features

Star of Taiji dolphin-hunt film wants to win over Japan

95 Comments

The requested article has expired, and is no longer available. Any related articles, and user comments are shown below.

© Copyright 2009 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

©2021 GPlusMedia Inc.

95 Comments
Login to comment

“It tastes so good,” Mutsuyo Kaino, an 88-year-old housekeeper, said of >dolphin meat, which is eaten raw as sashimi or stewed in a pot. “This is >a fishing town. You shouldn’t worry about a movie

aww..now I want to try some.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

If he's really serious about "winning over Japan", he should do more to actually engage the Japanese media. Promote the film, as it were.

This latest trip has been almost exclusively for the benefit of the foreign media (note the AP copyright on this piece) - which promotes the movie everywhere but Japan. "Getting the word out", and making a handsome profit at the same time.

Recently he's been playing up the angle that it's about saving the children from mercury poisoned meat - yet his efforts to get this tidbit out have been aimed everywhere but at Japan. The Australian media, the British media, the American media... everywhere but Japan.

I guess he makes more money with an imagined conspiracy. "The film they won't show in Japan" kind of thing.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

this week at least two evening news programs. TBS and NTV, featured it prominently.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I don't think the film will find a distributor in Japan. Maybe O'Barry can at least have it entered in the Tokyo International Film Festival next month.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

As a dolphin supporter I abhor the mass cullings that occurs in Tsuiji waters. As much as I hate the killing of dolphins, I hate the capture of these animals for the purpose of human entertainment in aquariums and films as Ric O'Barry does.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

your argument is against the manner of harvest but not against the killing of dolphins in general

It's impossible to kill cetaceans humanely, whether in general or in Taiji Cove.

If one wants to deal in animal meat, that animal should be given birth to and reared in captivity.

Then there's the argument that subjecting animals to captivity is also cruel.....

I wouldn't object if food animals were raised in completely natural surroundings, allowed to live a full life, and were dispatched humanely.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

'It tastes good' is not a sufficient argument for subjecting an animal to unspeakable suffering.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Hokkaidoguy - do u really think the toothless Japanese press with their exclusionary "press clubs" would touch this story with a ten foot pole?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I don't think the film will find a distributor in Japan. Maybe O'Barry can at least have it entered in the Tokyo International Film Festival next month.

Good idea this one. Perhaps you could also get everybody's favorite new age governor to offer some opening remarks. "Tokyo Olympics, I love foreigners, save the dolphin/whale, blah, blah, blah."

Then again, maybe not....

0 ( +0 / -0 )

... seeing themselves as powerless victims of overseas pressure to end a simple and honest way of making a living ...

Boy does that sound familiar. I'm having flashbacks to the Bubble

0 ( +0 / -0 )

hoserfella - if you've been watching TV lately, both TBS and NTV have given coverage to this press event on the nightly news. So, yes, I think they would touch this story with a 10 foot pole.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

NeoJamal, Ric O'Barry no longer captures and trains dolphins for entertainment or films, as the article states, he stopped in 1970. "He has devoted his recent years to helping return dolphins in captivity to the wild and to stopping the killing at Taiji."

The problem of killing and eating dolphins or whales is really a cultural difference.

I think a bigger reason for stopping this is the safety of dolphin and whale meat. The amount of mercury and other chemicals is a real safety hazard for anyone who eats it. According to a previous article, maybe not on this homepage, Mr. O'Barry showed the test results of dolphin meat he purchased in the supermarket to Taiji officials, who then tested some meat themselves. They got similar results, high mercury content, and according to that article, removed dolphin meat from the school lunch menus.

I'm sure this thought-provoking film will be interesting to watch, though the killing scenes are probably going to be tough to sit through.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I'm sure this thought-provoking film will be interesting to watch, though the killing scenes are probably going to be tough to sit through.

I'm sure the intelligent viewer will be able to discern this part as propaganda.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Japan should be concerned about this movie as their international image is being destroyed, I seriously hope this damaged Tokyo's chances for the 2016 Olympics.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I think I will start to cry !!!!!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Japan should be concerned about this movie as their international image is being destroyed, I seriously hope this damaged Tokyo's chances for the 2016 Olympics.

