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Harmful, unintended consequences of technological advances, such as the deadly mass strandings of whales caused by naval sonar, need to be confronted, not denied.

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In countries such as Hungary, Costa Rica and Chile, dolphins have been recognized as nonhuman persons. India's government recently followed suit and is now starting to close down dolphin parks and has prohibited catching and importing the marine mammals for entertainment purposes.

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The international community has totally failed to convince Japan, Iceland and Norway to stop hunting whales, including those facing extinction. A new proposal would allow the rogue nations to drop the pretense of scientific research in exchange for a reduction in kills, but environmentalists are skeptical.

Larry's List

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Blue whales are changing their tune, medieval trial-by-floating-or-drowning turns out to have been shockingly accurate, and President Obama may have trouble with working people because he's so damned upwardly mobile -- all this and more on today's list.

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While some whales' hearts are as big as cars, the hearts on the Supreme Court that ruled Wednesday against a ban on high-powered sonar in Navy training exercises must be shrinking by the minute. The decision was a defeat to environmentalists, who argue that sonar panics whales, makes their ears bleed and pushes them to beach themselves.

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Under the pretense of scientific research, a fleet of Japanese whaling ships is hunting the humpback whale for the first time in decades. The whaling mission plans on killing roughly 1,000 animals in all, including 50 or so humpbacks. While Japanese officials claim the purpose of the mission is to study whale organs, the meat from the animals will be sold commercially.

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