My Sea Shepherd


 

International Day of Protest against the Canadian Seal Hunt

International Day of Protest against the Canadian Seal Hunt


March 15, 2006

Protests occurred in the following cities:

NORTH AMERICA
United States
Austin
Boston
Chicago
Denver
Detroit
Hollywood, Florida
Honolulu
Los Angeles
Mentor, Ohio
Minneapolis
Norfolk & Virginia Beach, VA
Orlando
Portland, Oregon
New York
Salt Lake City
San Diego
San Francisco
Seattle
Washington, DC
Waterford, CT

NORTH AMERICA
Canada
Calgary, Alberta
Halifax, NS
Kelowna, BC
Nanaimo, BC
Toronto, ON
Vancouver, BC
Windsor, Ontario
Winnipeg, Manitoba

EUROPE
Austria - Vienna
Belgium - Antwerp
Croatia - Zagreb
France
Paris
Nice
Toulouse
Germany - Berlin
Hungary - Budapest
Ireland - Dublin
Netherlands - Den Haag
Poland - Warsaw
Russia
Moscow
St.Petersburg
United Kingdom - London

OTHER
Australia - Melbourne
India - Madras
Israel - Tel-Aviv
South Africa - Cape Town

Protest reports are available for many cities. Click on any link on the above list
to jump down to that city's protest.


Australia

Melbourne- Natalie Bowkett

On Wednesday 15th March, the International Day of Action for Seals, SSCS Melbourne staged a protest outside the Canadian Consulate, 101 Collins St, Melbourne. The protest was held between 12:30 and 2:00, in order to target business people taking lunch breaks. It also coincided with the first day of the Commonwealth Games, allowing us to gain exposure to and support from a number of international visitors including a few surprised Canadians!

Twelve Sea Shepherd supporters and friends attended with flyers, signs, canvases and toy seals. In such a short space of time we managed to obtain 32 pages of signatures. The public was so supportive that they were queuing up to sign petitions. Most people we spoke to were unaware the seal slaughter was about to begin and in such vast numbers and such brutality. Not one person approached with any argument in favour of the slaughter.

The day before in Tasmania Liz Hardy held an anti-fur and sealing protest and received similar such support. She had people crossing the street to talk to her and sign petitions.

SSCS Melbourne would like to thank everyone who attended the protest, ALV for their assistance, the security staff at 101 Collins st who allowed us to stage a peaceful demonstration and even erect signs on their property, and to all the people of Melbourne who gave us their support.

Natalie Bowkett


Belgium

Antwerp - Anne Van Ingelgem

On Saturday March 18 Sea Shepherd Europe went to Antwerp's main shopping street to collect signatures against the barbaric Canadian seal "hunt."

The action was a big success: Many, many shoppers signed the petition. People had to stand in line and wait to sign. We received lots of positive reaction, but many people expressed their amazement as to why this slaughter is still happening, despite years of protest.

Sea Shepherd Europe thanks everyone who signed the petition and spoke up for the seals. Special thanks to signature hunters Monique, Tom and Stijn, who made this action successful.

Sea Shepherd Europe trok op zaterdag 18 maart naar de drukste winkelstraat van Antwerpen om er handtekeningen te verzamelen tegen de gruwelijke Canadese zeehondenslachting.

De actie was een succes: shoppende voorbijgangers ondertekenden massaal de petitie. Men moest in de rij staan en geduldig zijn of haar beurt afwachten. We kregen heel veel positieve reacties, maar mensen vragen zich hardop af hoe het mogelijk is dat deze barbaarse slachting ondanks het jarenlange protest nog steeds plaatsvindt.

Sea Shepherd Europe dankt iedereen die de petitie ondertekende en hartverwarmend opkwam voor de zeehondjes. Speciale dank voor handtekeningjagers Monique, Tom en Stijn die van deze actie een succes maakten.


Anne Van Ingelgem


Canada

Calgary - Barb Sicotte

Approximately 30 people (pretty much a record for an animal rights protest in Calgary) and one canine came out to protest the seal hunt; some people even came from as far as Edmonton to take part. We held the protest in front of Harry Hayes, the large state government building in Calgary. Being downtown at lunch hour, we got lots of exposure and I would say generally a good reaction from people...lots of honks of support and positive comments. We were proud to take part in this campaign and do our part to bring more awareness to this issue; as Canadians, it is our duty to denounce this sick and barbaric hunt every chance we get until it is stopped for good.