Of course, the reasonable individual would regard the treatment of dolphins to be a decisive factor in deciding where to hold the Olympics. Then again the reasonable poster on JT would sooner regard such events that unfold in small town Tsuji is merely a device to compound on the case against Japan for some individual who is disgruntled about Japan in general.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

This movie sounds like it's full of predjudice against non-western marine life harvests so I don't know why anyone would expect it to be of great demand at Japanese movie theaters. I wonder if Korean theaters have been running it?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

According to Japanese news reports, the Taiji whalers have started their coastal whaling but bad whether seems to have prevented their boats from leaving port on Wednesday.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

weather

0 ( +0 / -0 )

As soon as O’Barry arrived, he was stopped for questioning by several plainclothes police officers, who demanded his crew members show their passports.

Man, this sounds like one of the most redneck, racist towns on planet earth! It seems to have the freedom of movement of North Korea.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

events that unfold in small town Tsuji is merely a device to compound on the case against Japan for some individual who is disgruntled about Japan in general.

On the contrary, I am very gruntled about Japan in general. I love the place. But Taiji....<shudder>

Let these dolphins be culled.

It isn't a 'cull', it's a slaughter. Look it up in your dictionary.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

“People say dolphins are cute and smart, but some regions have a tradition of eating dolphin meat,” said fisheries official Toshinori Uoya. “Dolphin-killing may be negative for our international image, but it is not something we can order stopped.” - Like where? It sounds to me that Taiji is the only place in Japan where Dolphin is actually promoted as a food source. Unfortunately for these dolphin fisherman, international opinion is that dolphin is not food.

That being said, the Inuit for example have been hunting whale and other creatures for centuries, nobody gives them a hard time because it is part of their culture. They also don't have access to 24 hour supermarkets and pachinko parlors like I'd assume the residents of Taiji have. And how many Inuit sell dolphins to aquariums? To say that the Dolphin Culling is part of taiji's culture is really stretching it. Taiji, unlike northern canada, is not void of people and establishments of business and people could just as easily get their food from other sources.

and the old crone who thinks dolphin meat is tasty, despite the mercury levels... please keep eating

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I would not eat dolphin meat but then as a responsible and fairly liberal person I cannot reserve the right to stop the actions of another culture or nation because it does not sit with the values of the culture I align to. I am not pro-hunting in anyway, but I am pro-liberty and I find it extremely uncomfortable that some nations/groups/religions are trying to homogenize cultures so they sit with their own values. If we carry on down that route then eventually we will all have the cultural norms of middle America. These people would have us living in the middle of the road if they could and I for one will not have that. I value diversity. I find the 'anti whatever it maybe' crew as nothing less than totalitarianism wrapped up in a liberal sheep's clothing.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Do most japanese people even want to eat dolphin meat? I heard that Taiji is actually trying to promote Dolphin meat to Japan. Good luck with that

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The issue is people from outside this community/culture saying we don't do that in Sydney, Wellington, London, Vancover, San Francisco, so we would like you to stop doing it as it makes us feel uncomfortable.

Does no one have a problem with that?

Please, I want to know.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Makkun, "That" is not just any other thing. It's slaughtering the most intelligent animal on earth. These Japanese fisherman does not want to acknowledge this fact. Even if we prove that they are as smart as us, they won't care. Their primary goal is not to make food out of dolphins, but to kill them for pest control, because they believe the dolphins are responsible of declining fish stocks. We protest that this is very cruel treatment for smartest animal on earth.

Interesting fact I stumbled upon searching dolphins in Wikipedia English and Japanese versions. English version of Wikipedia has great coverage and lots of facts about social life and culture of dolphins, while Japanese Wiki is openly denying any claims of them being smart, and talking about what kind of sauce goes well with eating dolphin meat. Are our cultures really this much different? Why we love these creatures so much while Japanese has no regard for their life and intelligence. Do they don't know or just don't care?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

It's quite naive to think this is only about the dolphins, culture, and being simply uncomfortable.

Other endangered species get caught as well. I remember the fishermen caught 5 or so killer whales and other species in the past and sold them for about $1mil each. They all died of course, but I guess that's part of their culture too right?

Many cases of food safety have been exposed, but these fishermen and co. have spent millions of yen trying to encourage Japan to eat toxic meat. They were giving it to children, the one's most at risk!

