A Primitive ‘Sport'

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28th July 2010

Catalonia voted to ban bullfighting – the first mainland Spanish region to do so. From January 2012, it will be illegal. What wonderful news that this outdated spectacle may possibly, at last, be on the way out.

Bullfighting occurs in Spain, as everyone knows. It is less well-known, perhaps, that it also happens in the South of France and Portugal, in Europe and in Colombia, Mexico, Venezuela, Peru, Guatemala, and more recently, the USA, in the Americas. In these events, the bull is usually fought in various ritual ways, sustaining many painful injuries, before it is finally killed. The bull is inexorably worn down by injury, in a terribly one-sided feast of blood, worthy of Ancient Rome. The bull is an innocent and helpless victim of a sustained sadistic attack. Make no mistake, this is torture. Sadly, tourism sustains this barbaric practice, in which an estimated 10,000 bulls die horribly, each year. If you visit the ‘spectacle', you fund its perpetuation. If you buy souvenirs of this activity, you encourage it.

The AVMC deplores this practice and counsels against ever visiting such a spectacle. In France, we have never been made conscious of this practice, despite many visits. In Spain, regrettably, they are downright proud of it. We couldn't miss it, with just one visit and the tourist shops are full of ‘mementos of suffering'.

Other rituals, involving chasing or running with a bull or bulls are seen in Pamplona (The Running of the Bulls during San Fermín) and in southern India (the Jallikattu), which exploit the bull's fear (even panic). These activities are also deplored.

PETA is a good source of information, should you wish to become more active on this issue (see Links).

Pictures & commentary (not for the squeamish):

The dead bull:
http://www.andygilham.com/nimes/nimes 132.jpg
http://www.2goglobal.com/2GoChronicals/2 Go Photos/Europe/France/drag_bull.jpg

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