Guilty Until Proven Innocent!
Within two weeks of each other four events world wide have been put into the media spotlight. All resulting in the untimely deaths of animals. Let’s take a look at them individually as we try to make sense, if at all possible of what took place.
Two Lions Killed
Case 1: Santiago Metropolitan Zoo May 21, 2016
A man around 11.30am scaled a roof, intentionally climbed over a fence and forced his way into the lion enclosure before removing all of his clothes. This man according to reports was trying to commit suicide, as he had a suicide note present in the clothes he discarded.
The lions initially ignored the man until he began taunting them and urging their attack. Zookeepers turned a hose on the animals and then fired a tranquiliser gun at one of the lions but hit the man in the neck. As the lions set upon the man, a zookeeper fired open rounds killing tow of the three lions. The man was taken away to hospital in a critical condition.
Points to ponder:
A man has decided to take his own life, should two animals die because of his decision. He did after all break into their enclosure. Should the zoo have a fool-proof plan in place in case something of this nature should occur? If not, should they be allowed to keep wild animals captive? The two lions killed had ben rescued, one from a circus and now supposedly had a safe refuge from humans. This was not the case. At what point do we as humans take responsibility for our actions.
Is breaking into these enclosures too easy? Should they be human proof? Is it not the responsibility of the zoo, to keep animals safe under any circumstance? Why is it naturally assumed a human life is worth more than an animal life? At what point are we to realise all life is important no matter what form it takes.
Did anyone stop and think about the trauma inflicted on the third lion not killed in the event? Watching her companions die in front of her and now left alone, feeling very unsafe about her life and future. Her life has been turned upside down.
Two Crocodile’s killed
Case 2: Thornton Beach QLD May 29, 2016
A woman 46 and her best friend 47 were wading in waist-deep water around 10pm at night, in an area known to have a high population of crocodiles. The 47year old fought in vain to save her friend when she was supposedly dragged under water by a crocodile. Numerous signs, warning people to stay out of the water and away from the water’s edge were posted in the area.
Rangers set out to find the animal that took the woman. Several days later a 2.5 metre crocodile was caught in a trap and its stomach contents examined, but results were inconclusive. The following day a 4.3 metre crocodile was also caught in a trap and was confirmed to be the attacking animal. The stomach contents revealed human remains believed to be those of the missing woman.
Points to ponder:
These women chose to swim in a known crocodile infested area at night, which is the worst possible time. They knew the risks so shouldn’t they therefore accept the consequences. The first crocodile was killed for no reason at all, as it was not the crocodile in question. What justice does that crocodile receive?
The second crocodile was just doing what a crocodile does, when a feeding opportunity presents itself. Have humans not dominated enough space on the planet without going to a remote place in Northern Queensland, and expecting life to stop except for their activities? Was the killing of that crocodile justified, when those women should not have been there in the first place, and it is their domain?
Gorilla Shot Dead
Case 3: Cincinnati Zoo 30 may, 2016
A three year old boy at the Cincinnati Zoo says persistently to his parents, “I want to swim with the gorilla”. Moments later, much to the horror of both his parents and onlookers the boy has climbed a one metre fence and plummets four metres into the gorilla enclosure. Harambe a rare 17 year old lowland silverback gorilla is confronted by this youmg boy’s presence in his home environment. Harambe appeared very protective of the boy and kept the other gorilla’s at a distance. It wasn’t until the crowd created some panic by their screams that harambe dragged the boy across the waterway at speed. Again at no time showing any aggression toward the young boy.
The keepers had managed to call to the other two gorillas who responded by leaving the enclosure. However Harambe didn’t respond, so unfortunately they used this as a sign there was a problem and shot dead this amazing gorilla.
Points to ponder:
Doesn’t anyone wonder how a three year old was so easily able to get into a gorilla enclosure? He was determined to swim with a gorilla. Was he just being a boy or wasn’t he used to being told no. Hopefully he has learnt his lesson. Should the parents not share in the responsibility for Harambe’s death as they too were negligent as parents, being the boy’s guardians. The degree of negligence may never be known. Again why is it assumed a boys life is more important than a gorilla. His home was violated by an unwanted visitor. It is not as though Harambe could just get away.
