Here's something that I think hippie liberals and tea partying patriots can BOTH raise a stink about: The fact that DOLPHINS, the cute clever kind like Flipper, are being brutally killed en masse in Japan, for food. Yuck! They're not even covered by the flimsy International Whaling Commission regulations that supposedly limit the killing of larger whales.
It's ridiculous for a number of reasons:
1. Dolphin meat far, far exceeds the legal limit of poisonous Mercury.
2. Hardly anybody even likes dolphin meat- it's 1/3 the price per pound of the cheapest grade of tuna, and they can only get rid of it by deceptively packaging it as other kinds of whale, or sneaking into poor kids' school lunches.
3. It probably wouldn't even be economical to kill dolphins, except that the fishermen cull a few of the cutest ones from each batch they round up to sell for $150,000 to places like SeaWorld and "swim with the dolphins" resorts. (So don't give your money to any of those places!)
4. Dolphins are probably the most intelligent and self-aware non-human animals on earth. They are aware of everything that's going on around them as all their friends and babies are rounded up into a cove for the slaughter. They leap and squeak in desperate efforts to communicate (perhaps trying to reason with us?) as they are agonizingly killed one by one by haphazard skewering.
5. Dolphins are relatively long-lived and slow reproducing animals that could easily be driven to extinction by the hunting. There used to be more than one town in Japan that hunted dolphins, but now all but the one town of Taiji has run out of dolphins to kill. They kill 20,000 each September in Taiji. Ugh.
I got on this dolphin-protecting tear just now after watching "The Cove", a documentary about the little town in Japan where all the dolphins are being killed. So that you can do something besides just get depressed about it, there's a page here with suggested things you can do to help. I embedded the trailer below.
The fact that this movie has come out and exposed what's going on, and Japan's only response has been to soup up their propaganda, makes me think that the Japanese government SUCKS. Seriously, I'm having major second thoughts about my plan to buy Subaru when my student loans are paid off.