Theme parties are not new in today’s times. From New Year parties to birthday bashes, quirky themes are hit and people often go out of their way to make it a unique affair. Recently, a school in the US hosted a prom event with a special theme and went too far to make it stand out. The Miami high school displayed a caged tiger as part of their jungle-themed prom. Videos and photos from the night were shared on Facebook by a family member of one of the students and it led to a huge furore online.
Christopher Columbus High School hosted its annual prom last Friday at the Double Tree by Hilton Miami Airport and Convention Center and brought in a live wildcat as a spectacle — a moved that was called “animal abuse” in the online space. Along with the tiger, other animals like lemurs, an African Fennec Fox and macaws were also a part of the “exotic” display.
A student’s sister Mari-Cris Castellanos shared a few clips from the prom on Facebook and lashed out the staff of the school calling it “shameful”. Furious with the bizarre move, Castellanos wrote, “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, it is not the student fault to be so naive BUT it’s the CCHS STAFF who arranged this event, therefore they are responsible for this tigers misery. [SIC]”
She also questioned how the school allowed this and urged everyone to ask, “DID THIS TIGER ASK TO ATTEND PROM?”
“Tigers are wild animals. They don’t need to be displayed as objects for our amusement. They don’t like the fire, the cages, the music, the teenagers with the cameras, they didn’t ask for that, they don’t have voices,” she told CBS Miami.
Here’s how others reacted to this exotic display:
Although the school issued a statement receiving the backlash, but there was no apology issued. According to a report by CBS Miami, the school said that animals present at the prom were in a “very controlled situation” and it had taken permission of the hotel before including them as part of the event.
“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,” the school was reportedly quoted, adding there were other animals like “lemurs, an African Fennec Fox and macaws” too.
They also added that throughout the event, two police officers were also stationed at the venue, where loud music and fire shows were performed — something that wild animals certainly don’t enjoy.
What do you think of this move? Tell us in the comments below.