International Day of Protest Against the Japanese Dolphin Slaughter
November 4, 2003
With only 4 days notice, organizers worldwide worked hard to pull off a successful international day protest on November 4th.
As you keep pressure on the Japanese Embassies and Consulates, you provide great moral and emotional support to the Sea Shepherd crewmembers standing strong in Taiji.
You will find as you read below that some gatherings were large, others small, and in Vienna, a "one woman show."
Collectively, we delivered a powerful message to the Japanese government.
We are determined to continue the Taiji Dolphin Campaign regardless of the risks.
BRAZIL - Alex Castro and Sandra Severo (Island Instituto Sea Shepherd - Porto Alegre)
We gave a Sea Shepherd t-shirt to the Japanese Consulate staff and they accepted with startled expressions! Congratulations to our 50 student volunteers who worked hard to put a big red carpet in the street with bloody dolphin toy. TV, Print and Radio came out to cover our protest. For the Seas!
Vienna - Annettschka Brosina (Sea Shepherd)
I started in front of the embassy some time before noon. I put a poster saying "Japan! Stop killing dolphins!" on my back and walked around and we managed to get 9 sheets of papers signed. After 3 hours I took the papers and copied them and then went to the embassy and rang the bell in order to be let in. I said that I put together some signatures against the dolphin slaughter in Taiji and they said "yes, we know. We've observed you." I asked if the letter would reach the Prime Minister if I gave it to them. And they were sort of like "Well...you know...bureaucracy, it might get somewhere. We can't tell if HE gets it." I gave it to them anyway. All in all I distributed quite a few flyers, told pretty much everyone what's happening in Taiji and what has to happen. I had fun and think doing nothing is much much worse...that's what I also told the people. For the oceans, Annette
Montreal - Ryan Young (Sea Shepherd)
Our small group gathered in the freezing Montreal rain to protest and gather signatures and hand out leaflets. We delivered our letter to the Japanese Consulate, who took it very seriously. He assured me he would forward the letter to the Japanese Prime Minister's office and convey our concerns to them personally. They seemed to be very aware of the international outcry over the dolphin slaughter.
Vancouver - Annelise Sorg (Coalition for No Whales in Captivity)
Although only a handful of protestors showed up, the media was out in full force. We displayed a 12' x 3' banner that said "Japan: Stop Killing Dolphins". Instead of the letter "D", we drew a big dolphin, bleeding. We handed out about 100 flyers and letters to people walking by, and we made an effort to talk to any Japanese people entering and/or leaving the building. I even had a chance to hop into a bus full of Japanese people waiting to be driven to the airport and handed out flyers to all of them as I told them about the cruelty of dolphin drives.
Berne - Sigi Lueber (ASMA)
We prepared for the protest by sending out press releases and information about the International Day of Protest Against the Japanese Dolphin Slaughter. We gathered at the Japanese Embassy in Berne. We were a small group as the protest took place on a working day. We delivered a letter to the Japanese Ambassador. We are also asking our members to download the protest letter from our website to send to the Embassy. ASMA website address is: www.asms-swiss.org. We expect our protest action will continue for quite a while. - Sigi
Denver - Kristal Parks (Sea Shepherd)
A report on today's protest: I was pleased with how it went.
1. 6 people showed up in all
2. we handed out 200 fliers
3. media did not show up
4. building security and police did show up
5. had good conversations with folks walking by
7. I wrote a letter to the Consulate General and gave people a chance to
sign it. Many did. I plan to demonstrate several more times and hope to
get a lot more signatures, then will include those in the final letter I
give to the consulate or send to the prime minister.
Honolulu - Bill and Shanti Bailey (Sea Shepherd)
The consul did not come out, but we were met by a security official soon after we arrived. Cathy Goeggel and Elaine Johnson of Animal Rights Hawai'i were especially helpful. Cathy brought a sign and a videographer (Dan), and Elaine did the publicity. Besides the Star-Bulletin, KHON TV sent a cameraman. We heard that they showed a segment that evening, but we missed it.
