Worst Persons in the World

The Copenhagen Zoo for this awfulness:

A Danish zoo shot and killed a “surplus” young giraffe and fed it to lions, despite an online petition with thousands of signatures protesting the act.

The Copenhagen zoo said it had to euthanize Marius, a perfectly healthy two-year-old young giraffe, to prevent inbreeding. Bengt Holst, the zoo’s scientific director said Marius didn’t fit with the zoo’s breeding program.

“Our giraffes are part of an international breeding program, which has a purpose of ensuring a sound and healthy population of giraffes,” Holst told CNN. “It can only be done by matching the genetic composition of the various animals with the available space. … When giraffes breed as well as they do now, then you will inevitably run into so-called surplus problems now and then. If we just sterilize him, he will take up space for more genetically valuable giraffes.”

There’s a graphic photo in the Mediaite article linked above, but it shows the dead giraffe — “Marius” — on the ground in front of a throng on people including dozens of small children. Just thinking about this story is disturbing to me. Can you imagine a two-year-old witnessing it?

What we do to animals.

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  • Toolymegapoopoo

    “In a seemingly macabre twist, the euthanization by bolt gun occurred in public and in front of children at the zoo. Holst said the children were not affected by the scene, and “asked good questions.””

    WHAT?!?! How can you possibly know that they were not affected? Were their child psychologists on the scene to make that incredibly difficult assessment? This was as sick and twisted a decision regarding an animal as I have ever seen.

    • Christopher Foxx

      This was as sick and twisted a decision regarding an animal as I have ever seen.

      Which? To do it in public, or to decide children should attend? Because the latter wasn’t the zoo’s decision. If the children are bothered, that responsibility lies solely with their parents. They’re the ones who brought them.

      • D_C_Wilson

        To do it in public. What was the point in that?

        • Christopher Foxx

          I don’t know. I didn’t watch the video at that link or look any further into the story. Why don’t you do that and see if the zoo gave an explanation.

  • Lady Willpower

    Apparently the kids thought it was awesome.

    • snowqueen

      Doesn’t that make you wonder about the kind of society those children are being brought up in? There’s a direct link between animal abuse and psychopathic behavior.

  • Siege

    So there wasn’t a single other zoo or wildlife preserve in the WORLD that would want to take a healthy young giraffe off their hands? I mean, I guess I get not wanting a “surplus” giraffe, but I’m not sure that killing it in front of patrons is necessarily the first solution I would go with.

    • http://cendax.wordpress.com/ Norbrook

      There were other zoos, along with private collectors, but they were not certified for taking this giraffe. Part of the certification requirements for these zoos is that they can’t “just give it away to whomever wants it.”

      • http://www.livingenergy.abmp.com/ KanaW

        Good grief. So in their estimation, euthanasia is better than sterilization and letting it live at a zoo that isn’t certified for ‘this’ giraffe. Idiots.

        • Christopher Foxx

          A “zoo” that isn’t certified is, in all likelihood, not able to properly care for the giraffe. Would the giraffe have been better served spending it’s life in a place where it was unhealthy, underfed and/or badly cared for?

          • http://www.livingenergy.abmp.com/ KanaW

            He doesn’t say they were uncertified, period. He said uncertified to take this giraffe. If the lack of certification is only that they are not a member of the breeding program, then it’s ridiculous.

            I do agree that the zoo should be reputable.

          • Christopher Foxx

            He doesn’t say they were uncertified, period. He said uncertified to take this giraffe.

            I don’t see us as disagreeing on this point.

          • Christopher Foxx

            Unfortunately not enough information is known. And most of the comments here and on the articles reporting this are reactions to the “Zoo kills Giraffe, and in front of children” headline.

      • D_C_Wilson

        So, how many certified zoos did they approach before making the decision to euthenized it.

        • http://cendax.wordpress.com/ Norbrook

          There is a central database, which those zoos use to manage the genetic diversity, including tracking all giraffes. If any zoo had needed it, they could have asked for it. They also had offered it, and received a number of offers, but none of the “offers” were certified.

  • http://cendax.wordpress.com/ Norbrook

    Well, they could have done the “natural thing” and just lamed it, then let the lions finish it off. I might also note that “sterilizing him” involves anesthesia, and a surgery, which carries a lot of other risks as well.

    More seriously, this was not a light decision on the zoo’s part, and it’s part of an overall program to maintain the species. While it’s nice to think in terms of soft warm fuzzies and saving everything, in terms of the species and available resources, it was the decision they were left with.

    I’m not particularly worried about trauma to the children, since it only seems to be the adults that get terribly upset by it.

  • Christopher Foxx

    Just thinking about this story is disturbing to me. Can you imagine a two-year-old witnessing it?

    Is the blame for whatever the children may have seen with the zoo? I’m sure it didn’t jump out from the bushes before an unsuspecting school field trip.

    • Toolymegapoopoo

      You’ve been going with this line of argument here all day. Surely it is the job for parents to shield their kids from this and it was an announced event by the zoo so no surprises there. However, there was simply no need to make it a public spectacle and the judgement of the zoo is seriously and rightfully being questioned. Here are some photos of the “learning experience” (WARNING: Dead animal and gore): http://www.bt.dk/danmark/se-alle-billederne-marius-parteres-og-bliver-til-loevefoder

      Pointless theatre.

  • Aaron A. Wallace

    That zoo is fucking metal.