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Thread: Spanish Bullfighting: Animal Abuse or Cultural Heritage?

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    MH's Most High Quality Poster 英雄メンバー / Eiyuu Menbaa / Hero Member earthforge's Avatar
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    Spanish Bullfighting: Animal Abuse or Cultural Heritage?

    Bullfighter's Return Stuns a Hardened Sport

    Was reading the aforementioned article about a torero returning to bullfighting following being gored in the ring (the horn went through his lower jaw and came out his left eye.) There is little mention of the controversy of bullfighting, though it's the main subject of the comments. So, I was wondering: what are your views on bullfighting? Is it cruel torture of an animal? Or a cultural practice that is a part of the Spanish identity?

    (Just a note: please give consideration to both sides of the argument. "torture,the spanih shud b ashamed!" and "n00b anamal rihts ppl" are NOT appropriate responses.)
    Avatar © Chelsea Gordon, author of Not Quite Normal.

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    MangaHelper 伝説メンバー / Densetsu / Legendary Member kkck's Avatar
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    Re: Spanish Bullfighting: Animal Abuse or Cultural Heritage?

    I would argue it is both things to great extents. I don't think the practice should be stopped though. A lot of people enjoy it, many make a living out of it and it is a part of the place's culture to great extents. Even if even people there are not overly adamant about it I do think the practice as a whole should be banned. Aren't the bulls used in bull fighting a special breed solely for that purpose? More so, isn't this the sort of thing that would end up as an underground practice if banned? That would be worth avoiding. I could be wrong about that last part but I would think it is worth considering.

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    MangaHelper 九千以上だ! / Kyuusen Ijou Da! / It's Over 9000! Farfalla's Avatar
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    Re: Spanish Bullfighting: Animal Abuse or Cultural Heritage?

    First: I'm a green freak and I know it xD So yeah, I'll pick bulls' side here.
    Seriously, it's 2012 and many so called "advanced" communities still use culture as an excuse for cruelty. Even traditions can be rethought or updated, but we're still hesitant even when the violence is against human beings, 'cause we don't wanna intervain on other places countries. Our first rule should be respect life in all of its extents and then adjust the rest to that. All hail Gandalf u.u

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    Registered User 中級員 / Chuukyuuin / Member DoctorApollo's Avatar
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    Re: Spanish Bullfighting: Animal Abuse or Cultural Heritage?

    I'm not much of an advocate of vegetarianism at this point (because I've just come to terms with the fact that individual effort is pointless and there is absolutely no purpose in anyone doing it unless /everyone/ did it) but I think it's absolutely ridiculous to complain about things like this being "cruel culture."

    It's the difference between forcing two people to fight each other and systematically breeding and murdering humans on a constant basis. Just when it's animals people seem to take the whole "oh, we can't abuuuuuse them~~~" side of the debate, but then when it comes to actually killing them it's completely fine in most people's eyes, many of those people being the ones that wouldn't be okay with the abuse.

    Anyway, yes, I think one would have to be an idiot to say that it's anything aside from both of those things, animal abuse and cultural heritage. But hey, that's what our society is based on, and not just Spanish bullfighting. So that's what I'm trying to say: there's no use complaining about this, because if you think this is worth complaining about, you have much bigger problems to try and solve. It's only the tip of the iceberg in its field.
    Last edited by DoctorApollo; March 05, 2012 at 12:14 AM.

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    MangaHelper 九千以上だ! / Kyuusen Ijou Da! / It's Over 9000! Farfalla's Avatar
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    Re: Spanish Bullfighting: Animal Abuse or Cultural Heritage?

    Killing is not necessarily cruelty, and human abuse also always raises negative opinions about it.
    And... I hate when people say that those who complain about something related to animals should be complaining about more important things XD We have an amazing brain, we can think, complain and work on more than one subjects you know XD A specific point was brought here, talking about it isn't invalid at all!

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    Registered User 中級員 / Chuukyuuin / Member DoctorApollo's Avatar
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    Re: Spanish Bullfighting: Animal Abuse or Cultural Heritage?

    I'm not saying it's invalid to complain about bullfighting, but it's invalid to say that abusing animals is bad and then completely ignore the killing. It's like saying that you're worried of sickness and ignore the fact you have cancer, instead choosing to fight a blocked nose or something. There's a bigger problem in the exact same field, that's why it's just silly to do that.

    Sorry, would you rather be killed or be treated as what people tend to refer to as a bit "cruelly?" I think if it came down to an actual human, anyone sane would choose what people classified as "animal cruelty" over actual death.

    Also, are you seriously arguing against killing being cruelty? So it wouldn't be cruel if someone came up to you right now and killed you? Sorry, would it be cruelty only if they did it in a "cruel" way? So if they could murder you painlessly and "humanely" it would be fine? You would be completely okay with being killed right now and you would not think it's cruel for you to be killed?

