Loading...
Activism

The Cove: Sundance Film Exposes Japanese Dolphin Slaughter in Grisly Footage

23,000 Dolphins are slaughtered each year in a hidden cove in Taiji, Japan. The Japanese government covers it up. No one could get in.

Until now.

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/v/Sw5qgVp0jng]

[UPDATE: Dolphin Slaughter in Taiji’s ‘Cove’ Suspended]!

The Cove exposes an atrocity of unimaginable brutality. The dolphin slaughter depicted here is committed yearly and without knowledge of the general Japanese public, even though they could be buying highly-toxic mercury-laden dolphin meat disguised as fish from their local supermarkets.

[social_buttons]

Barred access to the site, the film crew (which includes most notably the man who trained Flipper, Richard O’Barry) was forced to utilize covert military tactics and equipment, including thermal heat sensors and the help of two world-class free divers, to accomplish their mission.

The Cove is activist film at it’s finest: exposing this dirty-little-secret despite systematic intimidation and institutional attempts to cover it up. The film is part of the documentary selection for this year’s Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah.

>> See Also: Japan Accuses Animal Planet of EcoTerrorism Prior to “Whale Wars” Premiere

To learn more and take action, visit the campaign website: savejapandolphins.com. The film won’t be available to the public until post-festival distribution, so keep your eye out for it later in the year.

Also read more at nymag.com.

Get PlanetSave by RSS or Email.

[Update 1/25/09]: The Cove has received the Audience Award for U.S. Documentary at the 2009 Sundance Film Festival.




91 comments
  1. attietewd

    I’m sorry but with all the “Green” crap that’s out there…..more than half of it being just an agenda for those in places of power….Agenda 21, climategate, etc.. I am a sceptic….rather be a sceptic than gullible. Any group that would manipulate the emotions of kids into feeling guilty by teaching propaganda under the guise of education has lost my respect. It’s sad. Green organizations need to clean up their act. They are guilty of polluting young minds with lies.

  2. fred

    Can we heard the human joe whom siad said on January 20th, 2009 at 5:32 pm
    “I personally dont care what meat it is just as long as it taste good. how dare these people try to force their beliefs on the japanese people”
    into a cove and let him experience the agony that he obviously care nothing about.
    Some peoples souls are not worth the flesh in witch they are encased! Personally, i herald the film and the outcome that has arrived from it!!!!

    1. all for rights of people and animals

      You are a horrible human being, how are the people against this forcing their beliefs on the japanese!??? They are the ones lying about what kind of meat they are selling! They are lying because they know what they are doing is wrong!!! You are obviously of low self esteem when you say that you dont care what kind of meat it is that you are eating as long as it tastes good. SO if i cooked up human meat and gave it to you to eat and it tasted good then I told you it was human meat you wouldnt care? Not to mention this dolphin meat is being disguised as other fish and it is toxic because of the high levels of mercury. People have the right to know what they are eating!!! Also the horrible slaughter that these dolphins go through, YOU obviously have a sick uncaring mind and soul and the majority of people dont care what scum like you think anyway.

  3. Bel

    I have just finished watching this documentary and I can not find words to express the absolute distruction of an animal, it was distressing, what can we do as humans of the same planet to stop this..

  4. corinn

    its not a beilife why dont you watch the movie for yourself they are horrible for what they are doing and need to be stopped before we have another extinction!

  5. Timothy O

    Azrael… I am an American Republican. I am on this site. I think the slaughter of these dolphins is just a horrible horrible thing.

  6. Laura Watkins Ives

    My husband and I watched The Cove last night and excuse me if a kick a Japanese fisherman in the balls (shins are too forgiving). I am disgusted and appalled beyond words. I will likely boycott sushi just out of principal. What can we do to help stop this absolute tragety other than not going to Sea World? Laura from Long Beach

  7. D.Davidson

    Let us be their voice – stop the killing, the butchering, the absolute terror.

    Please check out our website and follow the links there, sign petitions, start websites, educate others, please be their voice – we will be heard.

  8. Kelley Dunstan

    I just watched “The Cove.” I really didn’t know anything about this and I was truly disturbed after I watched this documentary……really digusting that the government would cover something like this up. To watch these dolphins being slaughtered like that was really sick…what is wrong with this people??? Not to mention the people that are being exposed to all the high levels of mercury….just digusting!

  9. Ahem

    Sheer hypocrisy !!

    Its an impressive documentary attempt .. despite the biased presentation.

    Not award-worthy though.

    OK. Its against common-sense to eat DOLPHINS. They are toxic.

    Animal cruelty is a different issue altogether. All the cows and chickens can only wonder how lucky these Taiji dolphins have been.

    None of the other reasons hold water.

    Its the circle of life.

  10. pony

    Wow!! too cruel! unbelievable!!
    I also love the cattle as my good friend,
    but in the world every people eat beef , I hate it!
    We have to stop killing any animals, and plants!!
    We should make science technology more advanced and
    realize that all food is chemical supplement!

  11. liljeffery

    I’m Indian stop breeding our scared cows and eatting them now! rocky mountain oysters! wtf is wrong with you people you sick monsters

  12. Vanessa

    @Clayton:
    I am seriously doubting about your opinion that no other place in japan hunts dolphins.
    You said Japan exploits loopholes in IWC in order to hunt cetaceans, which is true, they also try to gather other pro- hunting members within the International Whaling Commission. Recently Japan threatened to step back from the Commission, why would you think… Since 2005 they started hunting even more on minke whales for ‘scientific purposes’ they claimed. Tsukiji market is full of whales and dolphins. Would it only be from the litlle cove in Taiji you think??

    Forgive me my english, it’s not my motherlanguage
    The cove was only now open to public at our annual filmfestival, so my comment is pretty late. Still, I had to say this.

    Vanessa

  13. dan

    Joe.

    perhaps it is the concentrations of mercury you should worry about that are in the dolphins.bio-accumulation…

    and they aren’t pressing their opinions on the Japanese they simply showing what has been hidden from them by their government.

