December 15, 2010
Report from Taiji: December 15 (new video)
Witnessing death, either on a large scale or a single instance, is something that will forever change who you are. Becoming numb and disconnecting is a survival instinct that your body simply must resort to. We all handle tragedy differently and some of us are more accustomed to tragedy than others. I fall into the category of being accustomed to tragedy. However, my life has in no way hardened me to the horrors of genocide. No matter how many times I see it with my own eyes, the sight of terrified dolphins being brutally murdered is something that will haunt me forever.
Today was a day that simply broke us. A pod of roughly 20 striped dolphins were driven into the Cove. Overcome with fear, they headed in three different directions, separating the original pod of possibly 50 dolphins. Two of the separated groups were fortunate enough to escape. One was not so lucky. The group that was driven into the killing cove included at least two calves. The mother of one of the calves was in the group that escaped. More than likely she will stay in the area, searching for her baby, only to be caught by the hunters tomorrow. At this point, I’m sure she would prefer death versus a life of grieving her lost child.
Another mother, trapped in the Cove, watched as her infant struggled, tangled in a fishing net. She watched as a skiff approached her offspring, roughly pulled it from the net, tied a rope around its tail and dragged it up onto the beach to its death. I’m not a mother, but I simply cannot fathom watching that happen to my flesh and blood. Can you?
Yet that is what’s happening. This is happening in our world and we have a responsibility to stop it. While the world punches a time clock, yawns through pointless meetings and stresses over finances, there are families being torn apart and innocent lives being lost.
Here is your opportunity to become a Cove Guardian. To join us in Taiji (voluntarily, and completely at your own cost and risk), write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We will get back to you, but please be patient. We cannot keep an eye on the Cove and answer e-mails at the same time. Contributions to Sea Shepherd Conservation Society to keep our official presence here are needed and welcome. These contributions cover the costs for transport, telephone, equipment, supplies, food, and lodging for the official Sea Shepherd representative. We will remain here through the end of March and will return for the next season in September 2011.
Thank you to the citizens of Japan who are weighing these issues and beginning to take a stand to solve them. Thank you to everyone who is on the frontlines of this war. This is a war to save ourselves from ourselves. Without your calling and writing Japanese embassies and your own governments, there will be no change. Keep it up! Every time dolphins are pushed into the Cove, let them have it. Every time there is blood in the water, let them have it. Make good consumer choices. Inform everyone you know about the tragedy here and how it is linked to the captive dolphin trade. All who patronize a dolphin show have blood on their hands.
For the dolphins,
Nicole, who will be assisting me during the next three months, will share her experiences while in Taiji on her blog.
Scott’s daughter, Elora Malama West, who assisted him, will continue her blog from home.