Governor Brown Makes Shark Finning Illegal in CA

I never had Shark Fin Soup even though I’ve seen it on the menu at every Chinese restaurant. It just never had an appealing “sound bite” to it – pun intended.

Why would I want to eat such a weird sounding dish when there are so many other dishes that are so tasty? The same goes for, tripe, chicken feet, pâté, or Foie Grás, “Sweet” Bread, etc… Gah~

To justify my reasons for not eating this expensive soup even more, it turns out that the practice of obtaining such shark fins (shark finning) is illegal in many countries. I never knew how inhumane and cruel the practice was until recently, when I wrote about it on Green Living Ideas.

Just in case you didn’t see it, here is a video of Chef Gordon Ramsay, a colorful Chef from “Hell’s Kitchen”, trying shark fin soup for the first time.  The video is graphic; his words are graphic.

I didn’t finish watching the video because it got me so upset but I don’t think I needed to see it entirely to be convinced that this practice should be banned.  Recently, Richard Branson, the founder of Virgin Group, and Yao Ming, the Chinese basketball star, were advocating banning this cruel practice and urging restaurants in China NOT to serve Shark Fin Soup.

So it wasn’t surprising that Branson called California’s governor Jerry Brown to ban shark finning in CA yesterday when it was up to the Governor to sign the bill into law in CA.

And he did. He signed the bill making shark finning illegal in CA. Whoo HOot! 

But Brown also signed Assembly Bill 853, a measure (a compromise) that will allow the restaurants to finish using up any stock they have and also to exempt legally caught sharks. Sharks are still being killed but at least this bill will stop the cruel practice of just cutting off the fins from live sharks and throwing the bleeding fish overboard to sink and drown.

So while it’s not perfect, it’s a step in the right direction.

Now only if we can get Branson to call Obama to ban GMO salmon and label GMO foods. Maybe then, our foods will be safer. Because, you know, money talks, bulls*** walks…

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Have a Great Weekend!

[CC Image by StormyDog via Flickr]