In response to the opening of the bullfighting season in Arles, over 50 well-known names from the French world of Arts, Culture, Research and Academia in France have signed an appeal published in Le Monde today, lending weight to the Anti-bullfighting Alliance’s proposal to Aurélie Filippetti, Minister of Culture and Communication.
Brought together in support of the Alliance, these personalities support the request for the battle against bullfighting to be added to the French inventories of Intangible Cultural Heritage. This would mean that, in the same way as bullfighting, there would be criteria to be met in order to be added to the inventory.
As a matter of fact, even if the Minister assures us that “being added to the inventory does not constitute in any way a form of recognition and serves only to state the existence of bullfighting practices in parts of France”, bullfighting enthusiasts state that this activity has become a “vital part of their cultural heritage”.
Such a shift could disturb the spirit of the French people, so the Anti-bullfighting Alliance has embarked on this step in order to re-establish equilibrium and to highlight the real impact of this act.
On April 4th, Jean Grenet, Mayor of Bayonne and President of the Parliamentary Association of Bullfighting Fans, announced Alain Afflelou would be a sponsor of the Bayonne Festival in July 2012, declaring in a press conference that: “Alain Afflelou is determined. He's agreed to give 500 000 euros to the event, without even knowing details of the brand placement”. Read more here (in French).
A legitimate concern led Claire Starozinski, spokesperson for the Anti-bullfighting Alliance, to interrogate the well-known glasses manufacturer to find out, once and for all, if he really is sponsoring bullfighting events. The company’s representative defended its case vigorously. The business asked expressly for “the money given to this event to not be used for the organisation of bullfights…”. But the official programme of the Bayonne Festival includes two bullfighting events! Read more here (in French).
The 500 000 euros will effectively be sponsoring bullfights since the functions of the Bayonne arenas are under the control of the city council. On the 15th December 2011, the Bayonne city council was deliberating over the balance sheet for the bullfighting season, since there was a shortfall of 367 427 euros!
The denial from Mr Afflelou was therefore a lie, because “it’s hard to imagine a concrete separation between what happens on the street and what goes on in the arena” explains Claire Starozinski. The Anti-bullfighting Alliance has launched a campaign which aims to bring about awareness to internet users of the reality of this sponsorship deal. A second statement has been put out by Alain Afflelou: this time, they get tangled up in their lies, saying that “Alain Afflelou has chosen to sponsor some 117 free events which will take place during the five days of festivities. The two bullfighting events on the programme are paying events which have nothing to do with our sponsorship deal”.
Some days before the bullfights Afflelou gave up because of all the protests !
McDonald's was to be a sponsor of bloody bullfights for young aficionados, taking place in March 2011 in Saint-Gilles (Gard). On Sunday, a « practical class » was offered with four students from bullfighting schools facing four one year-old calves. You can easily imagine the sight of the calves slowly killed by apprentice bullfighters who obviously have neither the experience nor the physical strength to wield the sword.
A huge protest from members of the Alliance against bullfighting came to the headquarters of McDonald's, leading to its president, Jean-Pierre Petit, denying any involvement of the chain in this bullfighting show and « condemning the decision of one individual » who used McDonald's logo without any permission.Jean-Pierre Petit and his whole staff took turns answering our supporters’ questions and vehemently denying any involvement of McDonald’s in bullfights involving children.
That's why Alliance against bullfighting's constant vigilance is needed to prevent bullfighting from becoming trivialised.
A Spanish teacher at Emmanuel d’Alzon, a private school in Nimes, had planned to invite Gilles Raoux a bullfighter, working at the Museum of Bullfighting Culture, into his first year High School class so that they could learn more about bullfighting.
As soon as Claire Starozinski was alerted by parents of students, she rooted out a 2008 directive she obtained from the Minister of Education, which says it is not part of the role of the national education system to promote bullfighting to children. Armed with this directive, Claire contacted Yvan Lachaud, French deputy, headmaster of the school and bullfighting supporter, in order to ensure that the directive was being adhered to.
The bullfighter's visit was cancelled!
In March 2009, a bullfighting conference was to be held at Jean-d’Arcet school in Aire-sur-Adour, south west of France, with bullfighters demonstrations during school time. Thanks to pressure from the Anti-bullfighting Alliance, the headmaster gave in and insisted that parents give permission to those students who wished to participate, after school. The result was that out of 185 students, only 9 showed any interest. Following this, the director of school invited the Alliance to come and « talk about the different faces of bullfighting ».