  14. josephb

    Join the cause at Facebook…Stop the Brutal Slaughter of Dolphins in Taiji, Japan…as revealed by The Cove, the movie.
    Join the cause…Spread the Word!…Kick it up!!!
    Help clear the red waters of Taiji, Japan NOW!

    join the cause at:
    http://apps.facebook.com/causes/326919?m=f951a7e5

    Mega thanks to planetsave.com for allowing this comment!
    Make a difference! Join the cause! Tweet the cause link!

    JB

  15. Martin F

    Glad this film was made and glad it is being discussed.

    I live in Japan and let me just add a few points – Japanese people DO NOT eat dolphin meat. There are 120 million people here and they eat normal things. The slaughter of 23,000 dolphins at Taiji at this event, once a year, is not going to feed the general population. Dolphin meat is not on the menu at MacDonalds in Tokyo if that’s what you thought.

    The racist comments on this thread are not going to help a single dolphin. Instead it may very well be the very reason why this issue is so difficult to debate in Japan. People here are just like people everywhere, and they DO NOT like to be told what to do or what to eat. What if a bunch of clever Japanese activists filmed the brutal cattle slaugther in the US, do you think that would change US meat eating habits or US government policy? How many millions of cattle and pigs are slaughtered every day just because some of you prefer to eat meat? Google for “downer cattle” if you need facts that have been covered up for many years in the US.

    Again, this is all terrible slaughter, and it deserves to be better known, and hopefully stopped, thanks for posting about it.

  16. Raymond

    I would like to see this film. I am aware that the Chinese government covered up the melamine incident, and not the Japanese government, but am equally aware of the whale hunting by the Japanese. Interesting.

  17. Emilia

    Thank God for those who had the tenacity and courage to expose this truth. We are all shamed and lessened as humans when any human commits such horrible acts, especially towards a species which has been so good to us humans.

  18. Emilia

    Thank God for the courage and tenacity of those who brought this truth to light. It shames us as humans when any of us commit such horrible acts, especially to a species which has been so good to us.

  19. sara

    i just heard about this – what our grief is often is our savior – thank you for bringing this to the light of the public – i will talk about this in my next work –
    let us all bring light to the dark in any way we can.

  20. Tom V.

    What is it with the Japanese and their need to destroy this planet? Slaughtering whales, dolphins, even their own people? They spike baby food with melamine and turn the waters blood red by poluting them to the point where nothing can live in it?? What is wrong with this culture? They need to be stopped.

  21. To

    I saw the movie and there are some issues that need to be discussed.

    1. Most Japaneese do not eat dolphin – it is packaged as whale meat and the public is decieved.

    2. The allowable amount of mercury (Japanese govt) is .04 ppm, dolphins because they are on the top of the food chain contain 2000 ppm.

    3. It is a totally wasteful brutal killing and capturing process.

  22. Steven Swann

    By the way, it’s Cetaceans or Cetacea. (“E” does not follow the “T”)

    That said, let’s make what Kierkegaard might call a teleological suspension of the ethical in regard to the relative merits of intellectual functioning in any of these critters.

    Assuming that it is within our rights/responsibilities/privileges to consume dolphins, then isn’t it within our range of responsibilities to kill them humanely? Yes, there is great thought given to how we slaughter animals today. Let’s give this modest attention.

    Japan is not a third world country, and it’s not appropriate for the modern world to encourage the consumption of toxic chemicals by its citizens.

    The Japanese aren’t stupid. The information brought out by this body of work is likely to eliminate these despicable events.

    The Japanese love whale meat. The ending of this cetacean rodeo will put more pressure on whale killing. More’s the pity.

    And, finally, let’s do think about the food chain again. The condition of our oceans is awful, and the evidence of that is abundant.

    Let’s try to think ahead at least 100 years……for a change.

  23. Rebecca Nichols

    I saw The Cove last evening at The Nantucket Film Festival, in Massachusetts and it was the best documentary I have ever seen. The movie, although heartwrenching, captivates the audience immediately and brings us to a point of wanting to help stop put an end to the needless brutality going on in Taiji, Japan. I applaude all the activists for their courage and endurance to shed the ugly light on The Cove…this movie will make a difference and anyone that goes to see it will want to help make a difference as well. Thank you for your amazing energy!! I will do all that I can to support this horrific, needless brutality.

  24. Mayumi Marks

    今日フィルムフェステイバルで”cove”を見ました.The Japanese are heartless. と思われてもしかたがないとおもいます。イルカが赤ちゃんイルカも含めてとても残酷に殺されて、死にきれないイルカたちがのたうち回る血の海の中をシュノーケルをつけた漁師が潜り、私はずいぶんと長いこと感じなかった怒りに震える感情を覚えました.日本の人々に伝えようと思います.太地でなにがおきているのかを。
    I just saw the film “Cove ” at the film festival at Maui film festioval. I am Japanese. I think people think “Japanese are heartless”after seeing this film.Many of dolphins kills really cruel way includs baby dolphins, they suffer a lot,,,, the cove turn to red color by the blood of dolphins, and fisherman swim with snorkel in the blood. Their heart and emotion are numbed. I tell this about Japanese people. Japanese must know what is happening, and should stop eat toxic dolphin meat.

  25. fred schmerd

    The first sentence tells you this information lacks objectivity and is designed to generate a profit for those promoting it:
    “The Cove exposes an atrocity of unimaginable brutality.”

    very effective marketing, but IMO sleezy.

  26. LaBelle

    I have just seen the film at the Sydney Film Festival and whilst I thought it was just plain horrific, it should be required (compulsory) watching for everyone, not just those in Japan but all over the world. What a disgrace – if I was Japanese I would hang my head in shame, except that I suspect most Japanese are totally unaware of this vile slaughter going on.

    I also think they have Buckley’s chance of ever seeing it in Japan – money can arrange all things

    Absolutely horrified that this is going on … and I was devastated at the distress of the dolphins racing around in a sea of blood, obviously terrified.

