Saturday, July 21, 2012
Aurora, CO. July 20th, 2012. 12:39 AM
This is sure as hell not the way I wanted to wrap up a week of Batman themed posts.
Unless you have been in a coma for the last 24 hours or so, you know about the horrific shooting in a Colorado movie theater in the very wee hours of this morning. I'm not going to rehash all of the details here. The truth is, even after a full day, the details are still pretty sketchy. I imagine that much will become clear (or, at least, clearer) over the next few days.
Right now, I am more interested in the various responses to the tragedy.
True to form, "The Media" began it's news reporting day by wetting itself over what could be a Pulitzer and Emmy worthy story. Every news broadcast, every radio talk show devoted every single goddamned minute to the story. By the time we got to the 11 'o Clock AM news, I was wondering how they were going to tie the shooting in with the weather report.
As the day wore on most of the media outlets began flailing around, trying to keep the story going, with no new information to report. This is not a unique situation. It happens whenever there is a story of this magnitude. Watching reporters and anchors go from initial enthusiastic reportage to that "deer in headlights" look as they realize that they have said all there is to be said four hours ago is one part amusing to two parts sad. But, God bless 'em, they do soldier on!
I should give positive recognition to a couple of outlets here in Los Angeles.
CBS affiliates KCBS Channel 2 and KTLA Channel 9 resisted the urge to call the shootings anything like "The Batman Massacre" or "The Dark Knight Rises Movie Shootings." (Unlike CBS and ABC national news who did just that.)
And, to former KNBC anchor and current KTLK radio personality David Cruz, who not only called out the media outlets who did succumb to the temptation, but also used his considerable Colorado connections to investigate far deeper into the story than any of the TV stations did.
But, no praise goes to the usually reliable and venerable Associated Press, who lowered themselves to posting this story, (rife with inaccuracies and wild speculation,) or to CBS' "48 Hours Special Report" and so many newspapers, who picked up the story and ran with it.
No surprise, both sides of the gun debate came out (forgive the idom) "both barrels blazing." The arguments, predictable. The Blog, of course, has his two cents to contribute to that argument. And, if you have been following for a while, you know where I stand on the topic. And, I will talk about it in a day or two. But, tonight is not the time or place for it.
President Obama and candidate Romney both suspended campaigning for the day and used their scheduled campaign stops to express their condolences to the victims and their families. For a few minutes, at least, both candidates were in complete agreement.
Lesser politicians were not so classy. Like this idiot.
Of course, the "social media" has been hopping. Here are a couple of my favorite posts from Facebook and Twitter....
From comedy writer and internet satirist Andy Borowitz...
"Dear Internet People: Maybe choose another day to make pro-gun statements. Sincerely, Good Taste"
From Cass McCune, friend of The Blog's sister and wife of Hollywood special effects legend John Dykstra...
"You never wake up with stories about how someone with a bunch of guns saved lives."
From "Star Trek's" George Takei...
And a really cool idea that is going viral on Facebook...
One of the shooting victims was a young woman named Jessica Redfield. Her tragic death at the hands of this lunatic is even more chilling when you read the last post to her blog, dated June 5th, 2012.
The Blog has some questions and some wildly irresponsible speculation about the shooter. (I feel like I don't want to contribute to his infamy by calling him by name. So, I wont.) We will see what new information tomorrow brings. And then I will comment further.
My thoughts are with the victims, their families and the survivors.
That's all for tonight.