I woke this morning and jumped on some news sites only to discover that a deadly shooting had occurred in Colorado, at the premier of "The Dark Knight Rises".
As more information surfaces about the tragedy, the media begins giving the body count names. Yes, the "12 dead" had lives, families, stories to tell us.
One such "number" was a 6 year old child. One was an aspiring sportswriter that had survived the Eaton Centre shooting in Toronto just a month ago. Jessica Ghawi's last blog was detailing an uneasy feeling that led her to change her plan of eating sushi and shopping, instead scarfing down a burger and then heading outside for fresh air. Less than 3 minutes later, a gunman opened fire from the same spot she had been sitting. A victim was found in the same area she would have been, had she gone for sushi instead of obeying some higher instinct.
To survive that, only to senselessly die in a movie theater- it almost seems like something from a movie itself. We can't believe life would be that cruel, to allow someone to avoid a fate only to fall to it a month later.
In the wake of the shooting, many people are crying out how terrible guns are. They don't want to acknowledge the gunman was also carrying a knife or that he threw in "some type of smoke bombs" and a bomb that "spewed a noxious gas". Clearly, this is a deranged individual that was intent on hurting or killing people, no matter if he had to do it with a rusty nail and a spoon. This is no time for a knee jerk reaction, calling for the heads of all gun owners, nor is it the time to try to force people to give up their 2nd Amendment Rights.
But this isn't about politics. Or gun control. Or anything but the heartbreaking tragedy of the families of a group of people who just wanted to be the first to see a movie.
Even as I write this blog, I'm watching the sympathy pour out on Facebook, speckled with the inevitable "my cousin once visited a city in Colorado. Hope he's ok" type attention-mongering.
This kind of thing makes you worry- makes you wonder if you are safe going to a concert, or a festival- or yes, even going to a midnight premier of a movie. What else can you do though? You can't lock yourself in your home and wrap your family with bubble wrap- even then you aren't safe. You just have to realize that bad things are going to happen to good people. That this didn't happen because God wanted it to, but because some asshole decided to open fire in a theater. Bad things are going to keep happening and you just have to live your life as best you can and hope that you can get through your years on this earth without them happening to you and those you love the most. None of us are guaranteed 80 years of stress free happiness- I wish we were.
Today, it's time to just hold on a little longer when we hug, laugh a little louder when something tickles our funny bones and give just a little more of our love to those around us. If not for the pure pleasure of doing it, do it in honor of those who will never be able to hug their loved ones again.