Sunday, October 2, 2011

Marching for Animal Rights

Pretty protesters. 

Members of the 'animalist' political party. 
When it comes to animal rights, Colombia seems to have a split personality: Many Colombians love animals. I see people feeding and helping pigeons on city plazas, I know ladies here in La Candelaria who populate their houses with rescued street dogs, and canine companions seem really popular and well-loved. Colombians' love for animals is so strong, in fact, that demonstrations and protest marchers for animal rights are more common than those for human rights. Yet, at the same time, Colombia is a conservative society with lots of poverty. So, bullfighting and cockfighting are popular here among some groups, as are rural practices like coleo and corraleja. Those four practices are actually protected by law, as 'tradition.' And horse-drawn carts called zorras are a common sight on Bogotá streets, driven by poor people who often scavange and resell trash for a living. Some of those horses are treated well, but others are overworked and underfed.

A protesting bull. 
Today's demonstrators included demands for a prohibition against circuses, bullfighting and the urban horsecarts, as well as representatives from an 'animalist' political party and people demanding 'animal equality' and an end to specieism.

But animal equality looked a long way off, even amongst those in the march, who included men on horseback, people walking dogs on leashes and with muzzles and trained dancing dogs.

Carabineros, or mounted police, who forgot their horses but made their own horseshoes. 

A canine conference. 

Carabiner drummers.
Green Man joined the protest. 

A green parrot. 

Mounted police follow the parade. 

A future policeman with his collie. 

How would YOU like to be the bull in a bullfight?

End speceism!

No more circuses! Animal liberation!

Pit bulls walk their people. 

Police dogs present!

Trained dogs lead the parade. 
                                                          A few four-legged friends in Bogotá.
A woman leads her llamas thru along La Ciclovia. 

Victim of modern diets: The supersized dog which inspired Botero. 

A cat eats a peach in Las Nieves market.

Exploited? Guinea pigs line up for the races in front of the San Francisco Church. 

By Mike Ceaser, of Bogotá Bike Tours

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