China Says NO to Rodeo!

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China Says NO to Rodeo!

[Ed. Note: Watch Rodeo People Love Animals???]

From SHARK / Showing Animals Respect and Kindness, September 2011

All their hard work paid off; Rodeo China is dead in the water. This was a major blow to the pro-rodeo movement.

Last week Mike Kobliska and I had the opportunity to go back in time. We re-experienced the energy and commitment of the animal protection movement almost a quarter century ago, when it charged forward, full of life, and transformed society.

Our time machine was a 747 jetliner which flew us from Chicago, Illinois to Beijing, China, where small groups of mostly young people are making monumental change.

Our experience started a few months ago, when animal activists from China reached out to SHARK. They were facing the prospects of a major rodeo coming to their country in the fall. Because of SHARK's 18-year history of exposing rodeo animal abuse, we were able to give them advice and share our videos.

All their hard work paid off; Rodeo China is dead in the water. This was a major blow to the pro-rodeo movement.

Last week, SHARK Investigator Mike Kobliska and I flew to China to share our rodeo experiences with both activists and the media. We were also available to debate rodeo promoters, but predictably, those folks would have none of it. It has been well over a decade since a rodeo association representative has had the nerve to face us in a debate.


Left to right: SHARK Investigator Mike Kobliska, Peter Li, China Policy Specialist for Humane Society International, and SHARK President Steve Hindi.

Now rodeo promoters claim to be planning another rodeo for April, but with the activists now thoroughly knowledgeable about rodeo corruption, the rodeo folk will be in for a tough ride. Also, we are only twelve hours away by air, and we'll be only too happy to go back to that wondrous country to work with those wonderful activists, so go ahead rodeo folk, make our day!

The cancellation of the Chinese rodeo project follows a disastrous attempt to spread the infection of rodeo to Spain and Portugal in 2009. Activists from Fight Against Animal Cruelty in Europe (FAACE) video documented rodeo thugs stabbing horses with small knives to make them buck.

The Spanish / Portuguese boondoggle resulted in numerous cancelled dates and poor attendance in general. Prior to that tour, rodeo thugs had lots of big talk about an annual tour that would be expanded throughout Europe, but that hasn't happened. Now the rodeo has been put down in China. We can't say they rode into the sunset because they didn't ride at all, so we'll just say - Good Riddance!

It is important to note that Chinese activists do not enjoy the rights and privileges we have in the US. One activist explained to me that the government won't allow large protests without official approval. When activists request permission for a large protest, that approval never comes.

The activist told me that their protests were limited to about thirty people. I found that ironic, because protests these days in the US are limited to about thirty as well, but it is laziness and complacency, not an authoritarian government that makes it so.


Mike, Steve and some of the amazing activists we worked with in China

If the American animal protection movement still had the zeal and determination of the Chinese movement, I can tell you that we would be much further ahead on our issues. I think this is particularly so in case of Pennsylvania's live pigeon shoots. There are but a handful of good, committed people that keep showing up and doing as much as possible, but much more is needed. Many if not most of those fighting the pigeon shoot battle are from outside the state, and that's not right. I wish Pennsylvania's animal lovers would take a cue from Chinese activists and finish off the blood spectacles occurring right under their noses.

The next massacre will be at the infamous Wing Pointe canned hunting club on October 23rd. Meanwhile, the state capitol in Harrisburg is waiting for some serious protests that will force the media to look anew and take a stand.