An enthusiastic crowd responded Sunday to a rallying cry to raise awareness of and to declare opposition to the resumption of commercial whaling..
More than 75 people gathered at Main Beach in Laguna to sign petitions and video-tape a plea to President Obama to keep his pledge to support the moratorium on the business of hunting whales. The Orange County event was coordinated with 14 other coastal counties organized by the Western Alliance for Nature.
"We have a voice — whales don't," said Greenpeace representative Nick Hurley, who led the chant: "President Obama, keep your promise. Save the Whales."
The signatures were gathered to show popular opposition to the April 15 announcement by the United States that it was brokering an agreement to legalize commercial whaling. Quotas are to be left up to Iceland, Norway and Japan, which have been accused of violating the moratorium, in place since 1986.
"We've collected hundreds of signatures here," said local event organizer Penny Elia, clad in a Save the Whales T-shirt from a previous protest, among her various environmental activities.