Friday, February 13, 2009

Day 297 of our Green Year: Banning Shark Finning

Recently, I watched a great documentary called Sharkwater. It was about sharks and how they are victimized and slaughtered around the world out of fear, and for their fins. The fins are used in shark fin soup, which is a delicacy in Asia. According to some beliefs, the shark represents power, and by eating its fin, you are transferring the power to yourself.

In regards to the fear, people fear sharks because of shark attacks. Around the world, millions of sharks die every year for shark fin soup and hunting. There are even people out there who hunt sharks and feel they are doing a service. The number of sharks killed each year is as high as 100,000,000. Yes, 100 million. Guess how many people are killed by sharks each year. Well, put simply more people are killed by pop machines than sharks. Sharks kill five people on average every year. Sharks are not even hunting people. They see something and they bite it, before realizing it is not a seal. Sadly, we have frail bodies and that one bite is enough to kill us.
You would not go into the forest and start hassling bears, and you would not run past a pride of lions, yet we think nothing of diving into the ocean where the sharks reside. Then we get mad at the sharks when it does what it has evolved to do.

To this end, Layla and I have signed a petition to ban shark finning and shark hunting, and have species of sharks put on the endangered species list so it is illegal to hunt them.

Sharks have survived for 400,000,000 years (400 million years). They are older than dinosaurs, mammals, birds, reptiles and nearly every plant species. Yet, this century we could see them completely wiped out.