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Bullfighting deemed late-night TV in Portugal

June 20, 2008 | 11:30 am


A Portuguese court has ordered a state-owned television station to stop broadcasting bullfights before 10:30 p.m., ruling in favor of an animal rights group that said the sport was too violent to be shown in the early evening, the Portugal News reported.

The court order, the Portugal News reports, will bar station RTP from airing evening bullfights during prime time, "in effect, bring[ing] bullfights on television on a par with programmes that contain extreme violence or sex."

No_kill_bullfight_2These photos are from bloodless bullfights in Artesia, Calif., where they poke the bulls with Velcro-tipped darts and subdue the animal by jumping on it. (We're guessing the Portuguese courts wouldn't have a problem with the Velcro.)

The decision by the Portuguese court was prompted by a complaint by a Portuguese animal welfare group which said that bullfight programs violated a law limiting the broadcast of shows that negatively influence children and teenagers.

The London-based League Against Cruel Sports lauded the decision, quoting bullfighting campaigner Florian Leppla as saying "If something that is too violent and dangerous for kids, you probably don’t want to see it either."

The pro-bullfighting community shot back against the ruling, Portugal News reported, saying it "ignored the efforts pro-groups have made in local and under-privileged communities."

--Tony Barboza

Photos: Glenn Koeing, Lori Shepler/Los Angeles Times

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