Photo via Huffington Post
The annual Canadian seal hunt is one of the most controversial events in the world when it comes to animal rights issues--animal rights groups stage angry protests, critics loudly call it unsustainable, and the European Union has gone beyond denouncing it to imposing a ban on Canadian goods produced from seal products. Needless to say, it all amounts to quite a spectacle. But nothing could have prepared anyone for the next chapter in the seal hunt saga: a Canadian governor publicly eating a raw seal heart from a slaughtered animal to show her support of the tradition. According to the report from the AP:
Canada's governor general ate a slaughtered seal's raw heart in a show of support to the country's seal hunters, a display that a European Union spokeswoman on Tuesday called "too bizarre to acknowledge."
And if you were wondering, yes, of course she gutted the seal herself.
Governor General Michaelle Jean, the representative of Britain's Queen Elizabeth II as Canada's head of state, gutted the seal and swallowed a slice of the mammal's organ late Monday after an EU vote earlier this month to impose a ban on seal products on grounds that the seal hunt is cruel.
Reminds me of the time I was protesting the government's placing wolves on the endangered species list (and lifting and placing again). I was eating wolf hearts left and right--those were the days.
Photo via Britannica
Here's how the scene went down:
Hundreds of Inuit at a community festival gathered Monday as Jean knelt above a pair of seal carcasses and used a traditional ulu blade to slice the meat off the skin. After cutting through the flesh, Jean turned to the woman beside her and asked: "Could I try the heart?"
She swallowed a piece whole and deemed it tasty, saying: "It's like sushi. ... And it's very rich in protein."
Jean, whose post is largely ceremonial, defended the hunt as an eons-old traditional hunting practice that is not inhumane.
Take that, EU--that'll show those stodgy Europeans that seal hunting's perfectly humane. But seriously, EU--please don't put a ban on products made by Canadian people. Hate to see how Governor Jean would show solidarity then . . .