Irrespective of Donald Trump and the climate change skeptics' opinions, there is no denying that temperatures around the globe are rising inexorably. Particularly impacted by the unpredictable weather patterns are the planet's non-human populations. Whether it be polar bears floating on increasingly small sheets of ice in the Arctic, or the bleaching corals of the Great Barrier Reef at another corner of the world's map, it's clear that there's plenty to be concerned about.
Considering how worrying the scenario already is and how much worse it's expected to get given our current trajectory, it feels patently unconscionable to take joy from a magnificent wild being getting some respite from the unbearable heat by splashing around in what is effectively a very large bucket. Yet, the antics and joie de vivre of Zola the gorilla in Texas' Dallas Zoo are sure to melt your hearts just as the rising mercury melts the polar ice caps.
Here's Zola enjoying a splash:
Unrestrained as Zola appears, just imagine how much more delightful and pure the scene would be if a few crucial aspects were changed.
1. Zola was in a jungle instead of a zoo (not that we're casting aspersions on the quality and care at Dallas Zoo)
2. The bucket was swapped with a brimming watering hole that supports an entire ecosystem
3. Zola had his family and friends with him
In conclusion — while it's perfectly ok to enjoy this heartwarming clip, let us not forget that there is also an equally poignant heartbreaking side to it. As per media reports, animals suffer serious mental stress when they are locked in a cage. Scientists have found signs of depression and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in animals that are kept under restraints. Protesting against the caging of wild animals, several animal activists say, just like humans they have all rights to live their life in their own terms and should not be put into an enclosure. The animal welfare organization 'People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals' in its slogan says, "Animals are not ours to eat, wear, experiment on, use for entertainment, or abuse in any other way."
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