It’s clear that the gorilla was the most innocent party in the incident at the Cincinnati Zoo.
It’s hard to second guess the Zoo’s liability in its decision to shoot the gorilla. It takes a Monday morning quarterback to say what someone else should or should not have done in a dangerous situation. The Zoo faced the possibility that Harambe could injure or even kill the child who had fallen into the gorilla section.
But the child’s mother was clearly the primary cause of the crisis. The mother claimed she was then watching other children. This is a poor excuse. If she could not adequately watch the children she was responsible for, she should not have taken her children to the zoo.
Perhaps the most compelling evidence against the mother is that she was on her phone at the time her child fell. She WAS NOT adequately supervising the child, and was distracted.
There are reports that she was frequently yelling at the child. This is another example of poor parenting. A child who is frequently shouted at will quickly learn to disregard the shouting. The mother should have rather exercised physical control over her child, and ensured his safety.
Too often now we are seeing examples of dismal parenting in public. The public needs to send these parents the message that such irresponsibility will not be tolerated. The police should have criminally charged this mother with endangering the welfare of a child, or the Ohio equivalent of such crime.
There is a secondary consideration as to whether the Zoo was liable in not creating adequate safety devices. Decades ago, zoos kept animals in small cages. This was rightly considered to be inhumane toward the animals.
So in the past twenty-odd years, animals have been placed in conditions somewhat similar to their natural habitats. But humans visiting these zoos have created dangers under such conditions by doing such acts as provoking the animals. In the Harambe incident, people were screaming, which caused the gorilla to be upset and thus a greater danger to the child.
Animals need protection from humans in so many ways. A full investigation needs to be conducted of the Cincinnati incident, and changes need to be made.