The San Francisco Zoo, or rather the Director, the Board of Directors, and all the Socialite [Straight and Gay] Fund Raisers in the City of San Francisco bear some responsibility for the escape of Tatiana, the tigress, on Christmas Day, 2007. They are also colossally reckless by not having the zoo grounds and enclosures wired for video. Makes you wonder, ”What were they thinking?”
Maybe that is the point, the Powers That Be in the S.F. Zoo [pardon the expression] food chain, have been so monumentally myopic, they failed to envision circumstances in which video surveillance of the zoo enclosures just might be handy. Say... like in Dallas, TX when a gorilla escaped from his enclosure, grabbed a BABY, and had to be neutralized, permanently, by a Dallas SWAT sniper. [whom I just happen to know, eat your hearts out!]
If TPTB had raised the money for and installed video surveillance, then someone would have seen Idiot Brother #1 scaling the fence and a Zoo employee could have been dispatched to deal with the situation before it escalated to it's inevitable conclusion.
Had the City's doyennes and Junior Leaguers cared more about the animals for whom they were supposed to be raising money and less about who would wear what to which ball [Hell, if they had all worn last year's gowns and donated the cost of new gowns to the Zoo Foundation] perhaps this magnificent animal would have had an enclosure that was closer to her natural habitat than a rectangular enclosure, furnished with fake rocks, designed to give visitors a maximum view of her. She was forced to be on display a certain number of hours per day. There was no place for her to lie in the shade, there was no place for her to stalk, there was no place to PLAY! She was a Flippin' CAT!!! Doesn't matter that she weighed 350 pounds. She wanted to stalk something. She wanted to climb. She wanted to PLAY, dammit.
But NOOOOOOO! She got to pace. Back and forth, up and down. Thinking, measuring, calculating, day after day, that's what that kitty did. Finally, Christmas day...PREY!
“OH, Thank you Santa CAT, ThankYouTHANKYOUTHANKYOU!!!”
She leapt, she pounced. Bye-Bye, Idiot Brother #1. What does she see after she's broken live action toy #1? Why, it's TWO Running toys!
“Oh, JOY! Santa Cat truly loves ME!”
I can just imagine her thinkin' that, can't y'all?
After all those years, born in captivity, raised in captivity, spent her entire life in a CAGE, she was FREE! Those predator instincts were just below the surface...she was just biding her time.
The Zoo's officials were woefully neglectful in their shortsightedness. Some more modern approaches to habitat and handling might have saved Tatiania's life. Shoot, more attention to SECURITY would have saved her life. Indict the survivors of her attack for animal cruelty, something along the lines of endangering the life of an exotic animal, for they are directly responsible for the police having to shoot her. But let's look at some sanctions for the Zoo's power structure for their antiquated housing and care. In a city that can provide health care to every citizen, legal and illegal, how about a few dollars so that it's caged animals can live in humane conditions?