On Saturday, May 30, 2016, at the Cinncinati Zoo, Harambe, a western lowland gorilla who had just turned 17 only the day before, was shot and killed to save a three year old boy’s life. The boy had “escaped” from his mother, and gotten into the gorilla’s enclousure. Social media has exploded with vitroilic rants against the boy’s mother, the zoo, and human beings in general:
- I’m far from being a tree-hugger, but lowland gorillas are endangered and stupid people aren’t. Sorry, #Harambe.
- Rest in peace, Harambe. Now arrest the mother and put her kids in state custody. She is unfit to parent.
- Gorilla died today at The Cincinnati Zoo today because of irresponsible parents
He just celebrated his 17th birthday
- #Harambe #justiceforharambe
Humans are the most destructive force on the planet 😔
- that animal is more important than your s‑‑‑ kid
- (directed at the boy’s mother) – u should’ve been shot
- Rare gorilla #Harambe murdered by @CincinnatiZoo bc kid got in enclosure. Zoo & bad parents shld be held responsible
Ahhh, the internet. Home to the outrage machine. Where the mob rules, where justice is sought (for a select handful of popular causes), and where an indivuial has the freedom to say anything he or she likes, no matter how repugnant, appalling, inaccurate, or inapproriate it may be, because, well, hey: IT’S THE INTERNET! Well, while millions of people were out championing the cause of an animal the overwhelming majority of them didn’t even know existed the week before, they overlooked some other lives. In honor of Harambe, let me share some other tragic deaths that occured in May of 2016:
Special Warfare Operator 1st Class Charles H. Keating IV, 31, of San Diego, California, died May 3 in Tall Usquf, Iraq, of combat related causes. He was assigned to a West Coast-based Navy SEAL Team.
1st Lt. David A. Bauders, of Seattle, Washington, died May 6, on Al Asad Air Base, Iraq, in a non-combat related incident. Bauders was assigned to 176th Engineer Company, Snohomish, Wash.
Investigator Anthony “TJ” Freeman, Bibb County Sheriff’s Office, Georgia. End of Watch: Thursday, May 5, 2016. Killed when his patrol vehicle was rammed by a suspect vehicle during a pursuit at approximately 3:00 am.
Detective Brad D. Lancaster, Kansas City Police Department, Kansas. End of Watch: Monday, May 9, 2016. Detective Brad Lancaster was shot and killed while assisting patrol officers who had responded to a suspicious person call at the Hollywood Casino at approximately 12:20 pm.
Police Officer David Van Glasser, Phoenix Police Department, Arizona. End of Watch: Thursday, May 19, 2016. Police Officer David Glasser succumbed to gunshot wounds sustained the previous day after responding to a burglary in progress at a home near the intersection of 51st Avenue and Baseline Road.
Police Officer Sean R. Johnson, Hilliard Division of Police, Ohio. End of Watch: Thursday, May 19, 2016. Police Officer Sean Johnson was killed in a motorcycle accident while taking part in a department motorcycle training program.
Police Officer Ronald Tarentino, Jr., Auburn Police Department, Massachusetts. End of Watch: Sunday, May 22, 2016. Police Officer Ronald Tarentino was shot and killed while conducting a traffic stop on Rochdale Street, near Zabelle Avenue, at approximately 12:30 am.
Firefighter Theodore A Stafford, died at home May 2, 2016 from a nature and cause of fatal injury still to be determined shortly after responding to the fire station for an emergency call.
Firefighter Steven Lapierre died May 5, 2016 when he succumbed to his injury after suffering a heart attack while operating at the scene of a brush fire on April 27th, 2016.
Firefighter John Morris Davis died May 7, 2016 after he responded to a motor vehicle accident and assisted other responders with extrication of one occupant. After completion, Davis experienced chest pains. Johnston County EMS started treatment. While in route to the hospital, Davis went into cardiac arrest. Resuscitation efforts were unsuccessful and Firefighter Davis succumbed to his injury.
How many people who are so distraught over the death of an animal are aware of the deaths of these men? Addtionally, how many, once informed, would give a second thought to them? Why isn’t the outrage and ire that is being directed at the mother of a three year old son who lost track of her son for an instant, being directed at the the enemy soldiers and criminals who are responsible for some of the deaths listed above? Why isn’t the compassion and affinity that is felt for an animal applied to men who gave their lives in the service of their country and community? Because our society has has become warped. Our priorities have become distorted. What should warrant a comment of condolence garners immense commiseration, and what should warrant recognition, admiration, and respect garners nothing. I’m sorry the gorilla died, but I think our society needs to rethink it’s priorities. When an animal is memorialized and human being are trivialized or forgotten altogether, it’s a sign that society has lost sight of what truly matters, and that’s not a good thing.by