…but there’s still an awfully long way to go. Catalonia may have banned the brutality of the bullfight last week, but other cruel fiesta events such as the infamous “Toro de Fuego” remain legal in many areas of Spain.
The Toro de Fuego, known in English as the “Fire Bull”, is still common across Spain and involves enormous cruelty. At the beginning of the event a metal device containing flammable material is fixed onto the horns of the bull and is set alight. Transformed into a state of terror, the bull panics and starts running, and this stirs up the fire even more.
Eventually, after the fire has burned for hours, the bull’s horns have disintegrated and the fire starts to burn its body alive. In desperation, the bull will often hurl itself against walls to try and end its own life. After the bull has endured enormous levels of pain and suffering from the flames – as well as taunts and abuse from the crowds – it is eventually stabbed to death.
Amidst the hysteria of victory in Catalonia, it is easy to forget how much work we still have left to do. We are at the very beginning of the journey towards a cruelty-free world and, as I have just explained, the cruelty is not just confined to the bullring.
However, the global anti-bullfighting movement has a tremendous amount of talent, energy and enthusiasm at its disposal. It will take years of hard work, but I know we’ll win in the end.