Bullfighting…help me understand this

bullfightAnyone who knows me knows that my heart is really big when it comes to animals.  I have a huge spot in my heart for them. It doesn’t really matter what kind of animal, I love all of them.  Snakes and mice not so much and I don’t want them in my house but when I see one of my cats killing one, I have to tell you that I feel bad.  I usually scream, jump on a chair and SCREAM call for Paul to take it outside.

I don’t watch 60 minutes very often.  It’s not that I don’t like the show but it’s just on at such a bad time for us.  During football season it’s a given that we watch only that on Sunday’s and in the summer, we’re outside at 6 and don’t watch anything that early. But last Sunday I did watch and I hated what I saw.

This is a story about a family of matadors.  Francisco Rivera Ordonez and his kid brother Cayetano.  Let me tell you, the crowd was going NUTS for these guys and apparently they are moocho loved in Spain.  Their grandfather, Antonio, was the greatest matador of the last 50 years. Hemingway, Orson Welles, Rita Hayworth, Grace Kelly all came to pay homage to the maestro. The boys’ father was Paquirri, a legendary matador of his time. Bulls were the family business, and the family tragedy. In 1984, Paquirri was badly gored in a minor ring somewhere in central Spain.  He died a few hours later.  His widow, the boys’ mother, did everything possible to lure them away from the ring.  She sent them both to summer camp in Maine; she also sent Francisco to a military academy in Indiana.  It didn’t work out that way and they both returned to bullfighting.

This is just plain crazy to me.  First off, I don’t get how any sane person would get into a ring like this with a bull and take the chance of being killed.  Second of all, I have a huge problem with the whole killing the bull in general, in this manner.  Where is the “sport” in this is what I’d like to know?  They stab swords in the bull.  In a ring where this bull has no chance of survival.  NONE. How is this a sport?  Even in hunting the animals aren’t caged up. The hunter has to go find them.  I don’t have a problem with hunting or any other kind of “sport” but killing for a game or not to use the meat for anything is what I have the  problem with.  There is no way the bull can get out of it.  It seems very one sided and unfair to me.  It made me cry to be honest with you.  I sat here quiet and could hardly watch. I just have always hated it.

I do understand that this is a cultural thing and it’s not my culture and therefore I may not understand the meaning of it.  These people just go nuts over this.  Can anyone explain it to me?

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31 Responses to Bullfighting…help me understand this

  1. SKL says:

    I can’t explain it, but I have a few thoughts. I’m no expert by any stretch, just trying to make sense of it in my mind. I think at some point this was really about the skill and risk involved in killing the bull. They added lots of bells and whistles (to make the bullfighters look more impressive) and safeguards (for the bullfighters) so that at this point, it’s more about building a pretty show around torturing a dumb animal.

    I don’t know how far back bullfighting goes, but do you think it would even exist if they could always just put a bullet through the animal’s brain and be done with it? One would think that once there was a humane way to do the job, they would stop this method of slow, painful death.

    I agree with you, Joy – there is nothing impressive about torturing an animal that has no chance of fighting back or saving itself. Maybe it’s very athletic, but isn’t there some other sport these guys could play that doesn’t involve torture? Aside from the fact that it’s just plain stupid to risk getting gored just for sport.

    • Luis says:

      I do understand your thoughts on the event. You keep calling it a “sport”. It is not a sport, there is no points, standing, a trophy at the end of the season, or a “world cup” presentation every 4 years. The bullfighters take on serious training to do this. The bulls roam free in a range, they are not caged. They are a special breed that is raised for its agresiveness. They are certainly not your “ground beef” variety. I supposed it is more humane to clamp their necks into a vise and thrust a rod into their forehead with a hydrulic. There is respect for one another, the matador and the bull. These animals do not eat the chemicals that your McDonalds burgers contain. At the end of the night that meat is consumed in restaurants all over the city the event took place in. If you love animals so much I’d stop eating vegetables, you should see what happens to all the animals burrowing in the ground when a PLOW goes by.

  2. shane says:

    I have no idea, I guess you would have to be from spain or mexico to understand it. In the U.S. we slaughter a s–t load of cows/day but there not tortured. So there is a difference. I’m like Joy when it comes to being a animal lover. I hit a deer with my car once or actually it hit me, and I cared more about the poor deer than my car LOL. To top it off it happened in st.micheal on the way home from Joys.

  3. mssc54 says:

    In some culturs having sex with young girls is not condemed either.

    • Joy says:

      And?? I know you like to joke and shock but what does that have to do with this subject? That culturally it’s okay to do what you’ve been doing since the beginning of time?

  4. trishatruly says:

    There is no sense to this. It’s mean and stupid. Your gut feelings are right on, Joy.

