Like many of you, I woke up on Friday to the news of the tragic shooting at the Century 16 theater in Aurora,Colo. during a Midnight showing of The Dark Knight Rises and was very shocked,saddened,and confused. A day later and 1,177 miles away, I still am.
A man by the name of James Holmes, a 24-year-old medical student and a transplant from San Diego with no known criminal record is suspected of shooting 70 people, 12 of those people are dead, the other 58 are injured. Investigators believe Holmes acted alone in what is believed to be the largest mass shooting in United States history in terms of victims who were shot.
Many around Aurora and the Denver area are mourning the losses of family,friends,and neighbors as is a nation. Many of them are still carrying wounds from the Columbine tragedy from 1999 in nearby Littleton. I myself send my thoughts and best wishes to the families involved who have lost loved ones and to those who are recovering from the wounds unleashed by this vicious and cynical person and their families as well.
Upon hearing the news, I immediately thought about all my friends who went to see this movie at that late hour last night (to my knowledge,my siblings nor any of my family were at the movie,and if they were they should probably speak up and tell me so I can get the story right) and how I would have handled things if this had happened at the respective theaters they saw the movie at. I guarantee you I’d be a huge mess if one of my loved ones or even one of my friends were caught in something like that. I lost a friend in a car accident in 2006 and thinking about that is still as painful as the day it happened.
The more I hear about these people whose lives have been lost, the more my heart has broken for not only them but their families as well, for they’ve lost a part of themselves in addition to their loved ones.
As I’ve written before I do not attend Midnight showings of movies simply because it is the wrong time of night to be out and also they play the same movie at Noon as they do at Midnight. Monsters like the man who did this are a big reason for me to take a pass on insomnia in favor of seeing the film at another time. More power to you folks for doing it, I’m not that big of a night owl anymore. While this type of incident is capable of happening at Noon as it is at Midnight, I believe that the big crowd seeing the premiere showing of the film mixed with the time of night the premiere took place made a perfect recipe for this man to unleash hell on these innocent people.
There are so many questions people have ranging from “What possessed this guy to do something like this?” to “Will this hurt the movie’s success at the box office?” to “Why in the world was a four month old child at a Midnight showing of this movie?”. The main question everyone has is “Why?”, it’s the one most oft asked in a situation like this and is one we won’t know the answer to for some time. Maybe we’ll never truly know.
My message to those who have yet to see the movie and plan to or plan on seeing it again is this: Please be careful of where you are, if you’re with a group of friends or family to see this, stay together and make sure you enter and exit together. If you see someone suspicious, let someone know so that something like this doesn’t happen again.