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Ric O'Barry and John Leguizamo to Light Empire State Building for the Cove Dolphins

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Tomorrow night the Empire State Building will be shining bright red in honor of the dolphins of the cove.

According to a blog by Ric O’Barry on the Dolphin Project website, race car driver and Save Japan Dolphins volunteer Leilani Munter planned the event. O’Barry wrote, “This whole idea was hatched by Leilani Munter, our race car driver volunteer who was at the Cove earlier this year as a monitor for Save Japan Dolphins.  She convinced the owners of the Empire State Building to host a special lighting ceremony to remind people about the plight of dolphins in Japan. Leilani will be joining us in New York.”

Also joining them are actor John Leguizamo, The Cove Director Louie Psihoyos and Producer Fisher Stevens. “We need to let the people of Japan know what is happening in Taiji and other remote ports of Japan, where the government Japan Fisheries Agency issues permits to kill dolphins for meat – meat that is highly contaminated with mercury and other pollutants. Before the people of Japan can stop their government from supporting this annual slaughter, they need to know about it. And what better way than to light up the iconic Empire State Building in New York, the ‘World’s Most Famous Office Building’, in red lights?” O’Barry wrote.

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  • Bob

    If it’s wrong to kill animals, how about they light it up for all the billions of animals that are killed in the US instead? Or how about all the innocent human beings that are being killed by US military drones? Talk about hypocrisy.

    How about Americans learn to have some respect and tolerance for people in other countries and other cultures who are utilise different species?

    • Heather

      Because the slaughter has NOTHING to do culture. It’s done by big fishing corporations who see the dolphins as competition. Boo-hoo, animals are doing what they’re supposed to, those fish are in those oceans to make humans money not to feed other life! Really, you’re going to be like that? Then what are you even doing here?

      • Kevin

        I don’t believe that even Ric O’Barry claims that big corporations are behind the dolphin fishing in Taiji. It’s a bunch of fishermen, that’s all.

        • you are poorly informed. Rick O Barry points out that its not jst a bunch of fisherman, but that its the international marine entertaining indstry (like zoos and dolphin shows) that are keeping these dolphin hunts financially going.

    • hunting cetaceans isnt “japanese” at all, it was done by most if not all countries who border with an ocean.
      I am from Holland, not an “American”, and until a few decades we also hunted whales. Our waling industry was a big industry. We stopped because of a growing international awarenes of many animals rapidly becoming endangered.
      “We” also had big campaigns against massive dolphin deaths caused by the tuna fisheries.
      So all in all, NO, whale and dolphin huntings isnt japanese culture AT ALL, and second, we are not hypcrities because the standards we demand from other nations (cetacean protection) are the same standards we ourselves have been doing for decades.

      • Kevin

        Poor logic to say something is not Japanese culture just because others did it too. Is eating rice not a core part of Japanese culture, just because rice is eaten all over the world?

        Beef eating is part of American culture, but it is also done in India. However, many Indians hold the belief that it is wrong to eat beef. In fact, the predominant share of them hold this view in various strengths. Since they have held themselves to that standard, do they have the right to hold Americans to that standard?

        • Rice is part of japanese culture, it was and it is eaten on a daily basis. Dolphin meat never was and never is part of the japanese culture. Take away dolphin meat, and japan will still be the same.
          As i pointed out, also my country Holland had a big whaling industry, but just as in japan it never was a core part of real culture.
          You just abuse the culture argument. Untrue and unfair.

  • Damien

    So do nothing to protect the dolphins and/or whales unless they are threatening our coastlines and toting AK’s Bob? Bob? Is that your rel name?

  • Alexandra

    I am a Canadian and am truly embarassed and sickened each year when our native populations out East are still allowed to slaughter/butcher seals in a very inhumane manner. Bob- this is an example of a culture that has been allowed to get away with killing animals in the name of “their history and culture”. You won’t find one person in this country that doesn’t have conflicting views about this practice. Initially they killed the seals for trade purposes-most countries now simply refuse to buy any seafood from Canada until this inhumane and senseless act is banned forever. It is a matter of educating the population about what is actually a cultural practice, but no longer necessary in this day and age!! I hope in my lifetime I see this senseless practice and bone of contention in this country abolished once and for all!! The people of Japan should know that what they think is whale meat is actually dolphin with high concentrations of mercury!!! You can’t actually believe that people would knowingly feed their children contaminated meat because it is “cultural” belief??

    • Bob

      If you check the facts, rather than animal rights propaganda, you will find that the ways Canadians kill seals are no more inhumane than the legal and well accepted ways that other animals are killed all over the world. And people engage in the seal hunt to earn income and provide for their families. Also I have not heard of Canadians having any problems selling their seafood in any countries.

      If you are embarassed about being Canadian feel free to leave. I’m sure other Canadians won’t miss you. Don’t let the door hit your ass on the way out.

  • Kevin

    Since there seems to be confusion on what Japanese culture is, here is a good reference to the book “Modern Japanese Culture”: http://www.scribd.com/doc/30887965/Modern-Japanese-Culture

    Here is a key excerpt, read pp. 303-305:
    While recognizing the importance of preserving animal resources, a majority of the Japanese find it difficult to comprehend the argument, frequently advanced in Western countries, that whales should be given special protection because their intellgence level is close to that of human beings. The animistic perspective long embedded into the Japanese psyche regards every being, including plants and minerals, as having a life of its own. This worldview has been combined with the Buddhist thinking that human and animal lives are on equal footing: human beings live depending on the lives of other beings. In the endless cycle of some animal beings eating others, some lives are maintained at the expense of others.

  • Daytripper1904

    People are so dumb when it comes to things like this. Some people save animals and others save other things. You shouldn’t put others down because of what they believe in. The japs know what’s going on. They believe that dolphins are eating all the fish so the kill millions of them a year. To me they could have better things to do then sell dolphin meat and labeling it whale meat. Obviously dolphin meat is waaaaaaaaaay darker. Same with sea world. They starve there animales in order to do tricks. People don’t seem to care to much about what’s going on and if you dont agree with what people believe in then worry about yourself and dont come on these wesites idots

  • Guest

    I think it’s great.

  • don miguelo

    The goal here is to bring awareness to that particular cause, and I think it’s a great idea. If other posters have a problem with America’s hypocrisy because they have slaughterhouses for ‘food animals’ or buy aquarium animals then let them let them petition the owners of the Empire State Building to light it a different color on some other night. But if they are just saying this shouldn’t be done until America is an ethically perfect society that harms no animals– that’s kind of not going to happen.

    I say let the light shine.

  • Kevin

    You originally said “Whaling isn’t Japanese because plenty of others do it to, so it can’t be Japanese culture”, to which I said “that’s like saying eating rice isn’t Japanese because the Chinese eat it too.” Now you are saying “Whaling isn’t Japanese because it wasn’t a large enough part of their real culture”, to which I say that you’re focused on some abstract definition of core culture, when an outside agent has no greater claim to a natural right to overthrow a minority foreign culture than a majority one.

    You just abuse constancy of argument. I can defeat the next one you present too, if you like.

  • Kevin

    You read poorly. Heather said “big fishing corporations”, to which I was obviously referring.

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