The Bishop and the Butterfly: Murder, Politics, and the End of the Jazz Age
    Donal's picture

    Just a Mass Shooting

    Shooting at Midnight Screening of The Dark Knight Rises in Colorado Leaves 12 Dead, 50 Injured

    Although initial stories reported 14 dead, WNYC's The Takeaway and ABC News are saying that the death toll has been revised down to 12, with at least 50 injured.

    I was struck by how routine such stories have become on local news. WBAL spent a few minutes on the shooting, then went back to the "Big Story": a political fight over the Maryland Dream Act. One of my daughters lives in Colorado, not that close to Aurora, but not that far, either, so perhaps that makes it more personal. I'll feel better when I hear from her.

    I mentioned the shooting to a security guard that frequently rides the light rail on my route. He simply said, "Another one?" He said something about them maybe repealing the 2nd Amendment, which surprised me, because when we aren't talking about the weather, he sounds anti-government and fairly right-wing. Perhaps wearing a guard's uniform makes him think again about the consequences of lots of folk carrying weapons.



    Thought of your post after reading this:

    Why Aren't There More Auroras? | Will Wilkinson | The Moral Sciences Club | Big Think

    The killings in Aurora, Colorado are literally sickening. I've been a little sick about it all day. And I find myself with the urge to say that this sort of horrifying mass murder is "senseless," that it defies comprehension, though it's not clear to me why I want to say that. I guess some part of me wishes it were senseless. But it isn't. We can make sense of hopelessness, anger, violent nihilism, bloodlust. It's not really so hard to see why someone might want to punish the world, or to make life intensely vivid for a few fleeting moments by killing a roomful of screaming people. We recoil from such gruesome inner scenes, but only because imagination is so capable of calling them forth. I wouldn't go so far as Terence and say "Homo sum, humani nihil a me alienum puto." People do plenty that simply does not compute. But Aurora, I guess I'm sorry to say, is not one of those things. What's truly terrifying to me is not that that this sort of thing is impossible to understand, but that it is so easy to imagine from the perspective both of the murdered and the murderer, and then, having imagined it, finding that I cannot quite fathom why it doesn't happen all the time. It is our safety that's mysterious.

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