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This is Not an Urban Legend
By Brainy Bird
One of the cinematic scenes I feared most as a child happens in The NeverEnding Story. Despite his master Atreyu's efforts, Artax, the noble steed, dies in the Swamp of Sadness. No matter how many times I saw that horse die, I cheered on Atreyu with every viewing of the film. C'mon, Atreyu! You can save him! Of course, he failed every time. Predictably, I cried every time, too. As I grew older, the weeping turned to watery eyes, but the feelings remained.
When Copenhagen Zoo recently announced that it would be killing its 'surplus' giraffe, Marius, thousands of people signed an online petition to save the animal's life. They were like tiny me pumping my fist, hoping and praying that Atreyu would succeed. But, unlike Atreyu, the zoo didn't even try to save the giraffe's life. Instead, zoo management acted more like the Swamp of Sadness. Copenhagen Zoo claimed that it had to kill Marius to prevent in-breeding. So they killed Marius with a bolt gun and then skinned him, chopped him up and fed him to the lions. This wasn't a private event, either. It was a very public occurrence broadcast live on the Internet. Visitors, even children, witnessed the whole murder. This whole nasty affair took place despite several zoos, including Yorkshire Wildlife Park in the United Kingdom, offering to take in Marius.
Every now and then I'll spot a bumper sticker that says, “Hey you! Get out of the gene pool!” Even though the bumper sticker is meant to be funny, it never makes me laugh. I am not a humorless person, either. I just don't like anyone touting genetic superiority. Why? Well, there's another bumper sticker I see every now and then, one I do like. It says, “Mean people suck.” Maybe Copenhagen Zoo hasn't seen it.
#Giraffe #CopenhaganZoo #AnimalCruelty