In the lead-up to the festive season 2009, the Anti-Bullfighting Alliance is launching its “DON’T SUPPORT BULLFIGHTING” campaign aiming to demonstrate to the Pernod Ricard Group the disapproval of all those who love animals. Although Pernod Ricard is number two in the spirits industry and sells some of the best known brands, it is also a supporter of the French bullfighting world, financing several Paul Ricard bullfighting clubs.
The Anti-Bullfighting Alliance has gathered together many of the world’s major animal protection associations: Animaux en péril (Belgium), ANIMAL (Portugal), CAS International (The Netherlands), FAADA (Spain), The Franz Weber Foundation (Switzerland), The Altarriba Foundation (Spain) and the League Against Cruel Sports (UK).
For these seven groups and the Anti-Bullfighting Alliance, it is not about damaging the Pernod Ricard Group, but about informing consumers. By associating its name, its fame and its financial power with an activity of which a growing number of people disapprove, and by shedding its neutrality, the Pernod Ricard group risks alienating a great number of caring customers who may choose to take their custom elsewhere.
Three hundred thousand letters have been printed in French, English, Spanish, Dutch, Portuguese and German and are downloadable from the websites of the participating associations. We propose that all those who wish to, should inform Patrick Ricard, the president of the group, of their intention to only use their spending power to buy products from ethically responsible companies the president of the group, of their intention to only use their spending power to buy products from ethically responsible companies:
On his website, Lee Cooper had chosen to promote the feria of Nîmes with bullfights photos. Taking into consideration the campaign of the Antibullfighting Alliance and the comments of his members, the leaders of the firm answered « we support under no circumstances bullfights and what they implicate ».
Lee Cooper goes even further stating that the genuine make for more than 100 years does not support « shameful causes ». And, to avoid any amalgam, the society immediately cancelled from his website any reference to the feria of Nîmes 2009.
You can thank them for their decision :
After some visual communication display 4×3 in bullfighting cities – Nimes, Carcassonne or Arles – in 2004, 2006 and 2007, the Antibullfighting Alliance started again this year, for the 62nd Festival of Avignon.
Reminding that 73% of the French population is against bullfighting and only 27% of the Spanish show interest for bullfights, we intend, with such a campaign, to make the tourists refuse to attend bullfights. France’s EU presidency has to understand that a show with an animal tortured to death in a bullring, is not compatible with the values of brotherhood and progress conveyed by the european Union.
The Antibullfighting Alliance also campaigned in August, in Nice and lots of resorts of the French Riviera, in order to, once more, make the tourists and the foreigners aware of the pain imposed to an animal mutilated and tortured during 15 long minutes, in a severely violent and barbaric show.
An important event was organised in front of the bullring of Nîmes on July 1st. Half naked, some activists of PETA, supported by thirty activists of the Antibullfighting Alliance protested against the bullfights on the steps of the bullring.
In spite of the terrible heat, this ghoulish demonstration carried off a deep success among the mass media, the passers-by and the tourists on vacation. A great emotion was also present.
In reaction to the exhibition organized by the Spanish aficionados in the European Parliament, twenty-seven anti bullfighting movements were present, in June in Brussels, for an international summit.
On June 4th, inside the Parliament, seven specialists, of which three eurodeputies - Caroline Lucas, David Hammerstein and Carl Schlyter - dismantled, one after another, all the arguments fluently moved forward by our adversaries whether it be on an economic, environmental, cultural or socio-political level. A static demonstration in the entry of the Parliament followed emphasizing the determination of all present movements and illustrating the international nature of the conflict.
During these two days, Alliance Antibullfight interfered again and again to share its strategies and its proposals with organisations from Portugal, from Spain, Venezuela, Mexico, Colombia, Germany, Holland, England, Ireland, Switzerland and Ecuador.
A good many of these movements have made the decision to come to Nîmes, September 13th, to participate in our big peaceful march. From their point of wiew, resolutely forward-looking, the European deputies made us solemn promises to continue conflict on all levels, particularly in the field of public subsidies allotted to the stockbreeders of bulls for the bullfights.
On March 17, 1995, Jacques Santer, president of the European Commission, wrote to us: "the conditions of granting of the premium to the fattening of the male bovines are met by the bulls of bullfight. However, since these assistances had not been designed for this type of animal, the Commission departments study measurements allowing the exclusion of the animals of bullfights of the benefit of these premiums."
