Blood and sand: the last days of bullfighting?

Blood and sand: the last days of bullfighting?

Even though there are hundreds of thousands of people who are fond of the so-called Fiesta Brava, in recent years hundreds of thousands of people who oppose it have also emerged due to the absurd suffering that this show represents for the bull.

The confrontation between the beast and man goes back to the bronze age, in the brightest time of the Roman Empire it was customary for young people of noble families to face death with the bulls in order to demonstrate their bravery and skills as hunters, more later the bulls were released in the Roman Circus to attack and kill the Christians at the time of their persecution.

From that time the bullfighting goes through different facets from the lanceo on horseback or on foot, until reaching the modern era in which other measures of protection are taken to the horses used by the picadores, the use of the banderillas and the ritual that today is part of the so-called Fiesta of all the Festivities until the changes within the cattle ranch, where breeders arise only from wild cattle for the fight, the paraphernalia around the bullfights, the preparation of the bullfighters costumes, subordinates , choppers and the formation of the gangs of each matador that include in the inaugural passageway to the mulilleros, who are responsible for removing the body of the bull, and the sandstones, which will prepare the square for the next task.

Telling the story of the Bullfight is not easy, there are encyclopedias with whole volumes on the subject, in some countries Bullfighting is considered not only as a tradition but as part of their Culture.

Bulls and Bullfighters have also been the inspiration of art, from plastic arts, sculpture, music, song, poetry, novels and other audiovisual manifestations such as films and documentaries.

Bullfighting, considered as Art, Tradition and Culture, has had faithful followers among renowned characters such as Ava Gardner, Gerard Depardieu, María Félix, Antonio Banderas, Joaquín Sabina, Alejandro Sanz, Cristiano Ronaldo, Paz Vega, Joan Manuel Serrat, Che Guevara, Gabriel García Márquez, Arturo Pérez Reverte, to mention a few.

Among the painters and musicians who were inspired by the Fiesta Brava we can mention Goya, Picasso, Manet. Dali, Jacinto Benavente, Bizet, Botero, Agustín Lara, among others.

Poets, philosophers and writers who fell before the spell of the bullfighting fans were Ernest Hemingway, Jorge Luis Borges, Miguel de Cervantes, Federico García Lorca, Pablo Neruda, Rubén Darío, Juan Ramón Jiménez, Valle Inclán, Ortega y Gasset, Antonio Machado, Benito Pérez Galdós, Calderón de la Barca, Gustavo Adolfo Bécquer and a long etcetera, who not only expressed their fondness with their presence in the bullfights but also wrote recognized works on the subject.

The graphic arts also made an appearance with the great designs of the Bullfighting Billboards adding to it the printing of pamphlets and allusive calendars.

However, the detractors of this type of events present very valid arguments to oppose the continuation of these shows, some extremists publish falsehoods that do not prove with facts such as the one that the animal is tortured before its exit to the ring, nor the breeders of wild cattle or bullfighters it is convenient for that to happen and it is practically impossible for it to be true since there are many people involved since the bull's temptation in the livestock, their transfer to the squares, the raffles that are made to know that bull he will have to be dealt with by which bullfighter, etc.

Image: Globedia

Yes, those who oppose the Bullfight are right, although the argument of the defenders of the same is that the bull is bred especially for the fight, does not mean that every bull fighting is brave, even when a bull is pardoned by his bravery , cured and sent to livestock to be used as a stallion is a guarantee that it will breed bulls that will inherit their bravery. The bull fighting is raised in the open, its care is special and never knows a cape before reaching a square because it would mean an extreme danger to the Matador, since the beast would develop what they call "sense", placing the bullfighter for his onslaught and not the cape for the task.

A fighting bull weighs between 500 and 600 Kgs, which is why it is considered the need for the participation of the choppers in the arena, they have the mission of "venting" the animal and ensuring that the bull attacks the head down and avoid pitching that exposes the participants of the task. This third is the most brutal of the bullfight and to which the fans themselves throw chokes when the picador exceeds their participation, the puja “decreases” the bull, bleeds it and hurts it, if we add the flags to that, it is definitely the third more violent and wild to the detriment of the animal and that in some bullfighting things is beginning to be avoided, defenders of the participation of picadores and banderilleros state that it is the way to maintain a balance between the bull and the bullfighter due to the size, weight and bravura, however this explanation is falling more in the qualification of myth than of reality.

Although bullfights were banned in Catalonia in 2010, this decision was taken by a large majority of Spaniards as another manifestation of their separatist tendency and managed as political artifice, despite the fact that the ban was repealed in 2016, it is not They have made runs to date.

The defenders of both sides, against animal abuse and in favor of the Fiesta Brava present arguments with extreme manifestations, in fact the opponents add to the defense of the right to life and the dignity of the animal the socio-political and economic interests of the great entrepreneurs and ranchers, in addition to the fact that many bullfighters who have achieved international fame have created their own livestock and businesses, adding the latter that the industry is a source of work for many people linked to the show.

Image: ABC

The awareness that the bull fighting suffers unnecessary torture has also made a dent among bullfighting fans, in fact it is currently promoted that to save the Fiesta Brava as a show, the fate of the picadores, that of the banderillas and the death of the horned and concentrate on the bullfighter's task modifying some laws of the Bullfighting Regulation, including the marking of the iron of the cattle on the skin of the animal, among other things.

In Latin America bullfights have been banned in much of the Central and South American Countries and in places where they still appear, they could not be called Fiesta Brava since tradition is not saved, in Costa Rica the killing of the bull is prohibited, so that the "runs" are not even similar to those we know as such. In a ring they release calves, they do not reach the level of bulls, anyone jumps to the ring to try to dominate them, which obviously does not happen and there have been cases of death of the “fans” by bumps received by the animals and falls that have caused neck break in some of the “spontaneous”

Mexico is the only country that keeps the forms and regulations of the Fiesta Brava, even so, some states and cities have banned the show and although the demonstrations against it are multiple, it is difficult for them to repeal because that in Spain, it is considered within the scope of Art, Tradition and Culture (inherited since the time of the Conquest and continued during the Colonization).

However, the work of opponents of animal abuse is so great that perhaps their struggle and their perseverance will one day achieve the fruits they expect, if Bullfighting does not disappear, they may modify the Bullfighting Regulation so that the bull Do not be tortured or executed in the arena.

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