Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Punish the Gorilla!

I just read that victims of Gorilla Bokito who escaped his island in the Rotterdam Zoo can sue for money. As if that wasn't bad enough, the main victim (who was told not to have such regular contact lest Bokito grew too fond of her) wants more than just money, she wants to see the Zoo punished!
Excuse me for not comforming to the "that has to be terrifying, poor soul!" crowd, but I'm more of a "shit happens" person. Okay, your hand got crushed, you bones broken and there are bite marks all over your body. Count your blessings you didn't attract the attention of one of the Siberian Tigers. What's more, who would have expected Bokito to trudge through the water and jump over the fencing? Gorillas can't swim. That makes his escape an anomaly. A freak accident. It was entirely possible, but improbable. If next hour a UFO crashed on me and my bicycle while I'm off to buy a ham-cheese croisant, do I sue the aliens for what is entirely a freak accident?
Further, people go to the Zoo to enjoy it. Escaping gorillas don't make it enjoyable. But sueing the Zoo is not my definition of making it more enjoyable. How much are these people going to ask? More than what is reasonable? Will employees or the management go to jail for something their gorilla did? They did the best they could to prevent this using means that would normally keep the gorillas confined and the view unobstructed by things that detract like bars and concrete. Just when you think you got it right, your gorilla has to screw you and your Zoo over by escaping!
And it wasn't the first time Bokito escaped, he was not quite a model prisoner even in Berlin. And here I thought Germans knew all about keeping savages locked up... So clearly, the gorilla must pay for the trouble he caused his masters and audience! Put him on meagre rations until the costs saved through this have made up for the damage claims made at the adress of the zoo! And since some animals can perform useful tasks, like elephants and horses, explore the possibilities of having Bokito renovate the island fence and water ditch so that he can't escape again!
Now some might say that's animal cruelty. You're, we have to look for the real culprit. But if not Bokito or the Zoo, who else was involved? The victim! The victim must pay the Zoo and poor, poor Bokito for tempting his fragile mind, seducing him to jump over that fence and start a rampage! A few more broken bones and biting will suffice as corporeal punishment. Or if it's going to be a jail term, let her sit it out on the rock with the gorillas. And I don't mean Alcatraz Island and it's inmates.

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