Taiji, Japan Blogs

If I could get any animal it would be a dolphin. I want one so bad. Me and my mom went swimming with dolphins and I was like, ‘How do we get one of those?’ and she was like, ‘You can’t get a dolphin. What are you gonna do, like, put it in your pool?” – Miley Cyrus

I really hate even the thought of using a Miley Cyrus “quote”, but I came across this and it really bothered me! People really don’t know. I find it is amazing how we as humans usually don’t think about what pulling an animal from the wild (it’s home) and keeping it as a “pet”, does to it. Look at the ignorance in this “quote”… I mean, we just don’t think about all of the coral reefs being destroyed so that clown fish can swim in a bowl, The tropical birds taken out of forests, the list goes on and on!! This really has nothing to do with my post today, just something I found and wanted to rant about!

Today everything from leaving the harbor, to driving dolphins in, to slaughtering, to butchering happened within 7 hours total. When we got there they had a pod and were on the horizon. We sent out the word for good energy and filmed as the horror on the horizon went on. The police came at about 8am. The whales were still fighting! They had fought coming into the funnel and then fought for almost two hours with the boats. It was magical watching them outsmart the molesters and appear on the other side swimming for their lives! But then a greedy *insert swear word(s) of choice here* would find them and trap them again!

While this was going on, I spotted Private Space up on the hill. Tarah wanted a picture with him, so we walked up to him.  I told him that he is very famous in the U.S and my friend wanted to take his picture, keep in mind Private Space understands English- he just doesn’t use it.  Next to him was one of the younger molesters. He was probably all of 22. We are told that the younger boys that are being roped into this don’t want to be killing dolphins, but it is their dads telling them to, they can’t say no to their dads!

So I walked face to face with him, and squatted like he was. I said a lot of things, and it seemed like Private Space was translating some stuff I said, though probably twisting my words. My main point though was, “Are you sure you want to go down this path? You are still really young, you could do so much with your life, but instead you are choosing a “career” which will lead to people screaming and calling you a molester and a killer for the rest of your life because you murder dolphins. Are you sure you want to walk down that path!?”…. I think he was either upset by the camera, or understood a little of what I was saying… because his lip started to quiver and he kept moving his face away from me.  Now making someone cry was never on my “bucket list”, but if it will possibly make him reconsider what he is walking into, I think I can live with myself.

By the time I was done trying to reach out to this young guy, they had trapped them. Within twenty minutes someone came on the radio and said that the gutting barge was moving into place. Rupert said he was standing with some of the younger molesters and they said that they were pilot whales and they had ten of them. I really don’t think those guys want to be doing this, I feel really bad for them honestly.

The Mayor came to the Cove today. It was the first time I saw him there since we have been here. I went up and asked him what brought him to the Cove today, he laughed in my face and his translator told me that I could only speak in Japanese to him, the translator said this in English! I came up to him again, politely saying excuse me in Japanese, trying to get his attention. The translator said only speak Japanese to this man, I told the translator that I was saying excuse me in Japanese and he still was ignoring me! Then the mayor jumped in his car and they both drove away. I found out later that he was campaigning to stay in office. Is this really the kind of mayor you want Taiji? One that runs away from a 17 year old girl? That spreads shame to all of Japan? It’s just something to think about when you are re-electing!

My dad and I went up to the mountain pass that over looks the Taiji Harbor and the entrance to the Cove. We watched the gutting barge and filmed that. We filmed the butcher house stairs. I got some really nasty blood shots of the innocent lives that were swimming around freely not eight hours before that. It all just doesn’t make any sense.

Now about writing and calling the embassies! A lot of people are asking if that really does work. IT DOES! Please do not stop!! The government is really feeling the pressure and the embassies are getting VERY frustrated. Seriously, keep it up. We can be here and we can keep eyes on the Cove, but actually everyone who is calling and writing to the embassies and their governments everyday are the people doing the most! We need to get a law changed. And if we can change it in famous Taiji it will change all over Japan. So when all you haters ask why here, not Denmark etc. Well it is because you have to start somewhere, and Taiji is very famous now. My dad says it is like the loose thread on a sweater, once you pull it just enough, the whole thing will unravel.

For the Animals,

Elora Malama

P.S I am putting today’s pictures on my Public Facebook. You can still access it if you do not have a facebook account. It is on my side bar under blogroll. I am researching building my own website so I can have un-limited photos. I have maxed out my allowed amount for this particular blog site! Those will not be up until tomorrow though, I am out of space on my hard drive, and having to build folders on my external, while editing. It is just taking forever! But I will edit those while I wait for the boats to come back in tomorrow. So nothing will be on the facebook page tonight. 🙂

24 thoughts on “If I could get any animal it would be a dolphin. I want one so bad. Me and my mom went swimming with dolphins and I was like, ‘How do we get one of those?’ and she was like, ‘You can’t get a dolphin. What are you gonna do, like, put it in your pool?” – Miley Cyrus”

  1. I hadn’t expected there to be sound with the video. And when I turned the volume up their terrified screams shot right through my chest. I don’t know how the killers can live with themselves, I really don’t.
    Elora, good for you trying to talk to that boy. Maybe now he will think about what he’s doing and his conscience will get the better of him. Keep the pressure up. Eventually you will find a crack and it will widen and this will all come crumbling down and the slaughter will stop. As for the mayor, I think it’s hysterical that he’s clearly scared of you. It must be because he knows that allowing the cove to continue is wrong. Why else would he refuse to let his translator help him communicate with you? It’s all just so ridiculous.
    Keep up the good work!

