premier Brian Peckford at Memorial University years ago. "Mr. Peckford defended his position on his home turf quite well I thought," said Watson and added with a laugh, "but I still think I scored more points in that debate. The point is that Mr. Peckford had the courage to defend his position in a public debate. I don't think that Hearn or Williams have that kind of integrity; I think they both prefer to take cheap shots behind the skirts of the media. "

Captain Watson will debate Hearn or Williams or the two of them anywhere, anyplace and at anytime.

"I think this debate has the potential to be enlightening, amusing and certainly entertaining," said Captain Watson. "Let's go for it Loyola, Danny, or the both of you. Hey, it could be fun and the public can judge the merits of our arguments much better."

Sea Shepherd
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