Where Do We Go From Harambe
Since the death of Harambe the gorilla on May 28th at the Cincinnati Zoo, debates have raged on about whether or not the right call was made in shooting Harambe and if the mother of the child who fell into the enclosure was guilty of negligence. However, neither of these issues really address the true overarching issue that should be in discussion. After reading Brandy Bonner’s “Thank You” to Harambe, I finally felt that I understood what issues we as a society should really be talking about. We should not be focussing on the death of Harambe or the mother of the daredevil child, but we should be reflecting upon the role of Zoos in our world. Zoos were originally created as a means of entertainment. Today, however, they also serve as a venue for educating the public and sponsor breeding programs to prevent the extinction and endangerment of animal species. What is lacking in our zoological programs today is that the world populous still view zoos as purely entertainment. Zoos are needing a huge overhaul. Although they have come a long way from the cement block and metal bar cages of the past, zoos need to work towards their own eradication. Zoos need to look towards a future where they are no longer needed. Although organizations like PETA may disagree, zoos are often times the only thing standing between the extinction of many world species. A transition to an end to zoos is necessary. Zoos need to begin to work towards the release of their animals to nature reserves throughout the world where these animals can live protected in their own natural habitat without being impacted by the negative practices of the human populace. As the world slowly begins to acknowledge issues like global warming, hopefully a decrease in environmental impacts will improve so that the now disappearing habitats of these animals can be restored. As much as I would like to see a gorilla like Harambe and his family in person, I personally would much rather see them in their natural habitat living a happy, healthy, and unrestricted life. Wouldn’t you?