Years ago, in another life, I got to travel quite a bit for work. Unfortunately, this was before my current drinking prowess had really kicked into high gear, so I wouldn’t just go to a bar and drink for the night. And the sights I wouldn’t have minded seeing in these towns typically closed around 5 pm, so I had to find ways to pass the time. So it wasn’t unusual for me to take one of those nights I was in town and go to a movie.
One of the movies that I wanted to see was the Dukes of Hazzard movie, which I can defend like I can defend the Pistons’ drafting Darko Milicic (keep in mind this was before Jessica Simpson caught the Daisy Duke curse and decided to spend a significant amount of time dedicated to a diet of butter shots 8 times a day). And not long after the movie was released I found myself in a little suburb outside of Denver where I went to see the movie.
At Century Cinemas in Aurora, Colorado.
Now, I’m not one of those people who thinks, “Oh, my God, I’ve been there, so it obviously affects me more than other people I know.” Don’t get me wrong, if I was Seth MacFarlane and I missed one of the 9/11 planes I’d have freaked the fuck out, but in this case, I just think it’s an interesting quirk, since it’s not like everyone from Detroit has been to a movie theatre in Aurora, Colorado.
Anyway, the fact that I had been to this theatre is completely irrelevant to this post (think of the first 4 paragraphs like the opening of a Simpsons episode that doesn’t end even remotely connected to how it began), because the reason I write this is several irritations with the coverage of the tragic massacre.
First off, let me state the obvious: the massacre in Colorado was fucking tragic. I typically don’t do the whole, “Our thoughts and prayers go out to the families,” because really, it should be obvious that a person is sympathetic to others in their times of tragedy. That said, I’m not going to start ranting about the media coverage without acknowledging the tragic nature of the occurrence.
Now that we’ve dispensed with the pleasantries, I’m going to bitch about the baby and the 6-year-old in the theatre who got shot.
If you watch the NBC Nightly News – or listen to the podcast like I do – you would’ve heard Brian Williams talk about the 6-month old who was sleeping soundly in the theatre because the child’s parents were having their date night and couldn’t find a sitter. Well that’s great, we now know the kid can sleep through a lot, because it wasn’t like the opening of that movie was the “I believe in America” speech at the beginning of the Godfather, there was some shit going down. But it was a 3-hour movie (which started at midnight), and it was inevitable that at some point, that kid was going to start crying and make a packed house miserable.
Luckily, the baby was “only” wounded by the killer. The 6-year-old wasn’t so lucky.
The simple joke is “what the hell is a 6-year-old doing at a midnight showing of a hard PG-13 movie?” It’s not a joke. Now, obviously this kind of shooting could’ve just as easily happened at 3 pm as it did at midnight, but neither of those kids should’ve been at that theatre, especially the baby. Basic human decency says don’t bring your baby to a movie theatre. If you can’t get a babysitter, get yourself a Netflix subscription.
Don’t get me wrong, I don’t think these kids should have been shot, let alone killed…but I wouldn’t have been heartbroken to see their parents take a flesh wound to the arm or leg.
Then there’s the proliferation of media reports calling it “The worst mass shooting in American history.” And maybe it technically was, because something like 70 people actually got hit by a bullet. But I go with the points system. If you get shot but survive, that’s a 1. If you fall into the “killed” category, that’s 5 points. Call me an insensitive prick, but a guy walks into a classrom at Virginia Tech and sends 33 people to their deaths, I’m giving that more weight than the guy who killed 12 but managed to hit another 60.
Now, this undoubtedly makes me sound like an insensitive prick, but the point is not who is the most skilled killer in U.S. history. The point is, why is it so crucial to automatically assign something of this nature the worst massacre in U.S. history? I mean, it sucks either way. You think the Columbine survivors are sitting there saying, “Phew, we’re down to #3, this makes things so much easier”? It just doesn’t matter.
It’s all a part of the media trying to make things sound bigger. The fact is it doesn’t need to sound bigger. “Shooter kills 12 at Batman showing” pretty much does the trick, whether it’s the worst shooting in history or the 5th worst.
Another example of this is referring to the events by the date it happened. It happened with the Virginia Tech shootings too. I watched an interview with someone from Virginia Tech and the guy referred to the shootings as “The events of 4/27” or whatever. The Colorado Rockies hung a jersey in their dugout saying, “We remember 7/20”.
Look, there are certain dates you remember in American history. 7/4. 4/14. 12/7. 11/22. 9/11. These are dates you remember. There are plenty of other events that rank right up there with these shootings and you’ll never remember the date it happened. Why does it start now?
OK, now I’m rambling, and really what it comes down to is I hate Colorado.
When I rule the world – don’t laugh – my first order of action will be to nuke Ohio, Utah and Colorado. Call it the “Don’t fuck with me” plan of action. There’s plenty to say about Utah or Ohio, but for right now let’s just focus on Colorado.
Columbine. The movie theatre shooting. The bubble boy hoax. Hell, those 3 nutcases and the wacko family are enough for me to judge a state filled with 5 million people.
So there’s my first campaign promise: Vote for Guy and I’ll wipe out Ohio, Colorado and Utah.