#JusticeForHarambe: Group Think and Lack Thereof

In the past 24 hours I’ve heard the following:

He was protecting the child.

Why didn’t the mother watch him? Arrest her. Take her other children away. Where is CPS?

Why didn’t they use a tranquilizer dart? A tazer?

A Change.org petition signed by tens of thousands of Mrs. Kravitz’ on the Internet asserts that something is terribly wrong at home:

We the undersigned want the parents to be held accountable for the lack of supervision and negligence that caused Harambe to lose his life. We the undersigned feel the child’s safety is paramount in this situation. We believe that this negligence may be reflective of the child’s home situation.

America has lost its mind. We no longer own animals, we adopt them. We (not me, you) refer to pets as furbabies. We talk about smiling dolphins (their mouths don’t actually move) and currently tens of thousands of people know the intent of a four hundred pound Gorilla.

Michelle Beadle Harambe

In fact, we’ve so lost our way that one reporter and a few thousand of her followers don’t want to hear from the parents of the four year old child who could easily have died and fortunately only suffered a concussion. Does no one want to hear about the child’s health? Is no one curious why the zoo didn’t have adequate security?

Instead the Sanctimommys are out en masse. This could never happen to their child. They ask each other why she has so many children, why she can’t control her children, why she didn’t have help? They say she should be shot.

shoot michelle gregg shoot michelle gregg

There is chatter about the murder of Harambe. Let me explain something to you. Murder is a crime that involves two or more human beings. Harambe was a mammal at a zoo not a person. You cannot murder something non-human. Language matters.

There is no way of knowing if the gorilla was protecting the Gregg child. Sure, it looked that way to my Facebook friends and as much as I love them their expertise is more valid in the jungle of the Macy’s sale rack than the jungles of the African Lowlands. No one knows the intent of a gorilla. How was a zookeeper supposed to get the baby back from the gorilla? By having a conversation with him:

“Mr. Harambe, if you wouldn’t mind handing the toddler over now we’d like to bring him up the ladder and back to his family.”

As we distance ourselves more and more from our own communities, adopting pitbulls instead of children and building wells for brown children in Africa while simultaneously allowing them to die slowly in Flint Michigan we lose a piece of our own humanity. Why is no one asking how a four year fell into the enclosure? Why is no one asking why the zoo had such a serious security flaw. Why is no one saying, “That could have been me.”?

When did we fetishize motherhood to such a degree that four year old children are supposed to have two eyes on them at every second of the day? When did taking children to the zoo become something that only bad mothers do? Has no one been to a zoo lately?

Here is a sampling of the Change.org commenters who have given a gorilla a name but call a child a brat:

Screen Shot 2016-05-29 at 9.31.58 PM

The gorilla wasn’t tranquilized for two reasons. Firstly, this isn’t an action flick and the gorilla won’t magically fall to the ground while safely cradling the toddler in his arms. Secondly, the gorilla might get more aggressive and if the tranquilizer dart works they’d need to wait 10 minutes to find out. What might happen in 10 minutes?

We need to stop naming wild animals. We need to stop caging them too but that’s a discussion for someone else to have. We’ve assigned human characteristics to mammals and animals and it’s confusing to some people. Here are murders in Cincinnati within the past 12 months.  Where is the outrage for these lost human lives? Why don’t you know about 28 year old Dominic Gilbert or 34 year old Julia Boyajian? They were both murdered in Cincinnati in May. Why is it easier for you behind your screens to show compassion to a gorilla than to a mother and her child? What broke in your soul to create that scenario?

I, for one, am pleased that Michelle Gregg didn’t have to bury a child.

Facebook Comments

  • Great Job, Jess. Michelle Beadle is a hack ESPN reporter. Everyone needs to calm down with the parent blame every time something happens to a child. If anything this is the stupidest zoo arrangement for a Gorilla exhibit I have ever heard of.

    • ginamero

      Liberal, no responsibility having moron.

      • I don’t want to let this get out of hand. So let’s be civil. Do you mean that I am a moron for having read the whole article and for supporting the parents of a child that fell through a very un-protected enclosure? You have the right to your opinion. Until I read this I was of the impression that a tranq would have been the best idea, but after reading the post by the woman who was there, it doesn’t seem that way. As for no responsibility, we are not in a position to judge an entire person’s moral and child rearing fiber on a single tragic event (although it happens repeatedly). I very well may be a moron, but it has nothing to do with this event or my post. And liberal, yes, I’m pretty liberal when it comes to social issues, not economic ones (I’m more of a libertarian) but it used to be the liberals that pissed me off for blaming the victims. Now it seems we blame without knowing the full story all the time.

