In banning the capture of dolphins for public entertainment, India has set a standard the rest of the world should follow. So why is the U.S. still lagging behind?
The ministry last month advised all state governments to reject any plans to establish a dophinarium by anyone - whether private or public, commercial enterprise or government agency.
Along with taking this action, India’s Central Zoo Authority recognizes that dolphins possess unusually high intelligence and sensitivity that should classify them as “nonhuman persons.” It further notes that dolphins do not thrive in captivity and are among the endangered cetacean species that deservea special protection.
A former trainer who now works to protect dolphins, Ric O’Barry applauds the Indian government not only for speaking out against cruelty but for helping to change the way we think about dolphins - as “thinking, feeling beings,” rather than property to exploit for financial gain.
It’s time for the rest of the world, beginning with the U.S, to follow India’s lead and put an end to all dophinariums.
We, the undersigned, applaud this progressive step by the Indian government that recognizes the special qualities and vulnerabilities of dolphins and seeks to protect them from any future captivity and exploitation.
PeTA notes that marine-mammal facilities have built their billion-dollar industries around the suffering of these intelligent and social beings, denying them all that is natural and important to them.
We have long known about the extraordinary intelligence and sensitivity of dolphins, and yet it’s taken far too long to act appropriately upon this knowledge, while we continue to allow the cruel exploitation of these creatures.
In captivity, dolphins’normal activity of swimming many miles daily is confined to swimming in circles in a pool, with the added humiliation and stress of being forced to perform tricks for food. Families are torn apart, and the combined stress of all that goes with captivity weakens their immune systems.
Though the public display industry has for years defended marine mammal exhibits as educational and beneficial, Dophinariums are nothing more than circuses of cruelty, and the U.S. should be shamed now by India’s humane and progressive action into following suit and banning all dolphin captivity and dophinariums. We ask the Marine Mammal Commission to make this recommendation to the Secretary of State immediately.
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