O'Barry was, according to the article, harassed by the residents instead of reassured that it's all just a culture thing. Aggression is never the answer and it only raised suspicions for the reporters, like poking a bees nest of paparazzi. They should at least be able to buy water in peace.

Other places less economically stable have outlawed their culture of dolphin (and whale) hunts years ago, and that's w/o "western pressure", like Peru and Taiwan. The town of Taiji's still in the Bubble, and we know what the Bubble was about...money.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I saw about this on You Tube, i was in tears for ages, the butchery was ghastly.

I hope this film can help the beastly slaughter, but these Japanese fishermen seem to stubborn and ignorant about the difference between a fish and a mammal.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

full of predjudice against non-western marine life harvests

Classic.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

#

According to Japanese news reports, the Taiji whalers have started their coastal whaling but bad whether seems to have prevented their boats from leaving port on Wednesday.

nonsense: bad publicity stopped them from leaving the port.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Again, I wish to go above whether they eat the meat, I want to go above the fact that other species get caught, I want to go beyond the differences in psyche attached to dolphins on wikipedia. What I have personal umbridge with is the fact that one culture feels it has the right to tell another culture how to keep it's shop in order. The Japanese have a different perspective on dolphins to other cultures. Does this make them wrong? Does it give any other culture the right to say, you are wrong do it our way, think like we do? No it doesn't. As that would be the epitome of cultural imperialism (imposing your culture on another culture with total dismissal for their viewpoint and no flexiblity in your perspective). Like many of these 'save the [insert name of animal here (but no slugs please)]' I find it infuriating that one culture can feel that it's vastly superior to another and as such has the right to evangelize their own cultural viewpoint to the point where everybody is just like them and everywhere is just like Texas..

0 ( +0 / -0 )

There must be a demarcation, a degree of intelligence of animals to draw a line between an animal that can or cannot be killed for sport, food or other human socio-economic benefit. The case for anti-dolphin killers is that dolphins are smart and lovable to humans compared to other animals, this is certainly true. However, to recognise that dolphins require protection would open the floodgates to other animal activists who make their case for preserving other various species, orders and other sorts (e.. avians, crustaceans, reptiles) the list goes on. People like Ric O'Barry are driven to protect their creatures of interest out of affection, but that reason does not go far enough.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

do u really think the toothless Japanese press with their exclusionary "press clubs" would touch this story with a ten foot pole?

They wouldn't touch it with a 10-foot gaff. Not for all the hot dolphins dinners in the world.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

nonsense: bad publicity stopped them from leaving the port.

That's indeed nonsense. Can you give us one example where the bad publicity have had any impact on Japanese fishing practices in the last 30 years? That movie will not save one dolphine - if that is really the intend. It will make fame and fortune to the makers. They can also congratulate themselves that they have done something. Indeed the movie and its followers have been instrumental in severing the friendly relation between Taiji and Broom. Are the hate mails and racism experienced by innocent residents of Japanese heritage in Broom really worth the cause? Ah, that's collatoral damage. Fomenting tension will bring nothing but grief to people. It probably feels good to follow the war drum "to do something" about anything, but this won't save one dolphine in Taiji. After the whale wars and all the other wars and being 'intelligent' beings we should have worked out by now that this approach doesn't work.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I'm with Makkun70, 'I find it infuriating that one culture can feel that it's vastly superior to another and as such has the right to evangelize their own cultural viewpoint to the point where everybody is just like them', very well said.

And just because an animal is deemed 'intelligent' does not mean that it should not be harvested, as long it is done sustainably.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Makkun, Cultures indicating brutal practices have always been critisized in human history. This is not only against Japan. But it is true, if a country as developed and civil as Japan does something like slaugthering animal like dolphin, it draws even more critisizm. But this is Japan for crying out loud. They can teach rest of the he world about how we should be treating each other with respect and dignity. They are regarded as one of the smartest people, making electronics, cars and leader in green technology. Whole world has shocked to see how can a people as kind and considerate as Japanese, doesn't mind slughtering smartest animals on earth. How can this brutality and world famous kindness can exist in same place?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

And this 'intelligent animal' argument is really irrelevant. If I catch a snotty-nosed kid pulling the wings off a dragonfly just because he can, he gets the flat of my hand hard up the back of his barbaric little head. The so-called growed ups of Taiji are no different from the snotty-nosed kid; they deserve the flat of the hand of the international community up the backs of their nasty, bloodstained heads.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

he gets the flat of my hand hard up the back of his barbaric little head

Wow, Cleo advocating violence. This should be a news item itself. (Just kidding Cleo).