In October 1997, the director of the Court of Auditors of the European Communities assured us that there was always a system of premiums to the beef and veal producers of the Member States of the Union including/understanding a "special premium" for the male bovines taken in a number limited in specific herds of races in order to be used within the framework of bullfights and to be intended later on for human consumption.
2006 was a great year for the Antibullfighting Alliance since the Parliament granted what we had been asking for so many years, namely the suppression of these special premiums.
It was, indeed, scandalous that subsidies, intended to safeguard the interest of the farmers are diverted from their use and assigned to cruel plays. Moreover, to allocate these subsidies went against what is stipulated in the European Convention of Protection of the livestock, Directive 98/58/EC of the Council, which establishes that the animals should undergo neither maltreatment, nor fear, nor suffering.
With the request of the Greens, Thursday, October 27, 2006, during the plenary session concerning the budget of the European Union in Strasbourg, the Parliament approved an amendment, by a vote of 277 for and 266 against proposing not to grant special premiums to the bulls intended for the bullfights any longer. David Hammerstein, Spanish green MP, declared: "It is clear that these conditions were not met in the case of the bulls known as of combat".
Today, while knocking on the door currency, we have the hope of reaching a decisive stage toward the abolition of the bullfight. The final decision will have to be validated by the Council of European Ministers.
It is now a question of putting pressure on the governments of the European Union.
You can write to:
Example of sample letter:
The European Parliament has just approved an amendment calling for the suppression of "special incentives" for beef producers in the European Union raising bulls to be used in bullfights.
On Thursday, October, 27, during the plenary session regarding the 2006 European Union budget in Strasbourg, the Parliament approved an amendement proposed by the Greens, by 277 votes for and 266 against, which proposes that these incentives should no longer be allocated to beef producers raising animals destined for the bullring.
The final decision will be taken by the European Council of Ministers. I therefore urge you, Minister, to ratify the decision of the European Parliament on this issue.
After Nîmes, in 2004, Anti-corrida revealed the other side of bullfighting - not the power and the glory - but the pathetic reality of a gruesome performance for the beginning of the 2006 ferias in Arles.
A large-scale anti-bullfighting poster campaign displayed fifteen 4×3 metre placards, during Easter, to coincide with the feria (fair) a week-long, non-stop celebration of corridas, bodegas and flamenco. The Alliance Antibullfighting hard-hitting posters aimed to make the public aware that this barbarous spectacle deserves no form of applause.
The campaign was launched on april 12th, official opening date of the Arles feria, and was advertised in a lot of medias. But on april 13th, all the photos were covered with paint… A significant gesture of aficionados showing that even themselves are ashamed of what they’re keen on… We’ve immediately lodged a complaint and bought new bills to be stuck up under police protection.
Even if this campaign cost 5 600 $, this unexpected event attracted lots more medias than we were due to get and marked a step in a long battle to expose the unpalatable truth of a tradition that has made Arles and Nîmes the main bullfighting arenas outside Spain.
In June 2002, were to be organised capeas (with no actual bullfighting) in the Stade de France in Paris Saint-Denis…
Although the director of major events, Jean-Christophe Giletta, said: "There is no question of any bulls being put to death. This is an entertainment for lovers of the bullfight" this kind of event would have glorified bullfighting, whether blood there is or not, and would have been a preliminary to bullfighting taking place there, depending on how it was received in Paris.
That’s why Anti-corrida campaigned from may 2001bringing a case and making 600 persons protest with e-mails and letters.
And on December 17, great victory! Patrick Braouzec, mayor of Saint-Denis, sent us a letter to inform us that: "Due to the great deal of letters and mails received, the Consortium had decided not to organise anymore feria or any kind of bullfights in The Stade de France".
And in september 2001, the mayor of Moscow, Louri Loujkov, cancelled the bullfights organised due to the protest of a large number of societies for the protection of animals and the Orthodox Church.
Thanks for having reacted with dignity in your name and in the name of Alliance, writing what you think about such a strange idea to export those shameful entertainments.
The Alliance Antibullfighting has won its case! The Court of Montpellier has just rejected an appeal against the banning of "taureau à la corde" in five cities of the Hérault department (South of France).
This degrading and humiliating event, in which a lassoed bull is dragged through village streets to be yelled at by a noisy mob, often involving injury to the bull along the way (bruised or broken tendons), was, at our request only, originally banned on April, 11, 2000 by the Prefect of Montpellier, following an 18-month inquiry launched by the Antibullfighting Alliance.