Everyone did an outstanding job on this protest, thank you to everyone who helped out, even in the little ways, for making it a huge success!

Barb Sicotte


Nanaimo - Pattie Turcotte

Today is the International Day of Protest against the Seal hunt in Atlantic Canada, so Nanaimo joined forces with 55 cities worldwide today doing the same thing....

It was held at the Nanaimo SPCA and for an event that was thrown together a week ago it was a total success! We had about 20 people come out, two women came all the way from Sooke, and another couple came from Saltspring Island! We even had a dog with "Stop the Seal Hunt" signs attached to his little yellow raincoat....soooo cute, and a mother and her two little kids with stuffed seal pups! Lots of honking from vehicles going by as well :)

Thanks for all your support in helping to bring awareness to this massacre of defenseless marine mammals, together we can make a difference.

Pattie Turcotte


Vancouver - Steve Thompson

Greetings to my fellow Day of Action for the Seals Protesters!

My name is Steve Thompson. For 2006, along with the cooperation of Ashley Fruno from Liberation BC, I helped to organize the Vancouver protest against the Canadian Seal Slaughter.

I estimate we saw an increase in the number of people who attended this protest compared to last years, which is actually quite good considering the weather was lousy. All in all a very enthusiastic crowd of approximately 50+ determined activists participated in this event. We had enough protesters present to cover the entire pedestrian walkway in front of the Department of Fisheries and Oceans office. A large banner was unfurled making it possible for passersby to see what was going on from a good distance. Ashley organized a large group of protesters into a loop that covered most of the pedestrian walking area, while at each end of this city block activists were handing out leaflets and educating the public on the slaughter. On this day we were a force to be reckoned with and anyone within a hundred meter radius of this block would have had to have been blindfolded with their ears muffled not to know what was going on.

In regards to media coverage, Ashley convinced just about everyone on the list to come out and record our event - the best exposure I've ever seen for a protest event. As it turned out we made front-page Metro-News and the daily edition of Vancouver's "24 hrs" ran a story as well. Our event was also extensively covered by local radio; several TV stations, CTV news and Global, included the protest in their evening primetime news editions.

All of this is proof, if you ask me, that the anti-seal slaughter movement this year is stronger than ever.

As for the Canadian governments spiel that the majority of Canadians support the "hunt" I am happy to report that as several independent polls have recently shown, this just simply is not the case. Out of all the people I spoke with only 3 said they supported the slaughter, 3 out of literally a hundred or so.

In closing I tip my hat to Ashley, she did a first class job and I am very glad we were able to work together. I would also like to thank everyone who came out. You are all true-blue and in my opinion worth your weight in gold to the seals many times over.

Steve Thompson
Sea Shepherd Volunteer - Vancouver

 


Windsor, Ontario - Darryl Braun

see Detroit for the combined report


Winnepeg, Manitoba - Twyla Groening

On March 28th and 29th, AnimalWatch Manitoba (animalwatch.ca) co-director Twyla Groening, associate member Aaron Fehr and associate member Dave Nickarz, Engineer aboard the Sea Shepherd Conservation Society's ship the Farley Mowat, spoke to University of Winnipeg students at an AnimalWatch Manitoba informational table. We showed videos taken at last year's hunt and Dave fielded questions on his disturbing experience of witnessing the hunt last spring. Dave was interviewed at length and received coverage in print in The Winnipeg Sun and conducted a live interview for UMFM - the University of Manitoba's radio station. We managed to have multiple letters to the editor printed in The Winnipeg Free Press as well.

Twyla Groening
Co-Director and Co-Founder
AnimalWatch Manitoba


Dave Nickarz and Aaron Fehr tabling at University of Winnipeg


Croatia

Zagreb - Bernard Vjeran Franolic


'Bleeding' Activists for the Bleeding Seal Pups

With 'bloody' heads 'smashed' by hakapiks, Animal Friends Croatia's activists and more than 60 protesters on Wednesday, March 15, 2006 expressed their opposing to the seal-slaughter in Canada. A figurative protest took place at noon in front of the Canadian Embassy in Zagreb, Gjure Dezelica 4.