        • Cajun Exile

          The parents knowingly crossed multiple barricades at the gorilla enclosure with a four year old child. The actions of the parent, not any action or inaction of the zoo put this child in danger.

          I am not sure if ginamero knows the full story or not but it is obvious that you certainly do not the most basic facts of the situation.

        • Morgainne O’Finneran

          this kid should never have been away from his parents, he should have been tied into a baby carriage. YES Michelle Gregg needs to be arrested, investigated and fined. I am troubled that I have absolutely NO sympathy for this white trash whore and her dirty grubby little waste of air.

          • Sherry Vogt

            I totally agree the mom didn’t do her job as a parent and watch the kid, but calling a 4 year old a waste of air is pathetic. Also, you mentioning the mom being “white trash” says you’re a racist Cunt. Let me guess, you’re a single black mom of probably 3 to 4 little nigglets running around all with different baby daddy’s. So, if that is the case, you probably can’t afford to go to the zoo, or want to because they would throw your ghetto ass in with the gorilla’s. So, stay unemployed collecting you government housing and cheese and fuck off. 1 more thing, you saying the child should have been tied down says a lot about your parenting skills and CPS should be checking you out

          • kat

            Wow, who’s calling who racist here???!!!

          • white trash whore and her dirty grubby little waste of air

            Let’s all get our parenting advice from Morgainne O’Finneran! Fun times!

  • Stephmos

    Thank you for this. Everyone seems to know exactly what a 400 lb gorilla was doing/would’ve done with that child. Wild animals are unpredictable. Maybe the gorilla was, in fact, trying to protect the child. But he’s a goddamn animal. Dragging the child through water could have drowned him. He could’ve easily crushed the child to death without intending to. “Gorillas drag around their offspring like that.” Yeah? Well we aren’t talking about a baby gorilla. We are talking about a 4 year old human child who just fell 15 feet into a wild animal’s enclosure. The zoo workers, who are the EXPERTS, decided what the best course of action was. It’s amazing how people are refusing to comment on that piece of info. The people who knew the animal, knew his behaviors, and loved him decided that the safest option for the child was NOT to tranquilize the gorilla. Sadly, it ended in death, which is unfair and tragic. It is. But let’s say that the zoo officials DID decide to tranquilize first, and the gorilla became so agitated that he (intentionally or unintentionally) killed the child? Would we all be singing the same tune then? Absolutely not. A child’s life is not worth taking that risk and I’m so glad that the zoo officials were able to recognize that.

    • Kevin Weinberg

      Actually, gorillas are the most docile animals known to exist on planet earth. There has never been a case of a gorilla killing a human. Chimpanzees are violent, yes, but gorillas are not Chimps.

      There is almost 0% chance that gorilla would’ve hurt the child. They murdered an endangered species for no reason. They should’ve shot the parents instead.

      • Stephmos

        You’re ridiculous. Intentional or unintentional harm does not matter when it comes to the life of a child. What would’ve happened if the child drowned from being dragged under water? What would you say then?

        • Glenda Green

          I would still say it was the parent’s fault. Not the Zoo’s, or the gorilla’s. But Kevin is right, nothing from any of the videos indicate an intent to harm on Harambe’s part.

          I am very happy the child is ok. But in a world with many billions of people and less than 800 gorillas, it is hard not to feel a stunning and intense loss at this gorilla’s murder.

          • It is a loss indeed. Sometimes there are just accidents. Sometimes someone is to blame. Sometimes the villagers grab their pitchforks and move with the angry mob without thinking.

        • Kevin Weinberg

          I’d say that there’s an awful lot of babies, and only about a few hundred silver back gorillas. Acceptable loss.

          • Sheryl67

            You sir are sick in the head. I hope you don’t have kids and if you do, I sure hope they don’t make a mistake and someones wishes them dead.

        • Kevin Weinberg

          It’s bullshit that the onus is on the zoo to kill an animal instead of saving the animal.

          The way it SHOULD work is that zoos should require every protection to keep people away from the animals, but if people circumvent that protection, or the parents fail to stop their children from doing so, they prioritize the animal.

          Why should the zoo prioritize the child? It makes no sense. How are they supposed to stay in business if they have to keep killing gorillas every time mommy’s too busy to keep an eye on her child?

      • Lamentation Smythe

        Actually, gorillas are territorial and they will kill infants that aren’t their own, so there’s a *much* greater than 0% chance that gorilla would’ve hurt the child.

