I Stopped Eating Fish

I am protesting the fishing industry after watching a documentary which showed how they are destroying the world’s oceans.  The oceans are the origin and engine of all life on this planet, and at the moment, they are in extreme peril.  Industrialized fishing practices are a primary threat to marine life worldwide.  1/3 of world’s wild-caught fisheries are depleted because of overfishing.  Over 90% of the world’s marine stocks are fully exploited, overexploited, or depleted.  Hundreds of thousands of tons of plastic waste and other marine debris from discarded and lost fishing gear enter the oceans each year.  As much as 40% of the world’s catch is bycatch of unwanted non-target species.  An estimated 650,000 whales, dolphins, and seals are killed annually in fishing nets, not including the numerous sea turtles, birds, sharks, and other marine life also killed by unselective fishing practices.

I can see advantages to both scenarios of either being the big fish in a small pond or being a small fish in a big pond, but they both depend on the pond.  I consider myself to be a small fish in the WordPress blogging pond, which is a relatively big pond, but it is broken up into small communities.  I don’t interact with many bloggers who are not in my community and by community, I mean those who respond to the same prompt challenges.  I am certain that there is a lot of stuff going on around WordPress that I don’t know about and I probably would not care much about, so it is as if the like-minded people have drifted into these communities.  One of Fandango’s favorite sayings is, “Whatever floats your boat” and I see that as being applicable here, as a fish whether it is big or small, the only thing that really matters is their happiness.

If the water in the pond is conducive for the fish to thrive, then it should be happy.  The advantage to being the small fish is that they may be more agile and able to adapt if their environment changes, but they always have to be on the lookout for that hungry large fish.  The large fish can be viewed as being like the king of the castle, but it is likely that all of his subjects despise him and when he dies, they will hold a big party.  The large fish will not need to worry about being eaten, but it also needs more food than the small fish, so it must try not to eat everything that it sees, or else it will be the only fish in the pond with nothing to sustain it.

Written for Fandango’s Provocative Question #146 which asks, “In your opinion, is it better to be a big fish in a small pond or a small fish in a big pond? Or perhaps a big fish in a big pond? Why do you feel that way?”

21 thoughts on “I Stopped Eating Fish

  1. Those are some stark statistics about what the fishing industry is doing to our oceans and environment. But nothing’s going to change, unfortunately, until it’s too late. I like your analogy of WordPress being a large pond and most of us being small fish.

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  2. Interesting post Jim. I’ve been hearing the ‘we’re killing the oceans’ thing since I was a pre-teenager, Jacques Cousteau featured in our teenage television viewing list, and Green Peace and the rest of the pro-earth people. Sad thing is that here I am, fifty years later, hearing the same thing and nothing much (to my point of view) has happened to change anything. Well the plastics waste is being addressed here in Utah, many businesses don’t support the plastics industry, Bottled water is tough to buy at a drive thru and even plastic produce bags in the market have been removed. Is it too little too late though? I don’t know. I’m 60+ now and I sincerely hope I drop off the perch before the fish shit hits the fan, because that reality? Is unthinkable.

    I’ve done my own part by recycling stuff for years (I started in the early 1980s), and then I read a very good blog post from Marilyn (teepee12) about what the reality of recycling entails. It was like a bucket of cold water in a way. Because if the recycling plant or the people working there are unethical, they dump a fair amount of what is recycled anyway. It was discouraging. And that might bring up a great question for an upcoming FPQ or Share Your World post. Hmmm. Thanks Jim!

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    1. It is nice to be able to say that you did your part, but one person’s deeds cannot save the whole planet. It is a serious issue, and it will probably be still going on long after I am dead. I agree that recycling would make a good question for either you or Fandango or you to uses someday Melanie.

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  3. This was a very interesting read, Jim. I try to buy fish with a sustainability seal on the package, but, of course, the packaging is mostly plastic *sigh*. Anyway, I love your analogy to WP; I think I am a small fish in the WP blogging pond, and a happy fish in our small school of community bloggers. Have a splashing and exciting day!

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  4. The facts of the trash landing in the ocean and lakes, waterways, and probably marshes and on and on, makes me feel like we are all in a goldfish bowl… of even a large fish tank. But like there is no [significant in the long run] aeration or cleaning being applied.

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