My daughter and some friends were among those who bought into the Batman hype and went to a midnight show of “The Dark Knight Rises.” She came home happy, safe, and sound, but I can’t imagine the horror that’s ripping through the lives of the family members of those who were killed or wounded in Aurora, Colorado, this morning.
Somewhere, some idiot is already working up a commentary, either on the air or online, blaming movie violence for the real-life violence, perhaps even blaming this specific movie, even though the shooter could not possibly have seen it before.
Somewhere, the NRA’s Wayne LaPierre is already working up a statement claiming that if more people in the crowd had guns, a tragedy like this could have been stopped because, they would have killed the murderous thug firing into the crowd, because everyone is Dirty Harry.
Somewhere, both presidential candidates and dozens of other politicians of both parties are making statements that don’t actually say anything and won’t affect policy in any concrete way, just as they did when a Congresswoman was shot in the head and nothing changed. Exception: New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who has called on both Obama and Romney to state, in specifics, what they’re going to do about guns.
Somewhere, there are Americans who now will not see “Dark Knight Rises,” or let their children go, out of fear that there will be another gunman waiting to kill them.
Somewhere, in Aurora, there are shooting victims having their lives saved, despite the fact that they don’t have health insurance, while no one debates how the rest of us are paying for their care in a system that still needs massive reform.
Somewhere, an authority figure is claiming that the shooting was not “a terrorist act,” as if mass murder of any kind doesn’t qualify.
Somewhere, there’s a relative of a victim who refuses to talk to the media and answer insipid questions at this time of immeasurable grief, realizing that the exposure won’t help anyone.
Somewhere, there’s a TV reporter doing a live shot, speculating and repeating unconfirmed information because they never leave the camera to go do actual reporting.