The majestic Humpback Whale
Meanwhile, the Japanese Antarctic summer whale hunt has been suspended– for now. Their whale quota for the season, usually ending in March, of just under 1,000, has far from been reached thanks to the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society, the anti-whaling “enforcement group.” Sea Shepherd ships chase whalers and employ such tactics as ramming, scuttling, video documentaion, and other nautical (and non-nautical) type maneuvers like blocking the stern so harpooned whales can’t be hauled in.
Since 1986, when commercial whaling was banned by the International Whaling Commission, Japan has been killing whales under the guise of “scientific research.” Two other nations, Iceland and Norway, outright defy the ban by hunting commercially. Those who kill whales do so for reasons no different from those who hunt any animal- cultural tradition, economic profit, and sometimes, unfathomably cruel, selfish desire. Sea Shepherd, who does not work on behalf of the IWC, assumes the responsibility of enforcing the ban- often in a militant fashion. But how else does one drive whaling ships out of the Antarctic seas toward South America, forcing the hunters to call it quits? Certainly not by being nice. Sometimes we have to draw a line in the sand and take a stand for something. Because sometimes that’s what the situation demands.
The mission of Sea Shepherd should be an inspiration to all who want to make a positive difference in the lives of animals- “To end the destruction of habitat and the slaughter of wildlife in the world’s oceans in order to conserve and protect ecosystems and species.”
A win (an end to whale hunting) and a loss (the delisting of wolves)- both equally significant in terms of the lives they affect.
Live vegan- not only by eating vegan, but also by protecting habitat for species other than ourselves. Yes, that means us vegans must be environmentalists. Eat local and in season. Be conscious of non-food items you consume, as well. Protect the wild we have left- it’s barely enough for the animals and plants remaining in it.