Amanda Knox Criticises The Public’s Quick Judgement Of Tiger King’s Carole Baskin
Amanda Knox, who was twice convicted and acquitted of murder, has criticised the public for judging Tiger King’s Carole Baskin too quickly.
Unless you’ve been completely avoiding social media for the last month, you’ll know exactly who Carole Baskin is and what she was accused of.
Memes, TikTok videos, GIFs and even a song all condemn the big cat sanctuary founder for allegedly feeding her missing husband to the tigers at her sanctuary, despite the fact Baskin has refuted the claims and there is a lack of evidence to support the grisly story.
The allegation was cooked up by Joe Exotic and some of his acquaintances on the Netflix documentary Tiger King, but the moment it became popular online there was little chance of Baskin redeeming herself in the eyes of the public.
Knox slammed the harsh judgements in a blog post on Crime Story, where she admitted that while it ‘certainly seems that Baskin had a hand in her husband’s disappearance’, in reality she, like every single one of those mocking Baskin online, doesn’t actually know anything about her.
The police reports, that altered power of attorney, the way she laughs…How could she not be guilty?
That sentiment is perhaps best encapsulated in this viral TikTok video parody, featuring the lyrics: “Carole Baskin killed her husband, wacked him. Can’t convince me that it didn’t happen. Fed him to tigers, they snacking. What’s happening.”
In the midst of this, I keep reminding myself: What do I know of Carole Baskin—or any of these people—aside from what I’ve seen in this documentary? The answer: nothing.
Knox cited comments from Baskin in which she claimed the Tiger King filmmakers approached her with the idea of making ‘the big cat version of Blackfish’, with Knox pointing out ‘that’s certainly not the docuseries that [Tiger King directors] Goode and Chaiklin made.’
She also questioned whether the documentary was ‘an objective and comprehensive overview of the facts’ or a ‘sensational story whose north star for every important storytelling decision is entertainment, not truth’.
Knox compared Baskin’s experience to that of her own documentary, Amanda Knox, which available to stream on Netflix.
Knox was twice convicted and twice acquitted of killing British student Meredith Kercher in the home they shared in the Italian university town of Perugia in November 2007, and in the aftermath described herself as being ‘reduced to a character in a morality play’.
Every person interviewed for [Netflix documentary Amanda Knox]… was given the chance to see an advance cut of the film, and everyone approved of how they were represented.
I can’t imagine that most of the “characters” in Tiger King would have felt validated by how they were portrayed, especially not Baskin, who is positioned as the villain among villains.
Knox went on to express her belief that Tiger King ‘put a group of human beings into the crosshairs of intense public scrutiny and judgment… without giving them the full benefit of the doubt, innocent until proven guilty’.
She added the series ‘goads us all into attacking the strawman version of Carole Baskin’; something that is ‘not only unsatisfying, but unfair’.
In an effort to get her point across, Knox rewrote the lyrics of the viral TikTok song about Baskin:
Carole Baskin maybe killed her husband. I don’t know, I’m withholding judgment.
Objective that doc series wasn’t. So let’s just have a discussion.
While the world may never know whether Baskin killed her husband, Knox stressed that ‘one documentary, from one directorial point of view, is insufficient evidence… to write off another human being (not a character) as a killer’.
Knox’s version of the TikTok song might not be so quick to go viral, but hopefully her message of ‘innocent until proven guilty’ will sink in.
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