At this moment, in more than 40 cities from all over the world protests against this year's seal-slaughter, which should begin in a couple of weeks, are being held. This year, as never before in history, the biggest animal rights and welfare organizations united are organizing numerous joint protests - PETA - People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, HSUS - The Humane Society of the United States, Sea Shepherd Conservation Society, IFAW - International Fund for Animal Welfare, WSPA - World Society for the Protection of Animals, IDA - In Defense of Animals, Harpseals.org and many others.

Bernard Vjeran Franolic
Int. Campaigns Coordinator
Animal Friends Croatia


Hungary

Budapest - Veronika Kristóf

We had the demonstration in the centre of Budapest, outside Air Canada Agency between 2.30-3.30 pm on March 16, 2006. Most of the pedestrians, with a lot of tourists among them, were interested in it. We distributed about 300 leaflets. We could horrify the people quite well with the shocking photos on our banners. These are things that are easier not to take notice of!

A Canadian-Hungarian citizen came to us who said, he did not understand this whole seal-hunting issue because there is a very precise protection of animals. I think this is what we do not understand either! He wished good luck to the Sea Shepherd work! Since nobody wanted to talk to us personally at the Embassy in the last two years (I could only put the petition in the post box), I will send them the petition with the Hungarian version as well as by mail.

The co-operation with the police was very good again. I will inform the readers about the protesting day and of course the seal-hunting itself through my media partners.

Veronika Kristóf
volunteer - Sea Shepherd


Germany

Berlin - Manuel Abraas

Berlin,18. March 2006

It was cold , -1 till -5 degrees Celsius. But we made our way from Bremen to Berlin to show the Canadian Government that we are not willed to accept the slaughter of harp seals. Just in that moment we put our table in position, police showed up to control us. We have made our housework; we had the permission of the Government of Berlin. We were only two, but we have been motivated and we still will be. We stood there 3 hours and spoke to the citizens of Berlin and to the tourists, gave them Information about the "hunt." We will be back, hopefully with more people on our side

Manuel Abraas
Sea Shepherd Volunteer


India

Madras - Ingmar Lee

'Bleeding' Activists for the Bleeding Seal Pups

A friend, Hariharan, and I traveled up to Madras today from Pondicherry to protest the seal hunt at the Canadian Consulate in Madras (Chennai) India. Quite a few people expressed interest in going, but it was an eleventh hour call-out and we were the only ones who turned out. At Pondicherry University, the whole Salim Ali School of Ecology and Environmental Sciences were made aware of the Seal Slaughter and would have come out for the day, but they had an exam, so they missed it.

When we got to the consulate, there wasn't a person in sight, except for the security guard, who was sitting there alone, bored out of his gourd. We had a whole bunch of last-years brochures which we had printed out to hand out to whoever was there, but there wasn't anybody at all. We went into the lobby and rang the buzzer, and eventually a secretary came up behind the bullet-proof glass to ask what we wanted. I asked to see the Consul, or whatever senior person there was, but turns out, the consul was away.

But she went and got Mr. Kishore Kumar, Trade Commissioner, who came to the window. I told him that we were participating in the March 15 world-wide day of protest which was organized by Sea Shepherd, during which people were expressing their revulsion and disgust for Canada's ongoing Harp Seal atrocity. Protests were happening at Canadian embassies and consulates all around the world. Mr. Kumar listened and then invited us in! We have to go through two bullet-proof doors, and were then taken to a little conference room were he listened to what we had to say and took a copy of the Sea Shepherd brochure. He told us that a lot of his duties involved environmental action here in India, and he said he was glad we had come, and he sympathized with our disgust for the slaughter. He promised to take the issue up with the Consul, and that he would make sure that our visit got into the record.

Ingmar Lee


Ireland

Dublin - John Carmody

Today's demonstration against the Canadian seal hunt went great, better than expected! We had a wonderful turn out, people just kept coming and going from 12noon til 2pm today Thursday March 23rd 2006! Volunteers from ARAN came from Limerick, Galway, Sligo, Meath and joined with our friends in Dublin! Many other caring people could not make it due to work commitments but called, wrote and emailed the Canadian embassy on the day, we also had a wonderful member of the Canadian public at this demo too and she now speaks out against this hunt and much more on animal cruelty.

