Monday, August 8, 2011

Shark Finning

Currently finning is illegal in U.S. waters, but it is still possible to find shark fin on the menus of restaurants all over the U.S., many of those in New York City restaurant menus.

Now you may be asking yourself what is finning and what is the big deal.  Finning involves cutting off the fin of sharks and throwing the rest back into the ocean.  The rest is the entire shark (their meat is quite inedible) that cannot live without its fin.  Since sharks cannot swim without their fins, they end up sinking to the bottom of the ocean and eventually dying slow, painful deaths.  Because of this, there has been an incredibly disturbing reduction in the number of sharks in our oceans.  This does great damage to our ecosystem.  Just imagine what the wilds of Africa would be like without lions or the Amazon without jaguars.  Sharks rarely ever pose a danger to people.  Actually, you are more likely to be killed by your toaster than be attacked by a shark.

Just recently Governor John Kitzhaber made it illegal to sell, trade, or possess shark fins in the State of Oregon.  This makes Oregon the third state to do so after Hawaii and Washington.  Currently, a similar measure passed the California State Assembly but has to be approved by the State Senate to become law.

Now let's get New York on the list of states that bans the selling, trade and possesion of shark fins.  Contact your State Assembly Representative, your State Senator, your local City Council Member and Mayor Bloomberg and tell them that you want to see an end to this barbaric practice.

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