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Keehar,

'I find it infuriating that one culture can feel that it's vastly superior to another and as such has the right to evangelize their own cultural viewpoint to the point where everybody is just like them'

This has nothing to do with one country being superior to another. If anything, I feel Japanese people are more superior to others, just because of the fact that they treat each other with respect like no other does. Low crime rate is great example to that.

It is a fact that rest of the world loves and respect dolphins, though they lack the kindness toward each other. We are not demanding, we are asking please, not to kill the animal that we love and respect so much. Many, who saw those slaughter videos in youtube could not hold their tears. Some are infuriated that in this day and age, developed and kind nation like Japan, would have no problem with this slughter.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

malfupete,

Unfortunately for these dolphin fisherman, international opinion is that dolphin is not food.

On the contrary, unfortunately for people who think dolphin is not food, Taiji dolphin fishermen (and dolphin fishermen elsewhere) are not governed by the governments of foreign countries but their own government. And I don't see Japan starting banning traditional food culture anytime soon.

nobody gives them a hard time because it is part of their culture.

Same with Taiji folks.

They also don't have access to 24 hour supermarkets and pachinko parlors like I'd assume the residents of Taiji have.

Where is it written that if you have 24 hour supermarkets ("conbinis") etc you may not have dolphin catching and dolphin eating?

Taiji, unlike northern canada, is not void of people and establishments of business and people could just as easily get their food from other sources.

Taiji has a sea right in front of it so why on earth should they not take their food from right in front of them?

Makkun70,

Thanks for the spelling tip, and I agree with your sentiment :)

0 ( +0 / -0 )

My question is this: will all the meat from the dolphin kill get onto the dinner table, or will authorities/slaughtermen have to create a market for it like whale meat? Is there really a big market out there for dolphin meat? Or is it simply a case of letting these villagers do the kill "because it is their tradition and right".

BTW, calling them "fishermen" is incorrect - Dolphins are actually mammals (Check Wikipedia). Perhaps something was lost in translation of the article?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Burakumin,

BTW, calling them "fishermen" is incorrect - Dolphins are actually mammals (Check Wikipedia). Perhaps something was lost in translation of the article?

Great point! We should call them "killers of marine mammals".

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Damien15,

It's strange that you think it's right to not kill smart animals but fine to kill dumber animals. I think you should reconsider that point of view.

Japanese has no regard for their life and intelligence.

Japanese people who have eaten cetaceans down through the years say "itadakimasu" in thanks before taking their meals, and build gravestones in memory of them, etc etc. From the perspective of Japanese people they have more respect for these animals than foreigners who simply see them as "cute" or "smart".

this is Japan for crying out loud. They can teach rest of the he world about how we should be treating

They are, perhaps? As mentioned above they say "itadakimasu" before dinner etc - you should learn about their traditional way of thinking properly before you start complaining about it.

spudman,

nonsense: bad publicity stopped them from leaving the port.

I'm not sure but I gather that they catch different types of cetaceans according to their quotas, and they don't hunt them all via this method criticised in "The Cove". I frankly trust the Japanese media to be more objective about the reasons for the lack of cetacean killing on a given day than the Western media who were accompanied by Obarry telling them all his conspiracy theories.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Has anyone checked the J-Wiki article about dolphins? Am I the only one finding it amazing that they are accusing rest of the world, foolishly believing the dolphins are smart? It clearly says that the common belief of the dolphis being smart is false! Right below that, it recomends to eat them with soy sauce or goma (sesame).

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Damien15,

You mention the idea that killing animals not raised in captivity is "damaging".

Certainly, like anything, unintended consequences can be brought about if done recklessly, but I suggest you investigate the notion of sustainable utilization (hunting) of wild animals. It has numerous benefits when compared with raising animals in captivity.