    1. Stephanie, I agree, this mayor is clearly a wimp! What kind of an official runs away from someone. Isn’t it a prerequisite that politicians have proper communication skills. What a farce! I may not like my mayor, Bloomberg of NYC, infact I abhor him but I don’t think he would run away from me if I was given tthe opportunity to ask him a question. Gotta love it.

      1. As to the mayor, I honestly believe the man is corrupt. How much is HE making on the dolphins sold to the aquarium industry? I’m sure he is paid for signing the killings off. I cannot believe the enormous arrogance of this guy , a little mayor in a little village. Someone remind him that Taiji is not the
        White House.

    2. Stephanie, I believe Rex wrote something about the screams. He said those were local birds.
      Hope this makes you feel better…

  2. Elora, thank you for your continued reporting on the very tragic slaughtering of Ceteceans occuring in the Taiji Cove under the difficult circumstance of bearing witness daily to their inhumane treatment at the hands of a few fishermen.
    You are a wonderful role model for the young people of the world.
    You get it that in the 21st Century we must learn to live with the other creatures of our planet not decimate them to extinction. All on earth are interrelated. We all depend on the well being of each other for our own well being.
    That you spoke with Private Face and tried to explain that he could choose another better way to make a living was an admirable undertaking. He certainly is young enough to change his ways and become a hero to the world rather than a villain. Being raised from young to think a certain way, to see the Cetaceans only pests and in competition with the Taiji Fishermen for the fish in the ocean it must be quit difficult for them to even understand why it is wrong. I hope you get the chance to speak with him and some of the other young Fishermen again. They are only taught to see one way of treating Cetaceans. Maybe somehow some way one of them will eventuallly see the light.
    It would be so amazing if Private Space were that one! Nothing is quite as sure as change, Private Space ~ You could make that change everyone in the wolrd is working to see come about. Hero?/Villain? Your choice Private Space.

  3. On WWAWD we were invited in to speak to the Japanese Embassy in Scotland after we had stood outside shouting for a few hours. Our argument on the day was that whaling is bad for business and every time they kill a cetatian, someone buys a Ford instead of a Mitsubishi. The spokesman did not react at all until I mentioned Taiji and then I was told that, “[they] understand that [we] think Taiji is bad.” What I took from that is that the Embassies worldwide must have been briefed on “lines to take” if questioned about Taiji and that it is so high profile that they must acknowledge it when it comes up. The Japanese spokesman then assured me that our objections would be, “..sent to Tokyo.” I don’t think we are making all that much difference out here, but you are DEFINITELY making a big difference there – keep it going for all of us and we will keep doing what we can as well.


    P.S. Happy Birthday, sorry it’s a bit late

  4. Hey Elora – just got through reading another awesome post! You are so brave and so amazing!! ANYWAY – you wrote something about a new website – I can help you with that if you need. I can give you free space and probably create an easy place for you to upload everything you can possibly want. I teach school, yes, but I also have been working on websites for years (I even did a site for the Romanian Gymnastics team – crazy, right?).

    Let me know if I can help in any way.

  5. Thanks, Elora, I think you are doing an awesome job talking to these fishermens kids. If we could stop future generations, that would be a great solution! As Rex stated at some point, obviously the old guys are the most fanatic killers. I am worried we will see more killings in the near future, although I have high hopes every single day for a miracle. It worries me that people keep comparing cows and pgs to wild dolphins.
    Every time there is murder in Taiji, something inside is killed in me too. My highest respect really goes out to you and the rest of the team in the Cove. Even though we are thousands of miles away, we are there with you through your messages
    Oh, and I’m sorry, but Miley Cirus is a stupid kid 😦

    1. I’m not crazy about everything I see Miley do, but to call people stupid for their naivete is not right. I, too, visited Sea World and my kids swam with the dolphins. But now my eyes are open. If I was to repeat Miley’s quote at this time in my life, I would be guilty of the blood and THAT is stupid. We need to give people the benefit of the doubt for lacking wisdom. Kids don’t think when they say “I want a horse” or “I want a hippopotamus for Christmas” or “I want a dolphin”. They’re just kids. — My 2cents 🙂

      1. Actually Miley is going to be 18 in around two weeks :U
        But yes, she technically is still a ridiculously naive kid

      2. exactly Gina, I never knew about all this stuff with aquariums till recently – but I used to follow Miley on twitter just for the really dense tweets she would send out – they finally got so bad that her people made her cancel the account. Not that I’m a Miley hater or anything, I think she was sending them from a cell phone in the dark because the spelling was insane.