This demo is now in its fourth year that ARAN has organized outside the Canadian embassy. Up until now we, like so many others, have being calling on the Canadian government to end the seal slaughter, but it looks like after 40 years this is not happening! So, at today's demonstration we focused directly on highlighting the boycott of Canadian seafood, we had fabulous placards reading "DON"T BUY CANADIAN SEA FOOD" and we chanted this also along with a really noisy megaphone.

To top things off media attention was great too. Prior to doing the demo we did several radio interviews on many Dublin FM radio stations and today we did interviews on many more including International Network News which sells stories to other radio stations. We were also lucky enough to have reporters from Independent News, Press Association Ireland which sells to major media outlets, Southside people, Northside People and East people newspapers and other freelance reporters! During the radio interviews and interviews with reporters from the newspapers we continued to promote the boycott of Canadian seafood and stressed that ARAN has now identified that Ireland imports about $170,000 worth of Canadian seafood and that we are working on highlighting the restaurants that sell this and encourage the restaurants that sell the seafood to stop. We also spoke about the huge boycott in the USA and the UK right now and urged members of the public to come out and speak out against the slaughter and to stop animal cruelty. Maybe this will be the only chance we have of ending this brutal massacre of defenseless marine wildlife.

Thanks to everyone who turned up, you made this demonstration happen and you're making a huge difference!

John Carmody
Animal Rights Action Network (ARAN)


Israel

Tel-Aviv - Mitzi Ocean

Israel takes a stand against the heartless slaughter of over 300,000 baby seals

Israel takes a stand against the heartless slaughter of over 300,000 baby seals that is to take place at the end of this month (March 2006), on the Canadian ice floes of St. Lawrence. On the 15th of March concerned Israeli citizens took part in the international demonstration at their local Canadian embassy in Tel-Aviv. They stood outside the embassy with printed and hand painted posters while informing the public of this atrocity. The Israeli public responded with heartfelt support and gladly added their signature to the numerous on the petition. A well informed letter of protest addressing newly elected Prime Minster Harper and the Canadian Ambassador was hand delivered to the embassy's office (note photo of address). Let us all hope that this international endeavor will be successful and beginning with this year the massacre will be halted. It is time for the entire world to unite to protect wildlife and the environment.

I would like to thank Jeff Sapir our photographer for the photos and all his help and support. And a heartfelt thanks to Alona, Jane and Neta for all their help, support and kind words. And Thank- you too to the kind people at "lastudent" who aided in copying the posters, petition and info leaflets.

Mitzi Ocean


Netherlands

The Hague - Susi Sperling

On March 18 Sea Shepherd Europe collected signatures against the seal hunt in the centre of The Hague.

Alex Cornelissen joined the action. Alex from the Netherlands used to be first mate on flagship Farley Mowat but became captain of the ship a few weeks ago. Alex spend a couple of weeks in his native country Holland and went to The Hague to assist Susi and Marc.

The action was successful, lots of passengers signed the petition and expressed their indignation about this horrible baby murder.

The petitions will be delivered to the Canadian government: a powerful signal from the Netherlands that this shame must stop.


Sea Shepherd Europe verzamelde op 18 maart handtekeningen tegen de zeehondenslachting in het centrum van Den Haag.

Alex Cornelissen was ook van de partij. Nederlander Alex was eerste stuurman op vlaggenschip Farley Mowat en werd een paar weken geleden benoemd tot kapitein. Alex genoot van een verdiende vakantie in thuisland Nederland en zakte af naar Den Haag om Susi en Marc te assisteren.

De actie was een succes, voorbijgangers tekenden massaal de petitie en drukten hun verontwaardiging uit over de gruwelijke babymoord.

De petities zullen overhandigd worden aan de Canadese overheid: een krachtig teken vanuit Nederland dat deze schande definitief moet stoppen.

Susi Sperling


Poland

Warsaw - Karolina Kostrzewa-Colwill

We printed and sent over 40.000 leaflets and 4.000 posters to 120 cities in Poland. Most of materials were handed out in schools and local mini events. About 10 big demonstrations took place in 10 biggest cities in Poland. We launched a separate web page and gained support of celebrities

In Warsaw on the 15th April we had about 70 people show up for the event. We also got a lot of media coverage: tv, radio and newspapers. There were about 4 articles, 3 radio interviews and 1 on TV news. There will also be a 2-page article in a youth magazine which comes out in about 250.000 copies.