You might like to note that Taiji's hunt last year saw it catch significantly less than the quota allocated to it by authorities.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Damien15,

My solution is to let people eat what they choose to, so long as it is done in a sustainable fashion and they use the best methods available to them for dispatching the animals in question. My solution is better than yours, I believe, since it respects the rights of our fellow human beings.

Indeed Japan does have a bit more cash than most, and I think they should continue to pursue their sustainable use philosophy and promote it to those nations with less.

I don't see why they should stop eating whatever they like though. Let's have a proper principle behind our actions, rather than arbitrarily draw random lines all over the place (which will get us into a big tangle).

How can we respect the fact that they are saying "Itadakimasu" if they slaughter their dinner inhumaely.

If you think it is inhumane then by all means go there and show them how they could do it better. And do try to understand the traditional Japanese philosophy about this.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Davidatokyo,

It has numerous benefits when compared with raising animals in captivity.

Can you enlighten us about those benefits?

You might like to note that Taiji's hunt last year saw it catch significantly less than the quota allocated to it by authorities.

What would be the reason for that? Could it be because there weren't enough to slughter?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Tradition plays no part in anything with regards to dolphin-hunting.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Can you enlighten us about those benefits?

I suppose you mean "I" rather than "us", but sure, briefly.

1) Less environmental destruction - whether you catch a wild animal or not it's environment is there, as it is.

Conversely in order to raise animals in captivity you need to create a space to do so - which results in environmental destruction, chopping down trees which would otherwise absorb carbon dioxide etc. This is just one example in this space. Other points include the fact that wild animals are naturally renewable resources that are available thanks to natural energy - the power of the sun is all that is required and that's free with no environmental cost. So we should absolutely be using these natural resources properly and reduce our reliance on more environmentally destructive means.

2) Free wild animals live better lives than animals in captivity. Put yourself in the shoes / hooves / flippers of the animals and think about which life you'd prefer. People who devour animals that lived their lives in captivity tend to ignore this fact and focus only on the killing method (the final instants of the animals life). On the balance there is simply no argument to be had, in my view.

What would be the reason for that?

They don't need / want to catch the full quota, would be the likely reason that the catches are lower than the quotas. In recent years baleen whale product supply is up, and on a nationwide basis this is viewed as a reason for the dolphin quotas no longer being filled as in previous years.

Your suggested explanation of a lack of dolphins to catch could be easily recognised if the dolphin hunters themselves were having this trouble (e.g. constant fishing effort but decreasing catch levels), but such a thing hasn't been reported or observed so far as I know.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Davidatokyo,

Other points include the fact that wild animals are naturally renewable resources that are available thanks to natural energy

That's where you and most people differ. You see animals as natural resources that we can kill any, for whatever reason. Most see them as fellow beings we share this world with. Just as we have a right to a life without worry of random slaugther, they also have a right to live and die off of natural causes.

They don't need / want to catch the full quota, would be the likely reason that the catches are lower than the quotas. In recent years baleen whale product supply is up, and on a nationwide basis this is viewed as a reason for the dolphin quotas no longer being filled as in previous years.

I remember in previous discussion, it was said that slaughter was for pest control. Also in BBC reporter wrote that fisherman (marine mammal killers) said they couldn't care less about quotas. But I should give you a credit for knowing so much about the trade. And understand maybe your livelyhood is depending on this slaughter. There is no convincing you that animals are fellow beings, and deserve right to live. If we can't preserve them all, all we can do is save the ones we can.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

If you think it is inhumane then by all means go there and show them how they could do it better. And do try to understand the traditional Japanese philosophy about this.

Do understand that it means "inochi itadakimasu" and do resepct the fact that it's used by all. That tells me Japanese people traditionaly respect life. It's only couple wild marine mammal killers that disgacing the nation wiht their inhuman methods and calling them traditions. Showing no respec to life that is so intelligent and friendly.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I don't think the film will find a distributor in Japan< No it will not. The Cove has no commercial viability in Japan. It is akin to the Sea Shepard which appears in the film. This "documentary" is not at all what O'Barry originally hoped for, that is, something that would appeal to the Japanese general public. Instead, what he got was a Hollywood-scripted macho-man "eco-thriller", by first time film-maker Louie Psyhoyos and his fatcat billionare Texas pal, Jim Clark, who BTW, hates Japan.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Where is it written that if you have 24 hour supermarkets ("conbinis") etc you may not have dolphin catching and dolphin eating?

