I've told my students countless times - Think Before You Act.
I've also heard several times. - Think Before You Click.
Why am I saying this? Because I want the readers of this post to be aware that I've thought about this post before I wrote it and I decided to make a stand. A stand I hope will reach many. Why? Because there are some traditions that just have to stop!
This is a reaction based on the article I read from Manila Bulletin's online newspaper entitled " Make Way for the Dragon: Manila Hotel’s Mabuhay Palace welcomes 2012 with a knockout menu".
Since the comments section of the post does not show and there is no way to express my view regarding the article, I am writing my reaction in my own blog.
The writer of the article, Ms. May Corpuz quoted Mabuhay Palace Executive Sous Chef Josephine Yu Tanganco-Candelaria about one of the items in the said menu which is the Mabuhay Palace Shark’s Fin Crab Roe Soup. According to the article this dish is supposedly a "Fiery orange and swimming in top ingredients, it is luxury in a bowl. Chef Josephine explains that she does know how controversial it is to eat shark’s fin these days, but she also says that it’s a very old tradition and that Chinese people expect to see it on the menu and will not eat if it’s missing. We would have reached “happiness” with the rich crab roe soup alone, but who are we to question ancient traditions?."
Now what made me stand up to this piece is the statement allegedly made by Sous Chef Josephine Yu Tanganco-Candelaria, "who are we to question ancient traditions?"
To answer this question, I made a search on Yahoo and Google about banned ancient animal traditions:
Here are the top 3 ancient animal traditions that are being banned because of animal cruelty.
"Bullfighting is part of Spanish culture," Activist Aida Gascon of the Anti-Bullfighting Party known as PACMA said. "But that should change. Many traditions disappear as the society advances."
|"Wild horses are rounded up from the surrounding hillside and guided into an enclosed arena, where men and women wrestle the horses trying to pin them down long enough to brand them and cut off their tails."|
For my answer to the alleged statement made by Sous Chef Josephine Yu Tanganco-Candelaria about questioning ancient tradition, my response is plain and simple - I do.
I stand to question traditions that are just plain wrong because it is WRONG. And as educated persons, we are given knowledge to choose between what is right and wrong. That is one of the purpose of education.
The cruelty exhibited in shark finning is already unbelievably appalling in so many levels and to say that we should keep promoting a tradition that is based on the suffering and pain of another to give some one pleasure or as Sous Chef Josephine Yu Tanganco-Candelaria intends "happiness" during the Dragon day is just something I would NOT take lightly. I cannot let this to be promoted knowing that the population of sharks is dangerously dwindling.
Now I have a question to all, "despite having this knowledge about the suffering and plight of sharks and still choose to eat them out of tradition, how different are we from the uneducated?"
The responsibility we hold as educators regardless of what is our profession is huge. What you say in public promoting a WRONG tradition (and I stand up to say that it is WRONG to eat shark fin soup) is just something I cannot stay mum.
I am not telling people to believe in what I believe but I will certainly not let anyone tell me that I have no right to question a wrong tradition. I know everyone has their "rights" but your right and freedom should not trample on my rights and freedom and even on the right and freedom of the sharks to live. Did you know that they kill pregnant hammerhead sharks nowadays just to collect shark fins from unborn sharks.
And someone is telling people that we should not question that because its ancient tradition!
Now don't let met get started on banned ancient tradition related to humans. Maybe that will change people's perspective on ancient traditions but if you need examples let me give you some. Did you hear about the tradition on circumcision? Yes. Good. How about circumcision of women in Africa.
Are you familiar about arranged marriages? Yes. Well yeah. How about children wives in India, Afghanistan and Yemen? Some as young as nine.
And some are so grotesque and hideous like the human sacrificial killings of the Aztecs they even made a movie about it.
If nobody spoke against these ancient traditions, just imagine what kind of world we could be in right now.
When are we going to open our eyes to the problem of shark finning just to satisfy a culture or a tradition? When the sharks are extinct! This is not the time when we have to wait for someone to tell us "Oh I told you so".
Every sinew of my being is telling me this is NOT the future I want for my children and I have to do something about it or else TRADITION might rob them of a world they may never witness because the consumers today consumed it to satisfy their ancient happiness.
I hope this reaches any one who thinks that they are justified from consuming shark fin soup because they are protected behind their "tradition".
Because YOU ARE NOT.
Disclaimer: The post above is of the writer's personal opinion as a consumer. This is not intended to cause any harm towards the establishment or the persons involved. This is a reaction against a write-up promoting Shark finning to make shark fin soup. The reaction could have been provided in the article if the comments box was enabled such as the post below.
Source: Yahoo for articles; Yahoo and Google for pictures