    Keep in mind the reason you're killed is so that other people can have fun and eat you, and they don't actually have to do this.

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    MangaHelper 九千以上だ! / Kyuusen Ijou Da! / It's Over 9000! Farfalla's Avatar
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    Re: Spanish Bullfighting: Animal Abuse or Cultural Heritage?

    Yes, to me killing is not always attached to cruelty. Old 'food chain' excuse. Since we're omnivores, it's expected that we'll eat meat. In fact, that are some types of iron element that can only be found in animal meat, not in other types of protein. I know people can be healthy without eating meat and that we consume way more meat than we should, but there are studies showing that the lack of animal meat has its consequences in our organisms. And... if saying that 'killing' is cruelty, then we shouldn't eat at all. There are also studies talking about vegetal nervous system, even if it's rudimentary, able to perceive stress, anxiety, pain, etc. So, not even feeding of fruits and seeds only would make us stop being 'cruel'. Feeding is necessary and, imho, feeding of animal meat is necessary as well. We need to review our processes, I agree, but for me you can't say that killing with meaning, a natural meaning, and respecting the life you're ending, is cruel. We're talking about survival, not entertainment here. But, again, that's only my opinion^^

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    Registered User MH中毒 / MH Chuudoku / MH Addicted k-dom's Avatar
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    Re: Spanish Bullfighting: Animal Abuse or Cultural Heritage?

    I think the people who are watching the corrida are really respectful of the bulls which are fighting.
    In fact from what a friend who watch one told me, there is a system of voting, and a bull who didn't fight properly isn't killed by the torero because he does not deserve this death.
    Even if it's true that the bulls suffers some pain, I think a lot of other animals are much more to pity than them.

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    MH's Most High Quality Poster 英雄メンバー / Eiyuu Menbaa / Hero Member earthforge's Avatar
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    Re: Spanish Bullfighting: Animal Abuse or Cultural Heritage?

    blade: I'm a little confused: you first mention how subjects like this are only the "tip of the iceberg" as if we shouldn't argue about it, and then you condemn that point of view. I don't think this is as much about the philosophy of animal cruelty as it's about a peculiar cultural tradition that entails the ritualized slaughter of an animal. Not that peculiar if I think about it, though. Many civilizations have these traditions. They also are pretty tame traditions compared to child sacrifices, which still occur in some regions of the third world as a part of pagan rites.

    Overall, I think the practice is long out of date. It's about the spectacle of seeing someone take on an animal that is stupefied. It's like a combo of deer hunting and American football. I understand it's a part of Spanish culture, but it's pretty brutal when you realize that the animal is just scared and enraged until it's slaughtered. You can respect the animal and honor it as much as you want, but the practice is just that.

    Contrast factory animals that do not have the same ritualized torture (though I won't deny that there are some practices used to make the meat taste good that involve the prolonged death of the animal but this is another subject - overall I claim that the meat industry is incomparable to cultural animal sacrifices.)
    Avatar © Chelsea Gordon, author of Not Quite Normal.

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    Registered User 中級員 / Chuukyuuin / Member DoctorApollo's Avatar
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    Re: Spanish Bullfighting: Animal Abuse or Cultural Heritage?

    Subjects like this are indeed just the tip of the iceberg, and if anyone feels there's anything bad within them, they should be discussing more important matters and attempting to solve them, instead. When did I condemn that point of view? Explain yourself more clearly, and I'll clarify what you've misunderstood.

    What defines a practice being out of date? By your logic, shouldn't football and deer hunting be out of date, too, considering it's just a combination of them?

    Why does "ritualized torture" make it worse? I repeat, if it was done in a humane way, would you mind being murdered right now?

    What you define as torture within this practice is something that many humans would be willing to tolerate over death, which is why things like Battle Royale and the Hunger Games work and can be portrayed realistically. (Most) people are (generally) more than willing to fight to their deaths over just dying without getting a say in it.


    As for Far, you didn't answer my questions and I just generally completely disagree with everything you said on the matter. I also have a lot to argue against the "food chain" excuse in the sense that naturally correct doesn't equal morally correct which is also why we're not raping and murdering each other for our own benefit.

    About the studies, there's no general agreed opinion on whether plants can feel pain or what degree of pain they can feel or whether it's even uncomfortable or comfortable to them. There's nothing scientifically agreed upon, which is why anything you read on the matter is never 100% sure of itself. Similarly, the fact that vegetarians exist -- and many cultures in the past have had to be vegetarians just due to the lack of meat -- we can actually live without that specific kind of iron or whatever. It's completely possible, just less convenient.