    And what for? Nobody in their right mind would eat any flesh containing so much mercury, so why is the killing so widespread if the flesh is not only inedible but also toxic?

    But a bloody good doco nevertheless and extremely well done.

  27. Survive

    Dolphin meat is the most toxic thing you can eat. Japanese citizens who do not know about this are being literally poisoned. This needs to stop. For the dolphins and the humans.

  28. Devyn

    I think it is a horrible tragedy being done on these poor innocent creatures not to mention their incredible intelligence. Something needs to be done and if the japanese think that this will forever go on and never be stopped! boy are they in for a surprise

  29. Bill Campbell

    @Bill Campbell responds to Azrael’s original message are in (parentheses)

    the killing of animals for food is just that. the killing of animals for food. unless you plan to protest every single form of human animal consumption, your being up in arms over this “senseless” slaughter is hypocritical at best, and just plain self-righteous arrogance otherwise. (So, if I cannot protest every single form of human animal consumption, then I should just shut up, or I may risk seeming hypocritical, self righteous, or arrogant, hmmm, sounds like you prefer an all or nothing approach. So, if I follow your logic, I have to protest every single form of “human animal consumption” or I have lost any right to call this or any slaughter “senseless” even if it involves a mercury laden animal being sold as food to unwitting consumers. Spotty logic Azrael.)
    The only problem here is the feeding of contaminated meat too an unsuspecting populace. (If you think this is the only problem here, I think you may have a larger problem.)

    There is no such thing as universal HUMAN ethics, if you believe so, than you have not traveled outside of the bubble that is North America (I have, and I see you did not read what I wrote carefully, I never said “universal HUMAN ethics”). There are things that we here in the west believe SHOULD be universal values – Azreal’s parentheses: such as the emancipation of woman, equality under the rule of law regardless of affiliation or origin– however us believing them does not necessarily make them so –Azreal’s parentheses:i personally think the rest of the world would benefit, but it’s their choice not ours. haven’t you Americans LEARNED over the last few years what happens when you decide to import your way of living abroad???–

    (Azrael, wake up. Most citizens play a minor role in exporting a country’s “way of living” abroad. Exporting a “way of living” is most forcefully done by corporations, politicians, governments and militaries, not simply “you Americans”.)

    As for your idiotic assertion that somehow the death of a bunch of porpoises, is in any way comparable to the torture or oppression of our fellow humans, well sir I simply don’t have the words to describe the contempt you engender.
    ( I compare what some would see as cruelty involving humans and dolphins to what some would see as cruelty involving humans and humans, and you ‘engender contempt’ because I dare compare the two situations…Please, stop engendering over a simple comparison, you might get an ulcer.)

    as for the rest, well, you seem to keep trying to tie the contamination of the food into all your other arguments when they are separate issues. (these issues are tied together: they are separate, but they are also connected) IF these dolphins were not contaminated with a poisonous substance, there would be no problem with this scenario what so ever (Not for you anyway). however I am willing to bet, all of you would still be just as upset over it. (Note to Azrael: don’t bet on blanket statements regarding your perception of the relative levels of “upsetness” experienced by “all” of these people you do not know.)

    finally, as to being an asshole, yes and no (make up your mind). No i am not an asshole regardless of the abruptness (rudeness? nastiness?) of my language, however the breathtaking ignorance and self-righteousness displayed even in the most eloquent of responses (Any of these responses written by idiots?) from those who peruse this page leaves me with no incentive to do anything (I kind of wish you’d stopped this sentence here) other than respond in the most blunt (read dull) and shocking (oooh…shocking) manner possible. so in that sense Yes I am an Asshole, but YOU sir, are still an Idiot.

    -Azrael
    (Ok Azrael, You sir, think I am an idiot, and I sir, think you’re an Asshole, and a bit of an Idiot, and yet we can both be compared to dolphins: we’re live born, self aware, air breathing, warm blooded mammals: so go easy on the contempt engendering there, Azrael, earth mammal.) (-Bill)

  30. beastinblack

    Azrael so by your terms there is nothing wrong me going to your house, stabbing you in the chest, then eventually ripping your heart out and having it for dinner? I bet it tastes good. At the endd of the day you are only a mammal as well, no different really? Only ignorance would argue that it is different because they are somehow ‘inferior’. We havent got a clue about their intricate lives and it is no different to hitler’s attitude towards the Jews and other races that were undesirable to him.

    To put humans so far above any other mammal species is arrogance beyond belief. With nearly 7 billion people occupying this planet, and to be over 9 billion in a few decadces, we are heading for a massive human disaster. Hunting animals for self preservation is one thing it happens all the time everywhere, thats nature, but hunting on behalf of greedy capitalism is another. We dont NEED dolphins for our survival, so lets cut them a break? It is called compassion. Contamination isnt really the issue.

    I am also against farm animals being bred for mainstream consumption, for example brazil where rainforests are burnt down for beef ranches, that is leading towards catastrophe. Human ignorance towards other animals actually makes me question our own intelligence. No doubt you will give me your usual passionate tirade, but I am correct. We might have great cognitive skills, why dont we put them to good use for a change? Capitalism is killing the planet, and as a result it will eventually kill the majority of us off as well. We are living on borrowed time at the moment unless we all grow up.

  31. Byron Tsusaki

    It is absolutely horrible that the fisherman in Taiji carry out this barbaric act of slaughtering thousands of migratory dolphin. And, it is even more dispicable that the Japanese government condone this slaughter.

    This barbaric act if like that of the Bataan Death March, during which tens of thousands of captured American and Filipino soldiers were beheaded, disembowled and raped on their journey to prisoner of war camps.

  32. Azrael

    @Bill Campbell

    the killing of animals for food is just that. the killing of animals for food. unless you plan to protest every single form of human animal consumption, your being up in arms over this “senseless” slaughter is hypocritical at best, and just plain self-righteous arrogance otherwise. The only problem here is the feeding of contaminated meat too an unsuspecting populace.

