Should bullfighting be banned?
August 9th, 2011
08:00 AM ET

Should bullfighting be banned?

By , GlobalPost

First Catalonia outlawed bullfighting, which the Economist likened it to a German state banning wurst or a French region condemning berets.

Now Peru's minister of culture has said the sport is "terrible" and that it causes excessive suffering for the animals.

So is bullfighting on the way out? Is it a "tradition of tragedy," as PETA claims, that kills 250,000 bulls annually?

See photos: The death of bullfighting in Catalonia

Activists who gathered in Lima last week to protest the mistreatment of bulls would seem to agree. "Bullfighting promotes violence, torture and cruelty to animals for no reason," William Soberon, of the Anti-Bullfighting Front of Peru, told La Republica. "We're not in the colonial era."

Peru's newly appointed minister of culture, Susana Baca, said she felt sorry for the animals and that she cried when she once attended a cockfight. "I've never been to a bullfight but from the little I've seen in the media, I know it's terrible and I had to close my eyes," she said on the program "Buenos Dias, Peru."

Watch video: Cockfighting, cruelty or culture?

But protests against bullfighting are nothing new in Peru. And comments by Baca that she would analyze the practice during her tenure quickly sparked controversy.

Bullfighter Fernando Roca Rey told La Republica that bullfighting should be seen as a cultural event and that "the minister can give her opinion, but that cannot be applied to the whole country." Bullfighting celebrations have been held in Peru since 1766 and the Plaza de Toros de Acho bullring is the oldest in the Americas and second-oldest in the world, reports AFP.

And the Spanish government recently dealt a blow to efforts to outlaw the sport when it ruled that bullfighting is an "artistic discipline and cultural product." The country's Ministry of Culture will now be responsible for the "development and protection" of bullfighting, a move that supporters hope is a step toward protecting the tradition from further regional bans.

See photos: Spain's unusual festivals

Bullfighting is also practiced in Portugal and the south of France and is widespread in Latin America. Mexico City's Plaza Mexico arena is the biggest in the world with seats for up to 55,000.

And while public opinion might be swinging away from bullfighting — a poll last year for El Pais found 60 percent of Spaniards did not enjoy bullfighting — the sport still has big-name supporters. Peruvian novelist and Nobel laureate Mario Vargas Llosa campaigned to convince UNESCO to classify bullfighting as part of Spain's national heritage.

And in novelist Ernest Hemingway, the sport found one of its most enduring voices of support. The art of the bullfighting, Hemingway wrote in "Death in the Afternoon," "is the only art in which the artist is in danger of death and in which the degree of brilliance in the performance is left to the fighter's honor."

Post by:
Topics: Animals • Culture

« Previous entry
soundoff (296 Responses)
  1. Blackberry Blossom

    Put it to a vote. If the people in Spain or Latin America vote to outlaw bullfighting, then outlaw it and let your grandkids read about it in the history books. If they vote to keep it, butt out and mind your own business, Team America: World Police.

    August 10, 2011 at 8:37 am | Reply
  2. Overby

    It isn't sport to take a farm animal into a large arena and slowly stab it to death in front of cheering crowds, it's disgusting. Outlaw it.

    August 10, 2011 at 8:53 am | Reply
  3. charles bowen

    Ban Bull Fighting NOW! Charles Bowen Solomon Stone

    August 10, 2011 at 9:37 am | Reply
  4. Orange Sunshyne

    Of course it should be banned.
    It should have been banned years ago.
    With the rising hispanic population in the U.S., there will probably be bull fighting in the U.S. at some point in the future.

    August 10, 2011 at 9:40 am | Reply
    • Superchik1017

      Wow! That was very ignorant of you. So much for your argument.

      August 10, 2011 at 10:25 am | Reply
  5. Meat Puppet

    Here's an idea – place criminals who are serving life sentences in the ring with a bull and see what happens
    felons like child molesters and other perverts would be the prime candidates
    as the bull has no weapons neither should the criminals
    time them and see if they can survive 5 minutes – much like bull riding
    of course it should be televised on PFV and the proceeds used to pay for the costs of incarcerating them and other social rejects

    August 10, 2011 at 10:14 am | Reply
    • Lolly

      Now there is an idea I can endorse!

      August 10, 2011 at 10:51 am | Reply
  6. Superchik1017

    Outlaw it! Watching an animal slowly die to death is horrible no matter how well you think it was treated up to that point. What do they do with the bull after the "fight". And don't give us any of that "cultural heritage" stuff. In America, the South claimed slavery was part of their culture, too but it didn't make it right.

