The Parliament of Catalonia voted Wednesday to ban bullfighting on the premise of animal cruelty, making it the first outlawing of the emblematic Spanish tradition. The 135-seat Parliamentary decision came after months of debate between animal rights activists and supporters of bullfighting. The Catalan regional government was propelled to vote on the matter after 180,000 citizens signed a petition circulated by the anti-bullfighting group. Interest in bullfighting has been on a decline in the region and only one of Barcelona’s three bullrings still stages corridas but barely filling seats.
As expected many are furious with Catalonian decision and some view it as a political and national identity infringement on Spanish culture; and an expression of independence from Spain. The centre-right Popular Party, which is adamant about a centralized-run Spain from Madrid, and avid supporter of bullfighting, is considering filling suit to overturn the ban. For their part, the bullfighting industry will face losses of 400m euros and said they could sue the local government for interceding in their means to earn a living. So for now, adios al toro toro it is.