5 04 2010


The Cove, Movie - Poster Image

Taiji, Japan.
23,000 dolphins are harvested to be selected by trainers, who will pick them depending on how trainable they look. Essentially, they are all looking for the ideal “Flipper”, like  in the TV series.
The film, which was originally rejected, was shown at the Tokyo Film Festival due to public outcry. Residents in Taiji are being tested for mercury poisoning, and for the first time Japanese media are covering the issue.

Ironically, the man who helped build the industry of training dolphins, and who held the title for many decades as  the top dolphin trainer in the world, is the same man who for the past 30 years has been trying to bring the industry down.

Richard O’Barry realized how capturing dolphins and holding them in captivity is a sure sentence to death.  Although he learned through trial and error, as he was the first to do so for the television series Flipper, he learned it all too late, after the original Flipper dolphin (Kathy) passed away in his arms after being held in captivity.  This hurt Ric tremendously, so much that the next day he got arrested for releasing a dolphin in a marine life captivity center.

The dolphins become stressed by the noises in the tanks and by the surrounding noises of the people that visit water parks like Seaworld and Local Aquatic Parks.  Dolphins are auditory creatures who depend on their sonar to see and hear everything around them.  One can only imagine how the constant humming of the noises coming out of the water filtration system can drive these beautiful creatures to the point of committing suicide, Richard’s own words.  Such is the case in every aquatic park like Seaworld.


A lagoon off the shores of the small town, Taiji, in Japan harbors fishermen who between September and March harvest the porpoises. Barbaric fisherman ignorantly protect The Cove where the slaughter is taking place, completely oblivious to the surrounding environmental and inhumane hazards.  The slaughter begins every September, unless we do something about it.

These people take the intelligence they have gained on these majestic creatures, and take advantage of this knowledge.  They do so by creating a wall of noise which makes the dolphins veer off their natural migratory trails which they have been taking for thousands of years.  The fishermen have found a way to intercept them during these migrations, and herd them into this lagoon of death, and into the now-exposed “secret cove”.  We’re talking about governmental and media cover up , here!


The Japanese government does not regard these animals as having any special value, and therefore treats them like pests. IWC (International Whaling Commission) has not done anything, other than debate the issue, in order to help the situation.  As a matter of fact, the Japanese government has created a campaign to financially entice small, poor, countries (mostly third-world island chains), and have them join the IWC, in order to sway influence and votes in favor of the Japanese government.  Japan pays all the fees and costs that these small “countries” must pay for joining the IWC, and in return “buy” their loyalty.  This form of governing and political influence within the IWC is not fair, yet, it is still happening today.  Countries like Antigua, Barbados, Dominica, Dry Tortugas, have prostituted themselves to Japan, in return for some financial relief.

Mercury levels have increased since the Industrial Revolution began  polluting our atmosphere and oceans by the burning of fossil fuels.  Scientific evidence supports the findings and has successfully proven that fish and oceanic wildlife in this part of the world has had a surge in mercury levels.  One study found a level of 2000 ppm (parts per million) of mercury in dolphin meat, where 0.02 is the highest recommended “safe level”.  That is a huge volume of mercury in the water, and unfortunately it trickles all the way down the food chain, and up it.  For more on mercury poisoning and another issue not well-known related to this issue of dolphin slaughter in Japan, see Minamata.  Minimata is yet another environmental tragedy as a result of the Japanese Whaling industry.

Such a beautiful place, with an eerie secret


Oscar-winner, and it is no surprise.  I’m sure the film makers are very proud  to have received an Oscar, but you get the sense by watching the film that their hearts are not set on any awards, or prizes, or fame, other than that which will raise awareness of the horrible atrocities happening in our own very lifetime in this bloody lagoon of death referred to as “the cove”.

The movie will make you cry, enrage you and make you want to reach through the screen and scream at these barbaric morons (yes we are being very biased and you will learn why upon watching the film)!  Ultimately, the damage has been done.

Ric O’Barry would like to start with this one small portion of the world, and insists that if we take care of the problem in The Cove, the rest of these types of places will get the message.   If not as a PR disaster, by bringing bad publicity to this issue, we can peacefully demonstrate our support by boycotting meat from this region, not visiting the types of parks which harbor these animals, and by making an economical impact on this horrible industry. Richard insists that it is crucial that this problem be eradicated, and we believe and stand behind him in his fight.

His dream is to see the suffering of dolphins STOP in his lifetime, and it’s a dream that we can all get behind.  Let’s do our part, NOW, today.  Let’s help raise awareness in our own social circles.  Try to do the most you can by going to their website and looking at all the ways we can BE ACTIVE, and support these pro-life organizations.  Start by setting up a drive or fundraiser and donate to these organization.  Sign petitions and write to our local officials showing interest in support for companies like Save The Whales Again, OPS (Oceanic Preservation Society), Sea Shepard Conservation, and Ric O’Barry.

For more information please visit The Cove Movie website and register with them to start learning all the ways you can help in the fight.  You might think they are well-stocked and fully equipped, but the reality is that ‘not many people are picking up where animal activist groups in the 60’s and 70’s left off’.  Reading about it and watching the movie is just not enough.

You are either active or inactive.

What are you?

We love ya, Ric, and support you.  We wish you long life and happiness, and we Thank You for calling the filmmakers of the movie.  Although you may not believe so, it has made a huge difference, and it is the first BIG STEP of this generation towards protecting our aquatic friends.