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There is a Season......

Story ID:9932
Written by:Suzana Margaret Megles (bio, contact, other stories)
Story type:Musings, Essays and Such
Location:Taiji - Japan
Person:Ric O'Barry
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Sadly, the only good thing to come out of the Vietnam War were the beautiful folk
songs it spawned: Michael Row Your Boat, Where Have All the Flowers Gone, and
Turn, Turn, Turn to mention just three of them. The last one I find very profound
because it reminds me that there is a season and a time for every purpose, under
heaven- though it saddens me as well. In my opinion, man’s “purposes” are often

Yes, there is a time to be born, a time to die, a time to plant, a time to reap, a time
to kill, a time to heal, a time to laugh, a time to weep....... Sadly, I find myself
weeping more often then most people because I am very aware of our cruelty and
indifference to non-human animals.

Re weather seasons- some of us are lucky to enjoy all four of them --winter, spring,
summer, and fall. Each has something to commend It, and we often find ourselves
having a favorite. Is it the snowy months of winter, or the awakening of life in Spring?
Is it the hot summer months with its picnics and swimming or the golden days of Fall-
enjoying cooler weather and admiring the brightly colored falling leaves?

I only wish that the animals could also be participants in enjoying our changing
seasons. Sadly, this is not so because of the CAFOs where they are forced to live.
Here there are only two seasons –the season of unending suffering in cages, crates,
or stifling factory barns with no sunshine or fresh air. And then there is the final
season of cruel slaughter.

We also have hunting seasons where animals are mercilessly killed for what – the
joy of the sport? Some people want deer killed because they are eating their flowers.
Sadly, they forget that we stole their woods, and now they are forced to forage in
our backyards. Whose fault is that?

And every March- Canadians allow the season of killing baby seals for their fur -leaving
the floes covered in blood and heartsick mothers. When will this carnage stop?


This was the reason for my reminiscing about seasons in the first place. David Kirby
recently wrote on August 15th – “The Dolphin-Killing Season Is About to Begin in
Japan. Here’s What You can Do About It.”

Background: Every year fishermen in Taiji, Japan herd hundreds of dolphins into
a cove. Most of them will be slaughtered and their contaminated meat will be sold
to supermarkets and restaurants across Asia. A few young ones will be “spared”
and sold to aquariums at a handsome profit.

Ric O’Barry, a former dolphin trainer, brought attention to the Taiji yearly slaughter
in “The Cove,” an Academy Award-winning documentary that has been seen by
millions of people in more than 45 countries. However, O’Barry feels that the need
for the people of Japan to see his documentary is most vital. Perhaps he feels only
they can stop this carnage if they have the will to do so.

The carnage begins in September and lasts until the dolphin killing season ends in
March or April. O’Barry has witnessed this carnage for 12 consecutive years in Taiji
and said that he will continue to return until they stop or he drops.

Louie Psihoyos, director of The Cove, said that the film does have an impact. He wrote:
“Countries are now banning the import of wild dolphins for dolphin shows. Vancouver
has banned the aquarium’s breeding program,” .......... “The National Aquarium in
Baltimore is shutting down their displays. Southwest Airlines is repainting their orca-
painted planes after announcing their breakup with SeaWorld....and most significantly,
Taiji is killing 60 per cent less dolphins.”

He also noted that both “The Cove” and now “Blackfish” spawned a movement that
reverberates throughout the world today. The 2012 documentary Blackfish about the
treatment of captive orcas at Seaworld has probably led to a stock plunge of 30 percent
for SeaWorld.

Psihoyos - through his organization (Oceanic Preservation Society) mailed copies of both
documentaries to all the board members at the top ten investment firms holding SeaWorld
stock. As a result, SeaWorld recently announced that attendance at its parks are down.
Also contributing to this problem is the proposed legislation in California to ban killer
whale shows in that state.

Way to go California! And wholehearted thanks to people like Ric O’Barry and film director
Louie Psihoyos. We need more people like them. We need more states like California.

And last but not least- a dynamic statement from Psihoyos: “And once you see a film like
“The Cove,” it’s impossible to hold stock in a company like SeaWorld without feeling like
a whore.”