New: PETA Offers City 250,000 Euros to Swap ‘Running of the Bulls’ for Ball Chase

San Fermín Festival's COVID-19 Cancelation Prompts Eye-Watering Offer of Seed Money for Humane Future Celebrations

For Immediate Release:
April 23, 2020

David Perle 202-483-7382

Norfolk, Va. – Because this year’s San Fermín festival in Pamplona, Spain, was canceled as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, PETA has fired off a letter to the mayor of Pamplona offering the city a quarter of a million euros (about $270,000) if it will end the festival’s cruel Running of the Bulls event and switch to the Running of the Balls or a similar animal-friendly celebration.

“With the bullfighting industry in serious financial trouble and opposition to harming animals for human fun growing ever-louder, Pamplona should seize this opportunity to end this cruel, archaic spectacle,” says PETA President Ingrid Newkirk. “PETA looks forward to when the San Fermín festival returns post-pandemic as a humane event that everyone, including people who respect animals, can enjoy.”

More than 100 Spanish towns and cities oppose bullfighting. But in Pamplona, terrified bulls are forced to run along narrow streets on their way to a violent death in the bullring. Once there, men stab each bull with a lance and harpoon-like banderillas until he becomes weakened from blood loss. Then, the matador stabs the exhausted animal with a sword, and if he doesn’t die right away, other weapons are used to cut his spinal cord.

PETA and Spanish group AnimaNaturalis have repeatedly protested the bloodbath. In addition to large demonstrations by animal advocates, the Running of the Bulls also draws protests from women’s rights groups because of the high number of sexual assaults and other acts of violence against women reported during this annual display of machismo.

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to use for entertainment”—opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview. The group’s letter to Enrique Maya Miranda, mayor of Pamplona, is available here.

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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind