Ouch, there’s a plank in my eye.

What a world we live in. Today I went to a fun first birthday party at a beautiful city park. On one side of the park was a farm with horses in the pasture. There was one foal, and I walked over with my son so he could see them. He loved it. We played in the dirt, ate fruit salad and chips and salsa and drank Capri Suns. It was such a nice day.

I’ve had this nagging guilt – or as my sister would say, “a check in my spirit” for the last few days about the judgmental posts I’ve been writing. I mean, I still think clubbing a seal is awful. BUT, I am rational enough to see that some villages of people have subsisted on seals for centuries. Just as Alaskan natives have subsisted on whales. What they do is no different, in my mind, than a bear eating a salmon or a snake eating a mouse.

I don’t mean to demonize people that are trying to feed their families. And I have no right to. I was born into a lower-middle class family with two working parents – I always had food and a roof. I may have always been behind on the fashion train, but who cares? I mean, I cared when I was 13, but that’s pretty normal.

The problem is that it’s so hard to decipher what the real cause to fight is here. Is it the big fishing trawlers that gobble up all the fish? Probably. Is it the Japanese whaling ships that don’t properly account for their catches? Probably. Is it the individual sealer that makes 30% of his annual income by participating in the annual seal hunt? Maybe – but I’m a lot less sure about that one. Do I wish they had better aim and really killed the seals with one strike? Absolutely.

Basically, I have no idea what I’m talking about. I’m just talking. And that can be pretty dangerous.

There are people like this guy who is so strongly against recycling, that he’s willing to call Al Gore a nazi. To me, this makes no sense. To him, it’s perfectly justified. I didn’t even realize there were people against recycling. Stupid me. If there are still people that don’t believe the Holocaust happened, and I’ve met at least one (raving, scary lunatic), and there are people that still doubt global warming, and there are people that still think they might find WMDs in Iraq, then I guess not believing in the benefits of recycling is par for the course.

So how do I fight without judging or belittling others beliefs? Even though I’ve been a Christian for many years – this has always been one of my main problems with my faith. I have friends who are Buddhists, Muslim, Jewish. I don’t think the Jesus I love would forsake them – even if they never “prayed the prayer.”

Jeez, I’m really all over the place on this one.

Basically, I want to live a life that I can be proud of. I want to teach my son to stand up for what he believes in just like my mom and dad taught me. But I don’t want to be another sealer, clubbing people over the head with my rants. It seems okay to share information, like the bake sales to save whales. I think people can participate if they want, right? But only if they know about it.

And who am I to say Alec Baldwin is an ass? I’ve probably said something just as bad to my husband. I’d like to think I’d never say things like that to my son, but he’s so small I can’t imagine it. One day he’ll be a surly teenager, and I may very well lose my temper and say terrible things. I hope not, but who knows? I think I was really just so sad for his daughter. That message must have hurt her so much and I wanted him to feel really awful for doing it. And then when his statements – on his site and on The View – didn’t seem very apologetic (apologetic to his daughter, I don’t really think he owes any one else an apology, except maybe Tina Fey, because I love her), I was even more sad for his daughter.

So anyway, there’s a big plank in my eye, and I don’t like it.

Alec Baldwin ~ blurgh and double blurgh

Here’s an article about Alec on The View…he says he wants out of his NBC contract.

I actually have a good friend who when through a bitter divorce and now, although he has shared custody, never sees his son. It’s a ridiculous situation, and I can’t believe what the mother gets away with. I’m sure that the situation with Alec Baldwin and Kim Bassinger is much worse, because they have enough money to drag the fight out forever and make it truly awful.

But clearly, the message he left his daughter was terrible and ridiculous.

And now Tina Fey and crew (not to mention, Ireland – the daughter) are suffering. That stinks.

I wonder how they’ll get rid of Jack Donaghy?

Seals, whales, fish – what’s next?

sealI’ve been reading a lot today about commercial whaling and sanctioned seal hunts. Here’s what I’ve found:

Canada says they have to kill seals because they’re eating all the fish. So they have to bludgeon them to death – or they might use a high powered rifle – so that there are enough fish for people to eat. They say this is the best way. They say they use all parts of the seal – meat for food, leathers and pelts for clothing and handicrafts, oil for fuel, etc. The sad fact is that there is a demand for these products. Last year, Canada’s seal pelt industry showed it’s biggest profit ever – with the market price of the pelt of a seal rising almost 40%. (source info below)

The Humane Society of the US (HSUS) is waging a huge protest against this practice – asking people to boycott all Canadian seafood imports like crab, lobster and various fish. But as this year’s seal hunt continues this month, coming in under the 270,000 limit of seals slaughtered for man’s profit – the seal market is booming.

