Human Exceptionalism

Dolphins Commit Porpicide!

Something must be done.  Dolphins are killing porpoises in Monterey Bay!  From the San Francisco Chronicle story:

The harbor porpoise that washed ashore last month at San Francisco’s Fort Funston was clearly a victim of foul play. It had two badly broken jawbones, fractured ribs on both sides and a broken scapula, evidence of a sadistic attack. Worst of all, the female porpoise, which had been seen twice before and identified by researchers in Monterey Bay, was lactating when she was killed, according to marine biologists.

It was a clear case of what scientists are calling “porpicide,” the deliberate slaying of a harbor porpoise by a surprising and, to most people, unlikely culprit. “We suspect that it was a bottlenose dolphin,” said Bill Keener, a harbor porpoise researcher for the Bay Area chapter of the American Cetacean Society.

Oh, porpicide most foul! Can you believe the cruelty?  Whatever happened to compassion? Don’t these dolphins know that all animals have a right to life?  After all, harbor porpoises are empathetic and intelligent beings, who feel pain and want to raise their children just like you and me.  Arrest those dolphins and bring them to the Hague!

Or, we could acknowledge that dolphins are not moral beings.  In this sense, they can’t be “sadistic,” which is a moral concept, and that by killing the porpoises, they are merely doing what comes naturally.  In other words, fauna are quite beyond the very concept of rights and duties, and hence, the killer dolphins are not doing anything “wrong.”  That’s my vote.

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