Catalunya has voted against bullfights and, as of May, they will be illegal on one bit of Spanish soil. Many are the reasons given for such a desition, either the desire of the Catalá to feel independent of Spain, or the lack of young followers, or their realization that animals have rights. No matter, it is still a victory for bulls and society as a whole. At least some people see beyond cruel obsolete ways of thinking and no longer consider it a cultural value worth protecting. Others may think more like me: that violence, no matter who gets it, is nothing worth admiring and is ultimately harmful, for everyone.

My home country, Colombia, is still one very attached to animal fights, dogs and cocks included in the list. Virtually every town, more than 1000 of them throughout the country, celebrates the annual festivities around cattle and men's abilities over the poor animals. Changing people's minds here will probably take centuries, but at least they no longer have the excuse of the "motherland" conserving those traditions. Finally, the Spanish teach us a useful lesson.

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Dear Juana,

It's great to hear from you again - you always have such interesting ideas and viewpoints on Colombian and global issues. Thank you for sharing this important news from Catalunya. I spent a year living in Quito, Ecuador and watched several bullfights. My first bullfight was during Fiestas de Quito where they bring in some of the best bull fighters from Spain. I was only 18 at the time, sitting way up high on the top row of seating and was caught up in the excitement and culture of the event, along with the other numerous celebrations during this festival. However later that year, I attended an amateur bullfight and sat in the front row. The beginner matadors struggled to kill the bull and the suffering was up close and very real. Since that experience, I have questioned the necessity of keeping this tradition as it is so inhumane. I admire the region of Catalunya for making this bold move for animals.

Feliz Año Nuevo!

Abrazos, Jade


Thanks for your perspective on this issue. I am glad to hear about this development in Spain. However, it is disappointing to know that there are still bull fights being celebrated anywhere regardless of the harm inflicted on these animals. I hope people will come to see that this exploitation of animals for entertainment purposes is wrong. May interest in animal rights continue to grow in Colombia and throughout the world.

Regards, Maria