Is it time to ban bullfighting? | The Tylt

Is it time to ban bullfighting?

Matador Victor Barrio was killed during a live television broadcast of a bullfight in the Spanish town of Teruel on Saturday, July 9. Barrio was the first matador to die in the ring in more than 30 years. The grisly incident reignited a long-time debate:

Is it time to ban bullfighting?

Slate magazine reported:

Although there are still around 2,000 bullfights a year in Spain, the number decreases every year amid increasing protests by those who say the tradition is nothing short of barbaric. Two Spanish regions have banned bullfights.

Bullfighting has massive and vocal opposition. Barrio's Facebook page was taken down after it was swarmed with people cheering his death. People who oppose it say it's not a sport. Critics call it nothing short of torturing and killing an animal for entertainment. And Barrio's death has rekindled animal rights activists' demands to ban the practice.

News that the bull’s mother will be killed to end the animal’s bloodline only fueled the flames. Spain's animal rights party, Pacma, made a statement demanding an end to the sport in Spain: “We reject traditions based in violence, revenge and blood."

But for some, bullfighting has iconic status in Iberian culture. In Spain, where bullfighting has been practiced for more than 1,000 years, it is known as "La fiesta nacional" ("the national festival"). Aficionados consider la fiesta nacional "a highly ritualized cultural event and art form which is deeply tied to Hispanic culture and identity." 

Ernest Hemingway idealized bullfighting as a noble pursuit in his writing. His 1926 novel “The Sun Also Rises” is credited with turning Pamplona's local festival into an international event that annually attracts around a million visitors. Bullfighting also provides a struggling Spanish economy with thousands of jobs and millions of dollars in tourism. The number of bulls killed during bullfights is vanishingly small compared to those killed for meat. And is it really less cruel for an animal to be killed in a ring than die in a slaughterhouse after a life of confinement? 

Should we #BanBullfightsNow? Or listen to aficionados who say #DontBanBullfights?

FINAL RESULTS
Culture
Is it time to ban bullfighting?
A festive crown for the winner
#BanBullfightsNow
#DontBanBullfights
Dataviz
Real-time Voting
Is it time to ban bullfighting?
#BanBullfightsNow
#DontBanBullfights
#BanBullfightsNow
Barrio's death drew little sympathy from animal rights activists.
#BanBullfightsNow
#BanBullfightsNow
#DontBanBullfights
The acting prime minister of Spain tweeted his condolences to the family and colleagues of Victor Barrio.
#DontBanBullfights
Some people see it is a part of Iberian heritage and culture.
#DontBanBullfights
Others think it's hypocritical to ban bullfighting, but ignore slaughterhouses.
FINAL RESULTS
Culture
Is it time to ban bullfighting?
A festive crown for the winner
#BanBullfightsNow
#DontBanBullfights