At the demonstration we acted out scene as if we were seals who are giving up there Canadian nationality by throwing fake Canadian passports in the trash. Also we gathered signatures on petitions, which than were given to a representative of the embassy.

The TV ad which we produced will be broadcasted about 50-70 times in VH1 TV (owned by MTV) and 4funTV.

Karolina Kostrzewa-Colwill


South Africa

Cape Town - Lejane Hardy

Good Day

South Africans felt the need to add their voices to the International Day of Protest against the seal hunt taking place in Canada each year. We staged a picket/demo outside the Canadian embassy in St. Georges Mall, Cape Town. A memorandum with signatures collected during the protest was handed over to Canadian Consul General Chris Brown by Lejane Hardy of Animal Network News and Peter Hammarstadt of the Sea Shepherd Marine Conservation Society. We received reassurance that the signatures and our concerns about this issue will be presented to the relevant authorities in Canada.

Groups represented by the 40 or so protesters were Whalemark South Africa, Beauty without Cruelty South Africa, Justice for Animals South Africa, Seal Alert South Africa, Earthlife Cape Town as well as a visit by Rutger Hauer, a director of the Sea Shepherd Marine Conservation Society.

Many of the protesters handed out pamphlets with information around the seal hunt and collected signatures. The posters ranged from a picture of a skinned baby seal where you can clearly see the skull broken by the clubs to statements such as "club sandwiches not seals", "stop the slaughter", "350 000 to die again this year" and a special poster put together by 6 year old Terri-Lea Byrne asking Canadians to "please stop killing the seals."

In a statement to the Consul General, Peter Hammarstadt made it quite clear that we are part of an international wave of sentiment against the seal hunt with protests outside Canadian embassies all over the world and that we will not stop our efforts to end this annual horror for as long as it carries on. We will keep the pressure on as well as continuing to call for a boycott of any Canadian fish products for as long as is necessary.


François Hugo and actor Rutger Hauer in a discussion
with canadian embassy encharged

Actor Rutger Hauer and crewmember
Peter Hammarstedt giving an interview

The Canadian Fishing Industry is keen to state that the hunt is not cruel, but it is very clear from footage that has been taken over the years by people such as Sea Shepherd, Humane Society of the United States and others, that the most appalling cruelty takes place in that we have seen many of the seal pups not being killed cleanly and suffering a great deal, the animals being skinned while still alive as well as in some cases being left to just bleed to death on the ice.

We, as South Africans, would like to strongly condemn this practice and would like to encourage the Canadians to look rather to promoting this incredible wilderness and the wonderful, beautiful wildlife such as the seals as a tourist attraction. As debated with passers-by, our tourist industry is based on our wonderful wildlife that people from all over the world come to see, seldom to kill and we would like to request that the Canadians look at eco-tourism as a viable option of making money instead of the barbaric and outdated seal slaughter.

Lejane Hardy
Editor - Animal Network News


UNITED STATES

Denver - Ann Swissdorf

The Denver event went very well. We handed out about 350 to 400 pieces of literature in the 2 hours we were there.

Ann Swissdorf
Rocky Mountain Animal Defense


Detroit - Darryl Braun

Report for Detroit, USA and Windsor, Canada:

Approximately 50 enthusiastic protesters gathered in front of the Detroit entrance to the Tunnel which spans the Detroit River connecting the motor city and the Canadian metropolis of Windsor, Canada. Commuters exiting the Tunnel on the Windsor side were greeted by banner- and sign-toting Canadian activists opposed to this shameful atrocity perpetrated by their fellow countrymen and supported by their government.

The demo was staged between 4:30-6:30pm, a period when thousands of commuters pass through the span. Those commuters would by necessity catch sight of the protesters upon entering and exiting. They could not avoid receiving our message. This simultaneous demo was unique in that it reached an audience consisting of large percentages of both Canadians and Americans.

Activists from the two cities have tentative plans to stage a follow up simultaneous demonstration at both ends of the Tunnel on an early May weekend day.

