Each year, the second Tuesday of September, the town of Tordesillas (in Valladolid, Spain) is host to a horrific fiesta known as “El Toro de la Vega.”
The festival begins with the release of a bull into the countryside surrounding the town, whereupon dozens of people then pursue the bull on foot and on horseback, stabbing him with daggers and spears until he collapses exhausted on the ground.
The bull’s tail and testicles are then cut off and held aloft as trophies, and the bull is paraded through the town amidst the cheers of bystanders.
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I am shocked to learn of your annual Toro de la Vega event in which a bull is chased, stabbed, mutilated, and, after enduring prolonged agony and certain terror, is killed.
This event is promoted as a cultural tradition, a celebration of your heritage and spirit, but your mitigating words and euphemistic descriptions cannot conceal the inherently barbaric nature of this event. Any celebration built on a foundation of extreme animal cruelty, exploitation, and suffering cannot be justified; condemning bulls, or any other animals, to a torturous ceremony for mere entertainment is indefensible. Commemorating your cultural history is admirable, yet subjecting an innocent creature to such a primitive ritual only demonstrates yours as an uncivilized, undereducated society.
Animals, as humans, are sentient creatures, capable of emotion, thought, and pain; when you support the exploitation of them, you only promote indifference and establish that you are unsympathetic to suffering. Furthermore, the global community will certainly recognize and scoff at your shameless attempts of justification and will refuse to financially contribute to such an archaic demonstration of savagery .
Indeed, until you ceases the Toro de la Vega in favor of a celebration that embraces compassion and respect towards all living beings, I will necessarily maintain the only ethical decision is to promote a boycott of your country and your country’s commerce.
Please choose compassion and empathy and permanently ban the Toro de la Vega and any other rituals that inflict suffering and pain on our animal friends.
I know your time is limited, and I thank you for your attention to this urgent issue.