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In a controversial twist on night-time revelry, a Melbourne nightclub named ‘Two Wrongs’ is facing severe backlash and an official investigation for featuring wild animals as props during its rebranding launch event. Social media influencers photographed themselves, not just enjoying the upbeat music but posing with snakes and baby crocodiles — photos that sparked intense criticism and concern for the animals involved.
Model Morgan Waterhouse was captured with a sizable snake draped around his neck, while influencer Britt Reukers posted glimpses of a party-goer planting a kiss on a baby crocodile. Although these images have since been purged from the nightclub’s Instagram account, they live on through screenshots saved by vigilant netizens.
The Victorian Conservation Regulator confirmed an ongoing investigation into the incident following claims that the nightclub allowed visitors to handle native reptiles, which is a breach of local wildlife protection regulations. This action was prompted by RSPCA Victoria, whose spokesperson expressed that such a loud, chaotic environment would be “highly distressing” for reptiles.
Such animals are highly sensitive to vibrations and noise, which would have made their nightclub stint a potentially traumatic experience. The RSPCA Victoria received three reports over the weekend concerning the event, all of which have been forwarded to the Department of Energy, Environment, and Climate Action for further action.
Social media users did not hold back their outrage, lambasting the nightclub and its patrons for treating animals as mere props for photographs. They criticized not only the obvious animal welfare concerns but also the club’s cultural appropriation of Japanese aesthetics and cuisine.
“Using animals as a promotional tool in an incredibly frightening environment for them is disgusting and cruel,” one user wrote. Another fired off, “Cultural appropriation to promote your club is one thing, but using animals as a prop to be passed around is absolutely gross. YUCK.”
In response to the backlash, Two Wrongs has limited its Instagram presence, disabling comments on its remaining three posts. However, the internet never forgets, and the nightclub must now contend with the consequences of its misguided marketing ploy.
As consumers, it’s crucial to hold businesses accountable for their actions, particularly when they threaten the well-being of our planet’s precious wildlife. We must remember to champion sustainability, respect, and empathy over fleeting entertainment.
With contemporary society’s fixation on gaining popularity on social media, people often take drastic measures to gain views and “likes” across various websites. This could be tolerable if not for the fact that many of these people exploit animals in order to reach a sense of pseudo-celeb status. It is never ok to use an animal for entertainment!
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