If you ever dreamed of seeing a local Running of the Bulls like they have in Pamplona, Spain, keep dreaming.
An American outfit that organizes an event it calls the Great Bull Run says it has been shut out of its Los Angeles area venue. The L.A. County Fire Department denied the event's request for a tent permit, citing “public safety.”
Animal-rights activists were quick to claim victory:
Organizers planned to hold the event Nov. 8 at the Pomona Fairplex.
PETA and the Animal Legal Defense Fund have challenged the Run every time it has attempted to produce an event in Southern California, including in Temecula and Lake Elsinore.
So far they've helped to shut the Great Bull Run out of Southern California.
Organizers say they have put on events successfully out of SoCal, including in the Bay Area last month. PETA says that, at that event July 26 in Alameda County, “One runner was hospitalized with a concussion and bruises after he had been trampled.”
Organizers also mentioned a similar case, stating:
… We’ve had nine events in major markets across the United States and we’ve seen less injuries than the average college football game, and none of them have been life-threatening.
PETA argues that it's inhumane to unleash bulls on humans. It has filed a federal lawsuit in an attempt to shut the Great Bull Run out of California altogether.
The Run would violate a state animal cruelty law, the organization claims. PETA states:
During the Great Bull Run events, organizers send as many as three dozen panicked bulls, weighing nearly one ton each, barreling down a narrow track at up to 35 miles per hour, chasing fleeing runners—many of whom have been drinking alcohol. Veterinary experts have concluded that the event also causes unnecessary suffering and stress to the animals.
Organizers blamed a county fire prevention engineer for overstepping his duties to declare a public safety concern in connection with the Run's tent permit application.
“What does this have to do with running with bulls,” Run co-founder Rob Dickens said in a statement sent to the Weekly.
Despite the opposition, Dickens said he would continue to try to bring the Great Bull Run to the region:
We’ll continue to provide local government officials with these facts with the hopes of bringing The Great Bull Run to SoCal in 2015, but we may have no choice but to limit this epic event to NorCal for the foreseeable future.