    There is no such thing as universal HUMAN ethics, if you believe so, than you have not traveled outside of the bubble that is North America. There are things that we here in the west believe SHOULD be universal values (such as the emancipation of woman, equality under the rule of law regardless of affiliation or origin) however us believing them does not necessarily make them so (i personally think the rest of the world would benefit, but it’s their choice not ours. haven’t you Americans LEARNED over the last few years what happens when you decide to import your way of living abroad???)

    As for your idiotic assertion that somehow the death of a bunch of porpoises, is in any way comparable to the torture or oppression of our fellow humans, well sir I simply don’t have the words to describe the contempt you engender.

    as for the rest, well, you seem to keep trying to tie the contamination of the food into all your other arguments when they are separate issues. IF these dolphins were not contaminated with a poisonous substance, there would be no problem with this scenario what so ever. however I am willing to bet, all of you would still be just as upset over it.

    finally, as to being an asshole, yes and no. No i am not an asshole regardless of the abruptness of my language, however the breathtaking ignorance and self-righteousness displayed even in the most eloquent of responses from those who peruse this page leaves me with no incentive to do anything other than respond in the most blunt and shocking manner possible. so in that sense Yes I am an Asshole, but YOU sir, are still an Idiot.

    -Azrael

  33. boyd harnell

    This is for Clayton Cornell, whose comments on Japan’s dolphin slaughter were well justified, although some facts were a bit astray. I’m an investigative reporter and contributing correspondent for the Japan Times. I broke the story on the secret dolphin slaughter in Taiji, Wakayama on November 30, 2005. Unfortunately, I’m the only journalist writing about this atrocity due to the Japanese vernacular media imposing a blackout on the subject. I’ve been to Taiji many times and filmed the drive fisheries (dolphin hunts) and witnessed all of the barbaric obscenities conducted on the doomed dophins who were unlucky enough to be captured in Hatagiri Bay and driven into the capture cove awaiting certain death. Due to the media blackout, the JT article was an exclusive and together with features editor Andrew Kershaw, we
    continued to feature the horrific government sanctioned dolphin genocide on the front page and
    elsewhere in one and two page layouts hoping the government would finally relent and ban the slaughter.And its still our priority after four years. The dolphin slaughter’s health issue stands as a historical recidivism that harkens back to the world’s worst mercury pollution disaster during the ’50s, exposed by Life magazine’s W. Eugene Smith, who was brutally assaulted for bringing this to public attention as thousands became ill of died. Although the brutal, inhumane aspects of this egregious issue would be enough to ban the dolphin slaughter in almost any other country, it’s merely treated as ‘tradition’ and the related health issues are mostly ignored. Our efforts journalistic efforts have been met with harsh criticism and subtle warnings. Although the articles produced two international Genesis awards for the Japan Times from the US Humane Society plus millions of hits online while letters of outrage poured in, Japan’s government merely dug in their heels and refused to ban the drive fisheries. The captive dolphin industry that fuels the drives is too lucrative. Some Taiji dolphins trained to perform at dolphinariums abroad fetch up to $200,000.

    Certified lab tests we conducted for mercury on random samples of dolphin meat purchased at retail outlets showed ballistic levels of this toxic substance, far exceeding the health ministry’s advisory level of 0.4 ppm for total mercury and 0.3 ppm for methylmercury.These test results were turned over to the government, but despite this, Japan’s health ministry fails to impose warning labels on this dangerous substance.

    Some 20,000 dolphins are massacred yearly, some
    2500-3000 in Taiji, an unknown number in Okinawa,
    and some 15-17 thousand porpoises in Iwate Prefecture. The most brutal dopphin genocide occurs in Taiji. We also featured the story on OPS’ covert op team, headed by world renowned photographer Louie Psihoyos,in a two page spread that received worldwide acclaim on the internet. They broke the barrier that showed the brutality of the massacre. The small group of some 26 dolphin hunters and their supporters in Taiji are poisioning their own people by selling the toxic dolphin food to retail outlets throughout Japan. Two brave Taiji assemblmen who became suspicious of possible high mercury levels in dolphin meat served to school children at special ‘whale’ lunches, had the meat tested. The result: Extreme levels of mercury and methylmercury were found in all samples. Assemblman Junichiro Yamashita and his colleague immediately called for a ban on the consumption of dolphin meat, calling it “toxic waste” and warned local residents against consuming small cetacean food products. For their efforts, the assemblymen were vilified by the Taiji local governemnt and one of them is currently recovering from a heart attack. Since exposing the
    egregious atrocity, the powers that be seem to be monitoring our articles. A Tokyo testing lab even had a ‘rap’ sheet on me compiled of all of my articles gleaned from the internet. They were warned to refuse any dolphin meat samples I brought for testing. More of this information in detail can be found in the archives of the Japan Times or by googling “Boyd Harnell dolphin slaughter Japan Times” Much help for the articles was provided by marine mammal expert, Ric O’Barry, and the Save Japan Dolphins Coalition.

  34. Bill Campbell

    (My comments to Azrael’s post are in parentheses)

    ok, it is patently obvious that none of you have ever taken or engaged in debate or rhetoric, so i will make this as simple as i can. (Ad hominem? Insulting? OK, so…)

    First off, this is NOT the extermination of a species. (It is a senseless slaughter.) Dolphins exist world wide in huge numbers and this is merely the killing of a few of them for (mercury poisoned) FOOD and SPORT (if you call killing penned up dolphins with spears from a boat sport), by a Foreign Culture, that does not share our ethics. (You and I don’t share ethics, so please don’t include me in your “our” (you already told me you don’t care enough about me to…)).

    This is kinda like screaming over the Seal hunts that take place in northern Canada, or the killing of dogs for food in Asian countries. DEAL WITH THE FACT THEIR CULTURES ARE DIFFERENT FROM YOURS. (So, should we just use this idea of “deal(ing) with the fact that their culture is different” to explain away all things that seem morally, ethically, environmentally nonsensical?)

