Why whales?

We are deeply disturbed by the former Minister of Fisheries and Agriculture’s decision to authorize the hunting of sei whales and minke whales over the next five years, along with a dramatic increase in Iceland’s whaling quota.

From the letter sent from Whole Foods president AC Gallo to Steingrimur J. Sigfusson, Minister of Fisheries. 

Now, I am against whaling. The reason is that I think it is done in the interest of few at a great cost for so many others. And this letter is an example of that.

But I like so many others in Iceland would like to get to the bottom of why Americans and Europeans are so particularly against whaling? 

Is it because they are endangered species? Or is it because they look cute and cuddly and are supposed to be smart?

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4 Responses to “Why whales?”


  1. 1 Roy March 21, 2009 at 10:54 pm

    Is Iceland not a European country?

  2. 2 Vilhjalm A. March 22, 2009 at 9:05 am

    Yes, it is because whales are “special” – they are intelligent mammals (like elephants) and some species are endangered.
    It’s incredibly stupid for the Iceland to kill whales, mostly because it alienates the American public. I can’t think of a worse “public relations” exercise, other than stoning babies to death and cooking them on the barbeque or something like that.
    The argument against whaling is not particularly logical (since certain species are not endangered), but neither is the argument in favor of killing them.
    Whale meat tastes bad (salty and fatty), and there is more than enough fish and beef in the world. So why does Iceland need to hunt them? Just to give the middle finger to the rest of the world?
    In my opinion the main reason not to kill them is because it gives the Japanese an excuse to whale, and the Japanese kill far more than the Scandinavians.

  3. 3 Einar Jón March 22, 2009 at 11:30 am

    Doesn’t this all boil down to publicity?
    Alaska makes USA the biggest whaling nation on earth. Why aren’t they being bullied and boycotted?
    To me the main argument is that the “natural order of things” is disturbed by not hunting them, so they overpopulate and eat a lot of our nice fishies (cod, haddock, herring and their food source).

    The “whales are special” thing is an emotional argument, not a logical one.
    Can one whale outsmart 1200 pigs (mammals of moderate intelligence)? Do all species need to fail an IQ test to deserve to get eaten?
    http://blog.peta.org/archives/2007/04/eat_the_whales_1.php

  4. 4 Mister Wu April 1, 2009 at 2:37 am

    Even if it is not illogical, it is psychopathic to kill intellegent self aware beings. The have long enduring relationships with their own kind, killing one whale effects others. That is where the emotional empathic decision comes in. Europeans use to kill of Aborigines because they couldn’t see them as “humans.” Oh they spoke a diffenent language and didn’t live in houses. Someday if they learn to communucation with whales what horrors and atrociies will we learn we have committed. Whales have been here for 60 millionms years to say they now they are harming the enviroment is ludicous to the Nth degree.


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