at Orthez, the topic also divides young people

“I believe that defending bullfighting is nonsense. If one finds that a person likes to watch animals being killed, it shows a personality that should be psychoanalyzed. There is no subject to debate,” said Olivia, 15, born in Bayonne…

“I believe that defending bullfighting is nonsense. If one finds that a person likes to watch animals being killed, it shows a personality that should be psychoanalyzed. There is no subject for debate”, launched Olivia, 15 years old, born in Bayonne. A feeling shared by his comrades was recognized in front of the doors of Fébus high school, a minority of which had a parent or grandparent who attended the arenas.

At the feet of Pesqué, the few enthusiasts aged 17 to 26 questioned really do not understand why “representatives who have never set foot in an arena” want to ban them from this passion that they all inherited from their families. Their first and main argument is the pursuit of a local tradition that they have been working on to this day. “It’s part of a cultural identity that I’m proud of,” said Bastien, 26. A banner high school girls reject.

“If the culture of the Southwest is to watch animals being killed and be happy to do it, I’m not proud of it. I find that tragic. Justifying animal abuse by the fact that it has been practiced for years in this area does not make sense. This cannot be a valid argument. Either it’s bad and forbidden everywhere, or it’s not,” said Dolma, 16, born in Oloron.

A culture in motion

The universe of bullfighting is so small in their daily lives that these high school girls from Fébus are not aware, for the most part, of the bullfights held in Orthez. For them, this tradition belongs to the past and is absolutely not among the concerns of their generation.

“You can consider that bullfighting was part of the culture of our region at one time, but the values ​​of a society change. The disappearance of a cultural fact is not dramatic if it improves a society, in the case this by respecting the living,” argues Fleur, 16, born in Orthez.

Finally, for these high school girls, the argument in defense of the freedoms presented by the lovers testifies to a speciesist vision of the world “where animals are ours to use for our pleasure and our freedom will be greater than them. This vision now needs to be deconstructed”, continued Fleur.

Some young people in the arena

In mid-September, a hundred young enthusiasts, including Orthézien Pablo Petriat, signed a column in the Sunday Journal to voice their opposition to LFI deputy Aymeric Caron’s bill aimed at banning bullfighting. In addition to freedom and the preservation of regional identities, they highlight the “key” role of bullfighting in the preservation of biodiversity. “The ban on bullfighting is the removal of a thousand-year-old breed and with it thousands of hectares – more than 30,000 in France – preserved by this extensive breeding method”.

Bastien, Simon, Théo or Arthur enthusiastically recount their memories of the Fêtes d’Orthez, where they were children, happily following in the footsteps of the elders to discover the novillada, then a few years later the bullfight on Sunday. Their stories are like Proust’s madeleines with music, pictures, smells, family rituals and meetings in the city’s bodegas and restaurants. An art of living and building community.

“Bullfighting promotes important values, such as solidarity, intergenerational links, rootedness, the defense of rare ecosystems or even self-sacrifice”, write the young signatories of the forum. This plea also wants to highlight the “bull economy”. “It supports our farmers, our cafe owners, our restaurants and hotels. It represents thousands of jobs and almost 100 million euros in benefits for the bullfighting territories in the South of France” .

Beyond this new legislative attack, some young Orthéziens aficionados fear the disappearance of these bullfighting meetings due to lack of sufficient renewal of spectators. An Ifop Sud Radio poll in June gives meaning to this concern.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *