The revenge of the bulls

Over 7,000 bulls and steers are killed every year by bullfighters in Spain to maintain their cultural heritage. But lately the bulls have turned – not in the bull-rings but in the streets during various summer festivals. Seven people have been killed by bulls this summer (and 4 over the last weekend) during bull running festivals.

The BBC reports:

Bulls have gored seven people to death during festivals across Spain since the beginning of July – four of them over the past weekend.

The deaths occurred during bull-running in the streets, not in bullrings. It is an unusually high number of fatalities for such a short period.

Among them was a 36-year-old town councillor gored in Penafiel, a town near Valladolid, north of Madrid. Further north an 18-year-old man gored in the stomach died in Lerin, Navarra. The other deaths occurred during bull festivals in the regions of Valencia, Murcia, Toledo, Castellon and Alicante.

Last year more than 7,200 bulls and steers (castrated bull calves) were killed by bullfighters across Spain, the news website El Diario reports. ……….

……. A Spanish law passed in 2013 defends bullfighting as part of the nation’s cultural heritage, saying it is the state’s duty to “preserve it and promote it”, El Pais website reports.

According to Spanish economics lecturer Juan Medina at the University of Extremadura, bullfighting generated €282.4m (£200m; $313m) in 2013, of which €59m was income from sales tax (VAT).

A thousand bulls per human is one way to look at it or in simple money terms, the death of each bull generates some €40,000 of economic activity including about €8,000 of VAT.

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