Mike and Rebbeca Kliebert decided to reveal the gender of their baby using a 61-year old, partially-blind alligator as a party prop.
A video of the moment was posted online by a family member and since then the expectant couple’s move has been at the center of controversy on social media.
The video has reached over 7.4 million views on Facebook. Mike is seen prying the alligator’s mouth open and then stuffing a watermelon into it. Sally, the aged alligator, then bites down on the fruit and releases a blue jelly-like substance to reveal that “it’s a boy”. A young child is then seen rolling on the ground next to Sally, followed by Mike trying to ensure the alligator does not go near the boy, by wrestling her on the ground.
Gender reveal parties are a new trend in which expectant couple’s reveal the sex of their baby to family and friends in different ways typically using the colours blue and pink.
While, animal rights activists are condemning the insensitive move. Social media users are split on whether the act was “goals” or animal abuse.
Surely this is a mild form of abuse? Treating that alligator like a circus animal. I hate people who do stuff like this thinking it’s clever or funny.
— Marcus (@marcosstaga) March 28, 2018
Everybody hated on that alligator gender reveal video but tbh I was like… goals
— erin (@BonjourCestErin) March 30, 2018
Journalist, Yashar Ali insinuated that Mike deserved to have his hand bitten off.
They used this poor alligator for a gender reveal. Wish the gator would have bitten his hand…he deserved it. https://t.co/FKi4tLztIU
— Yashar Ali ? (@yashar) March 27, 2018
According to a blogpost on PETA‘s website, the 61-year-old alligator used in the gender reveal is partially blind. The Kliebert’s, who own and operate a family-run turtle and alligator farm in Louisiana, have previously been on PETA’s radar.
The U.S Department of Agriculture cited that their farm has made 14 violations to the minimum standards of the Federal Animal Welfare Act, in slightly over a year. Violations included lack of clean drinking water for the animals and failure to clean built up waste from animal enclosures.
Many have also voiced concerns over the safety of the little boy in the video in response to which Mike Kliebert released a follow up video in which he refers to himself as “the gator king” or “bearded gator wrangler”. His 9-year-old son, Blaise, also “wants to be a gator wrangler like his dad.”
Mike proceeded to put fears to rest and assured viewers that Blaise was not in any danger during the filming of the video. He said that there were many people equipped to handle alligators, at the gender reveal party. He also informed people that he runs a gator sanctuary and farm and later admitted that he is also a gator hunter.
People are pouring in messages of support in comments on the Facebook video.
Watch the two videos below, the first one is the original video of the gender reveal party:
The follow-up video posted by Mike Kliebert:
Just 2 hours ago, Mike Kleibert announced on his profile that he has been blocked by PETA after trying to share his follow-up video on their page.