For the sea children, Bill and Shanti Bailey
Los Angeles - Scott Sheckman (Sea Shepherd)
We did most of the talking for about 10 mins - the consulate listened to what we had to say and we provided him a copy of the letter to the PM and flyer with our website.
A good turn-out for the short notice and nice weather (it rained on Monday). We had about 12 protesters participate.
We started protesting in front of the LA Consulate office that is near the MOCA and a busy lunch section. We handed out over 150 flyers and gathered signatures on over 40 letters to the prime minister.
Kurt Lieber and I met with the LA Consulate, Mr. Tomohide Toyama outside the lobby around 1:30.
Miami - Pedro Monteiro (Sea Shepherd), Helene O'Barry (Dolphin Project)
|Photos: Brian F. Call
Thank you to all those who made signs, and those who showed up in short warning and made this event a success!
We gathered around the front of the high-rise which housed the Japanese consulate, and with the NBC 6 camera rolling, went to the 32nd floor carrying our signs, and presented the letter to the official from the Japanese consulate.
The consulate spoke very softly, and under his breath. He read the entire letter while we waited. We spoke briefly. He said that he would forward the letter to Tokyo, and pointed out that changes in laws don't happen overnight; they require hearings and other political procedures.
|We went downstairs and joined about a dozen protesters who were holding signs at the building's entrance. We were interviewed by the NBC 6 news team, and photographed by Brian Call, a well known local nature photographer (see http://aliengator.com).
Val Silidker leads the chants with
the aid of a bullhorn.
While I was being interviewed, I heard a security guard screaming at one of the protesters. I was concerned they were asking us to leave the shelter of the building, and that we'd have to stand on the sidewalk in the rain. After the interview, I saw that he had picked up a sign and joined us. He had been screaming so he could be heard over our chanting "Japan, stop killing dolphins!" Val Silidker was the cheerleader with the bullhorn.
Miami's Channel 6 interviews
Seattle - Isobel Alexander (Sea Shepherd), Ben White (Animal Welfare Institute)
AWI supporters, and Capt. Paul Watson and crew from the Sea Shepherd flagship R/V Farley Mowat, currently berthed at Lake Union Drydock, joined forces to stage a lively protest in front of the Japanese Consulate building in downtown Seattle. Wearing engaging dolphin costumes created by activist Ben White, protesters delivered a one-way ticket to the Japanese Consulate General to witness the dolphin slaughter in Japan. Footage of the recent dolphin kill was projected off a large screen on the PETA van parked adjacent to the Consulate building. Consulate staff observed the protest from the sidewalk and were handed Sea Shepherd leaflets.
San Francisco - Suzanne Roy (In Defence of Animals), Mark Berman (Earth Island Institute)
Washington - Cathy Liss (Animal Welfare Institute)
Our protest went well. We have about 15 people, wearing foam rubber dolphin 'suits" carrying placards/ signs with red streamers. We were all chanting "Stop the torture, stop the pain, killing dolphins is insane". We protested under the watchful eyve of at least 10 policemen and their vehicles. Naomi Rose (HSUS) and Courtney Stark Vail (WDCS, US) are meeting with the Fisheries attache to the Embassy, Mr. Takaaki Sakamoto and others on November 20th.
Scotland - Corine Roux - (Sea Shepherd)
The protest in Edinburgh was a very quiet one. 1 person contacted me to join at the consulate, which was nice. I gathered about 180 signatures for the letter of protest that I gave to the consul of Japan in Edinburgh on behalf of Sea Shepherd and the people of Scotland, asking him "to ask his government to interfere to stop the barbaric killing of dolphins in the country". They would not let us in the consulate so the exchange happened on the steps outside.
Unfortunately, he would not let us take a picture of the handing over the letters and being so few it was difficult to do it against his will. The people of Edinburgh were very willing to sign the letter though and I had a lot of support in the streets.
Anyway, it was a nice experience and I felt frustrated at the lack of time to gather more signatures and people there. I contacted a local radio, 1 local and 1 national newspaper and a local TV network but non-turned up.... maybe next time.
I hope that it was a bit louder in other parts of the world. If I can be of anymore help, please let me know. Corine