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The Last Fish

Even now, although I would never call the killing or maiming of any sentient being a sport or family fun, in me there is still the child that didnít want to hurt my fatherís feelings by condemning these activities. He was sharing his childhood with me on these trips, the beauty of the land and the socially accepted cruelty of fishing all wrapped up into one confusing picture. I loved sitting next to the winding streams and daydreaming, but cringed at watching the fish die. Just as I loved and still love the true gentleness at my fatherís core and hope someday that his carnivorous ways will be a thing of the past.

We all have our own programing to overcome. And for some, having empathy and compassion for the sentient beings that live underwater seems far too great a task. For it is often through the love and affection that non-human animals give us that we open ourselves to loving them back. Even though a fish may not wag its tail at your touch, a crab purr with pleasure at a scratch behind the leg or a squid sigh with delight at a belly rub, these sentient beings have the same right to life and liberty as their land-based counterparts.

As we widen our circle of compassion beyond our family, friends and the human race, let us remember the crustaceans, invertebrates and animals that are being caged, netted, hooked and dragged from their watery existence into our foreign and often suffocating world. Those who find themselves gawked at in glass tanks, their bodies mounted on walls or displayed in the supermarketís glass coffins. Let us not forget them, or call their deaths merely sport.

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Read more: Conscious Consumer, Diet & Nutrition, Do Good, Eco-friendly tips, Environment, Food, Global Healing, Green, Make a Difference, Nature, Nature & Wildlife, Outdoor Activities, Peace, Pets, Spirit, Vegan, Vegetarian, , , , ,

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Alisa Rutherford-Fortunati

Gentle World is a vegan intentional community and non-profit organization, whose core purpose is to help build a more peaceful society, by educating the public about the reasons for being vegan, the benefits of vegan living, and how to go about making such a transition. For more information about vegan food and other aspects of a vegan lifestyle, visit the Gentle World website and subscribe to our monthly newsletter.


+ add your own
9:04AM PST on Jan 6, 2014

Thank you for sharing your story! I'm so happy that you're now vegan! You're an awesome human being for realizing what you were doing was wrong and making a change! People like you bring hope, really!

2:02PM PST on Jan 5, 2014

it's cruel and's only a so called sport to cowards and sadists

2:48AM PST on Jan 4, 2014

This story reminds me of my first [ and last ] experience of fishing when I was a child . My fish had swallowed the hook and a fisherman "retrieved" the hook . That ended my days of fishing , thinking there and then , the pain and cruelty inflicted on an innocent creature was not my idea of "sport" .

11:19AM PST on Jan 3, 2014

I agree that it is so cruel to exploit these peaceful sea creatures.
We no longer need to hunt and fish to feed ourselves.
people need to know the violence inherent in providing our food supply.

9:24AM PST on Jan 3, 2014

Wonderful article, thank you very much for it. Fish are sentient beings, as science has shown. They constitute the largest category of exploited animals, and arguably suffer the worst abuses. Yet, fish receive the least concern, even from the animal protection community.

Fish Feel is the sole organization devoted exclusively to promoting the recognition of fish as sentient beings deserving of respect and protection. We invite everyone to share their story of how they came to realize that fish are sentient, or relate that they have always intuitively know it, on our website: We hope yo uwill also visit the rest of the website, and Like the Fish Feel Facebook page: Please join us in advocating for fish, they so desperately need all of the help we can give them.

Mary Finelli
President, Fish Feel

7:28AM PST on Jan 3, 2014

Thank you.

7:16AM PST on Jan 3, 2014

The pastoral scene of people fishing is a huge disguise for one of the cruelest activities perpetrated by humans upon other creatures. Not only is it cruel, it is devious, sneaky and unfair. The bait hiding the awful hook is a sickening manifestation of the cruel and brutal nature of humans who, self-righteously, convince themselves that they are doing something benign. It is not benign, it is the worst kind of horror for other beings.

5:49AM PDT on Jul 5, 2013

Of all the horrible things humans do to animals if there's anyting more cruel or sadistic then fishing I don't want to know about it.....

7:46AM PDT on Jun 4, 2013


7:22PM PDT on Jun 2, 2013

Tyvm for this article...

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
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