Tag Archives: bullfighting

‘Snow White’, “killer” of bulls

6 May

A campaign against the film condemns that animals were slaughtered during the shooting, breaking the law of animal protection.




Anti-bullfighting organizations and defenders of animal rights have started a campaign against  the film Snow White, selected to represent Spain on Oscar’s long road to Hollywood, considering that while filming, bulls were slaughtered, thereby breaking the animal protection laws.

The Platform Torture is not culture, that encompasses Against Animal Abused Party(PACMA), Ecologists in Action and other collectives, claimed that on June 27th and 28th (2012)  two closed bullfights were organized at the Aranjuez’s bullring behind closed doors, coinciding with the shooting of the film directed by Pablo Berger. From that bullring left a refrigerated truck with dead bulls.
According to their investigations, there are “reasonable grounds to believe that” those involved with the movie making were taking advantage of the authorization of these two bull-fights behind closed doors. The scenes of the films were shot there,  which surely caused animal abuse towards the bulls in the fight, that were slaughtered in the enclosure”.

The  Entertainment Bullfights Area of the Ministry of the Presidency of the Community of Madrid denied that they had authorized the bull festival associated with the shooting of the film. On the other hand, the film’s producer had recognized that nine bulls were used, but that they hadn’t abused them.

The organizers, according to the announcement, ensured that a shooting technician confirmed that the bulls were subjugated to the beam part (chopper) and to flags, and were finally slaughtered in the pens of the square. Again according to their version, the College of Veterinarians of Madrid also admitted holding two fights behind closed doors where no incidents occurred.

The facts were denounced in front of the General Management of the Environment of the Community of Madrid but they never started investigating it, so the complaint was raised to the Administrative Courts, where it was accepted for processing.

In his trial, those responsible for the shooting of the film Snow White may have violated animal protection laws and even committed a crime of animal abuse punishable under the penal code.

Among others, the 2007 law for the care of animal’s farming, transportation, experimentation and slaughter considers it a “serious violation” when the use of animals in cinematographic productions, TV, artistic or advertising, even with the authorization of a competent authority, ends in death.

Taking advantage of silent film presentation in Madrid in a concert at the Zarzuela Theatre, the platform Torture is not Culture called for a demonstration against the film, which ensured governmental authorization.


Fuente: http://www.republica.com/2012/10/01/blancanieves-asesina-de-toros_556131/









Bullfighting has got a 41% lower since 2007 to 2011

4 Mar

The number of bull festivals has been reduced to half since 2007 | Professionals increase a 25 % and there is a 50% more of bullfighters assistants | Bullrings are empty, but the arena, where the bulls are killed, is getting filled by unemployed men doing ‘el paseíllo’, ceremonial entry of bullfighters.


‘Paseíllo’, ceremonial entry of bullfighters.

Bull festivals show growing symptoms of decadence every year in Spain. A year after banning bullfighting (in September 2011) in Catalonia, a region in the north-east of Spain, the number of bull festivals descended an 8%; so the fall in four years reached the 41% already, according to the information from the Spanish Ministry of Culture in 2007-2011.

In that period, the number of bullfights went down from 953 to 561. Besides, the main bull festivals: bullfight, rejoneo, which consists on fighting the bull on horseback with a lance, and novilladas con picadores, who are lancers on horseback that bullfight with young bulls, will be reduced to half if we add the projections of 2012, yet without information. But the festivity resists dying, and proof to this is that the Spanish Congress discussed on February 12th whether they accept the initiative of the Federación de Entidades Taurinas (Federation of the Bullfighting Entities) to make the party Asset of Cultural Interest or not, as it was known on February the 7th. Here is the possibility of bullfights coming back to Catalonia.

The most surprising thing of the information provided by the ministry is that the number of bullfighters increased a 25% in that period. The main reason for this was the economic crisis, which made that many amateurs of these traditions decided to go ahead and grasp the bull by the horns to have a remunerated job.
“Don’t you fear being stabbed by the bull’s horns? Hunger stabs you worse”, they might think when jumping into the bullring.

Spanish people are less interested every time in bullfights and parties with bulls. In 2011, the number of main bull festivals (bullfights, rejoneo, novilladas con picadores) decreased a 14%, in such way that in four years (2007-2011) the fall makes a 46% (it went from 2,045 to 1,120 festivities).

