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Of Trusting Parents, Dead Gorillas and Living Children

Gorilla Cincinnati Zoo
Written by Tim Dukeman

Two weeks ago, did anyone think a zoo is a dangerous place for children?

On that stupid gorilla:

  1. If you don’t think that child’s life is worth ten million times more than the lives of 100,000 gorillas, you are a bad person. You should feel bad.
  2. The people who decided to shoot the gorilla know 10 times more about gorillas than you do. This is just painful. Stop.
  3. The only reason this is controversial is because Americans’ only experience of gorillas is in documentaries and from the other side of very secure cages. The moral calculus is much more clear to people who live in Africa.
  4. The‪#‎justiceforharambe movement is asinine. The outrage is NOT that a gorilla lost its life. The outrage (if there is one) is that a child’s life was in danger. Since we don’t know much about how negligent the parents were (if they were actually negligent), let’s put down our pitchforks.
  5. You aren’t as good of a parent as you think you are. It’s only by the grace of God that your mistakes as a parent didn’t end in disaster. Appalling negligence happens, and there should be consequences for it, but let’s let our fine men and women in law enforcement make that determination, instead of trying these parents over the internet.
  6. It will take a great deal of evidence to convince a fair-minded person that these parents were negligent. They were at the zoo, not on a wildlife safari in Congo. It was entirely reasonable for them to expect that it’s completely impossible to get anywhere near a 400 pound gorilla without a badge/keys/security clearance. If there is negligence in this situation, it probably lies with the zoo, not with the parents.

Gorilla Cincinnati Zoo

The views expressed in this opinion article are solely those of their author and are not necessarily either shared or endorsed by EagleRising.com


About the author

Tim Dukeman

Tim is a graduate of the University of Memphis, earning his Master's in Political Science with concentrations in American Politics and Political Theory. He lives in Louisville with his wife. You can find him on Twitter @TDukeman

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