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Whaling 101

Whether you've studied it in school or seen Heroes actress Hayden Panettiere championing the cause, you're bound to know that whaling is a pretty important global issue. Here are the basics about this practice, and those who are fighting to stop it.

History and Regulation

The hunting of whales, commonly referred to as whaling, dates back thousands of years to at least 6,000 BCE. Eventually, whaling played a major role in endangering many whale species including the Gray Whale, Beluga, Bowhead Whale, Right Whale and Blue Whale. The International Whaling Commission (IWC) was set up in 1946 to regulate whaling. In 1982, the IWC implemented a pause on commercial whaling, while allowing some whaling to continue for research and "subsistence" purposes (eg. aboriginal groups who kill small numbers of whales for food).

Modern Whaling

Although the IWC has attempted to end commercial whaling, it still exists. Japan, for example, has a scientific whaling program called JARPA, which sells meat from "research" whales commercially. Also, about 14,000 dolphins are killed for food in Japan every year. Norway, Russia and Iceland have all opted out of the IWC and so continue to hunt whales.

Opposition

Many people and organizations (such as Greenpeace and the Whaleman Foundation) oppose whaling for several reasons. They argue that whaling is a threat to certain endangered populations of whales and that the methods of killing whales are inhumane. They also argue that Japan's whaling for research purposes is just a legal loophole that allows them to continue commercial whaling.

Did U Know?

  • Hayden Panettiere is an anti-whaling advocate and spokesperson for The Whaleman Foundation. She physically intervened in a Japanese dolphin kill and now has a warrant for her arrest in that country.
  • The blue whale is the largest animal on Earth!
  • Nantucket, Massachusetts was once the whaling capital of the world.
  • If you're interested in finding out more about anti-whaling activism, head to www.greenpeace.org.
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Proper Name for Killer Whales? Vote!

  • Humpbacks.
  • Ambergris.
  • Orcas.
  • Narwhals.

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Myshkin
Myshkin posted in Debating:
"Unrung" wrote:I'm saying your idea isn't practical. You can make a case that only under the dictatorship of a benevolent leader can society function optimally but I see little reason to believe that this is possible long-term. There are plenty of history books for this. I have said nothing about a benevolent dictatorship working long-term, only that it would be the most effective solution to bringing order to a "chaotic country". It's not necessarily the case that dictatorships cannot shift into other political systems, or that an autocracy cannot shift into something like a constitutional monarchy.
reply less than a minute
Myshkin
Myshkin posted in Debating:
"AlphaT" wrote:But that very rarely happens lol what "AlphaT" wrote:Historically, dictatorships fell when the same standard that made the dictator so powerful could not be maintained by his successors. I am not talking about dictatorships, I am talking about single dictators that, if found to be bad, can be deposed by assassination (or otherwise ousting them), and that dealing with this one single individual is much easier than dealing with the majority of a population if they are tyrannical. 
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Abbergrl
Abbergrl posted in General:
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Unrung
Unrung posted in Debating:
"Myshkin" wrote: "Unrung" wrote: This makes sense in theory, but historically, most dictators have been far from benevolent. I don't see the relevance. I'm saying your idea isn't practical. You can make a case that only under the dictatorship of a benevolent leader can society function optimally, but I see little reason to believe that this is possible long-term.
reply 12 minutes
AgentChimera
AgentChimera posted in Food:
Chocolate ftw. It's perf
reply 15 minutes