    2. ya know what’s right though and I hope everyone will share, it is very similar to the mass slaughter of pigs, cows, chickens, and so on. It’s all wrong and unnecessary. Who are we to kill anything selfishly when we don’t have to. I’m not perfect by any means, but I try to be vegan every day and am more than 90% successful now after starting with being vegetarian almost 2 yrs ago. Even cheese is cruel, toothpaste, every plastic grocery bag, and this list goes on for miles… I happen to think dolphins & whales may be more intelligent than most of us, and it is especially heinous what we do to them. This reply to what you said Anita, is directed at anyone in the world who might read it 😉 Oh and Elora, you amaze me more all the time. I’m 47 and severely impressed with and inspired by you ❤

      1. Peggy,

        I so agree with you. In addition to fighting for this cause we need to examine ourselves. This is a great way for people to open their eyes to things around them. For instance, Thanksgiving is just around the bend and so many turkeys will be slaughtered. Everywhere you turn you see pictures of smiling turkeys, like they are so looking forward to getting killed! It is such an accepted thing in American society. People of Japan visiting here on Thanksgiving might see this holiday as representative of cruelty just as we see their whaling festival. As Elora said, stopping the killing of these sweet dolphins is just the beginning. This needs to be a catalyst to end all such injustices in the world, one step at a time.


  6. Speaking of celebrities, I think it would be very effective to get Japanese celebrities to speak out. Yao Ming, for example, actively promotes against shark fin soup in China, which is a delicacy held in very high regard in China (they serve this at every wedding banquet apparently). I bet Yao would be against this dolphin slaughter, though he’s Chinese…but he might know Japanese athletes who would be against this. I bet some of these organizations (like Sea Shepherd) can get in touch with Yao and he might be able to find Japanese athletes/celebrities who can help out. Who knows, maybe people in Japan like Yao to begin with, so they may respect his opinions. Just a thought.

    1. Actually, if Yao is against dolphin captivity, that might be a big issue in China. I imagine there is or will be a lot of dolphinariums in China.

  7. Elora, you have written a great piece once again. Thank you for continuing to keep us up to date on what’s going on and for your courageous actions. You have inspired many of us. Many of us who can’t be there right now are calling and emailing the embassies, Japanese corporations, etc. And, many of us are planning trips to Taiji next year (if needed), You, your Dad and all of the other Cove Guardians are true heroes.

  8. I can’t watch the video, it would torture me. On a brighter note I saw on Choices for Tomorrow’s site that a local group in Kyoto has filed a lawsuit to stop the aquarium that’s being built there – good for them!

    I saw your update that the mad men of Taiji didn’t catch anything today – I guess they can spend the rest of the day walking into walls and staring into space (or whatever they do with their spare time). Hope you have a good day.

  9. I read a good deal of comments about Miley and I gotta say I agree with Gina. Miley is young and ignorant but I wouldn’t say stupid because like her a few years ago I was standing in front of the dolphin tanks at marine world in amazement, in fact it’s about the only reason we went. Instead of bashing on her why don’t we try to contact her and make her aware of the situation.  Im betting she would be more then willing to eat those words, and like it or not she has a HUGE fan base and would be a major contributor if she engaged in this battle. Young children are our future and she is the celebrity help we have been asking for. 

  10. Thanks Elora for being in Taiji. I read your blog and the other Guardian’s everyday, and visit the SSCS’s Facebook page at least 10 times a day to see if there are any updates.

    It gets tougher day after day to be able to stand NOT being in Taiji. I’m starting to seriously consider going next year. It would be a huge deal for me since I’m 18, never took a plane and had a lot of money problems since I left school and moved out of my parent’s at 16. But I’m becoming more and more obsessed with the idea.

    In the meantime, I keep writing letters, and leaving messages at the Consulate of Japan in Montreal. The next step is going to step out of my comfort zone and try to bring awareness to those around me. And I *try* to keep positive thoughts.

  11. And about Miley Cyrus, fortunately I think she’s a very open-minded girl. If she knew what was happening in Taiji, I’m sure she would be appalled and she’d probably take a stand for the dolphins. She does it a lot for GLBT people.

  12. Hi,
    Gotta agree with Scott, miley needs to be educated about the situation, as does rihanna, Kelly rowland and other celebrities who have promoted it. I will do my best to contact them. Think we all should try and if they’re on our side it will promote it. We need more celebrities actively helping.x

  13. Hi Elora, your efforts are both magnificent and humbling. Thank you for your great writing and your brave soul. Keep filming and we will keep writing.

    If you set up a paypal account and grab the html code for their “donate” button and drop it in your blog here, I am sure you would get some takers to help you on your mission (if that is needed or not I don’t know). Just saying.

    I would also recommend dropping your post feed address into google feedburner, then you can set the feedburner to auto-post your blog posts out to twitter, (set it to use #eco #green #taiji perhaps) facebook, stumbleupon, digg etc. Again, maybe you do already. Just saying 🙂

    Good luck out there.


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