Christopher Columbus High School’s Major Fail By Exploiting Live Tiger During Senior Prom
Outrage has ensued following the release of cell phone footage of wild animals being exploited Friday evening during a senior prom in Miami, Florida.
Unfathomably, the appalling and painful-to-watch footage included that of a tiger in distress as he paced inside a cage that was surrounded by fire blowers, loud music, and what appeared to be many horrified and concerned Christopher Columbus High School students and guests who were attending the jungle-themed event at the DoubleTree Hilton Miami Airport Convention Center.
Now, students, teachers, parents, and animal advocates everywhere are expressing their fury on social media and various local news outlets.
“How shameful for Christopher Columbus High school …showing its students on prom night who is the “king of the jungle.” This poor tiger was used as an EXOTIC amusement for the mindless teenagers who were present,” Mari-Cris Castellanos posted on her Facebook page. Castellanos’ brother is a student at the all-boys private school which boasts on its website to be a college preparatory high school that is second to none and a place that challenges, inspires, and prepares young men to embrace a life of personal excellence, devoted to service and the love of Jesus Christ.
Personally, I can’t conceive of a life of personal excellence and love that includes any form of animal abuse!
“It is not the students’ fault to be so naïve,” continued Castellanos’ post, placing the blame on the school for arranging and allowing for the absurd demonstration which reportedly also featured a lemur, two macaws, and an African fennec fox.
While the school administrators first defended their position to bring wildlife to the event, this morning the school released a new statement addressing the situation; most likely due to the negative coverage it has since received.
“As a school community, we regret the decision to have had live animals at our prom. This incident in no way reflects our school’s Marist values and/or accomplishments of our young men nor our sensitivity to animal rights,” said David Pugh, the principal of Christopher Columbus High School. “We will immediately evaluate our current policies and procedures regarding all school activities and events. We can assure the Columbus community and all who have expressed concern, that we are sorry. We have learned a great deal from this experience.”
Previously, as per the Miami Herald, the school stated that “Two Miami-Dade Police officers were present the entire time. The animals were provided by facilities that are licensed by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. The tiger, which was displayed for a few minutes in a cage was never harmed or in danger, was not forced to perform, was always accompanied by his handlers, and for the great majority of the time was lying down in a relaxed state facing away from the audience.”
There is absolutely nothing harm-free, relaxed or humane about what transpired during that event, in fact, it proved to be the opposite on every one of those counts and more!
Not only were these poor wild animals harmed, so were a majority of the young and innocent attendees who had to witness the inhumane and heartless exploitation of these majestic animals.
You can express your outrage on the Christopher Columbus High School Facebook page or by sending a letter to the school located at 3000 SW 87 AVENUE, MIAMI, FL 33165.