Saturday, July 11, 2009

This Is "Bull"!

Why is it that dog fighting and cock fighting are considered cruel, inhumane sport yet bull fighting with the insane ritual of "running with the bulls" in Pamplona remains so popular in Spain?

It brings out a side of me that is not pleasant. This year a man was killed and so far three more have been hospitalized. I cheer for the bulls. And I seethe with anger at the inhumanity of it. For it is humans who allow it, partake in it and cheer it.

It says little about the intellect of those who participate - trying to out run a herd of bulls down narrow confining streets. There are always vivid descriptions of the ghastly injuries that either kill or maim. Like being gored in the neck, heart and lungs.

It is, however, nothing compared to what happens to the bulls. It's not sport. It's brutal blood lust. It doesn't even pit bull against bull. It pits man, with his brain, such as it is, against a dumb animal. The bull is poked and prodded and bled by men on horseback until the mighty matador faces a hurting, confused, enraged animal to deliver the death blow. What kind of "sport" is that? What kind of pleasure can possibly be derived from witnessing it? A show of skill? On a mortally wounded animal?

It's bad enough when man shows his capability for inhumanity against his own as we are too often privy to in parts of Africa and the Middle East. What does it say about the psyche of man when this "sport" is the second most popular in a Western country thought to be a bastion of civilization? This is not a bunch of thugs betting on dogs out in the wilds. This is organized in huge public arenas followed by celebratory partying.

It makes me want to meter out justice in kind to those who participate. On the other hand, they do it themselves to an extent by running with those bulls. Every time one is gored oar killed, that is justice. It's too bad it's not proportionate to the number of bulls ultimately killed and what they suffer.


cconz said...

good post, funny thing, i too was happy when i heard man gored to death. i can't help it. i also express joy when i hear about a hunter shooting himself. If he shoots himself he should'nt be out there in the first place.

Sansego said...

Its just a Spanish tradition that is popular. Spain is not America, so it might be hard for an American to understand how this tradition can continue...but for Spaniards, its tradition.

I've been in many countries where their popular pasttimes might be considered odd, but I've also heard many Europeans ask me questions about odd American culture, as well. Too each their own, I guess.