    “Huh” im not sure how you missed that point. Do you eat Chicken or Beef? if you do, you are engaged in behavior just as if not more heinous than what you are protesting against. hence the term Hypocrite. (You state there is no ethical problem with omnivores killing and eating meat, but fail to address what to do when that meat is known to contain poison and is released to an unsuspecting public.)

    No As much as i love Wikipedia, it is NOT within a few degrees of the Britannica, ESPECIALLY on science. there is a reason no schools above the high-school level accept quotations from Wikipedia entries. if you truly must, use it to locate the actual peer reviewed journals they quote in the “external links” section… Jesus man, did you Go to College??? (Peer reviewed is better, but college equals smart? Come on.)

    If i condoned the Senseless killing of anything i would be in the minority. i am not. I am making the point that the slaughter of an animal for food by a foreign culture is NOT Senseless, it just doesn’t conform to YOUR sensibilities… Grow up and deal with the fact that western values are not universal.
    (We are not only talking about western values and sensibilities. There are human values and sensibilities shared across many cultures. Do you think we, as citizens of this world, should let cultures do whatever they please in whatever realm, because of tradition, or a misguided notion? Should pre-emptive war, stoning for adultery, female circumcision, torture, and genocide become lasting traditions in any culture?)

    and finally for a group of people claiming i lack reading comprehension, not a single one of you seem to be able to formulate an argument beyond either “OMG I LOVE CUTE DOLPHINS SAVE THEM” or “YOUR AN ASSHOLE BLARG BLARG BLARG” (You are not reading the replies carefully.)

    TO REITERATE (LOOK I CAN USE CAPS TOO) (How nice)
    1. THE KILLING OF ANIMALS FOR FOOD BY OMNIVORES IS NOT AN ETHICAL ISSUE. (Unless that food is tainted with poison.)
    2.DOLPHINS ARE NOT CURRENTLY INCLUDED IN INTERNATIONAL LAW BECAUSE THEY ARE NOT ENDANGERED. ONCE AGAIN YOUR POINTS ARE MOOT (Let’s emphasize the word currently in your sentence. Our entire marine ecosystem is in danger of collapse.)
    3. This is an actual issue, the public should not be fed food that cannot be held to consumption standards. (You agree with one point, but fail to let it have any ripple effect on your other arguments: why can’t you see it makes no sense to slaughter a mercury laden animal for “sport” or food?)
    4.ONCE AGAIN THIS WILL NOT “WIPE” OUT DOLPHINS, AS THEIR POPULATIONS ARE WIDE SPREAD AND DISTRIBUTED ENOUGH THAT THEY WILL NOT DISAPPEAR DUE TO A FEW KILLINGS IN JAPAN. (This is not the claim being made: you haven’t seen the movie.)

    So, Got Milk? (So, are you really an asshole, or do you just act like one?)

  35. Azrael

    ok, it is patently obvious that none of you have ever taken or engaged in debate or rhetoric, so i will make this as simple as i can.

    First off, this is NOT the extermination of a species. Dolphins exist world wide in huge numbers and this is merely the killing of a few of them for FOOD and SPORT by a Foreign Culture, that does not share our ethics.

    This is kinda like screaming over the Seal hunts that take place in northern Canada, or the killing of dogs for food in Asian countries. DEAL WITH THE FACT THEIR CULTURES ARE DIFFERENT FROM YOURS.

    “Huh” im not sure how you missed that point. Do you eat Chicken or Beef? if you do, you are engaged in behavior just as if not more heinous than what you are protesting against. hence the term Hypocrite.

    No As much as i love Wikipedia, it is NOT within a few degrees of the Britannica, ESPECIALLY on science. there is a reason no schools above the high-school level accept quotations from Wikipedia entries. if you truly must, use it to locate the actual peer reviewed journals they quote in the “external links” section… Jesus man, did you Go to College???

    If i condoned the Senseless killing of anything i would be in the minority. i am not. I am making the point that the slaughter of an animal for food by a foreign culture is NOT Senseless, it just doesn’t conform to YOUR sensibilities… Grow up and deal with the fact that western values are not universal.

    and finally for a group of people claiming i lack reading comprehension, not a single one of you seem to be able to formulate an argument beyond either “OMG I LOVE CUTE DOLPHINS SAVE THEM” or “YOUR AN ASSHOLE BLARG BLARG BLARG”

    TO REITERATE (LOOK I CAN USE CAPS TOO)
    1. THE KILLING OF ANIMALS FOR FOOD BY OMNIVORES IS NOT AN ETHICAL ISSUE.
    2.DOLPHINS ARE NOT CURRENTLY INCLUDED IN INTERNATIONAL LAW BECAUSE THEY ARE NOT ENDANGERED. ONCE AGAIN YOUR POINTS ARE MOOT
    3. This is an actual issue, the public should not be fed food that cannot be held to consumption standards.
    4.ONCE AGAIN THIS WILL NOT “WIPE” OUT DOLPHINS, AS THEIR POPULATIONS ARE WIDE SPREAD AND DISTRIBUTED ENOUGH THAT THEY WILL NOT DISAPPEAR DUE TO A FEW KILLINGS IN JAPAN.

    So, Got Milk?

    -Azrael

  36. Clayton B. Cornell

    A bit more in the way of response to your last slew of comments Azreal:

    “there is no “Scientific” hazard happening here”

    I didn’t say “hazard” I said “issue.” The wasteful extermination of a key member of any ecosystem is certainly going to be cause for scientific concern.

    “neither is this an “extermination of a key marine species” this is the killing of a handful of animals for food. ever eaten chicken or Beef? yeah you are a hypocrite.)”

    huh?

    “(Btw Science definitions from Wikipedia? LOL, Good job on shoring up your credibility)”

    I don’t need much in the way of credibility for this debate. Besides a) I did provide some citation where you provided none b) wikipedia has been found to be within a few degrees of accuracy as Encyclopedia Britannica and c) I didn’t feel like pulling the original research for you.

