When I first heard about the killing of a beloved Gorilla after a child plummeted into his enclosure at the Cincinnati Zoo, I immediately published this tweet: “It was an unfortunate series of unintended events that left officials with no option but to make one terrible choice to avoid another horrific outcome.” OK, you probably know I’m lying for two reasons: First, that’s eleven more characters than Twitter allows. And second, no one ever has an even-handed social media response to a controversial event. Some blamed the team that made the decision to shoot and kill Harambe (because we’re all experts at making quick decisions with lives on the line). Most blamed the parents of the 4 year-old boy who fell into the enclosure (because we’re all totally awesome parents who have never had an off moment). And others blamed the parents of the zookeepers for raising people who thought it seemed like a good idea to keep a gorilla in an enclosure in the first place. But here’s the bottom line. A decade ago, this event might have told us something about the complexities of parenting, zoos, animals, and first responders. But thanks to social media, this story mostly tells us something about ourselves. And it’s not pretty.

+ Vox: Harambe the gorilla: the zoo killing that’s set the internet on fire.