Batman Shooting

If you haven’t noticed, someone went on a shooting spree at the midnight premier of Dark Knight Rises, in a Colorado suburb.

It is a sad day for those innocent movie goers, who were rewarded with violence, simply for having zeal for the Batman story and seeing the movie on opening day. It is also a tragedy for the families of the victims, who will struggle to make sense of the loss. It is a sad day for the family of the shooter, who will also have to make sense of what went wrong in his psyche.

Furthermore it is a sad day for anyone who was looking forward to seeing Batman last night or today, or this weekend. Because it is we, most of all, who share kinship with those who lost their lives Thursday night. It is not race, ideology, political leaning, class, that so much distinguishes these victims as much as the simple zeal for Batman. People who might be inspired by Batman and then go back into their lives and try harder, at parenting, at surviving, and being a good person, at sticking to their core values, at being aware of what matters.

Movies like these are violent, but the message they carry is of peace and courage in a world where veil always threatens to take over. Critics will attempt to tie this shooting with the violence in films, and a statement will be made regarding the ethics of violence in films. This is a loss for our culture. When we start blaming films for violence, it’s a slippery slope, and it can ruin films and the act of seeing them. With billions of movie fans, and one shooter, I think it is safe to say other factors were involved in this man’s psyche when he decided to become a murderer.

Will I see Batman today as planned? Yes. However, I will illogically now be looking around the theater constantly, ready to throw my body on anyone who enters with a shotgun and tear gas. I hope i will have the courage to take bullets because I am a 41 year old man – I have lived my life and can’t imagine a better way to die than saving a bunch of people at the Dark Knight Rises. The only problem is that others may get hurt, and as much as we all wish we were Batman, we are not.

The irony is palpable. The acts of violence in the comic book version of the Bane storyline are completely random and senseless, and this is devised by Bane to confuse law enforcement. The reason it is senseless is because the perpetrators Bane uses as pawns are insane – he can count on them to kill for no reason.

This act is one of the more senseless we’ve heard of, because the people targeted are fans of Batman, fans of bringing senseless violence to justice. In a very real way Bane’s persona has crossed over into reality for this one theater. Let’s hope Batman’s does, too, next time this happens. I will do my best to channel Batman if this happens on my watch. I hope those reading this will do the same.

My heart goes out to the people and families who were hurt by this tragedy, and to anyone who believes in justice and its many icons. We will overcome.

Batman - a masked, heavily armed, vengeful vigilante
James Holmes (the name of the apparent shooter) - a masked, heavily armed, vengeful vigilante

As numerous witnesses have now attested, he started shooting in the middle of a shooting sequence in the film, such that quite a number of people initially thought it was special effects or somehow part of the movie.

I really think you need to reconsider your position on this. Movie violence does help normalise real violence, and the Nolan Batman films are particularly brutal and utterly lacking in remorse. Heather Ledger won widespread praise for his portrayal of a sadistic psychopathic terrorist.

Besides which, anyone who goes to a cinema at 1 a.m. to see a movie they know will be horrifically violent, and takes their SIX YEAR OLD kid along with them, is hardly ‘innocent’. And that’s without getting into the question of how the police were on the scene instantly, and the implausibility of a masked gunman instantly turning himself over to the authorities without a struggle. Quite frankly, if you think this was just a lone nut going crazy and that there’s nothing more to the story then I suggest you need to get your head examined…

Not; James bond, nor Sherlock Holmes but.

Guns are too easy to get hold of, if you’re a member of a club then why not have guns at the club, or at least ammo. There needs at least to be a legal association between the person who buys the ammo or guns, and resale except through an appropriate vendor should be illegal. Why sell cs cans!

Stop pushing people about too much, if we could see what’s going on with them, then metaphorically we’d see them encased in a metal cage around their body, with all sorts of things sticking into them. We would look upon them and say to our friends; look at that guy, man if that were me it would send me crazy after a while. Their lives and ’pain’ must be excruciating, but its not pain nor anything visible.

So when they can take no more they either commit suicide or attack ‘the life they could not have’, their schools or the places where people who have the lives they don’t have go.

There are probably hundreds of thousands of them in the world.

We probably know one.

Society and the authorities regularly attacks them.

Is it so hard to understand that there is only so much a person can take, or is it just easier to say they are insane ~ even when they have it all worked out like this guy? Or that something just clicked in their heads and they lost it? Surely there is a causal process, and it is that we should be looking at and not the end of the process/blame for its own sake.

One thing is for sure; if they have a gun half cocked in their head, then all you need to do is place a gun in their hand and it will go off.

