Lawmakers may weigh bull-riding ban

June 2, 2008 5:10:48 AM PDT
A plan to bring a bull-riding show to suburban Putnam County has some animal advocates and lawmakers seeing red.

About a dozen organizations and individuals have written letters protesting a Patterson landowner's plan to host the show. The Humane Society of the United States' New York State director calls bull-riding shows "cruel spectacles" that exploit "frightened and distressed animals."

The county Legislature's Rules Committee plans to discuss the issue June 19. Chairman Dan Birmingham says the panel might propose to ban bull-riding. He says the sport raises public health and safety questions, but he says he hopes to hear from an advocate for the sport.

And Rules Committee member Robert McGuigan says he wants to be careful not to jump to conclusions, noting that the sport is seen as an American tradition.