Ocean Kinetics - The Engineering Experts

Letters / Lack of proportion

Don’t get me wrong, I wouldn’t like to see the mass slaughter of “Caa’n Whales” re-introduced to Shetland voeheads. However, there seems to be a lack of proportion and indeed, hypocrisy, in the responses to your coverage of the Faroese ‘Grind’.

Allan Crowe, for example, writes: “Do you (Páll Holm Johannesen) seriously think that the rest of the world thinks that the Faroese in the 21st century need whale meat to survive? We don’t!”

Paraphrasing this, I might say: “Do you (Allan Crowe) seriously think that the rest of the world thinks that the United Kingdom in the 21st century needs beef, pork or mutton, to survive? We don’t!”

What if 100 cattle were slaughtered and bled into an adjacent voehead? Would not the water become, similarly, discoloured?

What if a shipload of people arrived from India, obstructing the herding of cattle into slaughterhouses and publishing lurid details and photographs of the actual slaughtering and butchering of the meat that goes on inside? How long would they last?

What the hell is the difference? At least, the “Caa’n whales are free to roam the ocean until they’re herded into a Faroese voehead.

Finally, I note the same photo that accompanied your article on the Vagur Grind also adorns the head of Pall Holm Johanneson’s letter. Did he intend that or was it added by your editorial staff?

Please reassure us that you did not, gratuitously, add that lurid photograph which detracts seriously from the impact of his protest.

We may not agree with what Mr Johanneson says but we should defend his right to say it without obstruction.

You are, of course, entitled to take an editorial position on any issue but if you added the photograph you will have struck a heavy blow against your own journalistic credibility, something I have greatly appreciated and which I have recently found myself defending, more often than in the past.

John Tulloch

Note from Shetland News: The photo was used because it illustrates what The Grind looks like. Even the Faroese government and whale hunters accept that it makes a bloody mess in the sea, and that’s all the photo shows.