News about Friday’s shooting at the midnight showing of Batman has been constant on our 24 hour news cycle. The untimely death of twelve and the numerous injuries are such a tragedy even more so when you think these people were just being “regular” and going to the movies.
After reading some of the initial reports and subsequent articles a few thoughts started spinning in my head.
As so many regularly allege, the 24 hour news cycle is the downfall of real news. I can’t tell you how many reports from Aurora I’ve read in the last 36 hours that have reported incorrect information and had incorrect or poor writing and grammar – like rather than doing any fact checking or editing at all it was posted just to be first. In this age of the internet and 24 hour news shows we are accustomed to finding out our information immediately. However, a few times over the last day while looking for information on Colorado I had pangs of nostalgia about waiting around for the 6:00 news program or until the paper arrived the next morning AFTER they took the time to gather their facts before reporting.
The stories all reported the number of children that were in the theater at this midnight show - 3 months old, 4 months old, 6 years, 9 years old. Why on earth were all those kids at a midnight showing of a loud, dark, adult-themed, violent movie? Certainly the parents had no idea what would happen once they got there, and it could have happen anywhere at anytime. They can not be blamed for a crazy person showing up and doing awful things. However, there is something wrong when parents forget they are parents and expose their kids to things made for adults. Our kids have (hopefully) a very long time to be adults. They don’t need to have it forced upon them too early by their parents.
In one of the stories I read yesterday, this one caught my attention…
Suspected Colorado movie theater gunman James Holmes purchased four guns at local shops and more than 6,000 rounds of ammunition on the Internet in the past 60 days, Aurora Police Chief Dan Oates told a news conference this evening.
"All the ammunition he possessed, he possessed legally, all the weapons he possessed, he possessed legally, all the clips he possessed, he possessed legally," an emotional Oates said.
The chief declined to say whether the weapons were automatic or semi-automatic, but "he could have gotten off 50 to 60 rounds, even if it was semi-automatic, within one minute," Oates said
I haven’t a clue what it takes to buy a gun and/or ammunition, but it seems like the amount purchased by the shooter was excessive. And the NRA says that we shouldn’t politicize this recent tragedy. Really? It’s probably a pretty good time (or after any of the other gun-related tragedies in recent years) to look at what the heck is going on in this country. The number of gun-related deaths in the US is more than the rest of the developed nations’ combined.
The NRA spouts we need guns to keep this a civilized society. It’s interesting that during this terrible tragedy not one of the movie goers pulled out a weapon for protection. The only person who had a gun in the theater was the insane one.
Let’s face it, automatic weapons aren’t usually purchased for weekend hunting or protection by responsible gun owners. They are purchased for violent crimes. Of course, in a gun culture, it won’t stop all gun deaths, but if it would limit them wouldn’t it be worth it?