    Okay, so raping with a meaning. What about that? If I'm raping you with the meaning of impregnating you and reproducing -- a natural meaning -- is that not cruel? Why, it's absolutely necessary to reproduce, and all that "consensual" bullshit just makes it harder and similarly to meat being an easier system to keep ourselves healthy with, I think rape is an easier system to reproduce with. I believe that if I respect you and there is a "natural meaning" to my raping you, then it's fine. Is that not cruel, then?

    Oh, but wait -- raping you is not actually necessary for my survival. It ultimately /IS/ just entertainment. Right, sorry, forgot about that one.

    You're being ridiculous, review what you're saying and try to look at it objectively.

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    Registered User MH中毒 / MH Chuudoku / MH Addicted k-dom's Avatar
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    Re: Spanish Bullfighting: Animal Abuse or Cultural Heritage?

    Blade, if you put the animal at the same level of a human then your reasoning is correct but not everyone has to agree with that, then use anthropomorphism concepts is just wrong.
    With just the animal point of view, the difference between abuse and killing, is that killing the animal has a purpose : to feed you, whereas abusing it brings nothing, even worse it will make the food taste bad.
    In the corrida on the contrary, you can consider that the torture has a purpose since it is meant for entertainment, hence it can be tolerable. Then the debate is more can you torture for entertainment.

    Quote Originally Posted by earthforge View Post
    Contrast factory animals that do not have the same ritualized torture (though I won't deny that there are some practices used to make the meat taste good that involve the prolonged death of the animal but this is another subject - overall I claim that the meat industry is incomparable to cultural animal sacrifices.)
    I'm not sure to understand your point here. I'm pretty sure the corrida bulls are treated much better than a lot of meat industry animals.

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    MangaHelper 九千以上だ! / Kyuusen Ijou Da! / It's Over 9000! Farfalla's Avatar
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    Re: Spanish Bullfighting: Animal Abuse or Cultural Heritage?

    I did answer your questions, didn't think I'd need to answer it directly with a "yes" or "no" response. That's life, if any other specie would kill me to eat me, how can I complain about nature? If I was in the jungle and a jaguar attacked me to eat me, I don't think the jaguar would be being cruel... I don't think he'd me eating me for fun or any other thing either... I don't agree that feeding of meat is unecessary and that's where we diverge. I dunno how else to answer that. Maybe I'm missing your point, and I could use a little help here. Maybe sharing those studies and pointing out the evidences, even if they are not proofs, would be interesting to the discussion as well. I'll try to do that later ('cause I believe that if there's a possibility that plants would be suffering as well, that should be taken in consideration, although it would be a bid taboo).

    And I don't think you made a good analogy when you used rape here. Reprodution can be natural, but I only think it would be "a natural reason to rape" if we were an endangered specie, what's so not the case... Again, we're going back to what you consider a matter of survival, and I'd need the studies to support me as an omnivore.

    But then again, if you keep being unilateral and rude, this conversation will be pointless. Calling me 'ridiculous' or other things and trying to force me to take your opinion will only make me not as interested in talking and listening to you.

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    MH's Best Artist 九千以上だ! / Kyuusen Ijou Da! / It's Over 9000!
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    Re: Spanish Bullfighting: Animal Abuse or Cultural Heritage?

    Quote Originally Posted by k-dom View Post
    I'm not sure to understand your point here. I'm pretty sure the corrida bulls are treated much better than a lot of meat industry animals.
    From what a Spanish friend told me,they actually are treated better.Unlike regular animals for the meat industry,they can enjoy life to its fullest.They can graze on huge pasture lands,get the best fodder and have a calm day.
    Not like I'm trying to defend it,but I thought I'd mention it.

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    MangaHelper 伝説メンバー / Densetsu / Legendary Member kkck's Avatar
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    Re: Spanish Bullfighting: Animal Abuse or Cultural Heritage?

    I don't think animals should be treated as human or anything even remotely close to that. What justification is there for that? Even animals don't treat each other as equals. They kill each other recklessly for food every day and heck, a few of them kill each other for the fun of it (which is not that different from bullfighting). Bullfighting is something a lot of people enjoy, there are carriers made out of it and I would think there is a decent bit of money moved around it. Its not like bullfighting bulls actually serve any other purpose whatsoever other than bullfighting. I don't think you actually would eat that breed of bull (since it has been breed for bullfighting, not for food) and certainly those animals have no place whatsoever in any sort of ecosystem as they would certainly disturb it.

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    Registered User 九千以上だ! / Kyuusen Ijou Da! / It's Over 9000! mattiaildivino's Avatar
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    Re: Spanish Bullfighting: Animal Abuse or Cultural Heritage?

    I have been in Spain 3 times,and my brother lived there 2 years. I think bullfighting is a shame! I am not against the fact they eat their meat,rather against that useless game which torture bulls. I'd like to see what a Torero would do if he were in bulls' shoes (oh,bulls don't wear shoes )

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