“Kicking the Pricks” to Capture Dolphins

posted by Jael Ever @ 18:49 PM
May 31, 2011

Even before this year’s earthquake and tsunami, the Japanese government agreed to stop commercial whale fishing.  But after those disasters, fishermen––who resisted the order beforehand––realized that it would be impossible to keep hunting whales as the severe storms had torn to shreds their ships and all on-land whale slaughtering operations.  What is not known now is if both government and fishing operations have likewise agreed to cease hunting for dolphins.

 The Sea Shepherds, the fearless group using every conceivable harassment to hound Japan’s huge whale hunting operations on several seas, eventually forced Japan’s government to cease whale hunting.   The earthquake and tsunami simply crossed the tees and dotted the eyes making that final decision.  However, that nation’s dolphin hunters operate out of a different location in the city of Taiji.  The Sea Shepherds and other anti-dolphin organizations made Taiji famous in 2003 with a Academy Award winning documentary called “The Cove.” 

 Taiji fishermen annually join their counterparts in several small villages along Japan’s coast to hunt, capture, kill or encage some 20,000 dolphins a year.  Sanctioned by the Japanese government, the dolphin hunting season usually runs from about October through April.  The Taiji fishermen keep those dolphins, not immediately slaughtered, dissected and distributed to restaurants and fish markets, swimming in tight-spaced ocean pens until buyers pay upwards of $20,000 each for them.  A few of these magnificent fish mammals are sold through the Ito Fishing Cooperative which sells them to aquarium, water park or other dolphin entertainment acts. The rest go to restaurant chains to be featured as mahimahi.

 During the tsunami, although Taiji itself did not suffer extreme damage from the killer storm, dozens of dolphins held in the ocean pens were heard screaming in agony as the waves pushed them against rocky shores.  Eventually, all the dolphins suffered horrible deaths from ocean upheavals and beatings.  The storms cut short this year’s dolphin season, but it remains to be seen if fishermen from Taiji and other villages will resume dolphin hunting this coming fall.

 Before he became the dedicated disciple who wrote three-fourths of the New Testament in Bible prophecies, Apostle Paul, was a highly educated Pharisee who had vowed to find, imprison or kill the few Jews who were new followers of the recently-crucified and resurrected Jesus Christ.  When he was stopped along the road going to one of those round-ups, he was stopped with a vision and words from heaven which asked, “Saul, Saul why persecutest thou me? .  . .
It is hard for thee to kick against the pricks” (Acts 9: 1 – 7).  Japan had best take warning from the recent earthquake and tsunami and stop hunting dolphins.  At some point, they must recognize that needlessly attacking God’s creatures is attacking Him.  As the changed Paul soon learned, indeed it is hard to kick against the pricks!

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