On November, 20, 2000, five cities (Saint Geniès de Mourgues, Lansargues, Baillargues, Candillargues and Lunel-Viel), backed by the CPNT party (Hunting Fishing Nature Traditions) filed an appeal with the Civil Court asking for the decree to be revoked.
The court rejected the appeal of the mayors of those five cities on the basis that bull parading was, as Alliance evidence suggested, "a performance involving violence of a nature likely to injure a roped animal but conducted entirely without veterinary supervision, and as such, represented a threat to public order".
We wholeheartedly applaud their decision!
Bullfights uses the very perverse effects of seduction: colours, costume full of light, brass bands, sunshine. Everything is set up in order to mask the bloody reality, going so far as to evoke fallaci usly "the bulls which are not killed" during Portuguese bullfights. Now the bulls in question are systematically slaughtered when they get back to the stables, away from curious eyes. That’s why we have stated another court case concerning this fallacious publicity.
But bullfighting cannot be justified! No argument can stand up to objective examination. Justifying bullfighting for economic reasons doesn’t hold water. It’s like justifying cruelty for money. Such reasoning could take you a very long way. Moreover, Victor Hugo, Courteline and André Malraux, determined opponents of bullfighting, are worth just as much as Goya, Picasso and Hemingway quoted by bullfight lovers as examples. And to matadors who insist that they love bulls, we answer "You don’t kill what you love!"
As for their so-called courage, let’s not forget that in 1992 at Saint-Sever, some bullfighters organised a punitive expedition one night. As a matter of fact, some Spaniards had been more popular. And who did they attack? The organisers? not at all. They stabbed the bulls shut up in the corrals… What courage!
A bullfight, a bloody rite condemned by a majority of Europeans, consists in torturing six bulls for a quarter of an hour each. First of all, the picador sticks a lance up to fourteen centimeters long into the bull’s back and twists it inside the wound so as to sever the neck ligament. Then he opens the wound by driving in six 7cm-long harpoons: the banderillas. Then the animal is put to death, at best with a single sword-stroke, but this is extremely rare. The unhappy record up to now is thirty four attempts!
But the worst is before… Some bullfighters demand that the bulls be mutilated before they come into the arena. They are willing to take fewer and fewer risks while earning up to $ 400,000 for a single performance! This horrible practice - afeitado - consists in sawing off with no pain killer five or ten centimeters of the horn then to stuff the innervated matter back towards the root of that very horn and then sharpening the tip again. Mutilating the bull’s horns amounts to depriving him of all his spatial perception and to diminish the animal psychologically speaking.
In addition, the spaces in which the animals, fed on pellets are raised, are getting smaller and smaller. Their muscular qualities are so deficient that they fall to their knees as soon as they come into the arena. As for the animals’ health, the Alliance has obtained autopsy stating reports that a damning proportion of bulls had been hit by tuberculosis, leading to the meat’s being seized. In these circumstances, can anyone dare talk about an equal-to-equal fight?
Moreover, the law allows anyone, in a zone where local tradition has not been interrupted, to torture and put to death a calf under horrible conditions. Children practise: the sword goes in, comes out, several of them gang together to try to finish off the animal, and the death throes end in a blood bath. Bullfighting schools even exist, there from the age of six, these same children are taught the "art" of torturing and putting to death.
These schools are subsidised by the French authorities using the money of all tax payers ! Encouragement of bullfighting creeps in everywhere: into schools and even hospitals. In Marseilles, some had no hesitation in giving a show for children with cancer, doubtless no blood was shed, but in that way, children are led insidiously to get a taste for cruelty.
On Saturday 20th October, a demo was hastily organised. Despite a forecast warning of southern storms and numerous attempts at sabotage, a group of close to 500 protesters marched on Nimes, capital of the bullfighting region.
The crowd began their protest next to a giant, very symbolic figure in the square near the arenas, where some bullfighting aficionados were waiting for us. They were concerned about the bullfighter statue but none of the protesters were paying it the least amount of attention… The participants then took over the small streets of the city centre ending up in front of the Maison Carée where a short speech took palce The demo ended with a descentto the arena by way of the main road.
This lively and dignified protest was well reported by the following media (articles in French).
The French theme park, Futuroscope, has this year given its sponsorship to the Dax Festival and the Encierro des pitchouns festival (children’s day), which involve bullfighting demonstrations on Saturday 11th August.
