Throughout the film several points were made about how intelligent dolphins are, but the one that was most profound was the fact that dolphins understand sign language... but they don't even have hands. I never really thought about that one before, what an impractical yet sophisticated ability it is for a dolphin to be able to communicate with people in this way. It's devastating to watch something get speared to death, to see the cove turn red with blood (ew, which one of the fishermen has to dive in to make sure they got all the dolphins), to watch dolphins flapping ferociously in the water, screaming until they die.
The fact of the matter is that nothing or no one should be rounded up and killed. After the movie was over, I felt a little conflicted. What about cows? It's not okay for cows to be rounded up, shipped half across the country, standing in their own feces for weeks, and being forced to eat something their four stomachs have trouble digesting. If we all watched The Cove version of the cattle industry, watched a huge five hundred pound animal crawling to the kill floor on weak, unused legs bent in the opposite direction, would we allow this to continue to happen in our own country? It's weird to go to another country and point out their shames when we have so many of our own. In the early 1700's and until about 1850, whaling was one of the prominent industries in America. Let us not forget that New Bedford, Massachusetts was known as "The City That Lit The World." Do you think we stopped whaling because we felt bad for whales? No! The demand for their oil plummeted after the invention of oil wells.
The question of activism remains: why anything? Why dolphins? Why healthcare? I thought I'd be doing some good by not eating meat, but shit. I knit with wool. I wear leather. My pants and my warm winter coat were made by someone who didn't earn a livable wage. My list of sins goes on. I want to try; I go to health care rallies and stuff like that, but feel like while I'm standing up for one thing, something else is coming apart. Do you think The Cove is going to change the fishing industry? Some people say there was so much media in Taijii that the dolphin hunting has stopped. I wonder for how long. Paul Watson made an interesting point in the film: you can be active or inactive. But how do you know if you've done any good?