I HAVE often tried not to get into debates about the Mijas Donkeys because people tend not to think with their heads.
Their thinking often takes place about 24 inches below, and everyone is an expert and a Dr Dolittle.
They can speak to the animals. “The donkeys are tired. The donkeys’ feet are hurting. The donkeys are sad.”
Fancying myself as a bit of an empath, I can kind of go along with this up to a point.
Where I get more defensive is when people start being offensive and insulting on behalf of the donkeys.
Cards on the table! Do I think that in 2019 we should be exploiting animals for financial gain? No, I don’t.
Do I think that the emblem of Mijas should disappear? No, I don’t.
Do I think that the donkeys of Mijas are well looked after? Not well enough.
Do I think that they would be better off as dog meat than to have the life they have now?
This is a silly question because I believe that the donkeys’ lives can be made much better with a bit of compassion and imagination.
At our August Council meeting, my colleague, Mario Bravo, presented a motion which proposed several things: clarifying weight limits to be written into the ordinances; good quality stabling with sanitation, allowing the donkeys to rest well at night and on off time; an area for the retired or injured donkeys to be able to move about freely and enjoy a donkey’s life.
The motion was rejected. In fairness, they did say that they wanted to do some of these things, but not how we presented it.
A commission would be set up to look into it. At the time of writing this, there is no news of a commission.
Well, so much for the donkeys. What about the dough balls?
When I posted about the donkeys, it went crazy. Within 48 hours the reach of the post was over 32,000.
I tried to control the comments, but there were simply too many. Someone even blocked me from commenting on my own post by reporting it as spam.
Most of the comments, given that it is an English language page, were from the International Community, in Spain and abroad.
The motion we presented was not new. It was always part of our election plan, yet 90% of the Internationals eligible to vote in the May elections didn’t bother either to register or to turn up to vote.
That is how much they really cared about the donkeys! With the full intention of offending people, they are the dough balls: very little substance, floating randomly on the surface, and producing little more than air and gas. Was that clear enough?
Incidentally, the claims of ‘torture’, ‘abuse’, and ‘cruelty’, have to, in my opinion, be put into a context of a country in which breeding farms for hunting and racing dogs are rampant, and where these animals are brutally disposed of at the end of their useful life; where bull fights are still popular, and where having a bull running down a street with its horns set on fire is seen as fun.
The Mijas donkeys don’t even come close to that.
We will continue to pursue this issue, not to please all the moaners, but for the sake of the donkeys, who do deserve a better life.