The programme, which includes the Futuroscope logo, can be seen on the website of the Dax Festival. Following numerous reactions from our members since 1st August, a statement in support of this sponsorship was sent to us…
A sponsorship agreement was signed in this spirit with the Mayor of Dax last April. During the course of the day, many sports activities and play events have been organised for the children: bouncy castles, skittles competitions, etc. As part of our sponsorship, Futuroscope wishes to support a popular, family day. This action is part of Futuroscope’s aim to promote summer events and to allow families from different backgrounds to come to Futuroscope by taking advantage of free tickets.
Laure MOSSERON – Marketing Director
On 2nd August, the Director of Futuroscope revealed that this controversy “is damaging Futuroscope’s image” and that he won’t “be bringing it up at the convention in 2013 and make sure children will not be involved with bullfighting this day”. In the meantime, many members have decided to boycott Futuroscope…
Since 2006, when the arenas were closed for restoration work, we have continued our attempts to inform politicians, most importantly highlighting the fact that the majority of the citizens of Fréjus are against bullfighting. Hundreds of messages from our members have prompted a reconsideration of the relevance of such barbarity in this town. The Alliance managed to get a response from the Mayor on the 3rd October 2010. In line with our arguments, Élie Brun has « decided that there will be no more bullfighting events in the Fréjus amphitheatre that is currently undergoing renovation work. This work will be terminated due to its expense and I do not want bullfighting events to take place there any longer. In any case, Fréjus is in no way a traditional bullfighting town. We will leave it to other towns to put this tradition into practice ».
However, on the 4th February 2012, Elsa Di Méo, city and regional councillor, attended the General Assembly of the Collective for Upholding the Bullfighting Tradition in Fréjus. Her presence alone at this meeting, even with only twenty people in attendance, is a clear sign that bullfighting will return to Fréjus.
We must remain vigilant and let the politicians know, in a courteous manner, that the time has come to turn our backs on such barbarity. Email firstname.lastname@example.org The reopening of Fréjus’s arenas can only mean that bullfighting events will be organised to take place there. Our thanks to our representative, Christian Baloy, for his work on this project.
On Jan. 11th, the Ministry of Culture added bullfighting to the list of French cultural heritage assets!
Our Internet subscribers reacted to a cyber action on 23rd April others also reacted by telephone, fax and email. The Anti-bullfighting Alliance, in association with six well-known animal protection movements, also published an open letter to Frédéric Mitterand in the daily newspaper Le Parisien, a letter to Frédéric Mitterrand calling on French citizens to write to the President.
Finally, Mitterand’s advisor met with Claire Starozinski in Cannes on the 12th May. She showed him that the commission which presented the dossier on bullfighting was exclusively made up of people linked to bullfighting activities and explained that bullfighting is considered acceptable only in certain regions. She highlighted the fact that this ranking as a cultural heritage activity was incompatible with the convention to safeguard cultural heritage, which advocates rapprochement and understanding between human beings, when bullfighting increases the tension between aficionados and the majority of the population...
Pierre Lungheretti assured Claire Starozinski that « this ranking is not a political decision at all. Neither is it about providing a label which can set a precedent for promoters of bullfighting. It is simply an inventory which has no value and does not allow any kind of subsidy ».
Videos are available here:
On September 11th, in Nîmes, capital of french bullfighting, just before the wine harvest feria, during which bullfights take place in Arles, some 3000 campaigners from 40 animal welfare groups joined in a peaceful protest organised by the Anti-corrida aimed at sensitising public opinion against these shameful spectacles.
Led by musicians and stilt walkers, the colourful procession, some in regional dress, carried banners saying: « Subsidise culture, not torture! », « I am a local resident and I don’t like bullfighting… » and « Nîmes no longer wants to be a city of blood! ». They came from Marseille, Toulouse, Lyon, Nantes, Nice and Paris, or from much further afield — Belgium, Holland, Italy and Catalunya.
After a minute of silence in memory of the thousands of bulls sacrificed each year on the altar of stupidity and unenlightenment, the marchers formed a huge human chain around the bullring, symbol of the strength of their commitment. Hundreds of balloons were burst and with a final « No concession, we want abolition! » the gathering dispersed. Anti-corrida Europe had shown their determination and hope for the future.
On the same morning, the pro-corrida managed only 500 supporters to defend their « traditions », despite the noticeable support of many parliamentarians...