So don’t give them access to guns!

Do everything we can to avoid it, then at least we can say we have done all we can ~ and if we don’t then we are part of the problem.

Do a clean sweep of America [or any other country where possible], get rid of all the guns/weapons of any kind, don’t sell them except under strict conditions. don’t let people take guns home from their jobs [army security or whatever].


Amourpous are you an American? Are you aware of the constitution that the country was founded on? We’d be all fucked up if we start stripping things from the bill of rights because some people aren’t responsible. Yeah man, lets bring it all down to the lowest common denominator. Yes some people snap because they can’t take it, but it’s not common for many people to. Maybe those people are weak. Gotta let nature take it’s course man.

I really hope no one is stupid enough to do this.

Hoping for the impossible? I didn’t think you were religious…

Do you have an inside scoop that we don´t ?

Good one.

No I am not American, what’s the constitution; is it that thing which gave freedom for everyone but native Americans and blacks! [originally anyhow] Maybe it does need to be rewritten? I don’t see why it would be fucked up if you removed the cause of so many deaths every day. It may only be the odd person who’s lost it and goes on a killing spree, but there is a lot of gun crime generally [not to mention gangs etc]…

Approximately 45 murders are committed each day in the U.S. well…
17,034 divided by 365 days = 46.6684931506849315068493 per day.

More gun crimes are suicides than murders, as far as I know that doesn’t occur in nature.

If you can make a better world, why not do so?

  • I dont think its anything to do with films, although I do find many deplorable. you can see all the violence and perversion you want on HD TV but virtually no nude adult heterosexuals [or homosexuals], certainly not an erect penis ~ thats way to scary.

Look at the evidence above - the guy started shooting while shooting was going on the film. He behaved to a large extent like the hero in the film. The people who were actually there thought it might be part of the movie, that’s how similar it was to the movie. Whether you like it or not, those are several connections.

Look at what has actually been on the news - from ABC:

Doesn’t seem like the response of someone who is surprised that their son ‘just went crazy’.

It’s also a fact that the majority of spree killers either kill themselves or fight with the police until they get killed. Not very many just give themselves up, though some do (like Breivik).

For the slightly more conspiratorially minded, I will point out that this guy was a PhD student in neuroscience. Doesn’t sound like the sort of guy who would become a mass murderer, though of course that depends on what kind of neuroscience he was involved in…

Well, the constitution is a document that essentially forms the base of our government here. Alot of people see it as a way to balance power between the state and the group of individuals which the state represents.

There’s a whole section of it called “the bill of rights”. Basically, that section gives individuals rights so that they can ensure the freedoms that are supposed to come along with being a citizen of an exceptional nation.

Lots of stuff that seems pretty basic, but is actually alot more complicated than it seems at first glance.

So should we ban alcohol because of drunk drivers? They kill an awful lot of people.

If you ever check out the constitution, you might notice that the 18th amendment, (or the 8th amendment), I can’t remember right now, guarantees, “equal protection under the law” for all citizens. So if a native american, or a black person is a citizen, then they have the same protections as everyone else. Whether or not they execute the exercise of those rights successfully is up to them, we give people rights, but we’re not a nanny state.

Have you ever been confronted with the classic, cliche statement that, “if you make guns illegal then only criminals will have them”? Its sort of true. I’ve been carrying a concealed weapon, legally and with a permit since I was 21, and I kept an assault rifle in the trunk of my car between the ages of 18-21 until I could carry a handgun legally. Over the last ten years, living in birmingham, (a city with an incredible rate of violent crime), I’ve actually pulled the thing out and pointed at people more times than I can remember. It’s probably kept me from getting beaten and robbed quite a number of times.

There’s no way I could be for banning guns, pissing on the constitution, giving crooks an advantage, disarming people who are trying to defend themselves and who are otherwise innocent, and giving the cops the power to kick down every door without fear. I just couldn’t do it man.


Not; James bond, nor Sherlock Holmes but.

He thinks he is acting like that, or he is mocking the hero status of those who live the life he hasn’t been able to? Or maybe he just wanted to do the shooting when the lights were down, people were watching the film and the noise on the film would mask his gunshots.
I think he had the intention of getting away with it, no?


Sure its mostly admirable [ though all I know of it was on the TV show about john Adams life], but a bill of rights should protect the innocent from street gangs, murderers and burglars who may be induced to kill etc. the constitution appears to lack accountability, due to its fundamental nature, and can be exploited, no?

