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During a weekend that should have been filled with tributes to fallen soldiers, headlines took a strange turn.
News and heart-pounding video of a young boy falling into a gorilla enclosure at the Cincinnati Zoo spread like wildfire and raised unnecessary controversy.
The unfortunate shooting of Harambe, the gorilla who can be seen tossing and dragging around the 4-year-old, had some folks spending part of their weekend remarkably (and falsely) calling the killing a racial act.
Now that the identity of the boy who just so happens to be African American has been determined, a somewhat saner controversy has taken over on whether or not Harambe should have been shot to save the boy.
But then again, not everyone was rational.
Dem rep. Steve Cohen capitalized on the headlines and payed a musical tribute to Harambe in a Memorial Day tweet:
— Steve Cohen (@RepCohen) May 30, 2016
Cohen’s ill-timed tweet, was ripe with finger-pointing at the boy’s parents. While Cincinnati Zoo Director was quick to try and deflect blame away from what some see has the zoo’s insufficient barrier system.
— CNN (@CNN) May 30, 2016
But that wasn’t going to cut it, and controversy quickly began to grow, with at least a few high-profile people weighing in:
— Piers Morgan (@piersmorgan) May 29, 2016
Between this guy and the mom, you have society’s problems in a nutshell. Everything is everyone else’s fault. https://t.co/1FvoNdQoEt
— Rob Lowe (@RobLowe) May 30, 2016
Lowe’s message resonated with many who agreed:
@RobLowe Thank you for saying what needed to be said! This killing didn’t have to happen.
— Jeff Capell (@JeffCapell) May 30, 2016
— Tom Kidd (@FabulousThomasJ) May 30, 2016
@RobLowe Thank you!! I live in Dayton and of course is a big story here. Taking responsibility seems to have gone the way of the Dodo…
— Casey Bretti (@Casey_Bretti) May 30, 2016
— pamela frew (@mollyheaton) May 30, 2016
Many folks though, weren’t ready to blame the parents and took a different view:
— Lizzie Quarry (@LizzieQ623) May 31, 2016
— NoodleButt (@NoodleButt) May 30, 2016
While the incident at the zoo certainly makes a riveting story, what was also lost sight of was the meaning of Memorial Day. Former Army Ranger and “13 Hours” author, Kris Paronto said it best when he spoke to Fox News over the weekend.
It’s “those sacrifices that are given on a daily basis overseas” that allow Americans to enjoy Memorial Day with “a beer and have a barbecue,” Paronto said.
Lowe agrees with that sentiment, and on Sunday (a day before his gorilla tweet) ignited a firestorm by suggesting American’s honor our nation’s vets by watching “13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi.”
Hopefully, some took him up on that.
CORRECTION: The age of the boy was incorrectly reported in earlier posts. It has been confirmed that the child is 3 and not 4-years-old.
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