Photo: Corridas de Toros: "Artistic Discipline and Cultural Product"
Zapatero’s government called the Ministry of Culture to be in charge of the “development and protection” of bullfighting from now on.
Animal rights activists were outraged at the decision of the government of José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero to protect bullfighting as an art form, and cultural patrimony of Spain.
The Spanish government announced that the Ministry of Culture will oversee the proper “development and protection” of bullfighting, work previously assigned to the Interior Ministry.
“Since it has been understood that bullfighting is an artistic discipline and a cultural product, it was considered that the ministry of culture was the correct place for its development and protection,” said Ministry of Culture officials.
The political move to protect the practice follows an intense campaign by professional matadors and bullfighters who pressured the government to protect their art and the profitable spectacle within.
Silvia Barquero, spokeswoman for Pacma, an anti-bullfighting political party, told newspaper Público the decision was ‘complete nonsense ... a measure which sends us back to the Middle Ages’.