Since the Cincinnati Zoo made the decision to shoot their silverback gorilla Harambe in order to save a little boy’s life last week, lots of people have been weighing in…
Ladies and Gentlemen, allow me to introduce you to the mighty, the scary, the awesome:
Gorilla Of Unintended Consequences.
“She… explains that zoo enclosures have become less safe in an effort to offer unimpeded views to visitors. The fact that this has been an unnoticed problem until now doesn’t mean it hasn’t been a problem all along.”
In more recent decades, zoos have begun to redesign enclosures, removing all obvious caging and attempting to create a seamless view of the animals for the visitor to enjoy watching animals in a more natural looking habitat. *this is great until little children begin falling into exhibits* which of course can happen to anyone, especially in a crowded zoo-like setting.
O‘Donoughue has watched the tapes too. The soft-hearted amongst us may think Harambe is holding hands with the toddler in the same friendly way a human would, but gorillas are not humans and you can’t read their body language in the same way…
So, IMHO, the real gorilla in the room is the sadly very much alive and kicking Gorilla Of Unintended Consequences.
One feels moved to ask: what is the purpose of a zoo? They all have different raisins-detray (yes, I know that’s not how you spell it).
Mr. Checkland, of SSM fame would say: POSIWID – The Purpose Of the System Is What It Does. Maybe the purpose of this zoo is to maximise visitor numbers to in turn maximise revenue. Maybe it is ‘to improve animal shootings, year on year.’
Whatever it is, this sad case is a perfect example of the Gorilla Of Unintended Consequences.