Bullfighting in Spain is still a popular event, but many people believe that the practice should be put to an end. This week thousands of protesters came together in demonstration of those thoughts, with the intention of spreading the word about animal rights.
The tradition of bullfighting in Spain has been around for centuries, but fewer people have been attending the events and there has been an increase in people speaking out against it.
According to the animal rights political party Pacma who organized Saturday’s rally, it was the largest to date to specifically oppose bullfighting. During the event protesters marched through Madrid with signs that read things like “Bullfighting, a national shame.”
In 2011 one region of Spain called Catalonia managed to ban bullfighting completely, and then in 2013 Spain’s government declared it a cultural asset. Last year that move was reversed which effectively removed the subsidiaries from bullfighting schools.
One activist named Jorge Rodriguez explained why it’s hard to change people’s minds about the practice.
“Our traditions are linked to our history — to the weather, to the culture, to the people. It’s a lot more than hurting animals for the sake of hurting animals. It’s rooted — and that’s why it’s so difficult to get rid of it.”
One of Spain’s more controversial festivals called Toro de la Vega used to allow for the killing of the bull at end, but now for the first time this will not be allowed.