A video in English
More photos on http://www.allianceanticorrida.fr/manif.html
17 communes of the Gard department in southern France will soon be holding municipal bullfighting events. Among the competitors at these events will be youths aged between 14 and 16 years who will face baby bulls, most of which will have sawn-off horns.
On the 11th July, Caveirac will take its turn to stage a bullfight, with young toreros ready to fight till the bulls are dead. The animals will be tortured then killed by apprentice toreros who clearly have neither the physical strength nor the experience to wield a sword. You can imagine the carnage that will ensue, all at a cost to the taxpayers of the Gard department.
Some of the citizens of Caveirac will no longer stand for this barbarism in their town and, although they want to preserve their Carmargue traditions, they have joined the cause of the Anti-Bullfighting Alliance. In 48 hours, they have made an extraordinary effort, even going door to door to get townsfolk to sign a petition against the bullfight. In this small town of only 3000 citizens, they managed to collect 200 signatures!
On the 9th July, Claire Starozinski together with 10 or so residents of Caveirac, took the petition to the organiser of the event - demanding that the bullfight be cancelled.
After a categorical refusal of their request, the delegation suggested that, as a "gesture of humanity", the event be transformed into a capea - a bullfight performed without spilling any blood. At 3pm, the mayor, Bernard Bergogne, informed us of his decision: "The bullfight to the death will take place on Sunday!".
But in 2011 nomore bullfights were organised !
The poster of the feria of Béziers, signed by the architect Jean Nouvel, copied a photograph of Sebastian Chabal with the head of a bull, creating an unbearable amalgam between bullfighting and rugby.
By an open letter for Sebastian Chabal and sent to the president of the French federation of Rugby, we reproached the instrumentalisation of the sportsman by a minority in lack of strong feelings.
Walter Spanghero, well-known rugby player and member of honour of the Antibullfighting Alliance, also wanted to react. Qualifying rugby of: « sport with a sincere respect for the opponent », he thinks that bullfights are « unequal confrontations between a person and a bull who is trapped in a cowardly way ».
That's why, in the name of all those for whom the involvement of rugby in bullfighting is unbearable, we asked Sebastian Chabal, « not to let [his] blue shirt stained by the blood of animals sacrificed ».
An hour later our press release, the agent of Chabal confirmed us, on the phone, that the photograph had been « diverted by Jean Nouvel ». On the following day, July 24th, Raymond Couderc, mayor of Béziers made the decision to withdraw the poster and did not exclude to carry a case against the architect owing to the serious detriment since the poster had to be sold in many ways!
Some press cuttings here :
Our campaigns have succeeded in persuading elected members and some city councils to distinctly refuse this barbarity. Following the decision of Mouans-Sartoux, Montignac and Bully-les-mines, Joucou (in the Aude departement) has proclaimed itself against bull-fighting at the request of numerous members of the association.
In this way Joucou, although situated in hostile territory, has become the 4th French town to publicly pronounce itself an "Animal- friendly town against bullfighting" with the support and assistance of its mayor, Emmanuelle Fauche.
Bullfighting is synonymous wiIth the torture and death of animals and has been converted into a big business subsidised with tax payers' money. As well as that, the flesh of these bulls is often put on the market as comestible meat without any specific indication for the consumer.
To respect the wishes of the European public in this matter, the Antibullfigthting Alliance is asking Euro MPs and the candidates to the European General Election to rule that :
a) Children under fifteen-year-olds be banned from access to bullfights.
b) EU subsidies no longer be handed out to beef producers raising bulls for fighting purposes.
c) Strict labelling of the flesh of fighting bulls be made compulsory.
d) Bullfighting should be banned.
Such a development would be a major step forward in the worldwide antibullfighting campaign.
Michelito Lagravère, aged 11, was drawn to bullfighting since the age of five. He has killed 70 bulls and has already scars. But French laws don’t permit anybody under 16 to perform in a bullring, so today’s pre-pubescent toreros all come to Mexico, where there are no such laws. Those baby bullfighters have begun getting top billing from promoters, who view them as a new way to bring people to the bullrings!
In the summer 2008, the Antibullfighting Alliance, applied to four public prosecutors and the ministry of justice to have the baby matador bullfights cancelled and succeeded in banning him twice. Two other shows given in small cities turned into capeas (no blood, no injuries for the bulls). The baby killer should have come back to France to perform again But he gave up… No blood, no money, no medias means no interest, of course!
