Cincinnati Zoo -Why was the Silverback Gorilla killed?

If you have had an internet connection or ears this past week, you will have heard at least something about a particularly sad series of events in Cincinnati, Ohio. It occurred at the Cincinnati zoo, and resulted in the death of the silverback gorilla named Harambe.

It began when a 3 year-old child managed to get past the railings and all the safety precautions outside of the gorilla’s exhibit and cage. In the videos released of the event, Harambe is seen grabbing the child and pulling him through water in an uneasy fashion. With the risks weighed of the 17 year-old gorilla’s threat to the child, the decision was then made to shoot and kill the gorilla in order to save the child. 

The general public was in an uproar over the killing. Many people voiced their outrage displaying a knee-jerk ignorance of the dangers involved with tranquilizing the gorilla. Tranquilizing Harambe would have frightened him and may not have worked for 15 or more minutes – time enough to endanger the child. The zoo officials were under high pressure with little or no time allowed for procrastinating. They were left with no choice but to shoot and kill the silverback.

Despite the uproar, Thane Maynard, Zoo Director of the Cincinnati Zoo, declared that he stands by the decision made. The tragedy still rings loud for all, as Harambe was one of less than 900 remaining mountain gorillas on this planet.