Friday, August 19, 2011

Will bullfighting become repugnant in Spain?

The Guardian reports: Bullfighting saved from the sword as Spain rules it is an artistic discipline: Socialist government says ministry of culture will be responsible for development and protection of controversial sport

"Prime minister José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero's socialist government announced that the ministry of culture will from now on be responsible for the "development and protection" of bullfighting, which previously fell within the remit of the interior ministry.

"The move follows pressure from bullfighting organisations keen to protect their livelihood following a controversial vote to ban bullfighting in the Catalonia region last year."
"Animal rights campaigners say bullfighting only survives because it is subsidised by the Spanish taxpayer. Attendances are falling, its appeal has faded among younger Spaniards and the industry has been hit by the economic crisis. The number of bullfights taking place at local fiestas has diminished as spending cuts have been enforced.

"The Catalan regional government voted to ban bullfighting in the northeastern region last July, by 68 votes to 55, with nine abstentions, on the grounds it is cruel and outdated. The vote was held after campaign group Prou! (Enough! in Catalan) collected 180,000 signatures in favour of a ban.
"The ban, which will come into effect next January and will not be affected by Friday's decision, will be the first to be introduced in mainland Spain. The Canary Islands outlawed bullfighting in 1991.

"A poll last year for the newspaper El País found 60% of Spaniards did not enjoy bullfighting, but 57% disagreed with the ban in Catalonia."

HT: Itai Ashlagi

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