Wednesday, November 13, 2019

A Whale Hunt :: essays research papers

Envision the Makah nation before white men came to reduce their lands, diminished their way of life, and contaminate them with new diseases. The Makah tribe was once free to roam along the dark sandy beaches of the Olympic Peninsula and experience the fiery glow of the sinking sun creep into the depths of the vast Pacific Ocean. They are no longer able to undergo this majestic cycle in the same tranquility that their ancestors once did. After dealing with the inequities that were brought upon them by the European settlers, such as being forced to speak a new language and being confined to a minute area of land, that cannot compare to the greatness of the territory where they once lived. On top of that their traditional whale hunt was abstracted from their community. Now with the chance to hunt again, the Makah faced a difficult decision against the opposition. The Makah tribe decided to return to hunting the whale in attempt to restore their culture and traditions. They agreed not t o use the hunt for commercial purposes and to hunt the whale in the same way their ancestors did. I think the Makah nation should be able to hunt the whale as means of renewing their culture and pride. The whale hunt provides the Makah with the ability to restore their culture and traditions, provide reparations for America's mistreatment, all while following strict guidelines for the crew and the process of taking the whale. The Makah’s decision to hunt the whale produced hostile reactions among the many supporters of the whale. Protestors from around the world arrived in mass. They were very unsympathetic, rude, and even aggressive toward the Makahs. An example of this is shown by their behavior toward the Makahs: Very soon, a woman shouted at the crew, ‘Real men don’t kill animals! Only a coward kills whales! You are a coward and a sissy!’ Another woman shouted that the Makah shouldn’t have special rights just because they were Indians. Another woman said her soul was connected to the soul of the gray whale. (Sullivan 136) This shows the emotion that the protestors brought to the controversy against the hunt. Their argument is that the whale is sacred to them too, and that slaughtering the whale is a criminal act. Everybody involved in the hunt is not perfect, but everybody deserves a chance.

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