The Aurora Affect

Since the tragedy in Aurora, CO yesterday, I’ve noticed a great many things about people and their reactions. You can call me whatever you wish, but it will forever fascinate me how people are and how they act and react in any situation, especially a situation such as this. For example, in the aftermath of 9/11, I witnessed a shared sorrow the likes of which I’d never seen in my lifetime. People of all races and walks of life came together in their grief and for a while, we were one. Even more interestingly, that bond continues to this day. Mention 9/11 to anyone and chances are they’ll get misty-eyed and sentimental. That restored my faith in humankind. It was beautiful, though the cause was horrific.

But then you have situations like Aurora and the affect it has on people. While it’s true that people are saddened, some taking it to the next level and being angry or outraged, it’s also true that some folks are going a little out of their minds. I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but if you’re on Facebook, I’m sure you have. For the one or two of you that aren’t on the Facebook or the twitter, I’ll tell you I’m talking about.

I’ve been seeing a lot of posts and photos saying that if even 1 person in the theater would’ve had a concealed gun, they could’ve stopped Holmes. I can’t believe that anyone would be so stupid as to think that’s even close to a logical thought. Don’t worry; I’m going to tell you why.

The majority of police shootouts happen within a distance of 7 feet. And during those shootouts, 75% of the shots miss their target. You’re probably wondering how trained professionals could be so inaccurate with their shooting, especially at such close range. Well it’s easy. In the heat of the moment, when your life is hanging in the balance and death is staring you in the face, your body changes. Your heart accelerates, you breathing changes, even your focus and vision change. So while you may be a hell of a marksman on the range, that doesn’t matter now. Not here, not while you’re fighting for your life.

So let me ask you this: If a trained professional can’t be accurate in a situation like that, what makes you think you can? Let’s say you were in the theater in Aurora and Holmes had started shooting. Let’s say you had your concealed gun tucked into the waistband of your jeans. You decide that this is it. This is the moment you’ve been waiting for. This is your time to shine, to be the hero and the badass you think you are. You pull your gun and stand, only feet from the shooter. Keep in mind that there is mass chaos as hundreds of people run around in a panic. Add to that the tear gas and confusion. Could you do it? Could you hit the shooter without taking out an innocent bystander? No. No you couldn’t. Police officers miss 75% of the time within 7 feet, and that’s without the tear gas, without the hundreds of innocent bystanders, and without the panic and confusion. If they can’t do it, you can’t do it.

Everyone dreams of being a hero and a badass, of being the person who swoops in and saves a room full of people. It’s normal. What’s not normal is thinking that the way to stop violence is with more violence.

I believe that people should have the right to have guns for hunting or sport. I do NOT believe that assault rifles are necessary, and I ABSOLUTELY DO NOT believe people should be allowed to carry concealed weapons. Why? Because I know a lot of people who do, and they’re all idiots. They’re the people who would be shooting off wild shots in a crowd of scared people in a lame attempt to stop a shooter, ignorantly unaware that they’re killing more people than he is. They’re the ones who think they’re a hero because they have a gun. They’re untrained and unaware. They’re a dangerous group of people.

All that being said, the affect the Aurora tragedy has on us is powerful. We all know that it could’ve been any one of us in that theater. It still could be, for there are more unstable people in the world. Sadly, we haven’t seen the last tragedy. And as long as people are obsessed with weapons and violence, we won’t.

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About Kimberly A Bettes

I whittle away the minutes of my life by entertaining myself with various projects and people. One thing is certain. I'm never bored. I also write stuff and take pictures of things.

Posted on July 21, 2012, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. 7 Comments.

  1. You have a very cogent argument Kimberly . I think 9/11 may have brought people closer because it’s the first time Americans realised there was a viable threat from outside that could do things on such a scale. These smaller disasters don’t but should create that bond of shock and horror. Most of these crimes are committed by loners. They’ve been noted as such in school. There are psychological tests which could help determine those most likely to be capable of such acts. Maybe they should be introduced to schools so the authorities can make sure no guns are ever licensed to these people. But I suppose the problem there is that guns are readily available on the streets. So maybe it’s time to clamp down on that too, and no-one licensed to carry in the streets with an automatic sentence for those found with concealed weapons.
    I don’t know the answers as to why someone can kill innocent people and my heart goes out to the families of the dead and to all the injured people. I just wish I could read that the U,S, had solved it’s gun crimes and removed guns from most of the population to prevent more of this.

