If you reread the piece I think you’ll see that my point is not to defend this mother in particular (I wasn’t there, I don’t know what happened any more than anyone else who’s reading about it on the internet does), my main point is that the possibility that this could be an accident isn’t even in the mix of reactions! That scenario was just rejected fully, before the facts were even in. Maybe she will be found to be at fault, maybe the zoo will, maybe they both will, maybe no one will, but the overwhelming blame-n-shame game will survive regardless, like a cockroach with a million legs, waiting for the next person to make a false step.

AMATEUR HOUR (2018) and BUT YOU SEEMED SO HAPPY (2021) | The New York Times, The New Yorker, McSweeney’s, The Cut | kimberlyharrington.me

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