You can't deny the little guys the chance to see live wild animals up close. Zoos are more and more performing a conservation role which is good, but as with Simon, I leave a zoo visit in a sad frame of mind.
I recall when it was exciting to visit the zoo and see what I only saw pictures of or read about. I remember some images well and with a smile.
Later, I saw animals that were bored and institutionalized, not "born free" as it were, and it seemed a lesser tragedy.
One of life's many paradoxes.