Replies to – ‘Not ashamed’: dolphin hunters of Taiji break silence over film The Cove

On December 11th 2017 an article was published in The Guardian written by Justin McCurry in Taiji
‘Not ashamed’: dolphin hunters of Taiji break silence over film The Cove
Members of the tiny Japanese community, which was vilified in the 2009 documentary, speak to the Guardian about fishing and their way of life.

taiji article



On December 11, 2017, “The Guardian” published an article entitled “Not ashamed: dolphin hunters of Taiji break silence over film The Cove.” The article is a dispiriting read, as so much information is calculatedly left out to justify Taiji’s brutal slaughter of dolphins. I find it suspicious that Taiji’s dolphin hunters, who have had years to respond to ‘The Cove’ movie, decide to “break silence” at the exact time a sympathetic journalist who obviously does not care about animal welfare, gives them a platform to defend a dolphin slaughter that has shocked the world. The article completely ignores the cruel aspects of a dolphin hunt that has nothing to do with “tradition” or “culture”.

Not a word has been mentioned about the dolphins’ utter panic and fear during the actual drive, which may last for several hours out at sea, nor is there a mention about how mothers desperately try to protect their offspring during slaughter. The author conveniently turns a blind eye to the grueling selection process carried out by dolphin trainers who assist in the slaughter.

Trainers show up just prior to a slaughter to select show-quality dolphins that can be sold for thousands of dollars to the dolphinarium industry. Offspring are dumped out at sea, alone, after their mothers have been killed or taken captive. This article, which seeks to defend extreme animal cruelty by leaving out crucial information, makes me more determined than ever to stop the injustice against dolphins in Taiji. When the media begins to normalize unacceptable acts; in this instance, the capture and killing of dolphins; the battle becomes even more important. We need to hold our ground and stick with the facts: profiting off another’s suffering and shipping dolphins anywhere and to anybody in the world has nothing to do with Taiji’s tradition of whaling.

– Ric O’Barry –  Dolphin Project

The truth is slightly different to the Taiji dolphin hunters claims. #Guardian

1. Of course the Taiji dolphin hunters are not ashamed, they are psychopaths and psychopaths feel no shame. To inflict this level of cruelty and suffering to such intelligent, sentient creatures is nothing short of barbaric and has no place in a civilised society.
2. This so called hunt is not “traditional”, it’s conducted using powerful modern boats and other technology. Claiming something is traditional is no reason to continue, many traditions have ended for good reason.
3. The hunters go to great lengths to conceal the horrific slaughter including hammering bungs into the hole inflicted by the spinal lance to avoid blood flowing into the water. The dolphins slowly bleed to death internally.
4. The activists do not provoke or manufacture confrontation. If they did they would be immediately arrested by the many police. Many law abiding activists coming to simply document the hunt are denied entry to Japan.
5. Claiming the town would not survive if the dolphin hunt ended is untrue. Very few people in the town benefit financially from the hunt. The few hunters and dolphin dealers however make huge amounts from each dolphin sold into slavery.
6. The town would actually be far better off if they turned to tourism, whale and dolphin watching trips in the wild would be a long term sustainable industry that would benefit the entire town. The tourists that do come to the town are not told about the hunt.
7. The dolphin meat is toxic and unfit for human consumption, the local supermarkets are full of alternative foods and there is very little demand for the dolphin meat so claiming dolphins are an important food source is ridiculous.
8. The dolphins are not a resource and nor do they belong to the hunters or Japan, they are simply migrating past and should be protected for future generations as they are in most other parts of the world.
9. The hunt is totally unsustainable as they destroy entire pods including pregnant females and juveniles, ending the gene pool. Dolphins are an apex predator and essential to the continued health of the oceans.
10. The local fishermen want to exterminate the dolphins as they see them as vermin competing for the fish stocks. The reality is the opposite, more dolphins equals more fish stocks as they regulate the food chain. Reduced fish stocks are due to human overfishing and habitat destruction.

– Jessie Treverton – Former Sea Shepherd Cove Guardian Leader

This article says it took eight years for the Taiji dolphin hunters to break their silence about killing of dolphins in…

Posted by Louie Psihoyos on Monday, 11 December 2017