To get his name listed in the Guinness Book of Records as the world’s youngest matador, his parents encouraged him to kill six calves in Mexico, on Jan. 2009.
A video was even brought to the attention of Guinness World Records for recognition. Fortunately, the record will not be validated on the grounds that they " do not accept records based on the killing or harming of animals". Well done the Guiness Book!
Let us remember that the Antibullfighting Alliance succedeed in preventing baby bullfighters under 16 from facing a bull in a bullring and managed to ban El Juli (on the left) and Andy Cartagena from performing from 1995 to 1996. Moreover, at our request, the law court fined the organiser of bullfights in Nîmes, in 1997, owing to his previous performances.
In support of OABA (l'Œuvre d'Assistance aux Bêtes d'Abattoirs - Action for Abbatoir Animals) and the Anti-Bullfighting Alliance, Albert Jacquard, the famous geneticist, has contacted the Minister of Agriculture to alert him to the fact that meat from fighting bulls is being « sold without telling the consumer what it is ».
An article which appeared in Le Point on 14th August 2008, revealed that the average consumer could be eating this meat without realising what it is!
Bearing in mind that « bulls suffer from numerous mechanical intrusions which could contaminate the carcass », Albert Jacquard highlighted the fact that the sale of fighting bull meat breaches food hygiene laws.
Furthermore, Jacquard insists that the meat has an elevated pH and that the presence of lactic acid in the muscle cells means that it is impossible to preserve this meat under normal conditions of use.
As the speaker for both associations, Albert Jacquard is concerned over the lack of information for and protection of consumers and has demanded that, until the sale of this meat is banned, labelling which specifies that this meat is from fighting bulls should be made compulsory.
Our Antibullfighting Alliance heard in October 2007, that Céline Dion had chosen young matador Matias Tejela to illustrate one of the songs from her new album Taking chances with a video clip. The killer was to appear, in a bullfighter costume, bare-chested and with a muleta in his hand, on a huge screen throughout the singer's 2008-2009 world tour.
The Antibullfighting Alliance launched a vast campaign leading to a polemic which soon snowballed through the medias and on line. Six days later, Céline Dion's record company assured us that: "although the choreography only showed the torero on a water surface, due consideration would be taken of our protests and the clip would not be released in its current version".
Eventually, be it in Boston, Montreal, Tokyo or Paris, the giant screen displayed neither clip nor matador in 2008 or 2009!
Your thanks to Céline Dion and Sony Music would be greatly appreciated.
In May , at the time of the big Feria in Nimes, Anti-corrida organized an air campaign over all the area and particularly over the center of Nîmes to encourage the million visitors who go there each year, to flee the bullfights.
The aircraft flew over the Jardin de la Fontaine, the crowded restaurants and bars, at the time of the water tournaments and over the suburbs where bull games and bullfighting were also organized.
In July and august two planes flew from Cerbere to Antibes, along all the beaches targeting the holidaymakers. In all, 600km were covered and Anticorrida Alliance was able to deliver the message to millions of tourists.
This action had such an enormous impact that a lot of people have since thanked us for the idea and lots of medias covered that action.
Charity bullfights are more and more set to raise funds for AIDS, the paralysed, the handicapped children or whatever. May be to have an alibi.
The horrible afeitado (see below) is legal during those so called festivals.
In 1998 we succeeded in making the Paralysed of France drop this fundraising. Here’s what the director wrote to us: "We’re glad to announce you that, owing to your campain, we won’t accept any funds due to the sufferings of any animals anymore".
In Lunel, 25kms from Nîmes, took place, in Feb 2000 and march 2001, one of those charity bullfights for a French well known society, ADOT, which aim is to get organs. Antibullfighting Alliance campained in writing to the president and in sending back our cards. After a lot of press cuttings the president wrote to us : "Due to your emotion and reproach, we’ve made the decision to give up any income from entertainments which causes the sufferings of animals, especially bullfights". A great victory for all of us! You can thank the president of A.D.O.T. at France-Adot@wanadoo.fr
You can join the Antibullfighting Alliance, download our documents, our folders and shop safely online By purchasing from this catalogue, you will be contributing to the fight against bullfighting.
And now, there’s a new, easy and safe way to help and make a donation free of charge. When on the page boutique, click on one of the two last "cotiser" buttons. You can choose between Membre bienfaiteur: 35 € or Cotisation étranger: 25 €.
Thanks so much for playing your part in helping to make a better world for mankind...
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