Target: Mataelpino Mayor Jose Angel Guerrero
Goal: Thank the Spanish town of Mataelpino for finding a successful alternative to the annual bull runs
Mataelpino, a town north of Madrid, has become the first town in Spain to end its participation in the annual running of the bulls. Interested parties will now be participating an a bull-less version that not only protected the lives of both humans and bulls, but also boosted the town’s tourism in an ailing Spanish economy. Mataelpino deserves our gratitude for taking the first big step in ending this senseless and cruel event.
The event has been dubbed a “boloencierro,” combining the Spanish words for bowling ball, “bolo,” and running of the bulls, “encierro.” Rather than being chased by bulls, participants will be pursued by a gigantic 275lb polystyrene ball comically decorated like a bull. People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) already announced its support of the event, hoping that other towns will choose similar alternatives in the future. In fact, the organization said they would be happy to pay the event costs if other towns chose to do so.
The bull run injury count this past year in the city of Pamplona was over 100. That includes three men who were gored and doesn’t include the number of bulls that were injured running through slippery streets littered with trash and alcohol from the parties the night before. The bulls are not participating because they think it’s fun. They run because they are upset and scared, trying to escape the enclosed lanes of people screaming at them and taunting them. Putting not only participants and animals but also the general public at risk solely for the sake of entertainment is senseless. It needs to end, and Mataelpino has shown Spain how to do it.
Please sign the petition below to thank Mayor Jose Angel Guerrero and the town of Mataelpino for finding a fun and successful alternative to the annual bull runs.
Dear Mayor Guerrero,
Mataelpino recently held the first annual Boloencierro, “running of the balls,” a more safe and humane alternative to the running of the bulls held every year across Spain. Not only did it keep many bulls and Spanish residents safe, it was also positively received by the public and offered a significant boost to the tourist economy.
Thank you for finally doing away with a tradition that puts the lives of both people and animals in danger. This is the first such attempt in Spain and the fact that it was so successful offers hope that towns throughout the country will take notice.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: leticiacap via Flickr