Have you ever read a headline and then thought, “No, that can’t possibly be what this article is about”?
Well, that’s what I thought when I first saw this news story: “Hogs Gone Wild, 50 team [sic] compete in Eldorado Picnic hog wrestling contest.” Surely, I thought, the wrestlers wore pig costumes or something. They didn’t actually wrestle with pigs …
But no—there were, in fact, 50 teams of people, all clamoring to wrestle a pig. The goal? To grab a frightened pig and force him onto a padded barrel in less than a minute.
Eldorado’s fire chief, who is either PR-savvy or oblivious, says—in the words of the article—that the hogs “are kept cool and treated with utmost respect.” But the astute writer of the article observed, “Not buying that for a minute, the hogs huddled together drawing deep furrows in the muck with their snouts. They glared, squinted-eyed, each time a squealing comrade was herded away.” I certainly fail to see how terrorizing pigs qualifies as “respect”—just look at the first picture in the photo gallery. Look at the expression on the pig’s face—does he look respected or terrified?
This isn’t the first time that misguided people have used animal wrestling as a fundraiser. In fact, the Brooks Hill Community Fair in West Virginia—which was just this past weekend—had planned to hold a greased pig race until PETA told them how cruel it would be. The race was subsequently canceled—a victory for PETA and pigs and a show of decency from Brooks Hill! The Delta Fair and Music Fest in Tennessee is another event that decided not to hold their pig-wrestling competition. Good for them.
Of course, if anyone’s wondering what the Eldorado Lions and Fireman’s Community Picnic might do next year to raise money in a cruelty-free way … might I suggest tofu wrestling instead? We’ll even provide the tofu.
Posted by Amanda Schinke