Darryl Braun
Sea Shepherd Conservation Society


Los Angeles - Jonny and Kristin Vasic

On March 15th, close to a hundred LA area activists showed up at the Canadian Consulate downtown to protest the Canadian Seal Slaughter. We were lucky to be joined by Sea Shepherd President and Founder Captain Paul Watson, Martin Sheen, Dan Haggerty, and SSCS board Members Ben Zuckerman and Kurt Lieber. Ian Robichaud of Harpseals.org helmed the protest and the Last Chance for Animals news van showed videos of the slaughter.


Kurt Lieber , Martin Sheen, and Paul Watson

Activists covered all 4 corners of the busy intersection at Hope and 6th street with signs and petitions against the seal hunt and hundreds of flyers were handed out to pedestrians. Car drivers honked their horns in support and many even slowed down and rolled down their windows to get flyers from the protesters.

Captain Watson, Martin Sheen, and Ian Robichaud arranged a meeting with the Consul General and they were taken upstairs to a closed door meeting. Cameras were not allowed, but we were able to get video footage from outside the lobby of the assistant Consul's unwillingness to give a comment on camera.

After the meeting, Captain Watson and Martin Sheen reported back that the Canadian Government's position has not changed, that they are still defending the hunt, and don't care about the boycott even if it is hurting fishermen.

Martin Sheen rallied the crowd by reminding everyone that "..lost causes are the only causes worth fighting for!"

The protesters returned to the sidewalk and continued to let people know that they are not willing to rest until Canada ends the slaughter.

By Jonny and Kristine Vasic, Sea Shepherd Volunteers

Captain Paul Watson and actor/activists Martin Sheen and Dan Haggerty


Mentor, Ohio - Lane Ferrante

It was really crowded at this Red Lobster. It was Friday and lent and dinner time. We were able to reach a few people. We distributed all remaining leaflets on windsheilds. We stood on a very, very busy street and got alot of honks and thumbs up along with the usual rude, ignorant comments. I was very surprised that alot of people had no idea of this travesty. Even if we got 10 people to boycott I see that as a success. We will plan another protest at RL soon.


New York - Debbie

We had about 250 activists attend the NYC demo in NYC. We had a bullhorn, handed out tons of literature and reached thousands. The following groups were at this protest; Caring Activists Against Fur, NYC Animal Rights, HSUS and FOA. We did have some press at the protest but NO news. We did reach thousands of people, great turnout!!

Debbie
Caring Activists Against fur


Norfolk & Virginia Beach, VA - Leeanne Siart

Local activists in the Tidewaters area of Virginia (including former SSCS crew member Leeanne Siart) hit the streets to protest the seal slaughter in Canada. On March 15, several activists held a demo and gathered petition signatures on a busy location along the boardwalk in Virginia Beach. On Saturday March 18, the activists stood in front of the main entrance to a busy shopping mall in Norfolk, VA holding signs, gathering petition signatures and handing out anti-fur stickers to passers-by. Their efforts were well received and many local citizens were angered to find out about the slaughter and vowed to not purchase "seafood" from Canada until the seal hunt is permanently stopped.

Leeanne Siart
Sea Shepherd Volunteer


Portland, Oregon - Connie Durkee

In the cold and rain, at least 10 Portland area activists gathered in Pioneer Courthouse Square and handed out hundreds of leaflets against the Canadian seal hunt and got pages and pages of signatures against the clubbing of the baby seals. People were very sympathetic to our message and we felt like our time was well spent educating passers-by that the seal hunt is still taking place and reminding them of the horrific cruelty involved.

One of our activists took extra leaflets with her to hand out at her high school and chose the topic of the seal hunt for her high school project. She came with her Mom and they were a great team, filling up their pages of signatures in only 1/2 hour.

Connie Durkee - IDA


San Diego - Joy Zakarian

Members of Last Chance for Animals, San Diego Animal Advocates, and Sea Shepherd brought our body screen TVs and footage of the seals and their brutal slaughter to downtown San Diego where we demonstrated in front of the Canadian Consulate Trade Office. We handed out literature about the Canadian Seafood Boycott and gathered signatures from people who are joining it. We were disappointed that no media showed up, but we were able educate some people.

