Monday, March 27, 2006

Canadian Seal Slaughter Continues: Vanity vs. Subsistence: Natives Do to Live, Take Little. Canadians Do to Support Vanity and Make Money: Waste Much

A few points here taken from the article below. Very important to realize. Number one is the difference between what the brutal, blood thirsty slaughterers are doing and what the natives do. Quite simply, it’s survival and subsistence and limited take and using all take vs. bloodthirsty, greedy, cruel abuse of baby seals. You’ll even see that one tribe member clearly states that they don’t do it for money.

And the second part is that these defenseless babies. So, not much of a “hunt” or challenge. Just sick men bashing in the skull of a baby that cannot really move.

"No matter how you measure it, these baby animals - and they are babies - have their brains smashed in, often just a few feet from their mothers," said Mary-Ellen Walsh of the group End the Sealhunt.”

“Caught on the sidelines in this dispute are Canada's aboriginal people, particularly those that live in the Arctic: the Inuit, the Innu and the Dene. These people hunted seals for their own purposes for millenniums.

"Our hunt is perfectly sustainable, otherwise we would have killed all the seals a thousand years ago," said David Diog, of the Dene nation.

"And we use every part of the seal, nothing is wasted.

"We don't do this to make money."


Article:

Eight weeks of pain: record seal kill tipped


By Richard Reynolds in Toronto
March 25, 2006

http://www.smh.com.au/news/world/eight-
weeks-of-pain-record-seal-kill-tipped/2006/
03/24/1143083994112.html?page=fullpage#
contentSwap1

CANADA'S annual seal hunt begins today on the ice floes off the country's east coast, where, despite decades of protest and boycotts of Canadian products, a record number of seals will be killed this year.

In all, 325,000 seals - most just weeks old - will be clubbed to death by hunters over the next eight weeks. The hunters are mostly fishermen who use boats to reach the new-born pups.

The French film icon Brigitte Bardot was in Ottawa this week to protest at the hunt. Her visit to an ice floe 29 years ago kicked off the first major opposition to the hunt.

Paul McCartney also visited the ice two weeks ago, courtesy of the US Humane Society, and posed with a days-old whiteback seal, so-called because of its stunning white fur. With its big soulful eyes and pure white coat, a whiteback laying helplessly on the ice epitomises cute.

At one time most thought the hunt would die out. By 1983, only 25,000 seals were being killed. But in the early 1990s the hunt was revived with the support of the Canadian Government, as a substitute for the failed cod fishery off Canada's Atlantic coast.

Hunters are no longer allowed to kill whitebacks, even though the image of the baby white seal remains the symbol of protest. They must wait until the pups moult into a light-grey mottled coat, usually in about 14 days. But this is the only major concession to decades of protests against the hunt, which is called barbaric and inhumane by critics.

But even though the once prized white fur is no longer available, prices for the seal pelts have nonetheless risen dramatically. The best pelts now fetch more than $A140 - in real terms, the highest prices ever.

The provinces on Canada's east coast are called the Maritimes. The money is obviously important for Maritime fishermen, but the history actually seems almost as important.

"My father hunted seals, my grandfather hunted seals, my greatgrandfather hunted seals" said Newfoundland fisherman John O'Connor in his thick, almost Irish drawl.

"And I'll be damned if any Frenchie actress is going to come here and tell me to stop doin' what my family's been doin' for hundreds of years."

That sentiment, plus the fact that supporters believe the hunt is no more inhumane than the slaughter of cattle, chicken or pigs, sums up the arguments in favour of the hunt.

But lined up against it is a formidable array of animal rights groups.

They claim the seals are "skinned alive" and the hakapik - the club used to kill the baby seals; bullets might damage the pelt - is a cruel, inefficient instrument.

"No matter how you measure it, these baby animals - and they are babies - have their brains smashed in, often just a few feet from their mothers," said Mary-Ellen Walsh of the group End the Sealhunt.

"And this just so some fashionable people can have some nice trim on their coat or wallet - even the meat is essentially wasted."

While in the past the carcass of the seal was left on the ice to rot, the Government has made a point of trying to use the entire animal. But for the most part that means the meat is sold to pet-food or fish-food manufacturers.

Government spokesmen insist that studies have shown the animals are almost never skinned alive and the hakapik is as efficient as a "bullet to the brain".

"This hunt is perfectly humane," said Phil Jenkins, a spokesmen for the federal fisheries ministry.

Caught on the sidelines in this dispute are Canada's aboriginal people, particularly those that live in the Arctic: the Inuit, the Innu and the Dene. These people hunted seals for their own purposes for millenniums.

"Our hunt is perfectly sustainable, otherwise we would have killed all the seals a thousand years ago," said David Diog, of the Dene nation.

"And we use every part of the seal, nothing is wasted.

"We don't do this to make money."

Traditionally the Arctic peoples cure the meat, use the fur for clothing and even use the guts to make laces and ties that won't freeze up in the intense cold. Many still follow this practice.

No comments:

Search for More Content

Custom Search
Bookmark and Share

Past Articles