It should be written in your DNA.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Fisherman do not only catch fish. If you think about the verb 'fish' it is not exclusively used for fish but for all aquatic animals. Therefore fisherman is still an appropriate term to use.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

so if I am a whaler then I am a fisherman? How about if I am a sealer? Your stretching the definition of fisherman there. Wait a pearl diver is a fisherman. nope still doesn't work. dictionary says (N)a person who catches fish for a living or for sport.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Spudman thanks for the definition. So these men who catch the dolphins, if besides this they also 'catch fish for a living' are then just fishermen catching dolphins. Makes sense now. Who knows there may even be a few salary men who catch dolphins too!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Dilbert14,

Animals being killed by other animals (which includes humans - we aren't aliens we were all born here too unless you can prove otherwise) is entirely natural.

My knowledge of the increasing supply of baleen whale products being credited for the reductions in catch of smaller cetaceans is a result of my reading stock assessments for the smaller cetaceans in question. These are available (for free) on the internet for anyone who actually cares to look for them and read them :)

Inakadazebaby,

I agree, if there was a word like "whaler" or "sealer" for dolphin catchers then it would be in use already. The fact that such a word doesn't seem to exist makes me think that dolphin fishermen is appropriate. Also I suppose it comes about because perhaps English speaking people have in the past enjoyed killing whales and seals but never got around to targeting dolphins.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@davidattokyo

You seem to be well informed. Maybe you can answer a question for me. Some (most) news reports speak of 2,300 dolphines killed in a year, others talk of 23,000. What is correct?

@Jaegger They count killed dolphines and whales, Afghans are not counted. They don't.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

tigris,

It's probably the difference between Taiji's catches (2,000 or so) and Japan's total catches / quotas (around 20,000).

Apparently in Iwate they catch the highest numbers, but for some reason we don't hear many stories about their fishermen. I suspect it is due to them simply not being targeted yet, as opposed to the foreigners being accepting of Iwate fishermen catching small cetaceans. Taiji folks seem to be the only ones bearing the brunt of this ugly side of globalization.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Davidatokyo,

Animals being killed by other animals (which includes humans - we aren't aliens we were all born here too unless you can prove otherwise) is entirely natural.

Again, animals only kill for survival purposes. We do for recreation and pest control. Death is part of life only if it comes naturally, not brought upon. There's nothing natural about letting anyone kill any animal for any purpose they see fit. Killing a marine mammal like dolphin for pest control is infuriating to most people. And you will see, it will dissapear!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I sincerely believe Japanese people are kind considerate people that won't let this inhumane slaughther continue.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The co-stars could not be reached for comment.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Damien15,

We are animals, this is a fact. Humans can not survive without eating food, which involves consuming (and thus killing) other lifeforms.

Recreation killing ain't my bag personally, but if managed properly it can have positive conservation benefits, as can pest control.

Death is part of life only if it comes naturally, not brought upon.

In population dynamics there is a term "natural mortality", which certainly includes death due to predation (look it up).

There's nothing natural about letting anyone kill any animal for any purpose they see fit.

How ever do you think people came to kill these animals in the first place if it was not natural?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

In sincerely hope that you will wake up to human diversity and also realise that all animals are deserving of equal respect.

Sorry but, aren't you supporting the slaughter? How can you think they deserve respect and randomly slauhter them?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

It's gaining momentum, http://www.japanprobe.com/?p=12424

Everything happened here was positive. Japanese news coverage is very very positive. He is focusing on mercury levels and so should we. All you dolphin killers, what is your view on mercury levels in those meat pushed to the schoolkids? Does it worth keeping the "tradition" to the point of poisioning kids?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Dilbert14,

How can you think they deserve respect and randomly slauhter them?

