Yesterday I teasingly asked one of my best Japanese friends, “when you watch a dolphin show, do you think the dolphins look yummy?” In return she snapped “No. When you look at a cow in a field, do you think the same thing?” Ouch.
Whaling – and those who vigorously oppose it – has been in the news a lot lately. The Cove won an Academy award, much to the puzzlement of many Japanese people. The recent arrest and detention of a NZ anti-whaling activist in Japan has worried many of my students, although I’m not in the least bit fazed (frankly, I’m just thrilled if they can actually find NZ on the map). And I have yet to formulate a satisfactory answer to the age-old question, “why is it okay to kill and consume sheep, pigs, and cows, but not whales?”