Archive Bill Clinton: Dolphin Killer

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Fat Boy vs. the Dolphins: Mr. Clinton (i.e., the US (likely your) President (aka Fat Boy Bill)), seems hell-bent on getting a lot of dolphins killed for the sake of cheaper tuna sandwiches.

Remember a few years back? The Dolphin Safe Tuna Labeling Act (or something to that effect) was passed after much effective lobbying by environmental groups. Busloads of children protesting at the capitol probably also helped. I'm sure most thought the law was a no-brainer.

Well, not over. It appears that Mexico hates "Dolphin Safe" labels. They've been lobbying to have them act repealed, in the spirit of fair trade, so that Mexican tuna fishermen (who usually happen to kill dolphins) can sell their tuna in the United States. Their lobbying may be in the works of paying off. 

To begin with, they got a contingency of alleged "environmental organizations" (Greenpeace, Center for Marine Conservation, World Wildlife Fund, Environmental Defense Fund, National Wildlife Federation) to agree to something called the Panama Declaration. Basically, this said that if "not too many" dolphins were killed in the process of catching tuna, then Mexico (and other Latin American dolphin killing tunaries) could sell their catch to the US and still receive the "dolphin-safe" label. Most enviornmental organizations (including the US Humane Society, Earth Island Institute, Sierra Club and others) were (and still are) completely opposed to this.

An attempt was made prior to the end of the legislative session last year, but fortunately, Senators Barbara Boxer (California) and Joseph Biden (Delaware), along with Representative George Miller (Cailifornia) were able to succesfully put an end to last minute railroad efforts in the Senate and House to overturn strict existing US tuna labeling laws.

But, Mr. Clean (um.. Bill Clinton), grimacing at spending $ 0.67 on a can of tuna to feed himself and the guests at the Lincoln Bedrooom, has written a letter to the Mexican President promising he would lead efforts to overturn such laws. He's also receiving assistance in the from of H.R. 408, introduced by U.S. Representatives Gilchrest of Maryland and Young of Arkansas and S. 39, introduced by by U.S. Senator Ted Stevens of Alaska.

This legislation intends to repeal the ban on the sale of dolphin-deadly tuna and would change the legal definition of dolphin-safe to allow chase, harassment, encirclement, capture, and killing of dolphins, as long as no deaths are "observed?" Many dolphins have died in mile-long nets without being observed, and the new definition just invites cheating.

Additionally, the bills promote consumer fraud by allowing the use of the "Dolphin Safe" label on ALL tuna, regardless of whether the tuna was caught by chase and encirclement, leading to the "incidental" slaying of some dolphins (I think the Pentagon refers to this as "collateral damage" - unintended kills, e.g., civilians).

* Disclaimer:  The statements concerning Mr. Bill and his hankering for  * 
* Tuna are just educated guesses. Other statements are verifiable.       * 

A) Write your Senators, tell them to vote against S. 39.

B) Write your Representative, tell him/her to vote against H.R. 408.

C) Write your president. Tell him to lay off the tuna.

D) Forward this to others that may care asking them to do likewise.

E) If you support any of the "organizations" mentioned above, write them a letter asking them to explain their position on the issue to you.

Note: Should one of your congressmen be Senator Barbara Boxer (California), Senator Biden (Delaware) or Representative George Miller (Cailifornia), be sure to also thank them for previous efforts.


Senator X
U.S. Senate
Washington, DC 20510

Representative X
U.S. House of Representatives
Washington, DC 20515