So if I understand you correctly, you believe that some species are worthy of our respect and should not be killed, while others are not worthy and can be killed for food. Right? Please tell me, how do you know which species belong to which category?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Louie Psihoyos was caught telling the press that the whole world is shocked at this.

no not really... maybe just in his view of "whole world"

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Ninjaninaritai,

I believe all species deserve our respect. My point is, noone will invest their money to make dolphin farms, and if they did, we wouldn't have as big problem with it. Killing wild dolphins the way they do, is too cruel. Did you see those videos in youtube? How can anyone be proud to say this is a culture? If they want to eat dolphins that bad, they should farm them and find humane way of killing them? There's no humane way of killing a wild dolhin, but if they are in captivity, they'd at least be killed individually, not slashed by stabbing randomyl in a cove. Don't you see how cruel that is? Any change in this situation would be an improvement.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

In population dynamics there is a term "natural mortality", which certainly includes death due to predation (look it up).

I'm sure it is so. But reason for predation is importnat. Us slashing smart beings to death in small cove because they maybe responsible of fish stock decline = barbaric and not natural. Animal killing another animal for food = natural mortality.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

How ever do you think people came to kill these animals in the first place if it was not natural?

Natural? Don't know. Respectable? Never.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

OK. I am going to disagree with you on this. See ya.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Acutally, I can comfortably say that it's not in human's nature to slash and slaughter smart animals like dolphins. That's why we're debating on this. There are many think like me, we maybe in majority. Maybe not in Japan, but in the world, most people acknowldges that dolphins are not food. However many years need to pass, this will stop!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

We are animals, this is a fact.

We're the only animal kill unreasonably. Killing for survival is accepted, killing smart animals for pest control is not! Killing other animals for any other reason than bare survival, is barbaric and not natural. We're the most barbaric animals, because some of us like you think other animals are here for us to kill and slaughter, for any reason we see fit. Problem is there are more of us thinking fellow animals don't deserve this treatment. Least we can do to raise them in captivity, in good conditions, and don't touch the ones that we collectively decide. The idea of "it's not right to discriminate, so we should allow anyone to kill any animal" does not stand, and will not be permited. Sooner or later this will stop. It has to.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Even if these arguments for what's right and wrong concerning dolphin slughter are very subjective, the fact that they are puching the mercury contaminated meat to schoolchilden is very worrying!!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The meat from one dolphin fetches about 50,000 yen, and is sold at supermarkets across Japan, where dolphin and whale meat are considered delicacies.

Eventhough I have lived and travelled all over Japan, I never saw dolphin meat.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Dilbert14,

We're the only animal kill unreasonably.

From the wikipedia article on killer whales (the largest species of the dolphin family): "Although, unlike transient killer whales, resident killer whales have never been observed to eat other marine mammals, they are known to occasionally harass and kill porpoises and seals for no apparent reason."

Since the dolphins are so intelligent, do moral standards apply to them? And if so, is the described behavior morally deplorable?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Foxie,

Because most of the time dolphin is labeled as whale meat.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Davidatokyo, Can we at least hear your take on the mercury issue? Do you think it's overrated?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Dilbert14, your views on dolphins and their behaviour are fascinating. But since Mod deletes all our posts that are not explicitly about Taiji or The Cove, I'm afraid we're not able to discuss this issue further. Sad, I would love to know more about your views.

Moderator: We ask all readers to please stay on topic.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Moderator, I wish we could include some arguments about why we shouldn't kill dolphins and give some examples about how smart they really are. Is it really off topic, when we are discussing about moral points of what's happening in Taiji?

Ninjaninaritai, I too would love to talk more on the subject. If you can, please check about the dolphins in autism studies. It blew my mind.

Moderator: How smart dolphins are is not what the story is about. If you have an opinion on "The Cove," please post that.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

This is a great story. So much conflict. Ric O'Barry of the late 1960s making (likely) great money training dolphins for television vs. Ric O'Barry today making (likely) great money promoting a film vilifying taking dolphins and using them for entertainment. Ric O'Barry essentially playing "my culture is better than your culture" with local fishermen. Local Japanese trying to restrict access to a national park, and police unable to arrest clandestine filmmakers who circumvent the barricades. This looks like it has the makings of a non-fiction best seller.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Foxie - Eventhough I have lived and travelled all over Japan, I never saw dolphin meat.

The reason you have not seen it is because it is not labeled as dolphin meat. It is sold as whale meat. Yet another food scam in Japan. If you were to order whale meat at a chain izakaiya it would be dolphin meat and more likely from Wakayama (Taiji) full of all sorts of chemicals and heavy metals and possibly frozen for six months.

