Cetacean Society International
Whales Alive! - Vol. X No. 3 - July 2001
Protest Against Talbots in Boston
By Jessica Dickens, CSI Board
On a rainy Thursday morning in May, CSI Board members traveled to Boston to join the Environmental Investigation Agency, Humane Society of the United States and others to protest at a retail clothing company's shareholders' meeting for its connection to the Japanese whaling industry.
JUSCO Company, owner and operator of one of the largest supermarket chains in Japan acquired Talbots, a retail clothing company with stores throughout the United States, Canada and United Kingdom in 1988. This same supermarket chain is also one of Japan's top distributors of whale and dolphin meat. It is through companies like JUSCO who create the market allowing the Japanese whaling industry to continue. Although measures have been taken to protect whales and dolphins, Japan along with Norway continue to defy the treaties and agreements set forth by the world's governments to prohibit commercial whaling. Since the time that JUSCO became the majority shareholder of Talbots, thousands of whales and dolphins fell victim to the inhumane and cruel practices of the whaling industry.
Hoping to change all of this with a large replica of a whale's fluke positioned in the background, whale conservationists and others joined together outside of the shareholders' meeting passing out fliers, talking to the public and holding signs to inform others of Talbots' link to the whaling industry and to persuade JUSCO to stop selling whale, dolphin and porpoise meat. Although a decision by JUSCO Company has not been determined, CSI board members returned from the protest with a positive attitude from the whole experience. But as the months unfold, those of us who care about and respect cetaceans can continue to make decisions in our own lives by choosing not to support the commercial whaling industry in whatever form or fashion.