    August 10, 2011 at 10:24 am | Reply
  7. Barry

    In a humane and civilized world, bullfighting should go the way of the gladiator fights.

    Bullfighting should have ceased long ago, but some people are slow to catch on.

    August 10, 2011 at 10:25 am | Reply
  8. MARIA SONIA ESTRADA-SOLERO

    SOY VEGETERIANA , POR ESO PUEDO HABLAR CON PROPIEDAD . TORTURAR HASTA LA MUERTE A UN ANIMAL ES UN ACTO CRUEL Y TERRORIFICO QUE DEBERIA ESTAR PROHIBIDO . A LA MAYORIA DE LOS ESPAÑOLES NO NOS GUSTAN LOS TOROS . LOS CONSIDERAMOS ALGO CRUEL Y MEDIEVAL , QUE DEBERIA SER ERRADICADO .

    August 10, 2011 at 10:31 am | Reply
  9. Barry

    Yo no hablo Espanol.

    ?Habla Englis?

    August 10, 2011 at 10:41 am | Reply
  10. Blubulls

    You can live for weeks without meat. Just ask my wife.

    August 10, 2011 at 11:01 am | Reply
  11. Foreman

    For those against bull fighting I believe that you could do more to stop it from south of the border. Immigrate to Mexico and complain all you want. Otherwise let their national sport alone...

    August 10, 2011 at 11:02 am | Reply
  12. Susan Davis

    Alec, do you realize what you said? You said the picadors are not allowed to pic more than two times? Are you for real? Anyone who questions Alec can find thousands of pics all over cyber space of bulls with DOZENS of pics thru their spinal cord! And even if by some remote chance they actually enforced a rule like that, you are thereby saying it is fine for the bull to lose blood so very slowly? You are saying even one pic is fine? Then perhaps you should be the one picced !

    August 10, 2011 at 4:02 pm | Reply
  13. Susan Davis

    Mlove, you are as wrong about bullfighting and bulls as anyone could possibly be! Of COURSE slaughter for meat is cruel, barbaric, horrific, but not even that compares to the long suffering of the bull in bullfigting. As I mentioned above the bull is kept in darkness for DAYS and beaten and incapacitated before ever entering the ring, the cowardly humans who created this "fight" designed it in such a way, that the bull is significantly weakened without killing him, you don't seem to grasp the kind of suffering that is involved in that, the bulls suffers for DAYS, DAYS , and you seem to think having their penis and ears cut off while alive is a jolly picnic! And as to your claim that bulls are not docile , that is an extremely ignorant statement. As a child I played with my barbie dolls in a field with bulls the size of houses, they are docile animals, in fact a chi hua hua is more frightening to me than a bull! Get your facts straight before shooting off about something you know nothing about!

    August 10, 2011 at 4:16 pm | Reply
  14. MLove

    Susan, why are you on here arguing about my opinion? Seriously? I have actually studied quite extensively on the subject and was even able to visit a ranch that bred the bulls, in Spain several years ago. You come on here and claim I am ignorant based on what you know! If there was a legitimate way to end the culture of bullfighting, I would fully support it. I am not saying it is a good thing. I am saying that just as bad, if not worse fates happen to animals raised for food on massive scale. why not try to end factory farming? You would spare billions of animals a horrible cruel fate that way.
    I have spent quite a lot of time around cattle, grew up on a ranch in CO, and have worked cattle on horseback many times. Most beef bulls are rather docile, you are correct. But study the lineages of the cattle in Spain bred for the ring, they are different. They are quite unlike what we are used to in America.
    Why are you being so hostile on a board that is for sharing our opinions anyhow? And accusing others of being ignorant and uneducated? Based on different ideas than your own? Why not just share YOUR opinions and ideas instead of trying to instigate blame?

    August 12, 2011 at 8:20 am | Reply
  15. Observer

    YES, ABSOLUTELY,WE MUST BAN THIS GAME – IT IS VERY CRUELTY – BUT THEY DO THIS FOR SO MANY YEARS AND STILL KEEP DOING IT, I WENT TO SPAIN HOLIDAY AND OFFER A FREE SHOW AND DINNER WHICH I CANCELLED IT, I DID NOT EVEN CARE THAT IT IS FREE FOR ME AND THE DINNER. IT IS SO SO CRUEL FOR ANYONE STILL OPERATING THIS KIND OF SHOW JUST BECAUSE IT IS OLD AND HAS BEEN CARRIED DOWN CENTURIES DOES NOT MEAN IT IS RIGHT AND SHOULD BE KEPT DOING IT.

