Questioning tradition

In contrast to the editorial "Keep Whaling Commission Intact," May 14, I commend the International Whaling Commission for extending the international moratorium on whaling. Japanese representatives justified whaling as a tradition and challenged Americans to stop eating beef. In fact, both traditions deserve challenge. Protecting whales represents an opportunity for the global society to demonstrate self-control in exploiting other species - a beacon of hope in the current mass extinction. In addition, many individuals around the world have found new reasons to value these animals alive more than dead. Eating beef also deserves reevaluation, as the raising of beef cows in many areas of the world is questionable land use, and many aspects of current factory farming in the United States today are inhumane. Society needs to evaluate actions on their own current merits as well as by the values of past generations. Catherine Badgley, Chelsea, Mich.

Letters are welcome. Only a selection can be published, subject to condensation, and none acknowledged. Please fax letters to (617) 450-2317 or address them to "Readers Write," One Norway St., Boston, MA 02115.

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