    “Finally i am very sorry but there are many MANY things endangering the oceanic Eco-systems long before the killing of a few dolphins for sport and food. ”

    You’re missing the point. I also still don’t understand how having other bad things happening now somehow makes this not bad…

    “Please running around screaming to “SAVE THE DOLPHINS!!!!” is not only ridiculous considering the scale (23,000 in a whole year? wow, they kill that many chickens DAILY”

    I’m pretty sure you’re in a minority group that would condone the senseless killing of a group of animals.

    And here are some answers to your second post:

    “Perhaps i could have coached my arguments in a more polite and political correct manner, but this is a comment section on an internet page… too be honest i don’t care about any you enough to warrant that kind of effort.”

    Anyone who comments on the internet is adding to the conversation or detracting from it.

    “Can you respond to a single one of my assertions with anything beyond calling me a Asshole, or trying to cast aspersions on my intelligence? i doubt it, but please try. . .none of you seem to be able to do anything but engage in Ad-Hominem arguments…”

    I already did but it doesn’t seem that you’re actually reading my previous responses.

    Let me reiterate my arguments one last time:

    The actions in Taiji are morally reprehensible.

    This is an issue of a) ethics (whether or not it’s ok to massacre a highly-intelligent creature that can’t defend itself)
    b) international law (dolphins are ceteceans and should be included under IWC regulations)
    c) public health (feeding highly toxic levels of mercury to the Japanese public)
    d) scientific importance (dolphins have been wiped out in certain parts of the world. what effect does Taiji have on the greater dolphin population?)

  37. Azrael

    Sigh, Ok, where to begin?

    1. i am not an asshole for pointing out in a condescending manner the fallacious statements being made by the author of this “article”. Perhaps i could have coached my arguments in a more polite and political correct manner, but this is a comment section on an internet page… too be honest i don’t care about any you enough to warrant that kind of effort.

    2. Your pedestrian understanding of self-awareness, your lack of any reading comprehension, your blatant and frequent use of fallacious and specious arguments all conspire together to invalidate your message.
    Good luck trying to convince anyone with more than 3 brain cells that you’re right. Maybe your cat and dog buy your malarky, but I don’t.?”

    You accuse me of using Fallacious and Specious arguments… and yet you do not point out a single one. Is it because your own understanding of the issues under discussion is rather lacking? (and BTW my understanding of self-awareness is quite accurate according to our current models, maybe you should go read a little as to how Eye’s and brain’s function?)

    now my response is not that large, is it perhaps that since you cannot refute my claims, you instead try to drown me out with “ARGH YOUR AN ASSHOLE AND IM NOT LISTENING!@#!@$!@#$@#$” Can you respond to a single one of my assertions with anything beyond calling me a Asshole, or trying to cast aspersions on my intelligence? i doubt it, but please try. (see now THAT was a specious argument based on a personal attack on YOU rather than your claims, although since you didn’t really make any claims your statement becomes moot in the context of debate or argument)

    Since none of you seem to be able to do anything but engage in Ad-Hominem arguments, all the while accusing me of doing the same ( I would ask if you are American republicans, but i doubt they would find themselves on a “save the dolphins” page) i will simply leave it at that, unless and until one of you can come up with something better than “WAH WAH WAH ASSHOLE BLAH BLAH BLAH JERK”

    -Azrael

  38. Alex

    Hey,

    First off I understand why so many people are upset about the killing of Dolphins, however this is a very common practice in Japan. Also as far as I know the numbers of Dolphins that are being killed in this “cove” are not a significant enough amount to consider these killings to be endangering the species at all. I do sympathize with the people who believe that animals have rights and I agree to a certain extent and believe we need to stop these practices.

    Secondly, this is not really about killing Dolphins, as much as the film crew try to attack peoples emotions, this is more about the “pubic health hazard” that is coming from the consumption of these animals.

    Overall I feel that it is sad animals that are self-aware and have emotions are hunted, killed, and tortured. I feel that the animal testing facilities that use monkeys and apes are a far bigger issue in the long run than the killing of a few thousand dolphins for consumption.

    Alex

  39. Aaron

    @Azrael

    Your pedestrian understanding of self-awareness, your lack of any reading comprehension, your blatant and frequent use of fallacious and specious arguments all conspire together to invalidate your message.

    Good luck trying to convince anyone with more than 3 brain cells that you’re right. Maybe your cat and dog buy your malarky, but I don’t.

  40. Neo

    There is nothing wrong eating dolphins. What is wrong is that Japanese people don’t know that they are being fed by toxic foods disguised as something else, and that there are some Japaneses here loving to see their fellows get poisoned. This documentary could be helping both the dolphins and the innocent Japanese citizens. This is a massive scandal, and whoever behind it must be put behind bars.

  41. scott

    @Azrael wrote: “so, I’m very sorry Sir, but you STILL fail at life.”

    Is that some ad hominum? Yes, I think so. Good way to promote your position so that we all take your opinions seriously? Probably not.

    I have not seen this film nor the trailer (teh dial-up, it sucks). In this country (US) great strides have been made in the humane handling of livestock as food / fiber sources. These days we engineer handling facilities that utilize the natural instincts of herd animals so that they remain calm right into the kill box. This helps with efficiency, meat quality, and worker safety. Read “Humane Livestock Handling” by Dr Temple Grandin (ISBN 978-1-60342-028-0).

    I suspect that the killing of the dolphins in the Cove isn’t so carefully thought out. If we truly are at the top of the food / intelligence chain then it is incumbent upon us to ensure that the chain remains whole and complete and that those animals that we eat have ample opportunity to reproduce and live as happy and healthy lives as we can provide for them. To do otherwise simply endangers our own position.

