There's a little town in Japan called Taiji which used to seem like an unremarkable place with Buddhist temples, a whale museum, fisherman and a verdant national park nestled around a small cove. It used to have a big secret too. Through the award-winning documentary, the Cove, the bloody secret of this town has been exposed to the world. Beginning September 1st through March 23,000 dolphins and porpoises are slaughtered.
With the world watching,Taiji is now at the epicenter of an ongoing battle to and stop this horrible practice. The thousands of dolphins are routinely rounded up by fisherman and driven into the cove. There, they are chosen by dolphin trainers for a destitute life in a tank somewhere around the globe or a swim-with dolphin program. The so-called less appealing ones are chopped up and found neatly stacked in styrofoam trays in Japanese supermarkets (often mislabeled as whale meat). Most Japanese people are completely unaware of what is happening in Taiji.
While Taiji might be thousands of miles away, there's much you can do right now to help stop this slaughter.
2. Ask others to get involved.
3. As a tourist, think twice before you participate in a swim-with-dolphin program or visit a captive dolphin. There's a good chance such an animal could be from Taiji.
4. See the Cove! It's a beautiful, engaging, enthralling and fascinating film that will keep you on the edge of your seat.
The secret is out. The slaughter has begun in Taiji. We can all take action now to shut the cove down.
Sarah's Social Action Snapshot originally appeared on Takepart.com