Tag Archive: IWC

Dear Ichiro Fujisaki and Readers,

You have reached my tenth and final post for this blog! Congratulations on making it this far (I know some of these posts are quite lengthy) and thank you for taking the time to educate yourself on an issue that deserves your attention. You now have the intelligence to go out and make a persuasive case on the campaign against dolphin slaughter.  Let’s recap on what embodies this education. Hyperlinks direct you to the blog post that expands on the linked subject.

More than 2000 dolphins are killed each year in Japan alone. A majority of this slaughter takes place in a cove in Taiji, Japan. Research supports that dolphins have an incredible capacity for intelligence, self awareness, and memory. Therefore they may even be aware of their fate in the cove! Despite the brutal manner in which these animals are killed, which involves hours of torturing their sonar perception by banging on pipes, the meat is extremely toxic with mercury. This mercury is extremely harmful to humans, as seen in the Minamata case.

The Japanese government refuses to take action to change these policies or warn the Japanese people that their food may be poisoned. Some of the meat is even mislabeled! Promoters of the practice claim that it is a cultural tradition, but common knowledge amongst Taiji civilians about the issue is rare. The angered reaction from Japanese fisherman when the topic is exposed further adds suspicion to this cultural justification.

There are plans that can be implemented to begin the process of excluding dolphin as an edible product. They include restricting fishing policies and banning the distribution of dolphin meat according to health regulations. Even though dolphin does create a large amount of economic profit for Japan, there are more also reasonable plans that provide economic profit without murder. These include eco-friendly tourist outlets like dolphin watches or cruises. However, these plans can only get enough momentum to become a reality if YOU are there to propel it.

Along the journey to reach this final post, you have heard many stories. You have heard my story as an aspiring scuba diver looking to speak up for the ocean. You have heard the story of Frankie, who is one of thousands of people (like me) trying to convince you to stand up and serve as an influential voice on the dolphin campaign. You have even heard the stories of individuals like Hayden Patteniere, Ric O’Barry and Elora Malama, who are taking incredible measures to ensure a safe future for dolphins and the Japanese people. But at the end of the day, it is your story that really matters. I urge you to take the knowledge you have obtained in this blog and spread it for the world to hear. It is time to protect your people. It is time to take a stand. It is time to give dolphins something real to smile about!

Thanks for reading,
Kelsey Anderson

PS.   READERS: The strength behind this campaign does not solely lie in the voice of Ichiro Fujisaki. It lies in yours as well.


Frankie Says

Frankie Churchill is nine years old, but we have a lot in common. We both go to school in California. We both are fans of the ocean. And we both have a message for  Ambassador Ichiro Fujisaki.

Sadly, my message doesn’t come inside a hand-drawn heart. Niether did Fujisaki’s answer to Frankie, stating that he “takes note of [Frankie’s] concerns but also wish[es] that [he] understand the many different cultures in the world, many of which have traditions that are different to those found in the United States.” Fujisaki goes on to explain to young Frankie that “most people eat some sort of meat, whether it is hamburger (meat of cow) or some other form.” Hmmm. Touche, Fujisaki. What’s funny is I don’t remember consuming toxic levels of Mercury at my last barbeque.

Ichiro Fujisaki is the US Ambassador for Japan, and as such serves as the ideal bridge of power for an American like me to influence a foreign issue. Revoking or restricting Taiji’s fishing permits would be a monumental step in eliminating the dangerous and disturbing treatment of dolphins in Japan. Including appropriate, eco-friendly tourism like dolphin tours would help supply economic profit in a non-harmful manner as well. Furthermore, getting the Japan Fisheries Agency Food Sanitation Committee to ban meat that contains mercury would cut off the demand for dolphin meat, therefore decreasing dolphin hunting as well. Ichiro Fujisaki holds enough weight in the political system to serve as a persuasive voice in making these changes a reality. I urge that he listens to the messages of people like Frankie Churchill and takes this issue seriously. The safety of the Japanese people and the preservation of a beautiful species needs to be taken into consideration above the success of an economic product.

Here is a link to Fujisaki speaking about Japanese environmental policies and nuclear waste. But what about the waste that his people are consuming daily?

Japanese Ambassador Ichiro Fujisaki on Going Green