Thursday 25 November 2021

Private zoo owners should experience jail for three years to find out what it's like to be in cages

NEWS AND COMMENT: Private zoo owners are ignorant. They are uneducated and they are stupid at least in respect of one topic: animal welfare. They don't know what it's like to be banged up in a cage. They think it's all right. They think that if a tiger is born in a cage it accepts the cage (wrong, the need for much space is in their DNA). Another indicator of ignorance. They should go to jail for a couple years or more and feel what it's like. This is exactly what has happened to the notorious Joe Exotic. 

Joe Exotic in prison
Joe Exotic in prison. Image in public domain.

He's been in jail for almost 3 years. I guess you know why. He was the star of the Netflix documentary which went viral. I guess the world and their dog know about Joe Exotic - real name: Joseph Maldonado-Passage. He is revelling in his celebrity status. Netflix should be ashamed of providing him with the platform to gain celebrity status.

In the follow-up series by Netflix he apparently expressed some sympathy towards the big cats that he kept locked up in his infamous zoo. At one time it was America's largest private zoo. He saw nothing wrong with it at all. He saw nothing wrong in exploiting big cat cubs for photo sessions after tearing them away from their mothers. He saw nothing wrong in killing adult tigers who became redundant for the purposes that he required them i.e. to make money.

RELATED: Joe Exotic gives his zoo to Carole Baskin

At the end of the first episode, I am told that Joe Exotic expressed some regret for what he's done. Being in prison has given him a different perspective on his treatment of the animals at his former zoo over the many years he kept it running. He admits that he now finally understands why it is wrong to keep big cats locked in cages because he knows what it feels like. In his words:

"After being lumped up her three years, I know now how my animals felt. I'm ashamed of myself. I hope I'll get a second chance just like my tigers."

And hearing that annoys me and many others. It's taken him all these years to realise that he has caused distress and pain in these magnificent creatures. And he did it all for financial gain and celebrity. Frankly it sucks and this is the exact sentiment of many other people as indicated by their tweets on Twitter.

RELATED: Joe Exotic was terrified of big cats and wickedly cruel says film producer

And yeah, in an act of added irony, one of his old mates in the private zoo business, Jeff Lowe, expresses sympathy towards Joe Exotic for his uncomfortable experience of being in prison. He said that it is a long time to be locked up in prison (2.5 years) but he was perfectly happy to lock up animals in his zoo for many, many years and of course the same applies to Joe exotic. I'm afraid that this is another example of ignorance. It is an example of an unenlightened and abusive approach to animals.

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