“Never doubt that a small group of people can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.”
The cove remained empty today… The water remained clear and untainted, and the surroundings were silent, save from a few birds chirping here and there… There were no screams coming from the cove, no thrashing sounds. The dolphins were safe.
We saw the boats head in unusually early this morning- at about 8a.m.- it came as a huge relief, especially after the last few days, but we were suspicious of their early return. A few of the Cove Guardians drove quickly to the harbour, to investigate as to whether they may be loading up captive dolphins at the Fisheries Union- but did not notice anything out of the ordinary. We were very welcoming of the news that no dolphins would be harmed today- to see the slaughter day after day is painful.
The quote I found above, I thought, is highly indicative of the situation in Taiji… this slaughter has been continuing for decades, and in that time- there has been so many little victories, a few major ones, and the slaughtering of dolphins here in Taiji has drastically changed, even from less than ten years ago. This is largely because of the work that passionate individuals have done in this area… to look back on videos from the past, and to see how far we’ve come at exposing the slaughter, as well as the changes that the fishermen have made because of continued pressure- the near future looks hopeful for the dolphins off the coast of Japan.
If you think about it, this slaughter has been in existence for just over 40 years or so now… however- the issue here has only really been exposed for a significantly less amount of time… it was in 2003 that the first momentous activism was carried out, and since then, the awareness, media attention and changes have been snowballing.
This is the first time, ever, that a group of activists have been situated on the ground in Taiji every single morning without fail over the course of the dolphin drive season. There has only been 3 months so far… out of over 40 years… that this has occurred, and the changes that we have seen, and the prospects and ideas for the future show that there is going to be a change here… and soon.
People need to understand the delicate situation over here- it’s a little different to activism in the Southern Ocean… We are working here under Japanese law- we are working on Japanese soil. So, we need to respect the people, and the country. In saying this- we are monitored closely by police, coast guard- you name it- to ensure we stay within the confines of the law here. We cannot jeopardise the work that so many people have carried out here- we cannot have westerners blacklisted from the town altogether. It will take some time, and logical methods, but when you think about it; the change and progress that has occurred within these three months… out of 40 years… it is very encouraging for the goal of shutting down the slaughter for good. We just need to keep the pressure, keep exposing what we see, keep the respect, keep the flow of new ideas and most importantly, keep the focus on the dolphins…
Thankyou all for the support!
On the path to protect,