Editorial: Illegal hunt may be last for Makah Nation

"The Makah's last federally sanctioned hunt was in 1999, after a 70-year hiatus. Many observers, including this editorial page, embraced the cultural significance of the event and supported the spiritual tonic the hunt represented for the tribe.

Subsequent legal challenges by environmental interests imposed new restrictions on Makah whaling. The tribe had been trolling the halls of power in the other Washington looking for an administrative exemption or congressional relief to resume the hunt.

With Saturday's hunt, the tribe shot a large-bore hole in its own foot and lobbying efforts. There was nothing traditional about last weekend's hunt, but it may be the last for a long, long time.

Everyone will be watching the tribe and evaluating its respect for the rule of law before anyone else will commit to what happens next.

In the environmentally sensitive Northwest, hunting whales is a topic that makes politicians nervous. And right now, they are diving for cover."

Get the Story:
Editorial: Hunting for trouble in the path of whales (The Seattle Times 9/12)

Opinion Letters:
"What type of culture needs a machine gun to kill a defenseless animal?" (The Seattle Times 9/12)

Relevant Documents:
Tribal Council Statement | Makah Tribal Whale Hunt | Marine Mammal Protection Act

Court Decisions:
Anderson v. Evans (June 7, 2004) | Anderson v. Evans (December 20, 2002)

Relevant Links:
Makah Nation - http://www.makah.com

Related Stories:
Unauthorized hunt likely to delay action on permit (9/11)
Editorial: Makah Nation reacts swiftly to rogue hunt (9/11)
Editorial: Illegal whale hunters must be punished (9/11)
Makah Nation blasts unauthorized whale hunt (9/10)
Makah Nation to discuss rogue hunt on Capitol Hill (9/10)
Russian Natives, Makah Nation share culture, whales (10/25)
Appeals court shoots down Makah whaling case (06/08)
Makah Nation marks fifth year since first whale hunt (05/17)
Tribes and U.S. seek review of whale hunt ruling (03/14)
Opinion: Makah Nation whale hunt is not legal (02/12)
Makah whale hunt faces another review (12/23)
Federal judge shoots down treaty challenge (08/09)
U.S. pushes for whaling rights (6/10)
Whale hunt a go for Makah Nation (7/16)
Makah whale hunt faces threat (3/30)
Friends, foes turn out for Makah hearing (2/2)
Makah whale hunt up for review (01/16)
Court rules on Makah whaling (6/12)
Makah ruling overturned (6/9)
Metcalf's Indian history (6/9)
Metcalf pleased with ruling (6/9)