I don’t usually post on a weekend (It could be argued I don’t post regularly at all…)
A horrific tragedy unfolded about 7pm our time last night in Colorado in the United States.
14 people (and counting at the time of writing this) and dozens more were injured when a man walked into a midnight screening of ‘The Dark Knight Rises’ and opened fire.
This is the arsenal the gunman used on his killing spree.
A Glock 40-calibre
A Remington 12-guage shotgun.
An AR-15 Assault rifle.
I understand when Americans get upset when people from other countries criticise their gun laws, and I understand the intention of the constitution in reference to a right to bear arms.
This article from legendary U.S film critic Roger Ebert, however, is great reading :
The full article can be read here and I’ve cut and pasted some prescient thoughts from Mr Ebert’s New York Times article below…
“Should [James Holmes] — whose nature was apparently so obvious to his mother that, when a ABC News reporter called, she said “You have the right person” — have been able to buy guns, ammunition and explosives? The gun lobby will say yes. And the endless gun control debate will begin again, and the lobbyists of the National Rifle Association will go to work, and the op-ed thinkers will have their usual thoughts, and the right wing will issue alarms, and nothing will change. And there will be another mass murder.
That James Holmes is insane, few may doubt. Our gun laws are also insane, but many refuse to make the connection. The United States is one of few developed nations that accepts the notion of firearms in public hands. In theory, the citizenry needs to defend itself. Not a single person at the Aurora, Colo., theater shot back, but the theory will still be defended. (My italics and bold)
I was sitting in a Chicago bar one night with my friend McHugh when a guy from down the street came in and let us see that he was packing heat.
“Why do you need to carry a gun?” McHugh asked him.
“I live in a dangerous neighborhood.”
“It would be safer if you moved.”
This would be an excellent time for our political parties to join together in calling for restrictions on the sale and possession of deadly weapons. That is unlikely, because the issue has become so closely linked to paranoid fantasies about a federal takeover of personal liberties that many politicians feel they cannot afford to advocate gun control.
Immediately after a shooting last month in the food court of the Eaton Centre mall in Toronto, a young woman named Jessica Ghawi posted a blog entry. Three minutes before a gunman opened fire, she had been seated at the exact place he fired from.
“I was shown how fragile life was,” she wrote. “I saw the terror on bystanders’ faces. I saw the victims of a senseless crime. I saw lives change. I was reminded that we don’t know when or where our time on Earth will end. When or where we will breathe our last breath.”
This same woman was one of the fatalities at the midnight screening in Aurora. The circle of madness is closing.
May those who lost their lives by virtue of simply starting their weekend off by going to a cinema to see a movie rest in peace.