Target: Hiroshi Moriyama, Minister of Japan’s Agriculture, Forestry, and Fisheries
Goal: End the annual Taiji dolphin hunt in Japan, during which hundreds of dolphins are butchered.
Japanese fishermen have already killed dozens of dolphins during their annual hunt off the small coastal village of Taiji. Every year, fishermen venture into the ocean and capture the dolphins. They are corralled into a cove, where they are slaughtered. On the first day of this year’s hunt, twenty dolphins were murdered. Hundreds are expected to be butchered in the cove by the end of the six-month hunt.
The fishermen and the villagers argue that the hunt is ethical because it represents the nation’s tradition and because the dolphins being murdered are not endangered. However, tradition cannot be used as an excuse for the slaughter of hundreds of innocent and majestic animals. Times change and societies progress. Traditions should follow suit. In addition, the fact that the dolphins are not endangered holds no merit. If this is used as an argument, hundreds of dolphins will continue to be murdered at an extraordinary pace and will one day face extinction.
The brutality of the hunt gained notoriety after the documentary about the Taiji hunt, entitled “The Cove,” won an Academy Award. Since then, protesters have flocked to the village. However, the village’s fisheries officials and the Japanese government refuse to listen to their pleas and continue to allow hundreds of dolphins to be murdered. Sign the petition to demand that the Japanese government recognize the cruelty of the hunt and make an effort to end this barbaric practice.
Dear Mr. Moriyama,
Once again this year, fishermen in your nation’s small village of Taiji have embarked on their six-month dolphin hunt. Already, dozens of dolphins have been corralled into the village’s cove and slaughtered. Hundreds more are expected to meet the same fate. For years, people around the world have spoken out against this barbaric practice. However, officials in both Taiji and the Japanese government refuse to take action.
Those supporting the hunt argue that the annual dolphin hunt embodies Japanese tradition. However, while there are admirable traditions, there are also traditions that should be done away with. As society progresses, so should traditions that no longer embody the world’s ethics. Murdering hundreds of innocent dolphins is not a tradition that should remain. Japan has such a rich culture, one to be very proud of. However, this hunt, in addition to the despicable whaling practice, tarnishes Japan’s wealth of culture. I ask you to bring an end to the Taiji dolphin hunt before this beautiful animal disappears from our oceans forever.
[Your Name Here]
Photo Credit: Aude Steiner