Joy Zakarian
LCA San Diego


San Francisco - Melissa Gonzalez

The San Francisco protest went really well. We had a great show from the media:

KPFA
KTVU
AP PRESS
SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE
SAN FRANCISCO EXAMINER
NEWSROOM ACCESS SAN FRANCISCO

Melissa Gonzalez
IDA


Seattle - Michael Moore

The Seattle protest started off as a typical Seattle day - cloudy, windy and drizzling rain. As the day progressed, the wind ceased and the sun came out - and so did the people. We had around 40 people show up covering all four corners of this busy downtown intersection at 6th and Stewart. Holding banners asking people to Boycott Canadian Seafood and telling the Canadian government to "Stop the Slaughter" we stood firm in front of the Consulate's office. We were accompanied by the requisite law enforcement officers - 4 of them. Although we did not get any media to visit, we did hand out hundreds of informational flyers to passers-by who where horrified by the pictures - some not realizing that Canada was still killing seals - many promising not to buy Canadian seafood. Many cars driving by honked their horns and waved in support. There was also a young woman there filming a documentary for her class on the seal slaughter. Many thanks to all who came out in support of the seals - you're all an inspiration!

Michael Moore - Sea Shepherd Conservation Society


Waterford, CT - Emily Eckert

Eight of us met in front of the local Olive Garden in Waterford CT. There are no Red Lobsters in this area and because Olive Garden is owned by the same company, Darden Restaurants, I decided to organize the protest there. Ryan Goyette, who was part of the Sea Shepherd crew aboard the Farley Mowat last year, spoke to the owner of the Olive Garden. She said all the Olive Garden restaurants buy their seafood from local fisherman, and she gave us the number for the Darden Restaurant Human Resource department.

This Olive Garden leases property from the Simon Malls next door, so the mall's security guards were driving around, they drove by us three times before they parked the car and came to talk to us. I think that they were just really bored; one of the guards stepped out of the car and smoked a cigarette while the other took out his paper and pen and questioned us about what exactly were we protesting, and then they left.

The sidewalk we were on was next to a busy road and as people drove by, many of them gave us a horn beep and waved. We stood on a corner in front of a stoplight, where people could not resist their curiosity and read the banners when the light was red. Mid- protest we had to take a break, it was really windy, our fingers were freezing from holding the banners and we had to retrieve the posters a couple times because the wind blew them away. We ran across the street for a hot chocolate, which also gave us a chance to sit and get to know each other more.


protest group

Ryan & official protest poster

The second half of the protest was less responsive from passer by's, but one lady with a son of about 12 years old drove into the parking lot and got out of their car to ask what we were protesting against. As it drew closer to 6 p.m., the protesters slowly started to disperse, until there were just two of us left. I got home and checked my email and received 5 emails. A couple people wrote that they wished they could have made it. The last email was from someone who saw us as she drove by the mall, she happened to see us at the time we were talking to the security guard so she asked if everything went alright.

It was a good protest, a good experience, and a great chance to meet people. And it was even more powerful knowing there were people around the world doing the same thing for the same cause.

Emily Eckert


UNITED KINGDOM

London - Essex Animal Freedom


London joined cities and countries across the globe, in condemning the annual massacre of harp seals on Canada's east coast. It is perhaps no coincidence, that the Canadian Government chose to release its new kill quota, as protests were taking place throughout the world.

Demonstrations took place outside both entrances to Canada House, in London's Trafalgar Square, a prominent tourist attraction. A further protest was held at the Canadian High Commission in Grosvenor Square.

Over 40 people took part in the protests, with large, eye-catching placards and banners, together with a representation of a slaughtered seal on the ice. Hundreds of leaflets were taken by members of the public, and many petition sheets eagerly signed: The petition sheets were handed in to senior officials of the Canadian High Commission. Megaphones reinforced the message, that the slaughter of these innocent animals is indeed Canada's shame.

During the demonstration at Canada House, a senior member of the High Commission staff spoke to one of the protestors and gave written information from the Canadian Government about the seal "hunt": "it's not inhumane; it's necessary, etc. etc." Should we expect anything different?!

Regular protests will take place throughout the coming weeks highlighting this cruel and barbaric slaughter.

Essex Animal Freedom


 

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