Spanish Bullfighting — The National Question Mark

25Statistically, the tradition of bullfighting is being opposed by more than half of the population in Spain. But still a significant part is simply ignorant to the negative aspects of this famous but brutal spectacle, which makes it difficult to weed out from Spanish culture.

Bullfighting Ring

For or Against

Spanish animal conservationists are hoping that the help to fight against bullfighting would come from abroad, especially within the EU. As public animal torture for entertainment purposes and in spectacle form is for many a continuing shame of both national and global proportions. Catalonia is the only province, where the barbaric bullfighting tradition has been completely banned. In other parts of the country however, the sports is even supported with the help of national tax revenues. In this way, even those who oppose the issue are forced to support it financially. To no surprise a hot debate remains around the issue.

The term “Fiesta nacional” is a public holiday and celebration which is used to defend bullfighting. Supporters consist of people from all classes and professions — even some of the so called elite, such as the Duchess of Alba are in favor. The fight is being depicted as beautiful as well as artistic, a deeply culture rooted Spanish event that foreigners can never understand.

Around 16,000 bullfighting and other events that involved animal torture and the killing of animals are held each year. Often in conjunction with different saint honoring religious festivals. The figure is high and reasons are often hard to explain. Of course, it does not label every Spanish person as an animal torturer but perhaps simple ignorance is the biggest blame amongst the people.

Primitive Village Festivities

It is fascinating, how within the European Union such celebrations are still held, where the horns and head of the bull are lit to fire, and an animal is made to run in such ways for the joy of the nation. Only in recent years, a law was established which prevented the torture of chickens in national festivals. But for instance the killing of Spanish Greyhounds after their hunting season has ended is still common.

The charm of Spain is unfortunately stained with publicly shed blood of animals. However it’s good to remember that with issues on animal rights each country should look in the mirror. No country has a clean conscious and perhaps sometimes the problems are even better visible than hidden as is elsewhere.


What’s your stance on bullfighting?
We’d love to hear your opinion in the comments!

1 Comment

  1. Jose

    It’s a controversial tradition for sure, personally I don’t approve of it.

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