    • I wish for the same thing. But I’m also aware that if someone has it in them to kill, they’ll do it with or without a gun; however the body count would be far less if the killer walked into a crowded room wielding a knife instead of an assault rifle.

      It’s a terrible thing. I try to understand what makes a person cross that line and become the monster who opens fire into a group of people, but I just can’t wrap my mind around it. Personally, I could never, ever do such a thing for any reason. But there sure are a lot of folks who do it.

      As for our guns being diminished and controlled, as much as I wish that were the case, I don’t see it ever happening. Republicans shout from the rooftops that Democrats want to take away guns, which leads many people to cling tighter to theirs. In reality, the only gun issues that are ever a debate are whether or not to ban assault rifles. No one has the sense to realize that the government doesn’t care if you have hunting rifles or pistols. So gun sales skyrocket. It was on the news yesterday that gun sales are up 23%. It’ll never end.

      Thanks for weighing in!

  2. Well Kim since I am one of the people who posted the comment -had someone ELSE had a gun the out come of this tragedy may have been different – let me say first – I had no thought of anyone being a ‘BADASS or HERO’ I simply thought of those people having at least some small chance of LIVING. As far as what happens to your body in a crisis situation, I am also well aware that different people react in different ways. The one time I had to react to a life and death threat I went into ‘tunnel vision’ all I could see was the man I was aiming at, and the fact that I am alive today testifies to the fact that I hit my target and HAD I NOT HAD A GUN I WOULD NOT BE ALIVE! So of course I ABSOLUTELY BELIEVE IN THE RIGHT TO CONCEAL/CARRY – since it saved my life one time! Because once is all it takes to be pushing up daisies. No one life is more important than MINE, except for my childrens & their childrens – anyone else best be able to defend themselves! Isn’t it odd how two cousins can have such different opinions?

  3. It sure is! If I were in a restaurant or something and an armed man walked in shooting, I’d rather a gun too. But chances are, I would only make things worse. I’m sure there have been plenty of times when a crime has or could’ve been stopped by someone with a gun of their own. But I still feel that the majority of the time, it would hinder not help the situation. (And there were several people who said even 1 gun carrier in the theater could’ve pretended this; there were even pictures with those captions.)

  4. I’m of the attitude that criminals are COWARDS and when fired upon, they will be the ones running and screaming. Why do you think the “Batcrazy Batman shooter” chose a venue where guns are BANNED????? Why didn’t he attack a police station or the nearby military base? Why did he use a smoke bomb on a theater full of unarmed innocents? He took every advantage he could get and still shot most of his victims in the back. I believe we should encourage more lawful citizens to carry concealed weapons. What other defense would the crowd have had? Nothing!

  5. Criminals are definitely cowards, I absolutely agree. But if there really is a mental instability or if the shooter is on drugs of some sort, that would give him courage. (That’s not the case here obviously because he shot children and even rigged his apartment so the police wouldn’t arrive in time to shoot him. Which also is concrete proof that this was a premeditated act, so I can’t believe that’s even a debatable issue in court.) I don’t mind trained professionals carrying concealed weapons (by that I mean military personnel, police officers – former and present, etc. NOT the bozos with a Rambo complex. They’re the ones I know who are more likely to cause more harm than good, even in an emergency situation.) But I definitely see your point. Thanks for weighing in!

  6. Pistols tend not to shoot independently, individuals shoot guns. Each of the marker laws on the planet won’t stop somebody coming from using a marker like a instrument, exactly like many people start using a kimberley camping tours
    , hammer, blade, cutlery, or another instrument they would like to work with to wipe out somebody having. A felony will not let the law of any type to halt these people coming from do harm as long as they prefer to. This is the reality of living.

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