Cincinnati Zoo Wants All Joking about Gorilla Harambe to Stop

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In late May, a 17-year-old silverback gorilla named Harambe was shot when a child entered his enclosure. The news spread quickly across the internet with people chiming in on various aspects of the incident. People expressed their thoughts on whether or not the decision to shoot the gorilla was the right one and how much responsibility the child’s parents should hold.

After a bit of time passed, the internet took a turn and began making jokes about calls for justice and respect for Harambe.

I've switched candidates #justiceforharambe #harambae

A photo posted by Sam Boykin (@sambo58) on

Regardless of the “right” or “wrong” of the situation, those who work at the Cincinnati Zoo are in pain over the loss of their beloved silverback gorilla. They want the jokes to stop. They’ve even shut down their Twitter account.

Fox News quotes Cincinnati Zoo director Thane Maynard as saying, “We are not amused by the memes, petitions, and signs about Harambe. Our zoo family is still healing, and the constant mention of Harambe makes moving forward more difficult for us. We are honoring Harambe by redoubling our gorilla conservation efforts and encouraging others to join us.”

Hopefully, the energy going into making jokes about Harambe is matched by an interest in learning more about gorilla conservation.