    I’d like to kick them in the (g)uts!!

  5. Laura (LS) says:

    Ok, I read the first part of this post REALLY fast, so I could scroll down past that awful picture. I couldn’t even look at it!

    I never understood bullfighting. Ok, scratch that. I get the whole “macho adrenaline” thing… it’s like going onto a football field, or getting into a stock car, bungee jumping, or even more accurate, getting on the back of a Brahma Bull in the rodeo arena. There’s that rush, that very real idea of looking death in the face and laughing. And proving that your skills can make you survive.

    I get that. I’ve even done a teeny-tiny bit of dabbling in it.

    What I don’t get is why there has to be deliberate death? With all the technology available today, couldn’t those bullfighters carry a pseudo-sword that paints the bull? Three “stabs”, in the correct places, and you’ve won the round. The bull and the fighter leave the ring to meet another day.

    People often say that things like rodeos and dogsledding are inhumane. And sometimes, like in every sport, they are, because there are idiots who are in it for the glory, damn the animals. They should be dealt with. But overall, those sports are very aware of the contributions of the animal, and there are safeguards in place for their protection (vet checks at every Iditarod Checkpoint, for example). Spain, and other countries that practice this barbaric “sport”, should be ashamed of themselves.

    Perhaps PETA could do some good for once, by stepping up and protesting this, rather than trying to shut down a mass Chicken Dance at Talladega.

    • Eron-Rodriguez says:

      Okay there are no rounds in bullfighting it’s about the bravery and courage. The fight is fair the bull has three very powerful weapons its horns, its hooves, and its very powerful muscles. Each bull is bred from birth to be the strongest they can be so they arn’t “drugged” before the fight. Besides stay in your own culture these fights have been our tradition for hundreds of years and besides just dont watch the fight. After the fight the meat of the bull is used to feed orphanages. PUT YOURSELVES IN THE RING WITH A BULL AND SEE IF THEY WILL THANK YOU FOR TRING TO SAVE THEM THEY ARE NOT DEFENSLESS

  6. javajunkee says:

    yeah I had to get past the picture too. 😦 that makes me sad.

    There is no sport in it. It’s called being stupid, chicken ass morons.
    That’s how stupid most of those people are they don’t even realize there is no sport in it. These magnificant animals are locked up in a cage and killed without any way of really defending themselves. It would be at this point I would cheer if one of those animals were able to fend for themselves and spear a couple of those freakin’ morons!

    AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAARRGGGH now I’m good and pissed off.

  7. javajunkee says:

    can Peta really even doing anything when it’s out of the country like this? I mean it would be great if they could but it’s probably poopooed around as being part of their culture.

  8. Gary says:

    I don’t really understand it either. It is however a long standing tradition in Spain and Mexico so I can see why they would be hesitant in stopping it.

    I don’t know much about the “sport” either, other than the bull dies and sometimes the bullfighter get’s hurt. People of Spain and Mexico look up to bullgithers as we look up to athletes like Michael Jordon or Babe Ruth. It’s just a part of their culture that differs from ours but unfortunately an animal dies.

  9. Gary says:

    That’s supposed to be “bullfighters” not “bullgithers”. What the _ell is a “bullgither”?

  10. Just a Mom says:

    I have never understood the “sport” in bull fighting but then again I don’t understand the sport in dog fighting or rooster fighting either.

  11. dodie says:

    BTW, rodeos and dogsledding are inhumane. And I don’t know much about the whole dogsledding thing (except that it is humane) but rodeo animals are NOT treated well. I won’t go on and on, but I have first-hand knowledge of this and can promise you it is true. The animals are expendable. If one is injured or dies, it is easily replaced.

    As for bullfighting, the bulls are often drugged before they go into the ring, and it is not uncommon for their horns to be filed down, so as not to inflict any real injury.For more information from, yes, PeTA, go to their website (peta.org) or http://www.peta.org/mc/factsheet_display.asp?ID=64. There are addresses at the bottom of the page, if you want to DO something about it.

    Thanks for showing your compassion about this.

    In my opinion, “tradition” is the stupidist reason to do anything.


    • Eron-Rodriguez says:


  12. Doraz says:

    I do not understand a lot of this stuff either. You can say it is due to culture. Yes, an animal is hurt. What about the people that get off on hunting animals minding their own business? Is that right? Trying to figure things out sometimes gives me a big headache! 😦

    • Joy says:

      The thing about hunting is that the animal isn’t caged up and the hunters will eat the meat. Somehow, to me, that makes hunting different. I have no hunters in my immediate family (thank goodness) but a lot of extended family do it but they eat the meat all winter. There is a “reason” for them doing it. It’s not just about killing an animal in a ring with no other alternative with a crowd cheering every time a sword is thrust into the body.

