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2 June 1999 Issue

Makah Whale Hunt Follow-up

Last Sunday's special issue of Animal Writes that focused on the killing of
the baby gray whale brought a gratifying return of comments showing the
concern our readers have about this issue. There was also a reprint in
another animal-related, online newsletter - AnimalTalk by Nyppsi@aol.com .
Nyppsi added the following editorial which we believe to be worth noting by
our readers:

AnimalTalk Comment: This issue is about more than the killing of a whale,
which, in and of itself, is cruel and totally unnecessary. The Makah did not
kill this whale for subsistence, they did not need it for food or survival. For the
Makah, this was a totally senseless and unnecessary murder of an animal to
satisfy a cultural "need." This is not a bit different than the practice of Santeria,
the sacrifice of live animals in the name of religion -- an equally disgusting
"tradition." But there's more to this than meets the eye. It has been
not-so-quietly intimated that this was a carefully orchestrated effort on the parts
of a number of countries/organizations that support the worldwide slaughter of
whales for profit, and wish to undermine the United States' position as primary
objector to that practice by encouraging this clear violation of the premise that
whales should only be killed when absolutely necessary for subsistence. The
current administration, which talks a good environmental line, fails, once again,
to deliver, and fell right into the trap. The whale killers, and those who support
them, have done their job well. This whale didn't die because the Makah tribe is
starving and needs food. This whale didn't have to die for Makah tradition -- the
administration could have easily said NO, based on the greater need of the
nation to maintain credibility in the international community. We could say to
ourselves "Why all the fuss, this is just one whale?", but there's much more to
this than meets the eye. Notwithstanding the fact that this was a life, and life is
always precious and important, it is clear that this whale, this living, breathing
creature, was a pawn, and really died in the name of human political nonsense.
Think about it. Get angry. Do something.

Go on to Vegetarian Festivals
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