Harambe is the hero we need, but not the one we deserve.
It’s been more than a year since a child fell into a gorilla enclosure and officials at the Cincinnati Zoo had to make an obvious judgment call about whether to shoot Harambe.
We all know what happened next.
Though he may be gone, Harambe, our sign of the times, is not forgotten. The internet would not allow it.
Whether it was the memes or the trolling or the Harambe-shaped Cheeto or Harambe the write-in presidential candidate or the petition to put Harambe on the dollar bill or a Florida man risking his life for the dead gorilla or much, much more, Harambe’s name became a household one.
Now Harambe maniacs can rejoice and go on pilgrimage to the de facto mausoleum we call “Gorilla World.”
Harambe’s artificial home in life and his eternal home in death at the Cincinnati Zoo, which has been revamped with new safety precautions, is set to reopen to the public in a few weeks.
Changes include new landscaping, an energy-efficient stream and waterfall, and a resurfaced outdoor habitat.
A new indoor area will also allow guests to see the gorillas year round.
“We launched a fundraising campaign to expand Gorilla World in 2015 and have come a long way since we broke ground on the project last fall,” zoo director Thane Maynard has sad in a statement. “We’re on track to complete the new indoor environment this fall and excited to get gorillas outside in a few weeks.”
The zoo installed new barriers at the exhibit after the aforementioned 3-year-old boy entered the enclosure.
Zoo officials say the new barriers include wooden beams and knotted rope netting.
Only time will tell if the changes are up to snuff.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.