LAGUNA BEACH, Calif. - Called “Tarzan of LA” and star of Discovery’s "Naked and Afraid," Gary Golding is known for his crazy antics. He's not afraid of eating things that disgust other people -- most recently, a baby dolphin he stumbled on in Laguna Beach.
“I said, ‘you know what, the best thing I could do to carry a message of not wasting it is to eat that thing,’” said Golding.
Golding videotaped himself cutting off the young mammal’s dorsal fin, pulling out the dolphin’s heart and other organs, grilling them up, dipping them in a mustard mix from a homeless man and eating the dead baby dolphin.
The video has sparked quite a bit of outrage with people disturbed and disgusted by his treatment of the dolphin and accusing him of breaking the law. Others don’t think he’s doing anything wrong.
“There are people in China who eat dogs and we consider them as pets so animals are food and nourishment,” said Jennifer Quamina.
“I don’t think people should eat dolphin but it was dead so he’s not letting it go to waste,” added Jess Tollefsoa.
With his sidekick Frankie the Chihuahua, Golding says he’s an environmentalist and animal-lover who would never hurt a dolphin. “That vegan or vegetarian energy that people have where they love animals so they don’t eat them. Well, I love animals more than you, vegan and vegetarian, because I wouldn’t let it go to waste. I’ll eat it and honor it so it doesn’t die for nothing.”
California State Director at the Humane Society of the United States Sabrina Ashjian issued a statement that said:
"The Humane Society of the United States strongly condemns the alleged conduct of a Naked and Afraid contestant who was recently seen apparently slicing into the body of a dead dolphin on a California beach. Not only is eating a dead marine mammal disturbing, but it is also potentially illegal ... Violations of the US Marine Mammal Protection Act could be punishable by tens of thousands of dollars in fines and a year in jail. The HSUS urges the federal government through the National Marine Fisheries Service to investigate the allegations against Gary Golding and to bring appropriate charges if the news report is accurate."
President of the Humane Society Legislative Fund Sara Amundson also released a statement regarding this case that says:
"There is no place for this act of sheer barbarism in a civilized society. Gary Golding's complete disdain for protecting vulnerable animals is a shocking low ... We condemn this alleged conduct and urge the National Marine Fisheries Service to swiftly investigate this horrific act to bring justice."
Golding’s mantra, even tattooed on his back is “consume as little as possible.”
“If every single one of us, eight billion did that, could you imagine how much cleaner the planet would be?” he said.
Golding first got in the spotlight in 2014 for helping save two men drowning in Redondo Beach, where a teenager died in the same spot the next day. He spends his free time kayaking with whales, feeding the homeless with salvaged dumpster food and inspiring children to care about the earth.
“You can be weird, you can be crazy, you can be a complete nut-job, but you can channel and focus it to make the world a better place,” said Golding.
NOAA is looking into whether or not he violated the Marine Mammal Protection Act, which makes it illegal to “take marine mammals without a permit.”