  42. Bill Campbell

    @Azreal: your points are distorted and convoluted, and I agree with Joe, you come off as a real asshole. I almost wish you would eat a ton of mercury tainted dolphin meat, but I wouldn’t want dolphins to be killed for you, or anyone else to eat. Feeding poisonous meat to the public is a worthy thing to uncover.
    Yes there are plenty of problems in the world, and many millions of PEOPLE live in horrible conditions…what are you doing about it?
    Being an asshole about a movie that uncovers a truths that affect us all?

  43. Texaspoet

    If the government is covering up the preparation of any kind of food that is harmful to me and then it is being sold as something other than what it is, I’d like to be made aware of it. This is criminal.

  44. David

    @Azrael Chickens and Cows are mindless, domesticated animals and better yet they taste good. Dolphins are intelligent mammals that are known to help stranded people all the time. Don’t muddy this with your vegan mindset. We got to eat. Dolphins and whales deserve our protection because they are so intelligent. We should be protecting the sea, but don’t take it farther than it needs to be taken.

  45. David

    The Japanese are heartless. They were in WWII and they still are today. Why we let them get away with this is beyond me. What a *&$**# people. Seriously, they suck.

  46. Azrael

    Ok Clayton, you seemed to have missed my point entirely in your attempt to pick apart my post, but considering the subject matter i am not surprised.

    To respond,

    1st-2nd your responses to my first 2 points are basically the same thing. That the Japanese killing of Dolphins in their own territorial, or international waters is in some way an illegal thing. it is not. in fact it is SPECIFICALLY permitted under international law to hunt and kill just about anything. the exceptions being of course endangered species (are dolphins endangered? Hmmm nope!) and even than you can get away with it for “cultural” traditions or “scientific” purposes.(and BTW this is only 2 issues. Public health, and Animal rights. there is no “Scientific” hazard happening here, neither is this an “extermination of a key marine species” this is the killing of a handful of animals for food. ever eaten chicken or Beef? yeah you are a hypocrite.)

    3rd the generally accepted view on self-awareness is based almost entirely on how the brains of those mammals operate. They have a large cluster of cells located on the frontal lobes of the cerebellum, that enable them to recognize transposed images (in other words those species can recognize themselves inverted in a mirror as the same being) now my cat can’t do that, neither can my dog, yet they are arguably self-aware… in other words, this definition is Bullshit, kinda like the scientific understanding in the 1800’s that Black’s brains were smaller than Caucasians. (Btw Science definitions from Wikipedia? LOL, Good job on shoring up your credibility)

    4th ok so you did’nt really write anything here, instead you just what? tried to define intelligence? to attempt to poke fun at mine? Did you even understand the point? that perhaps even though an animal can demonstrate something approaching human intellect, they are still NOT HUMAN? and therefor should not be mistakenly ascribed human characteristics?

    5th as to not answering my point why? could it be perhaps that it is true? could it be perhaps that every single living thing on this planet is a killer, and in fact humans are the only creature that can choose NOT to kill, based on circumstances? whereas an animal will kill in the same circumstance every time, this is the difference between “Intelligence” and “Instinct”.

    Finally i am very sorry but there are many MANY things endangering the oceanic Eco-systems long before the killing of a few dolphins for sport and food. Like the chemical and nuclear dumping that occurs around Africa and the southern Americas? how about the declining shrimp and crustacean populations due to over-fishing? (an actual marine emergency?)

    “a global sense of decency and respect for the world we live in???” Please running around screaming to “SAVE THE DOLPHINS!!!!” is not only ridiculous considering the scale (23,000 in a whole year? wow, they kill that many chickens DAILY at a slaughter house)but i would say YOU are contributing to the overall decline by drawing attention away from real issue (you know like how 4 billion of us live in conditions i wouldn’t bury my dog in?)
    so, I’m very sorry Sir, but you STILL fail at life.

    -Azrael

  47. harold

    Also, most people in Japan would be horrified to find out that this sort of slaughter is going on every year. I have many Japanese friends, all of which strongly disapprove of such brutality.

    Ok, now about the cows. Do know how to breed dolphins by the thousands (does anybody)? no? ok then. You might say “but the ocean does” in which case…. your a idiot.

    Also, if you found out you were eating dog meat but didn’t know it wouldn’t you be inferioted? I would. Now what if you found out you were eating dog meat that had a extremely high level of toxins? Now how would you feel?

  48. joe

    I personally dont care what meat it is just as long as it taste good. how dare these people try to force their beliefs on the japanese people

    1. Yair Navarrete

      When the Japanese inhumanely slaughter dolphins for meat that is filled with mercury we have a right to express our views and stand up for a creature that cant fight for itself. Dolphins are self aware and to herd them like cattle is a crime no less killing them.

  49. Jeff

    @Aaron

    I think nik’s point was that any small factual errors will be seized upon by those who oppose the film for the purpose of discrediting the film as a whole. Then viewers might be tempted to question the portions that are accurate.

  50. Clayton B. Cornell

    @Azreal: Answer to each of your points below…

    “1st off, Dolphin meat is delicious, and as Omnivores it is well within our purview to consume them.”

    Sure, that’s fine and may be true. However, doing something because it feels good doesn’t justify doing it. While most people do have a large affection for certain species (dog, for example), that is only one reason why this is so atrocious.

    “2nd off, the feeding of contaminated food to the public is hardly a new phenomena, i would posit that the only reason you are up in arms over this is because it is a “cute” animal.”

    Not only is this a logical fallacy (tradition) but it’s also bullshit. By the same logic we shouldn’t change anything that’s wrong just because we’ve always done it this way.

    There are numerous issues here that span multiple stereotypical subgroups, including (but not limited to): public health, animal rights, science, international law, the tragedy of the commons and the extermination of a key species in oceanic ecosystems.

    None of this depends on the animal being “cute”.

    “3rd off, im sorry merely because something happens to have demonstrable self awareness (so do cows btw, in fact just about every creature that walks, runs, flies swims, or crawls on this planet is “self aware””

    You’re missing that the generally accepted definition of “self-aware” means being able to recognize oneself in a mirror (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mirror_test).