Harambe showed no aggression just protection to the young boy. If he had wanted to kill the boy what was Harambe waiting for. Why was this an instant death warrant.
Once again if the zoo can’t protect the animals in this circumstance then that right should be revoked. It is all well and good for those that run and work in the zoo to be sad, but if protocols were in place this would have been avoided. The zoo without a doubt bears most of the negligence but somehow we know they will not be punished. Harambe’s life will just be remembered as a tragedy. A good solution would be to place a sign at the front of the zoo ENTER AT YOUR OWN RISK. That way if anything goes wrong the animals wont suffer for a stupid human decision.
White Pointer Shark Drowned
Case 4: Falcon Beach W.A. 31 May, 2016
About 20 surfers had been sitting in the water waiting for a wave, when a shark struck a little before 4pm. The man who was 29 years of age had his leg bitten off above the knee and his board broken in two during the attack. Two surfers with long boards paddled out to bring the injured man into shore. He had excessive blood loss and was no longer conscious when he reached the beach. CPR was performed by several people relentlessly until the ambulance arrived. He was placed in an induced coma by doctors once at the hospital. The man dined several days later.
The next morning drum lines were placed in the area by the government, to catch a white pointer suspected of causing the attack. Fisherman had sighted a 3.2 white pointer in the vicinity the morning of the attack. Later that day a 4.2 mtr white pointer was caught on the drum lines. It died and was towed out to sea and discarded. Authorities could not confirm this was the shark in question. The experts examining the bite marks on the man’s surfboard, only confirmed after the shark was caught that it was indeed a white pointer that was involved in the attack, but couldn’t determine the size.
Points to ponder: The fisherman, on the morning of the attack, reported the sighting to authorities that the white pointer(3.2mtr) they saw, was 1 km off shore. When the authorities put out the report they did so, with an incorrect distance of 1.8km which according to their guidelines doesn’t warrant any further action. People had already failed that surfer before the attack even took place. If the correct information had been given the beach would have been closed.
Everyone including surfers know the risk when they take to the water. Dawn and dusk have been historically proven to be the worse time of day for shark attacks. There had also been a lot of bait fish around earlier, which attracts sharks. Going into the ocean especially as far off shore as surfers seems to go is a known risk. This is the natural environment of sharks. Unlike humans sharks cannot survive outside water. Humans inhabit land and sharks inhabit the oceans. We have a choice and they don’t, it is as simple as that. We mostly go into the ocean for recreational purposes, so it is clearly a choice.
Sharks go about their normal business and occasionally our paths meet. When humans climb Mt Everest they know the risks, and accept them should it end their life. How are we going to kill a blizzard or avalanche, or altitude sickness. The same should be true for the perils of the ocean. We choose to climb Mt Everest, we choose to go in the ocean. Choice, choice, choice. What are the alternatives? Get a pool, travel in a boat, just sit on the beach like the rest of us. If you want to dive, surf etc then accept that that may be the price you pay. Stop trying to blame someone for your decisions and make it look right.
Killing a shark or any creature under these circumstances are not just barbaric but totally unreasonable. If a person is murdered, do we start killing anyone in sight until we hope to catch the real culprit.
How many innocent sharks do we kill in this process and will it save the next surfer? Of course not! We could kill 1,000 sharks and it still would not save the next swimmer. The difference between a shark attack and a murderer is that the shark is not evil or a rogue, it is just surviving. How can you blame any creature for doing that? It is usually the family of a deceased person or a survivor of a shark attack that is the first to say it is not the shark’s fault. The government is merely trying to look as though they are protecting the community, when they clearly know their actions are worthless. Animals don’t get a chance to voice their opinions. It is time we spoke the truth, and took responsibility for that truth!