Spanish matador takes baby to work, sparks outrage

Spanish bullfighter Francisco Rivera Ordóñez posted this image on social media, sparking outrage online.

Story highlights

  • Francisco Rivera Ordóñez' post sparked outrage at child's exposure to dangerous animal
  • Other matadors have shown support by posting their own photos with their children

(CNN)One of Spain's most renowned matadors has come under fire after posting a photo on Instagram showing him fighting a bull while holding his baby daughter.

Francisco Rivera Ordóñez sparked fierce debate after he shared the photo with his 61,000 followers, which has since received 13.4K likes.
    "Carmen's debut, she is the fifth generation which bullfights in our family," the post read. "My grandfather was bullfighting like this with my father. My father was bullfighting like this with me, and I have done it with my daughters Cayetana and now with Carmen. #prideintheblood"
      He then followed it up with a second photograph, saying: "History repeats itself. Long live the best legacy, the feeling, purity, honor."

      Se repite la historia . Viva la mejor herencia , el sentimiento , la pureza , honor .

      A photo posted by Francisco Rivera (@f.r.paquirri) on

      Despite Ordóñez sharing what he insists is a revered cultural tradition for matadors, the picture immediately caused an uproar from animal rights activists and concerned parents. Many criticized the celebrated matador's actions as "irresponsible" and "dangerous."
      One Twitter user wrote: "I live in a country where exposing a baby to a bull and showing him animal abuse is referred to as tradition." On the other side, a commentator wrote: "The spineless stupidity of some has made Francisco Rivera's photograph reach the prosecutor's office and made it act, another stupidity in itself."
        Even famous faces joined the debate, with British comedian Ricky Gervais -- a well-known animal rights campaigner -- tweeting: "Mental, dangerous & cruel. With or without a baby."
        Spain's Equality Minister Maria Jose Sanchez also weighed in on the controversy.
        "A fireman wouldn't dream of taking a child to put out a fire nor would a football player run around with a child in their arms during a match." And Alfonso Alonso, the country's acting minister of social security, said that it was "not right in any circumstances to put a child at risk."
        Local media is now reporting that the case has been referred to a local child protection agency in Andalusia for investigation.