A magnificent 17-year-old endangered Silverback gorilla is dead and a 4-year-old child is alive today and in the end, that is the way it had to be.
Harambe the gorilla from a Cincinnati zoo was killed on the weekend for a reason and it’s a good one.
The powerful, wild animal was shot dead after a 4-year-old boy somehow managed to fall into its enclosure. Up until that Sunday, the barrier had been effective for 38 years.
We've seen the footage. A little boy in a moat of water and Harambe suddenly dragging him by a foot up stream. Then down stream. Sudden. Strong. People above screaming and filming.
The screams rise. The gorilla is behind something and we can't see. Then a shot.
Images of the gentle way the gorilla moved the child were released today and thousands have been vocal about how angry they are over the decision to shoot-to-kill rather than tranquilise.
But this anger is misplaced. There was a single and clear choice on that Sunday. It was the choice between a 4-year- old boy and a gorilla. The boy wins.
The shot that killed Harambe was a necessity.
It needed to be a bullet and not a tranquiliser as zoo staff knew tranquilizers would take too long to immobilise - and can also cause aggression.