Rebecca Aldworth, the HSUS director of Canadian Wildlife Issues, is keeping a blog as she monitors/witnesses the seal hunt going on right now. I have to warn you – the videos are sickening (warning: graphic content). How these practices could be considered the best way to kill seals is ridiculous. These methods are atrocious – no matter how many rationalizations man comes up with.

So back to whales. Iceland resumed commercial fishing of minke and fin whales. When you read their government info (link below)whale tail – it reads almost identically to Canada’s seal hunt info. Something along the lines of – and I’m really paraphrasing here, “We look at the numbers world wide and the numbers in our area, and figure out how much we can take and still sustain the species. We kill them the best way we know how – which is nicer than the way a lot of animals are killed (like livestock in slaughterhouses and hunted deer.) We do this so there are enough fish for man, and so man can profit, and so man can survive.”

I realize that I’ve brought up two pretty disparate topics and lumped them together in a pile of disdain. That might not be fair, but I think they are related enough. Both industries exist in an effort to meet man’s needs while making the highest profit. Both industries use horrendous practices and creative, self-serving accounting. And while seal populations are not readily in danger, whale populations are. Maybe not every species, but some of the species that are being hunted (like the fin whale) are declining.

So what’s the choice here? We don’t exist in a vacuum. I choose to boycott Canada’s seafood industry because I am against the bludgeoning of seals. I choose to let my government know that I am against whaling in all forms – whether it’s being done by Alaskan natives or Japanese. I hope that one day my leaders will actually represent my interests. I hope that leaders worldwide will do what’s truly best for OUR planet – not what’s best for the bottom line.

Conservation Resources:

Government Information:

I promise my next post will be lighthearted ;) All this protesting is exhausting, and those seal videos made me cry.

Book #22

Pirates of Pompeii(Book Binge book #12) Roman Mysteries #3, Pirates of Pompeii by Caroline Lawrence. This one was awesome! I read it in about an hour. Lots of focus on Nubia – who I love. Jonathan’s sense of humor and leadership qualities stand out. A little more of Lupus’ history is revealed.

Read these books already.

There’s no shame in my game…these books are probably for fifth or sixth graders, but I’m gobbling them up like I was 10 again. Good stories are good stories – no matter how old you are.

Bake Sales to Save the Whales

Bake Sales to Save the Whales

This is your warning – soapbox moment fast approaching! My mother was really involved in Greenpeace for most of my childhood. She was always fighting a cause, but whales were her passion. There were always pictures of humpbacks and seals on our walls, and whale and dolphin songs on the record player. She wrote “Save the Whales” on every letter she ever wrote. I’m picking up my mother’s “sword”, and I hope you’ll join me. It really doesn’t take much time or effort to help.

Why this weekend?
This weekend, April 28th and 29th, are National Days of Action for whale lovers and Earth lovers. Why? Because in May, the International Whaling Commission will meet on US soil to discuss current whaling practices. We want our government to know that US citizens are against commercial whaling, against the killing of whales for scientific purposes (as is currently done by Japan, who then sells the meat in markets across their country). There is a global moratorium on commercial whaling, and all but three countries abide by it: Japan, Norway and Iceland. Their goal this year is to end the moratorium. The US has to stand up for the whales, or those countries will get their way and there won’t be any whales left.

Take Action
Bake sales to save the whales will be held all over the country. Want to help? Here’s how:

  • Stop by and buy a cookie to support Greenpeace’s efforts to stop commercial whaling. Give a $1, sign a petition, make a friend!
  • Want to do more? Volunteer to help at a bake sale. Just choose the sale most convenient for you and RSVP.
  • Can’t attend a bake sale this weekend? Make a phone call to ask the Bush Administration to do everything in their power to defend the whales:

President Bush, White House: (202) 456-1414
Secretary Rice, State Department: (202) 647-4000
Secretary Gutierrez, Commerce Department: (202) 482-2000

  • Want to do more? Visit the Whale Defender website at www.whales.greenpeace.org/us. Download the whale activist toolkit, and join thousands of folks from around the world who are taking action to defend the whales. You’ll find fact sheets, petitions, sample letters, and other materials to help you make a difference.
  • Want to donate? Become a Greenpeace Supporter at www.greenpeaceusa.org

Lots of ways to help – which one will you choose?

funny search terms: romance sheep

My favorite part about my free WordPress blog is the listing of recent search terms that people used to find me. Here’s today’s list:

Search Views
romance sheep 2
how many calories in a starbucks soy cha 1
pictures of landfields 1
the earth, my butt, and other big round things 1
homemade reusable bags 1

Um, romance sheep? That one cracks me up.

Since I frequently talk about romance novels (see books category), and I also recently suggested that we “buy mom a sheep” for Mother’s Day, it makes sense that that combo would find my little spot on the web. The real question is what was that person looking for? Ah, life’s great questions.