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Rodeos' 'Tradition' Is Cruelty to Animals

September 08, 2002

Re "Rodeo Shows the Old West Is Alive 'n' Kickin'," Aug. 25:

Rodeos are brutally inhumane events that result in many injuries to and often deaths of the animals involved. This "great American cowboy tradition" includes activities such as roping calves by slamming them to the ground and tying their legs so they can't move, using painful bucking straps that cause bloody open wounds on horses' sensitive flank areas, and jolting docile cows with 5,000 volts to make them appear aggressive and wild.

In steer wrestling, the macho cowboy jumps from his horse onto the head and neck of the running steer, twisting the steer's head around until the victim falls to the ground. Broken necks and many other injuries occur. One of the Rancho Mission Viejo Rodeo attendees you interviewed says that this type of spectacle "shows that we're still united."

Actually, it shows that many of us are still barbaric idiots who are insensitive to the pain and suffering of others.

Joy Zakarian

Cardiff

*

These rodeo cowboys should stop kicking and come into the 21st century. Civilized people do not abuse animals for entertainment. Animals are flipped, smashed, thrown, twisted, jerked and so on. Is this really entertainment?

Electric prods, sharpening sticks, spurs and flank straps are all used to induce a violent reaction from animals. Their forced participation results in injury and possible death.

Rodeos are repulsive. Perhaps these rodeo cowboys should consider finding other ways to demonstrate their strength than hurting animals.

Evelyn Oynebraaten

Huntington Beach

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