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An endangered sea turtle was found trapped between more than two dozen floating bundles of cocaine off the Florida coast by the U.S. Coast Guard last month, and a video of the discovery has gone viral.
The US Coast Guard rescued a sea turtle entangled in bundles of cocaine off the coast of Florida pic.twitter.com/woQfUEMDWv— CNN (@CNN) December 20, 2017
The story is, of course, sad because it’s yet another example of a human-caused wildlife injury. The turtle had “significant chaffing” on its neck and flippers from the rope that held the drug bundles together, which in total were valued at more than $53 million. Many people saw it as yet another terrible news report from the year 2017.
Humanity batting a thousand as we exit 2017 https://t.co/Vriin8RmYt— Shaena Montanari (@DrShaena) December 20, 2017
I don't know what would make this story worse, if this just happened accidentally, or was done on purpose.— Tere Kirkland 🌠 is on HIATUS I STG Y'ALL (@TereKirkland) December 21, 2017
Either way, humans are terrible. Sorry, turtle. https://t.co/VgsyPB2DV1
But, wait, what if the turtle was actually the drug dealer?
this drug smuggling turtle tricked all u https://t.co/RQN6w2mWGd— christine teigen (@chrissyteigen) December 20, 2017
This turtle is the greatest drug dealer of all time.— Alex Edelman (@AlexEdelman) December 21, 2017
“Uh yeah that’s right officer I got tangled” https://t.co/qIqeQGQaUW
Meanwhile on Turtle Twitter:— The Hoarse Whisperer (@HoarseWisperer) December 20, 2017
"Got pinched by the Coast Guard but totally pulled off the whole 'Oh, noes! How did I get tangled up in all this coke!?' thing..." https://t.co/57YSTaue9j
People worried about the fate of the turtle and its family.
I hope you’re happy you showed this sea turtle’s face. He has a family who’s gonna be murdered by the cartel he was smuggling for. I’m disgusted. https://t.co/IwkIQHSpA7— gwack gwack slrrrp *spit* slrrp gwack gwack inhale (@FLOTJM) December 21, 2017
Now the turtle is gonna turn up dead because someone didn't get their delivery. https://t.co/tyHXOcJT5U— Freckle Goddess (@WhoIsDommie) December 20, 2017
The incident also set up Franklin the Turtle jokes…
Coast guard pulled up and he was like pic.twitter.com/6fQmzqEySV— Gage Gray (@GageGray) December 20, 2017
Smh, Franklin. Another child star lost to drug abuse https://t.co/3CLhc48tWO— ˢᵃʳᵃʰ ˢᶜʰᵃᵘᵉʳ (@SJSchauer) December 20, 2017
…and plenty of turtle-on-cocaine jokes.
TURTLE ON COCAINE:— Jesse McLaren (@McJesse) December 21, 2017
I... feel... like..... I'm... the... king... of... the.... world.
Dude slow down I can't understand you.
That turtle 30 minutes later pic.twitter.com/4DcqHv69PQ— Daniel Golan (@danielgolan94) December 20, 2017
The story has a happy ending: The turtle was set free. (No charges.)
Tiffany Kelly is the Unclick editor at Daily Dot. Previously, she worked at Ars Technica and Wired. Her writing has appeared in several other print and online publications, including the Los Angeles Times, Popular Mechanics, and GQ.