Well, here we are again. Another horror, another tragedy for this country to face. A man decides to go into a movie theater where people were doing nothing more than slurping down a soda and munching on some popcorn while watching the exploits of Batman and start shooting. Twelve people dead, nearly sixty wounded.
Why did he do it? He apparently dressed up like the Joker, so is that the reason? Is he nuts? Just evil? Knowing the why isn’t going to matter. He did it and people are dead. The why of that won’t make it better, it won’t bring them back. It just answers an unanswered question.
As typically happens with something like this, my mind focuses in on the children. I think of the 6 year old girl who died. I imagine a girl who was enjoying the summer before she starts 1st grade, waking up Thursday morning super-excited because her Mom was going to take her to a midnight showing of a super-hero movie. My two girls would have been the same way. And evil has taken away that young girls future.
I read several things the following day that while depressing also no longer surprise me. First one was the number of people who tried to blame the shooting on Rush Limbaugh. Why? Because Rush a few days prior made a ridiculous comment that the movies villain was named Bane as a left-wing conspiracy to reference Bain Capital which is a sore issue in the Romney Presidential campaign. This was a dumb thing to say because Bane has been a villain of Batman’s since 1993. But did this make Rush culpable? No, and the accusations had no staying power because that kind of stupid had already been worn to death when a former Governor of Alaska was accused of being culpable in the shootings done by another evil man in Arizona a year or so prior.
Additionally once the name of the shooter was known, ABC news could hardly hold back their glee in reporting the fact that the individual was a member of the Tea Party. Only he wasn’t. The man of the same name though that was of the Tea Party has now had to deal with death threats because the media is ever trying to prove that the Tea Party is an evil organization out for blood.
Then of course you have the people who want to use a tragedy like this to prove that guns should be banned. That certain weapons or ammunition should be banned. Because when no one has the ability to defend themselves against a freak like this, only then we’ll all be safe.
Finally, to top it all off – the faux-church known as Westboro has decided to come to Aurora and protest the lives of innocent people yet again. I will never cease to be amazed by the capability of this group to do the work of the very entity they say they are against.
But you know what? All of this means nothing. No matter what we do, people are going to kill other people. People are going to blame others for it. Presidents and Presidential candidates are going to be “deeply saddened” by it. And people are going to use these tragedies to shove their political agenda down our throats.
We always spend the first several days of a story like this in shock. Why did he do it? How could God let this happen? Who’s to blame? What do we change? And then we go back to our lives as if this horrific thing won’t ever happen again. Heck, I do that too…in fact I was in the theater today watching the very movie these people died trying to go see.
Truth be told, I really believe there isn’t any real solution here. I know how depressing this sounds – but I don’t think there’s answers. People kill others. All the time. For no reason. And they’ve been doing it forever. And while most of us don’t want that to happen so much anymore, it will keep happening. Sadly, I don’t think there’s a lot we can do to prevent it.
James Holmes just reinforced to me today that our society is not as civilized as we fake ourselves into believing. That saddens me deeply. I’m sure in a few days I’ll have moved on to something else more important in my life, but for now, I’m really unable to shake the feeling that I may no longer ever feel safe in my “civilized” country anymore.