In Japan

By Johanne Aa Rosvoll
Cove Monitor
Ric O’Barry’s Dolphin Project

I’m here; I’m in Japan.

I’m here to fight against the cruelty of a cause that means so much to me and that has taken over a huge part of who I am and my life.

I’m here because I once fell in love with an amazing quote: BE THE CHANGE YOU WISH TO SEE.  After reading this, I understood that I was not supposed to be one who just closed my eyes and went on with my life, when something really hit me – hit me hard.  And this cause did!  I am in Japan because I want to be a part of a change I want to see.  I don’t want to be on the sidelines, saying how sad it is that this cruelty is going on, when I would rather be a part of this important change.

Many people probably look at me as an activist.  But I don’t like to be labeled.  Usually that word “activist,” unfortunately, has a negative ring to it for many people.  Not that I’m personally against anyone who calls himself or herself an activist.  But to me, I see my self as “active.”  Active to change something that I believe should not be allowed – active to end a crime against those who are innocent.  I want to be active instead of blank.  That is why I’m here, fighting for these innocent dolphins, every year.  Because to me, being passive and blank has never been an option!

Well, I’m sitting here at the airport hotel waiting for two of my fellow active friends to arrive, so we can head down to Taiji, and represent Save Japan Dolphins the best we can.  I’m so proud to be a volunteer for and Ric O`Barry.  If there is one person I really admire, it’s him: Richard O`Barry.  He can truly say that he is the change he wants to see.

And I am just getting started on my journey, so I one day can say that I am too; the change I want to see!


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About Ric O'Barry

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Ric O’Barry, Dolphin Project Founder & Director has worked on both sides of the captive dolphin issue, making him an invaluable asset in the efforts to end exploitation. He worked for 10 years within the dolphin captivity industry, and has spent the past 40 working against it.

In the 1960s, O’Barry was employed by the Miami Seaquarium, where he captured and trained dolphins, including the five dolphins who played the role of Flipper in the popular American TV-series of the same name. He also trained Hugo, the first orca kept in captivity east of the Mississippi. When Kathy, the dolphin who played Flipper most of the time, died in his arms, O’Barry realized that capturing dolphins and training them to perform silly tricks is simply wrong.

From that moment on, O’Barry knew what he must do with his life. On the first Earth Day, 1970, he launched a searing campaign against the multi-billion dollar dolphin captivity industry and has been going at it ever since.

Over the past 40 years, Ric O’Barry has rescued and rehabilitated dolphins in many countries around the world, including Haiti, Colombia, Guatemala, Nicaragua, Brazil, the Bahamas Islands and the United States. He is a leading voice in the fight to end brutal dolphin hunts in Japan, the Solomon Islands, the Faroe Islands, and wherever else they occur.

O’Barry has been recognized by many national and international entities for his dedicated efforts, such as being voted Huffington Post’s 2010 Most Influential Green Game Changer, and being listed on O Magazine’s 2010 Power List – Men We Admire for his “Power of Passion.” O’Barry received an Environmental Achievement Award, presented by the United States Committee for the United Nations Environmental Program. He has done countless interviews with such prestigious news programs as Larry King Live, Anderson Cooper 360, the Mike Huckabee Show, and the Oprah Winfrey Show.

His book Behind the Dolphin Smile was published in 1989; a second book, To Free A Dolphin was published in September 2000. Both of them are about his work and dedication. He is the star of the Academy Award-winning documentary The Cove and the Animal Planet television series Blood Dolphin$.

Author: Ric O'Barry


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