  • Jan Ayres

    This is a ‘mother’ that already has previous child neglect charges. Now I hear she has a get rich quick scheme to sue the zoo instead of thanking them for saving her sons life by killing this beautiful animal. I guess that beats working in the kindergarten in her eyes. Sorry, but I blame the mother entirety

    • Anna York

      By chance, can you supply some proof. I don’t doubt you since I’ve read this multiple places. I just know a lot of people want to see proof of this claim. Thanks so much!! If you can’t supply it, don’t sweat it. I’m sure it’ll surface sooner or later.

      • jan ayres

        Anonymous d’oxed her

  • seekthetruth

    All I can do is shake my head at some of the ridiculous statements people are making. Anyone who said anything about tasing the gorilla is a lunatic. i wish people educated themselves a little (internet isn’t the answer) before sounding like a fool. Surprise surprise that in no time folks are bringing up race and taking about “my people” getting shot . No wonder so many people don’t understand when an unarmed person can be legally shot. This country is being overrun by the ignorant. Sorry, I couldn’t reply directly to the uneducated person spewing the garbage.

  • Dan

    “Why is no one saying ‘That could have been me’?”- That’s a great question, I’ll give you my reasons.
    I’m not 100% sure (only about 98% sure) I’d be better at keeping an eye on my kids than the mother, that’s why I always use a condom (or eat box).
    Is it any wonder I’ve never been a parent to any child who has hopped fences to swim with gorillas?

    Now in case you are thinking “That could have been me”, I recommend you put down your damn phone while you’re at the zoo and watch your kids. Teach your offspring; not to get close to wild animals, to respect fences/barriers, that a gorilla is not the same as a lifeguard?..etc. The zoo is a perfect place to teach your kids about wild animals, but it’s not a damn daycare.
    If you think your kids are that dumb (result of neglect, I don’t blame the kid), then watch your damn kids. Don’t have kids you can’t take care of. Birth control. Condoms. Stop mating with people who would be terrible parents.

    “Language matters.” Absolutely. “Harambe was a mammal at a zoo and not a person”. You do realize Gregg and her toddler by definition is “a mammal at a zoo”. I think it’s funny when ‘mammal’ or ‘animal’ as if it’s a dirty word. Humans by definition classify as mammals and animals.
    That dirty ape is at fault. And that dirty ape I’m referring to is the mother Gregg.

    I absolutely agree that we need to stop caging wild animals. Why do I have more compassion for a gorilla than a mother and her child? Because the mother and child are fine. The child is a victim of neglect. The gorilla is a victim of captivity, then because of that mother’s neglect of her toddler, the gorilla is now dead. I would have equal empathy for the child if the child had died.
    What distinguishes humans from other apes is typically our intelligence, it’s because I consider humans smarter than other mammals that I think they should be held to a higher standard. Any mother who can’t keep an eye on her kid doesn’t deserve to be considered human.

    Compassion for the child, and the gorilla. None for the cunt.

  • antuan ruiz

    Why is no one saying it could have been me? Because not everyone who has a child has to think about how ignorant they are or ignore their children when it could matter most. It’s a zoo with real live animals not stuffed animals, animals can be aggressive that is why you have to watch your kids. If you have too many kids, then make sure someone can help you watch them or close your damn legs.

    • So you live in the only house on the planet that doesn’t have Band Aids?

  • Cajun Exile

    The gorilla was the property of the zoo. They choose to destroy the animal (their property) rather than have the child harmed. This decision was based desire zoo officials to protect the child or because they did not want to suffer the bad press and the inevitable lower attendance if the child was harmed. Likely both aspects were considered but zoo officials. Zoo officials made their decision and I will not second guess them.

    The parents of this child is a completely different situation. Apparently the parents climbed into the enclosure with their four year old child. This was a reckless irresponsible act on the part of the parents. This was not an “accident” that could happen to anyone. Child protective services should force a review as to whether this parents are fit to care for they child.

    The zoo should sue the parents for the cost of the gorilla and the bad press. They can loose their house (if they have one), their cars and their savings (if they have any).

    Then the next set of idiot parents who think its cool to climb over safety.

    Your comment “why the zoo didn’t have adequate security?” is reflective a notion that it is the burden of society to remove all risk in life. This misguided notion of reverse Darwinism is far more idiotic and destructive to western society than any misguided notions of animal welfare.

  • CTY

    You’re a complete moron. I’m unfollowing you.

  • Ben Bove

    I don’t get the thanking God statement by Mrs Gregg, did God kill the gorilla so her son would be safe?, if she had such faith, why didn’t she go in after her little darling herself, instead of having a beautiful animal murdered.

    • Again: murder is reserved for human to human events. Hysteria is unbecoming.

