By SARUN SAELEE
HONG KONG — Dolphins are considered as one of the friendliest creatures of human being. However, many thousands of them have been killed by people for food. If dolphins’ meat is not safe to be consumed, should such an adorable marine mammal with full of self-awareness still be slaughtered?
According to The Cove, the 2010 Oscar winning documentary film, directed by Louie Psihoyos and starring Ric O’Barry, more than 2,000 dolphins are slaughtered each year in Taiji, a coastal city of Japan. They are killed for human food while some are traded to amusement parks, aquariums and so-called dolphinariums for their shows. Importantly, their hunting practice, known as dolphin drive hunting, is also deemed unacceptable for the world community.
Although the movie has been screened broadly, and eating the dolphin meat is actually risky for human health, especially children and pregnant women due to high levels of mercury contamination, the dolphin slaughter is still going on.
O’Barry, the veteran dolphin activist, said the meat could be used for fertilizer, pet food and sometimes is served as a free lunch for students in Japan. Moreover, many people are really not aware of the issue and still consuming. He spoke in a Q&A session at Hong Kong Baptist University Tuesday after showing part of The Cove.