Thursday, November 01, 2007

Dolphin Slaughter

Oh my god, oh my god, did you see the Japanese butchering the dolphins on Sky news? Watch it. Don't watch it. I don't know what's better. They were swimming around in a sea of blood, literally. It's like watching footage of a genocide for me. I can't imagine what it must have been like for the people who were trying to stop it.

Could giving to Greenpeace help do something?

My Korean student told me that the old people in Korea still cry when they talk about the atrocities of the Japanese invasion. That cruelty is still alive and well. Nobody needs to eat dolphin. I don't care about the argument that people are more important than animals, as a people I think we can be judged on our treatment of the world that we are stewards of.


  1. Oh God, I didnt see it, but I think my imagination is just as vivid. It sounds absolutely horrific. Now Im not a vegetarian and I do like a nice leather handbag, so I sometimes feel like a total hypocrite in that I love animals and dont wish any cruelty upon them whatsoever. I dont know anything about the Japanese, but I just dont understand how the slaughter of such beautiful creatures can be entered into with such great gusto. It makes me sick.

  2. The argument is that the fishermen's lives depend on it. 2 thousand dolphins and porpoises killed a year.

    An animal's degree of sentience is no argument to people who are happy to kill so calmly but I once saw a program about dolphins where one had had a still born calf. She was wild with grief, and kept trying to get the dead baby to swim. two or three other dolphins stayed beside her, and swam with her, until they gently forced her away from the baby. You can't tell me they don't have a higher emotional life.

    I don't know if I'd feel better if the dolphins they kill were 'farmed', probably not - but to go out and plunder from the natural world on such a huge scale, their sense of entitlement sickens me.

  3. Years ago I heard someome complaining about dolphins being caught in the nets of tuna fishermen. The irony wasn't lost on me. Why is the dolphin more important than the tuna? Why are 6m jews more important than 50m Russian peasants? The sympathy hierachy is filled with inconsistencies and cynicism.

    I say treat the dolphin like every other fish.

  4. It's that long running disparity. Why eat a cow but not eat and kill a dolphin. I remember being brought to Henshaws Butcher's Wholesalers in Finglas as a kid. Friend of my Dad was in the profession. The place was disgusting, rivers of blood outside the killing room.

  5. They're not fish, Milan, they're mammals - and they're bigger brains, and use more of them than us.

    I don't eat meat or fish, it doesn't seem like food to me. So I don't think we should be killing cows either, certainly not in the way we do today.

    But if it comes to it, yes, I think we should continue killing the animals we have bred and raised for slaughter over an wild animal of superior intelligence and beauty. I don't accept for a second that you can't differenciate between a dolphin and a haddock. If you really need convincing, there is a lot to be learned about dolphin understanding of language and sign, of the effect their brain waves have on disabled children and the depressed and of their behaviour towards those people and of the relatonships they have among themselves.

  6. I confess I know little about dolphins and their intelligence etc so i'm stepping back.

  7. This comment has been removed by the author.

  8. I know little about women's and their's, should I do the same?

  9. :)

    You know, my favourite line of that Bell X q song is 'you came, I think, but I never really know', whihc I find to be a touching confessoin.

    I'm afraid this issue brings out my impassioned inner twelve year old activist.

  10. TB - that's funny. I think you should steer clear of all women forever starting now.