  • kat

    “building wells for ‘brown’ children in Africa” ??? Are you serious? Can’t believe you made that kind of racist comment! As for your statement that humans shouldn’t be assigning human characteristics to animals, perhaps you’ve missed the fact that great apes are the closest thing you can get to humans. I guess you must be one of these brilliant evolution deniers!

    • I stand behind everything I said.

      Evolution doesn’t make them your cousin. Keep studying!

    • Not even close to racist. Check the context.

      • kat

        Yeah, I read every word before I wrote the comment. You obviously felt you had to comment on the children’s color, like somehow we shouldn’t be helping “brown children”, or maybe that we had to be told what color most children in Africa are, like it makes any difference.

  • Lamentation Smythe

    Yanno, we can care about animals being killed, and also care about people being killed. We can love animals and still love people. We can adopt pets instead of children, since children actually aren’t pets, they’re a lot more responsibility. We can be happy that this kid lived, but still sad about a gorilla dying. We can care about more than one thing.

    I agree with you about a lot of the stuff you’ve said about fetishizing motherhood, blaming mothers for actually being human, the zoo being to blame for not having adequate security, and a lot of people placing more importance on animals than other people.

    You could have said all the things I agree with without shaming people for loving animals, and being a giant racist* tho. Just because you hate animals doesn’t mean it’s wrong to love them.

    *”building wells for brown children in Africa” WTF

    • You can call me all sorts of things but you can’t call me racist.

      The same people who want to send their kids to Africa and South America so they can be the white face ministering to the people there in facebook photos are the same people who spit on African American kids right here in America.

      I used inflammatory language because it’s meant to get your attention. I’m pleased it did.

      • Lamentation Smythe

        I hate to break it to you, but people using “inflammatory language” that objectifies brown bodies just to make a point is being racist. Sorry bout your hurt feels for calling racism racism.

  • Nvm

    Hey Jessica you sound like a heartless bitch. When animals go extinct and all that’s left are humans and you realise that we’ll die not long after (because we need animals to keep our eco-system thriving) maybe you’ll realise what you took for granted? Every mother should be held responsible for the actions of their child and in this case she somehow allowed her child to get through barriers and bushes and across a large expanse of land and into a moat, that is negligence not an accident. Due to her negligence an endangered animal is dead. Stop being a cold hearted bitch and realise you are not the most important being on this planet, what broke YOUR soul to make you such a self involved cow? Oh and ‘brown children in Africa?’ why are you allowed to write anything and post it on the internet? Educate yourself SMFH.

  • aimer

    You’re not that bright, Jessica. Why do you take up bandwidth with this drivel? Even on your own little “blog” the majority thinks you’re an idiot. Thanks for degrading people who care about animals and who expect people to supervise their own offspring.

  • Guest

    People are understandably upset about the loss of this beautiful animal, but no one would have wanted the child to be hurt. I cannot comprehend that a four year old child would even want to attempt something like this- have no safety conversations ever occurred in this family? Considering that the mother is a child care worker makes the whole incident even more disturbing. On the flip side- imagine that boy had been in the care of a babysitter- would his mother have the same somewhat cavalier attitude towards the ” accident “?! I doubt it…
    I support the zoo in their decision to err on the side of caution for the child’s safety. I do hope Children’s Protective Services investigates this family and at the very least requires the mother to complete some parenting classes. Anyone with children under her care at the daycare facility should think long and hard about who is watching ( or not watching) their kids.

  • Michael Kenneally

    If everyone is against humanity, then why do you cowardly, ignorant pieces of shit sit behind a keyboard & monitor for purposes of “media socializing”? Dumb fucks.

  • Elizabeth Connell

    I am appalled at all the hate, for this mother. Shame on you people on the news articles posting her address, name, her work place and posting pictures of the parents in general. The mother clearly had her hands occupied with 4 children, a baby in a stroller and three kids. I’m not defending the mother by the way, what she did (not watching her kid closely) is wrong and she should have to pay the price. However she is a mom, accidents happen, I’m sure Michelle Gregg is haunted forever with the memory of a dead gorilla.

    And shame on people spewing hate on Michelle’s daycare Facebook page, you are not only ruining this woman’s business, you are also going to make customers rethink sending their kids there, And it has not nor ever been confirmed that Michelle is suing the zoo.

    As for the gorilla’s unfortunate death, I wish there was another way in saving Harambe, however he was getting aggressive because of the crowd in the video screaming and yelling. I think at first he was protecting the boy, but was provoked by the crowds loud noises and started going crazy dragging the boy in the water, and hitting the boy’s head on the moat edge

    As much as I love animals, I am glad the child is ok, A child’s life is precious, the gorilla could have smashed the child’s head. This isn’t disney, this was a wild animal. A wild animal who unfortunately had to pay for a mother’s neglect