Bullfighting comes to Texas: A 30-foot circle of dirt in the midst of Webb County's lonely brushland is being hailed as Texas' first dedicated bullring and bullfighting school. [...] Since U.S. law prohibits fight-to-kill bullfights, all fights at Santa Maria will be bloodless. The traditional three-act structure will remain intact, but blunt sticks will be used instead of barbed. Since bulls learn the game quickly, they are considered lethal before their second fight. Once a bull has fought once at Santa Maria, it will go on to a gentler career with rodeo clowns. In that, something is lost, David Renk said. "Even when they are charging and they are charging real hard. Itís left empty," he said. "The act is not finished."
I didn't know that it was legal at all in the US. And I'm sure that the rodeo clowns will appreciate receiving a pissed off and dangerous hunk of cattle just ever so much.
And speaking of Texas (as long as we're wandering through the Valley Star):
Under a 1944 treaty, Mexico is required to deliver 350,000 acre-feet of water into the Rio Grande from the Rio Conchos and other northern Mexico tributaries each year. An acre-foot is 325,851 gallons, the amount necessary to cover one acre of land, one-foot deep with water. According to the International Boundary and Water Commission, Mexico owes the United States almost 1.5 million acre-feet of water. Additionally, Mexico has released only half of the 600,000 acre-feet of water it promised under a minute order signed by Bush and Fox in March 2001.
How on earth did it work out that Mexico has to put water into the Rio Grande when they're mostly downstream from us? Yes, the river does form the border between Texas and Mexico, but nonetheless, most of the water is taken out of it in Colorado and New Mexico. What on earth is Mexico supposed to put back? Especially during what seems to be a North American drought -- everywhere south of the Canadian border except the Northwest and Northeast corners of the US seems to be having one -- where is Mexico supposed to find the water to put back into it? The river runs dry by the time it gets to the gulf, most years. In fact, most summers, the river is substantially dry at Albuquerque (spring floods don't last long) -- I can't imagine that there's much noteworthy happening in the river by the time it reaches Texas.
Sad thing is, the Rio Grande was once the mightiest river in the West. Hundreds of years ago, of course. The Spaniards wrote about having been able to send small ships up the river, about it being so wide that it couldn't be forded because there simply weren't any crossable fords. It's completely unnavigable now; anyone trying to put a boat into it ... well, there's really no place you could put a boat in it. In Colorado and northern New Mexico, it's too rough, and south of that, there's just not enough water.Posted by iain at March 26, 2002 02:01 PM
I think they're talking about the Conchos River, which drains north out of Mexico.Posted by Steven Den Beste at March 27, 2002 12:28 PM