      What do they do with these dead bulls?

    • SKL says:

      Doraz, if you look into the rules on hunting and the US hunting culture, you’ll see that every effort is made to keep it not only humane (i.e., as painless as possible), but also in a sense “fair.” Like, hunters aren’t allowed to shine a bright light to stun a deer and then shoot it, because that gives the deer less chance to get away. Hunters are limited in how many animals they can harvest in a certain time period. There are a lot of written and unwritten rules to prevent immature/drunk idiots from “getting off on” hurting animals under the guise of hunting. These rules are sometimes broken but our culture doesn’t glorify that.

      Hunting is more humane than allowing animals to overpopulate and starve to death. I also think it’s more humane than controlling the population the natural way – by reintroducing wolves and wildcats. Furthermore, it’s more humane than many legal farming methods, that involve keeping animals cooped up in small spaces where they can’t move until they’ve grown to the right size, shooting them full of hormones and antibiotics to increase the economic output.

      Now, you may be against any interference with animals – meaning you are a vegan – and if so, I respect that. But even so, the sport of hunting in our culture can’t be compared with bullfighting because its underlying intention is to be humane.

  13. With you all the way on this one, Joy. I don’t quite get it either, but maybe if I grew up with that being part of my culture, it might make more sense even if I didn’t agree with it.

  14. Bullfighting makes me SO mad. Sad as well. I kind of assumed that they don’t really kill the bulls these days since it’s so inhumane to do so, but I guess I was wrong. It is a horrible, horrible sport. We don’t live in the days of needing to prove to our fellow men that we’re strong by killing a wild beast – we’ve moved past that I think in the western civilization and I think that it’s insane that this stupid stuff is still going on!

  15. nikki says:

    I don’t agree with any kind of animal fighting. I don’t see the point in any of it. The say circus’s, rodeo’s, ect are inhumane too but at least they aren’t out right being tortured and killed. They are caged, but they are also not being poached. The picture you have up there is heart breaking and I am proud to say that is not the norm in our culture. Although down south in some areas dog fighting is. It is illegal though right? I’m assuming children watch this bull fighting too…Bailey would freak the H-ll out if he saw that! I can’t explain something I don’t understand! To me it’s just sad.

  16. tessa says:

    The part from the article from 60 minutes sums it up why they do this, really just tradition, do we have traditions that are bad?? We use to stone people to death, and that is the sickest thing I have heard of us doing.

    “Many parts of Madrid take you back many centuries. But don’t be fooled – Spain is one of the most modern and progressive counties in Europe. Half the cabinet are women, including the defence minister. There is gay marriage, quickie divorces, legalised abortion, and there is the ancient blood sport of bullfighting. How do you put that all together? It’s not easy.

    The best answer is probably history, and the Spanish addiction to tradition. Bullfighting started in the town of Ronda in the 18th century. Every September, there is a fiesta. “

    • Joy says:

      We “used to” is the key word here.

      • tessa says:

        Yes, but Joy the U.S. does mistreat animals as well. Puppy mills and cows that are mistreated. This past year we had the biggest recall on meat ever because of diseased, malnutritioned cows-dragged to plant.

        It is sad-I hate any animals being mistreated or killed for fun. It is very sad.

        • tessa says:

          Sorry about the video attachment and websites. I didn’t mean for the video to pop up, just thought the website would attach. Just trying to bring awareness since you are a big animal lover. I am explaining that in every culture there is some animal torture, even in ours, and it is sad-awareness is good. That’s why you wrote this.

          • Joy says:

            This is the thing Tessa, I know you mean well but this post wasn’t about puppy mills or the treatment of cows going for slaughter. It was about understanding the “art” of bullfighting. I was hoping someone knew more about it and could explain it to me. If I wanted to put on puppy mills or slaughter-house video’s, I would have. That is an entirely different topic. Had you wanted to direct your “cow thing” to Shane, since he brought it up, that’s different and fine but I didn’t want it to turn into something that it wasn’t.

  17. jill jenkins says:

    i agree this is sick
    i wish i could get my hands on the people who did this
    they would be sorry then!!!!
    GRRRRRRRRRRRR it makes me so angry !!

  18. CJ says:

    i agree with you wholeheartedly. i can’t understand why people think its AMUSING to watch a poor bull be killed for no reason!
    we should start a committee to save the poor helpless bulls being slaughtered with no reason.

  19. makayla says:

    Bull fighting is a cruel sport for peoples personal gain. It is disturbing and in humane. Someone needs to put a stop to this.These innocent animals are being brutally treated and killed and anyone who does not see something wrong with this needs to be put away.

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