NARRAGANSETT, R.I. - Sunday marks the 95th anniversary of the sinking of the Titanic, and Titanic discover Robert Ballard is lobbying for an international treaty to prevent so-called "extreme tourist" groups from doing further harm to the rapidly decaying vessel.
"These scavenger vultures, with their submersible watercraft, are turning the Titanic into a wreck," Dr. Ballard told a news conference. Dr. Ballard claimed that tourists cart away artifacts "as if they were collecting seashells at the beach."
The press conference took an unexpected turn, however, when Ballard was asked how he could differentiate between damage caused to the ship by scavengers from damage caused by the iceberg that sank it. Ballard became visibly upset and insisted there never was an iceberg. "'Iceberg!' What 'iceberg'?" he shouted in a shrill, high-pitched voice. "The 'Titanic' was wrecked by the venal capitalist scavengers!"
No nation has yet signed Ballard's treaty.