Will this movie be translated into Japanese and played at the major cinemas? - Just kidding! :P
0 ( +0 / -0 )

Hey Mark, what a cynic! I highly doubt O'Barry is making a killing in making money, on the scale the hunters are with the dophins. Ever hear of doing something out of your deep personal beliefs? If the man loves dolphins for over 50 years, wouldn't you think he might feel something averse to a story like The Cove without being driven by thought of financial gain for himself? I think you strike out completely on this point.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

O'Barry makes nothing from doing this Taiji campaign. Zero, nada, nothing. He will end up back home in Coconut Grove with a pillowcase of out-of-pocket expense receipts that never get reimbursed. It is the story of his life.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Meanwhile, Greenpeace, Sea Sheperd, and the ocean full of "save the...(insert cause" organizations rake in millions. Look at the Red Cross chief pulling down $300,000 + Meanwhile, O'Barry eats riceballs...

0 ( +0 / -0 )

If the man loves dolphins for over 50 years, wouldn't you think he might feel something averse to a story like The Cove without being driven by thought of financial gain for himself? I think you strike out completely on this point.

Perhaps I did. Except worldwide box office receipts for The Cove as of September 6th were $693,822. If O'Barry wasn't interested in financial gain, why didn't he just put the film on youtube instead of showing it at Sundance? Surely he could have gotten donations to cover the cost of production.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The meat from one dolphin fetches about 50,000 yen, and is sold at >supermarkets across Japan, where dolphin and whale meat are considered >delicacies.

Nonsense. Dolphin is NOT considered a "declicaty in Japan. In fact the only way it can be sold is to be mislabeled as "Whale Meat".

0 ( +0 / -0 )

If O'Barry wasn't interested in financial gain, why didn't he just put the film on youtube

The film was not made by O'Barry, it was made about O'Barry, and it was funded by a donation; from Jim Clark, the multi-millionaire behind Netscape. So what on earth are you talking about!?!

There are other perfectly logical reasons why a movie or documentary cannot just be release direct onto Youtube, e.g. when it comes to entering into certain competitions or finding distributors.

Gaining a prize such as Sundance is a lot more important to establishing the credibility of the campaign than Youtube views (on which there is already plenty of related footage).

Have you any idea what it cost to make ... all that tech, post production ... all the crew?

In short, if you do not know what you are talking about ... don't.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l4LQ9o2LOSg

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Have you any idea what it cost to make ... all that tech, post production ... all the crew?

If the film was funded by a donation from Jim Clark, as you said, I would guess zero, is that correct? So then who is getting the $693,822 from the theater box office? Besides the theaters and the distributor?

Assuming, though that Ric O'Barry isn't making money great money off of the film, I'll revise my comment. Is there anything about this sentence that is incorrect?

Ric O'Barry of the late 1960s making (likely) great money training dolphins for television vs. Ric O'Barry today promoting a film vilifying taking dolphins and using them for entertainment.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

http://www.zazzle.com/klclewis/gifts?cg=196203609873968101

0 ( +0 / -0 )

As a wider issue, I find Japan generally lacking in conscience when it comes to animal rights in general. I just don`t think Japanese see the rights of animals in the same way many in western culture do.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

There's children starving in the world and multi-milionnaires like Jim Clark of Netscape chose to fund this? The world is going crazy!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Ric O'Barry did not make one dime from the movie. Money from The Cove goes to a non-profit called OPS, http://www.opsociety.org/home.htm

I read somewhere that the movie cost 2.5 million to make. Right now it is #113 on the list of top grossing documentaries, http://www.boxofficemojo.com/genres/chart/?view=main&pagenum=2&id=documentary.htm

Anyone making claims that Ric O'Barry or the backers of this film are doing this to make a profit have a very stiff uphill climb to make their case.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Mark, revise your comment. You simply assumed, and incorrectly.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Mark, revise your comment.

Please see above.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Login to leave a comment

Facebook users

Use your Facebook account to login or register with JapanToday. By doing so, you will also receive an email inviting you to receive our news alerts.

Facebook Connect

Login with your JapanToday account

User registration

Articles, Offers & Useful Resources

A mix of what's trending on our other sites