    August 16, 2011 at 12:38 pm | Reply
  16. Observer

    YES, ABSOLUTELY,WE MUST BAN THIS GAME – IT IS VERY CRUELTY – BUT THEY DO THIS FOR SO MANY YEARS AND STILL KEEP DOING IT.

    August 16, 2011 at 12:40 pm | Reply
  17. A Simple Thought

    "For as long as men massacre animals, they will kill each other. Indeed, he who sows the seed of murder and pain cannot reap joy and love."
    Pythagoras, mathematician

    August 19, 2011 at 10:33 pm | Reply
  18. tryecrot

    Yes there should realize the opportunity to RSS commentary, quite simply, CMS is another on the blog.

    August 26, 2011 at 4:12 pm | Reply
  19. roland

    you can add it up anyway you want it ,,ITS ANIMAL ABUSE AND THE CHUMPS THAT SLAUGHTER THESE ANIMALS SHOULD JUST FIGHT EACH OTHER ,ITS BAD ENOUGH THE ANIMAL FOOD INDUSTRY MASS KILLS OUR COWS TO FEED THE SLOBS THAT ARE OVERWIEGHT HEART ATTACKED CLOGGED ARTERIES FOOLS.GET AH GRIP PUBLIC,, VISIT YOUR LOCALE SLAUGHTER HOUSE AN MAYBE YOULL CHANGE YOUR MIND ABOUT BEEF,O AND CK OUT HOW THEY RASIE THE ANIMAL FOR THE PUBLIC.

    August 27, 2011 at 9:18 pm | Reply
  20. Dragon

    Put the matador out there without weapons and lets see what happens then. I understand bullfighting is viewed as an ancient tradition, but just because something has been done a long time does not make it right. There were human slaves for thousands of years. Was that right? Many men beat their children and wives. This is wrong also. Being slowly stabbed to death for someone's enjoyment is wrong.

    September 22, 2011 at 10:45 pm | Reply
  21. Great blog. Thanks

    Can I use some of the content from your site on mine? I will make sure to link back to it

    December 2, 2011 at 5:02 pm | Reply
  22. mensajes claro

    Should bullfighting be banned? – Global Public Square CNN.com Blogs

    Muy buen articulo!. Gracias por la informacion.

    March 9, 2012 at 12:18 am | Reply
  23. What kind of man do women want

    Attractive portion of content. I just stumbled upon your website and in accession capital to assert that I get actually enjoyed account your blog posts. Anyway I'll be subscribing in your feeds and even I fulfillment you get entry to persistently rapidly.

    April 21, 2012 at 12:26 pm | Reply
  24. viajero

    I like the valuable info you provide to your articles. I'll bookmark your weblog and check once more here frequently. I am rather certain I'll be told many new stuff right right here! Best of luck for the next!

    October 3, 2012 at 12:29 am | Reply
  25. Cortney

    There is no argument about this question. Half of you people make me sick. This is sick and should be illegal end of story! This animal is taunted and literally stabbed to death and brutally murdered. I seen a video of a fight and my mouth dropped and i started crying. It makes me want to cry just typing this, how could someone do this to any living creature? The one i saw the poor thing could go no more but was still being taunted at and humiliated and dripping with blood still fighting to stand, then the sick person thrust the sword into him and he screamed. People cheered., Anyone who woul do something like this has something wrong with them in the head and is going to burn in hell. I ca guarantee you that,,

    October 10, 2012 at 8:52 pm | Reply
  26. marco delarosa

    im desperate, marry me

    September 18, 2014 at 10:38 am | Reply
    • justin bieber

      we all desperate. marco marry me...

      September 25, 2014 at 10:33 am | Reply
      • victor cardoso

        NO don't marry him marry me I feel so lonely

        September 25, 2014 at 10:35 am |
  27. George W. Bush

    someone get me a date with justin bieber

    September 30, 2014 at 9:57 am | Reply
1 2 3 4 5

Post a comment


 

CNN welcomes a lively and courteous discussion as long as you follow the Rules of Conduct set forth in our Terms of Service. Comments are not pre-screened before they post. You agree that anything you post may be used, along with your name and profile picture, in accordance with our Privacy Policy and the license you have granted pursuant to our Terms of Service.

« Previous entry
Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 4,666 other followers