The mother of the 4-year-old boy who fell into the gorilla habitat at the Cincinnati Zoo, which led to the death of 17 year old gorilla Harambe on Saturday, took to Facebook to defend herself.
As most folks now know, the little boy crawled through a barrier and fell into a moat, where he was picked up and dragged around by the 400-pound, male gorilla. Deciding a tranquilizer dart could make the gorilla more agitated, the decision was made to shoot and kill the animal.
As the story went out via the media, lots of folks expressed the idea that the mother bears some responsibility for not watching her four year old more closely. If she had, the gorilla would not be dead.
In a now-deleted Facebook post, the mom, Michelle Gregg, slapped back at those she felt judged her parenting skills.
“I want to thank everyone for their thoughts and prayers today,” she wrote. “What started off as a wonderful day turned into a scary one. For those of you that have seen the news or been on social media that was my son that fell in the gorilla exhibit at the zoo. God protected my child until the authorities were able to get him. My son is safe and was able to walk away with a concussion and a few scrapes...no broken bones or internal injuries.”
“As a society we are quick to judge how a parent could take their eyes off of their child and if anyone knows me I keep a tight watch on my kids. Accidents happen but I am thankful that the right people were in the right place today. Thank you to everyone that helped me and my son today and most importantly God for being the awsome [sic] God that He is.”
Witnesses have been quoted as saying they overheard the boy tell his mother he wanted to go into the enclosure with the gorillas. So the idea that he wanted to get closer must not have been a surprise to the mother.
You'll note Ms. Gregg takes no personal responsibility at all for the fact the boy crawled into the habitat. None.