There are different views on the tragic death of the gorilla that took place at the zoo this weekend. Some people defend the four-year old boy’s mother, some people criticize her. They blame the death of the beautiful animal on a human mother who did not supervise her child closely enough.
The entire situation is tragic. It is tragic that a beautiful endangered animal died. It is tragic that a little boy was traumatized. It is tragic that a parent lost track of her child for a moment, the mother, who, I might point out was also there with her husband. I haven’t heard one person criticize the father. Apparently sexism applies even in the most horrific of cases.
It is tragic that we as a society can’t just see a horrific situation, sit with our pain as uncomfortable as it is, and grieve for all involved instead of needing to blame someone or something. Instead we blame the zoo personnel for the way they did or did not handle the situation, blame the mother who did not have her child as well as her other three children attached to her body at all times, and blame the zoo handler for not knowing how to magically communicate to the gorilla that he or she simply needed the gorilla to hand the child over gently and all would be well.
Once that child was in the enclosure you need to understand, or at least in my opinion, there was no good way for it to end well for the gorilla. That is the ugly truth. It could have ended much, much worse for the child. The child could have died. I’m not saying the gorilla was evil and would have killed him on purpose. I’m saying, he might have just acted like a gorilla, perhaps handled him like a gorilla baby, and I’m assuming that baby would be much sturdier.
Imagine for just a moment, that you were that child’s mother. Could you extend your compassion that far? I can’t imagine the hell and fear she was experiencing watching her child in that enclosure with a four hundred pound gorilla. You know the zoo personnel did not kill the gorilla lightly or without thought, and I’m sure they made this decision with great sadness and pain. They loved and cared for that gorilla. They were also responsible for the life of a four-year old human child. They were forced to make a decision. They didn’t want to do this.
Now, my final point, is that maybe now we as human beings can acknowledge that perhaps, just perhaps we shouldn’t have these beautiful animals in cages for people to look at them. They shouldn’t be in this situation in the first place. They should be wild and free. They shouldn’t be in a situation where if a human child gets into their enclosure their caregivers have to kill them to save a child. I know it doesn’t happen all of the time.
However, IT HAPPENED. Lets not let it happen again. Let’s let the animals that are in the zoos live out their lives in peace. Secure the enclosures. Make them safe. Don’t let children go to the zoos anymore. There were two lions killed recently when a mentally unstable man jumped into their cage. So maybe no adults either. Or have adults go in, but only if they sign a release saying if they end up in the cage or in danger from an animal for any reason, they understand that they will not be rescued and they or their family will have no legal recourse. It’s time to say that the rules have changed and they are in the animal’s favor now. The animal’s safety and welfare comes first, for a change. In fact, if they are harming the animals or endangering them in any way, the human will be shot. Leave the animals the hell alone.
Any animals who can be returned to the wild, should be. The ones who have been raised in the zoo and couldn’t care for themselves or are too old or sick to do so should live their lives out in peace in the zoo. Yes, we would have to pay extra taxes to pay for this. We owe the animals at least this.
After that, no more zoos. That’s it. We’re done. Let the death of the Gorilla mean something. Let it be a wake up call to all of humanity to our selfishness and stupidity. Wild animals don’t belong in cages so we can go look at them. That’s not what they’re meant for. Stop it. Just stop it.
I am truly sad that a beautiful animal died. I am truly sad that an innocent child was traumatized. I hope he recovers his health and is able to recover from the psychological trauma. I hope his mother AND father understand and accept that this happened and that now they need to move on from it, and help their son, and their other children to move on and heal. That’s the important part, not answering to the internet.
Let’s stop judging the child’s mother and father and the zoo or whoever else we can think to blame. Let’s judge ourselves, humanity. We need to close the zoos. We need to treat wild animals with dignity, respect, and love by leaving them alone. We are barbaric. We should all be ashamed.