The fall will be bigger when the new information of 2012 will be known, since it will be the first re-counting without Catalonia’s assistance, where bullfights were banned by the Parlament, the Catalan parliament, at the end of 2011. “We estimate that in the end of 2012, and with Catalonia’s prohibition, the number of bullfights would be less than half of the ones of 2007”, according to Chesús Ferrer, a member of Ecologists in Action, a bullfighting entity which has been carrying out this kind of monitoring of the bullfighting supporters.

In fact, people are losing their interest in bullfighting and bull parties in general. The evolution of the ensemble of bull festivals (including parties, bullfight with young bulls, funny shows…) has decreased a 37%. In 2007, 3,651 bull festivals were celebrated, whereas in 2011 they were reduced to 2,290. A wide sector of the Spanish citizenship seems to be keen to put an end to it. So then, if the known as the national party dies, it will not be because of its forbidding in Catalonia.
In some way, these data rule in favour of those who think that cruel, bloodthirsty festivals may disappear without the need of prohibitions, but as a consequence of the change of values and the modernization of traditions.

The increasing lack of interest that bullfights awake is also shown in the results of a cultural habits and practices survey carried out by the Ministry of Education, a four-year official statistic which reflects a decrease of attendees. The number of people who say they attend bullfights has fell from 9.8 % during the period 2006-2007 to 8.5% during the period 2010-2011. “This important decrease would be even higher if official attendance data were available, instead of mere surveys, since these also include the number of people who attend shows which are not about bullfighting, such us funny shows, running of bulls or shows with young calves in villages”, says Ferrer.

The decrease of bullfights (2010-2011) affects all the autonomous communities of Spain except for two of them. The result is that, despite of the warnings made by many fans, the national party is not recovered: “If this keeps this way, bullfighting’s ending can be near “, say the anti-bullfighting groups.

The detachment that Spanish people are feeling about these bull shows contrasts with the official support that bullfights are having, up to the point of that some autonomous communities, mostly the ones governed by the right-wing Spanish party, the PP, have started proceedings to declare this festivities World Heritage or Asset of Immaterial Cultural Interest, trying to have with this the support of UNESCO.

But while the bullring is getting empty, the arena fills with jobless people, eager for the ceremonial entry and for carrying some traditional elements such as a cape, banderillas, which are small lances used during a bullfight or a pica, a pointed stick used for making bulls move. In the past years, permanent or mobile bullrings had turned into a yearning job for a lot of unemployed workers who are longing to risk everything and to change their lives.

Since 2007, in absolute terms, the number of taurine professionals has been increased until reaching 9,293 in 2001 (compared to 7,397 in 2007). There are people whose lives have been centered around bulls somehow and who have decided to take a step forward to try their luck, something which makes us remind of those post-war Spaniards who struggled to escape from poverty triumphantly. And everyone is aware that professional bullfighters earn very good salaries.

The number of matadores or bullfighters has augmented these last four years (an 18.6%) and  the same happened to the number of rejoneadores, people who fight the bull on horseback with the lance; novilleros or apprentice bullfighters who fight young bulls; banderilleros, men who stick small lances or banderillas into the bull’s neck; lancers or picadores, who pokes the bull with a large spear before the performance in order to prevent major hurts to the bullfighter and even comical bullfighters, dwarf men that make people laugh in circus shows. Nevertheless, the most surprising datum is the growth of bullfighters’ assistant, a 50%, which indicates that working in a lower hierarchy is not that bad. In the same way, the number of registered bullfighting livestock companies has increased (from 1,327 to 1,391), even though the amount of bullfighting schools has decreased from 49 to 42.

“All these results contrast with some state and autonomous administrations’ determination of shielding bullfights and giving them more public assistance. If bull’s survival depended on public attendance, it wouldn’t survive. All aids would be in vain, since the lack of citizens’ interest, increasingly sensitized against animal abuse, is the main enemy of these customs”, Chesús Ferrer says. Ecologists in Action demand to public institutions not to insist on keeping “aberrant and cruel practices with animals” and to go on the way paved by the broad majority of the Spanish society.

Source: http://www.lavanguardia.com/cultura/20130210/54365244648/el-numero-de-corridas-en-espana-descendio-un-41-del-2007-al-2011.html
Photo: http://www.mundotoro.com