Friday, July 20, 2012

A gunman opens fire at the movies. What's next?

What hath Rush Limbaugh wrought this time?

Apparently, and this is just a guess, the talk-radio gasbag's commentary on a Washington columnist's assertion that "The Dark Knight Rises" had political subtexts related to GOP candidate Mitt Romney, struck a chord in one James Holmes, 24, prompting the young man to don riot gear and break into a midnight screening of "Rises" in his home city of Aurora, Colorado earlier this morning. He tossed out some tear gas, and began shooting. 12 dead, several others wounded, including a 3 month old baby.

What isn't clear as of this writing is what motivated Holmes. An early background check drew the conclusion that Holmes had no links to any terrorist organizations here or abroad. A bomb was found in the theatre, and Holmes admitted to police he had explosives at home. His mother, contacted in San Diego, spoke with ABC earlier this morning, and said she'd not been contacted by police at that point, but then said she needed to fly out to Colorado to visit her son and find out more information. If more parents took responsibility for their children's action as grown adults, I don't think we'd have too many of these sorry cases.

Warner Bros. announced that a planned premiere in Paris was being cancelled. While there is no indication as to why, one must assume there are concerns about a possible copycat attack. Factor in the Summer Olympics starting in London next week, and you can understand why there were concerns about terrorism. I can only guess, again, but I'd not be surprised if security was heightened at theatres across the country, as "Rises" opens in wider release today.

I'm willing to guess that if Limbaugh didn't open his yap and fan political flames in relation to the movie so soon before its opening, none of this would've happened. It's enough that there are comics fanatics up in arms over pre-release negative reviews, such as Christy Lemire of the Associated Press, whose critique appeared in some papers on Wednesday. We don't need another misguided political reactionary adding further damage.


Samuel Wilson said...

Not a good idea to jump to conclusions. A lot of these maniacs are apolitical, caught up in their own insanity rather than any ideology. And as you noted, the movie itself has generated mania in some people before anyone tried to interpret its politics.

hobbyfan said...

That's why I'm only guessing motives. It's since gotten out that Holmes stockpiled ammo by buying it in bulk on the web.

Insanity shouldn't be used as a defensive crutch for these guys, though. If they've got a gripe, there's better ways to air it out than to harm innocents.