    The only animals considered self-aware by modern science are all the great apes (bonobos, chimpanzees, orangutans, gorillas, and humans), bottlenose dolphins, Orcas, elephants, and European Magpies.

    This puts bottlenose dolphins in a particularly special group of organisms, so they could deserve a bit more respect than you’re giving them.

    “4th off. @Ruggy “Dolphins are almost certainly highly intelligent creatures, possibly even more intelligent than humans, but by different metrics.” you are doing what is called “anthropomorphizing” which is to ascribe human characteristics to non-human objects or creatures. Dolphins while demonstrably intelligent, are in no way on the scale of humans. Well some humans anyway as your post proves.”

    Nice job using a big word. Perhaps the definition of intelligence could help: Intelligence (also called intellect) is an umbrella term used to describe a property of the mind that encompasses many related abilities, such as the capacities to reason, to plan, to solve problems, to think abstractly, to comprehend ideas, to use language, and to learn (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Intelligence).

    I’m not even going to answer your 5th point.

    “In short why don’t you expend your energy on something WORTHWHILE, like you know, homelessness, starvation, the fact that 50% of the world lives without electricity, or maybe that 60% of us have never made a phone call? no instead you want to save some fishy mammals, that aren’t even endangered. in short you all fail at life.”

    Who are you to decide what is worthwhile? 70% of the earth’s population depends upon fish protein for survival. Allowing for the blatant destruction of ocean ecosystems is criminal, and this is just a visually horrifying representation of that.

    It’s not so much about dolphins or food as it is about a global sense of decency and respect for the world we live in.

  51. Azrael

    1st off, Dolphin meat is delicious, and as Omnivores it is well within our purview to consume them.

    2nd off, the feeding of contaminated food to the public is hardly a new phenomena, i would posit that the only reason you are up in arms over this is because it is a “cute” animal.

    3rd off, im sorry merely because something happens to have demonstrable self awareness (so do cows btw, in fact just about every creature that walks, runs, flies swims, or crawls on this planet is “self aware”

    4th off. @Ruggy “Dolphins are almost certainly highly intelligent creatures, possibly even more intelligent than humans, but by different metrics.” you are doing what is called “anthropomorphizing” which is to ascribe human characteristics to non-human objects or creatures. Dolphins while demonstrably intelligent, are in no way on the scale of humans. Well some humans anyway as your post proves.

    5th off and finally, If your issue here is that contaminated food is being distributed without the knowledge of the public, fine, that is a real issue. BUt i am willing to bet instead it is a knee jerk (OMG THEY ARE KILLING FLIPPER) if you knew anything about dolphins you would know that for all their cute image….they are also sadistic murderous creatures that enjoy torturing their rivals children to death. combined with the fact that WE ARE OMNIVORES, therefor everything is food to us.

    In short why don’t you expend your energy on something WORTHWHILE, like you know, homelessness, starvation, the fact that 50% of the world lives without electricity, or maybe that 60% of us have never made a phone call? no instead you want to save some fishy mammals, that aren’t even endangered. in short you all fail at life.

  52. fku

    I’m not Japanese, but you people should mind your own fking business. Are you going to be the whole worlds karma police, no. The japanese have the decency to respect your norms and values, so you should at least leave them be, and not try to shed such bad light on them, just because their culture doesn’t see marine mammals as “cute”. That’s what the term ethno-centric is used for.

  53. wtf

    wait…so let me get this straight..Americans and most westerners consume fat juicy hamburgers which are made from cows every single fucking day SLAUGHTERING cows and Japanese people cant eat their dolphin or whatever they do with it? Isnt that ironic. No country says anything to the west for eating snails and pidgeons (symbol of peace) and you guys go crazy when an Asian country eats something the westerners dear love? Like dog dolphin whale? freaking hypocrites

    1. Yair Navarrete

      Dolphins are different than cows. First off dolphins can think for themselves and dolphins know they are alive which i dont think can be said for a cow. Killing dolphins is like killing a group of humans.

  54. Aaron

    Everyone’s a critic apparently. I think even a poorly produced work exposing something horrific, deceitful and illegal is great.

  55. nik

    @Clayton: wasn’t making a jab at you or the content of the film. If low-budget films with great messages want to be taken seriously, every bit of professional checking helps. Of course mistakes will be made and errors will go unseen. After having seen the trailer, I’m left with the thought that while good in intent, the film will be unprofessional enough to miss out on critical media exposure. I hope I’m wrong about this!

  56. Clayton B. Cornell

    @Joe:

    If you can watch this film and say the same thing I feel sorry for your state of mind.

    a) The Japanese public is unknowingly being fed this meat, in part due to government cover-up. This dolphin meat has been tested at 2000 ppm mercury while the “safe” limit that was established is less than 1 ppm. This makes it a public health issue for the Japanese public and they should know about it.

    b) The dolphins don’t belong to the Japanese and they aren’t a resource to be exploited. It isn’t part of their “culture” either, since no other place in Japan hunts dolphins.

    c) Japan exploits loopholes in IWC rules in order to hunt ceteceans in the first place, but they should be held to the same standards that the rest of the world is held to.

    d) “I eat meat because it tastes good” as a justification for anything–but especially–exterminating a species, let alone one that has been proven to be self-aware, is beyond my comprehension as a human being.

    Thanks for the comment.

  57. Clayton B. Cornell

    @nik

    I hate to be a blogger, but a) I can’t find what you’re talking about and b) I’d rather get something out that wasn’t perfect rather than sitting on it like every other journalist that was at the screening.

  58. nik

    I hate to be that grammar guy, but if you want to be taken seriously, triple-check all your copy before submitting it to the public.

    At 1:22, the text reads “that will effect us all” should read “that will AFFECT us all”

  59. Ruggy

    Dolphins are almost certainly highly intelligent creatures, possibly even more intelligent than humans, but by different metrics.

    It is a tragedy when a greater intelligence is killed by a lesser one, or when any intelligent being is needlessly killed where the death of a less-intelligent creature would have sufficed.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *