UN: Violent Bullfighting Goes Against Children’s Rights
We already knew that bullfighting tramples all over animals’ rights. Chasing, stabbing and mutilating a terrified animal in front of a jeering crowd is about as cruel as it gets. Now, the United Nations (UN) has stated that being forced to watch the barbaric spectacle is incompatible with children’s rights, too.
The UN Committee on the Rights of the Child has recommended that children should not attend or participate in bullfighting events because of their extreme violence. The pronouncement was made with regard to Portugal, where children in bullfighting schools are compelled to witness and sometimes engage in acts of violence towards animals.
This enlightened decision from the UN backs up what experts have been saying for years. Last summer, 140 scientists and academics wrote to politicians in Spain pointing out that promoting animal abuse has a negative effect on society as a whole. For a child, watching an animal be tormented and killed is a traumatic experience. Over time, it can desensitise them to violence.
In contrast, a recent study by Tufts University found that learning to care for an animal helps young people to develop better relationships and become more confident and empathetic. These are the qualities that progressive, modern societies should be encouraging in their children, rather than a taste for bloodshed. As Spanish model Elen Rivas has said, “Glorifying the deliberate slaughter of animals should not be tolerated in a civilised society”.
We hope that the UN’s influence will help persuade the governments of countries that allow bullfighting to stop propping up that cruel and damaging industry – for the sake of both humans and bulls alike.
Image: Jo-Anne McArthur / WeAnimals.org