Bullfighting in 60 Seconds
WARNING: GRAPHIC CONTENT
Here's what really happens in a bullfight.
From the moment the bull enters the ring, he is destined to die. His death will be slow and painful, and the last moments of his life will be full of terror and confusion as he hears the sounds of a jeering crowd. For the bull, bullfighting is no "competition". It is simply slaughter for human entertainment.
During a typical bullfight, the bull is first taunted by picadors – men who ride on the backs of blindfolded horses and thrust metal lances into the terrified bull's back and neck, twisting and gouging the lances in order to impair the bull's ability to move and ensure that he loses as much blood as possible.
Next, banderilleros run around the bull and plunge banderillas – brightly coloured harpoon sticks – into his already bloodied and mutilated back. The harpoons tear the animal's flesh, adding to his torment. When the bull is significantly weakened, the banderilleros run in circles around him until he is too dizzy and weak to continue.
Then the matador provokes the exhausted animal into charging once more. The matador often doesn't succeed in killing the bull, which adds to the animal's suffering. If the matador doesn't kill the bull, an executioner is called in to sever the bull's spinal cord with a dagger. In a final act of degradation, the bull is then dragged from the arena by his horns. The bull is often still conscious and twitching as his ears and tail are cut off and held up as "trophies" before the jeering crowd.
For most people, a minute is more than you would ever want to watch of this cruel spectacle. Yet the blood sport is still going on in Spain, France and parts of South America – even though many people living in these countries are strongly opposed to it.
Help us get bullfighting relegated to the history books.
The European Union is spending approximately £30 million per year to support Spanish bullfights. Please send a message to European Commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development Phil Hogan today and ask him to end the EU's shameful financial support of bullfighting.
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