Perhaps as I said before there should be a very strict legal association between owners of guns and ammo. Lawbreakers should not be able to but them too. Maybe future technology will help, then guns wont be able to be shot except by their owners ~ but if anyone can buy a gun that would be futile?

No because the association is with drink + driving, not drinking responsible. As opposed to an equivalent association would be gun + in car, or being used while driving. each topic should be taken alone imho.

Lucky they didn’t have a gun too ~ surely. Equally, where you have excessive extreme crime, many other crimes will rise exponentially. You have to carry a gun so they guy who want your wallet has to, if Holmes didn’t have a gun there is no way he could have killed all those people, he’d probably just got his ass kicked.
Guns are illegal here in Britain, but not enforced strongly enough. We still have far less gun crime.

You have to do a proper job if it was to be done, extensive searches for weapons and prison for just having one anywhere.

What about in the event of a foreign invasion? Having grown up in Alabama, one of the most gun packing states in the US, I have to say that when I see a weapons cache discovered in the middle east in the news, sometimes my friends actually have more ordinance in their houses. Could you imagine what it’d be like coming here to try and invade? We have more guns probably in the US than the entire rest of the world combined. Every week where I live there is a gun show at a civic center, where 1000s of square feet of space are filled with guns, ammo, flak jackets, knives, survival equipment etc, and it’s all just individuals selling to individuals, circumventing the rules that govern licensed dealers. I’ve literally sold something like 6 or 7 guns in the last 3 months to strangers, with no paperwork, for cash without giving them my name. I suspect that you think there are alot of guns here, but that you might not realize the actual amount. Trying to disarm the most armed society in the world is gonna take alot more than an argument, or a vote.

All of the above? I don’t know. I’m just saying, to deny at this stage that there’s any connection between violence in movies and violence in movie theaters is a bit incredible.

Seems like it. We’ll see if he’s declared ‘temporarily insane’, like Clayton Osbon was recently.

I’m not saying it’s not connected. Of course it’s connected. Maybe the the film being released is what inspired him. But most people can watch violent films, and play violent video games for years without hurting a fly, so clearly, the problem is not the depiction of violence.

I have no access to ABC and wasn’t aware of any of that.

I have thought the same thing about foreign invasion of America, but you have plenty of nukes and the most powerful air-force in the world; who’s going to attack America? No-one would even attack Britain because we have nukes, but we don’t have such easy access to guns.

As to the latter, I realise it’s a big part of your culture and just how many there are, but selling to strangers with no paperwork [generally speaking here, I am not saying anything about you personally] must be a big part of the problem. Though as long as guns are prevalent guys like this would be able to get hold of them somehow.
Thing is, while that may be acceptable, on the other side of the coin you have gangs and massive gun crime, the whole thing doesn’t strike me as being a sophisticated civilisation. don’t you want to live in a country where your kids can walk the streets in safety, where you can drive around not thinking about your survival, and see a film etc.

Ya probably all of the above. The correlations does seam strong, but as smears has made clear, the gun culture in America is there even if you got rid of the violent, evil-minded and perverse movies. Equally so would all the problems which led to this man thinking about doing something like this.

Indeed he was most probably thinking that he’d either escape of if he got caught hed otherwise partly get away with it by pleading temporary insanity ~ even though it is clear to me that this was entirely preconceived.

A vigilante goes after criminals and tries to enforce law. Holmes wasn’t acting as a vigilante. So basically, you have that both Batman and Holmes were masked and heavily armed. The more important part, intent, seems pretty dissimilar between the two.

What really helps “normalise real violence” is real violence. To some extent you are right about violence in movies, but what’s the conclusion? That there should be less violence in movies?

I think it’s the manner in which it is done; no remorse, that’s particularly dehumanising. …and the messages in such films tend to back that up, there is no attempt at resolution by other means or feeling ashamed because for whatever reason they have just killed and or tortured a human being.

Thank you. I’m not really sure what SIATD is even asserting. The fact that the shooter mimicked the movie (which is debatable, I saw it today, and there’s no scene of batman shooting even one gun at all. If anything James Holmes was imitating Bane’s henchmen during a scene 30 min in when they shot up a bar.)

…anyway the fact that this psycho murderer chose batman and a theater as a foil for his evil doings doesn’t mean violence in films inspired him to do it.

The movie was about the following:

  1. Stand up for innocent people
  2. Do not kill (Batman’s prime weakness is his respect for the “6th commandment.” He refuses to kill villains, and will even save one from falling off a rooftop. He’d rather see justice served in prison.
  3. Don’t take your childhood anger out on innocent people.

These are important, perennial themes of good art, they are PROPAGANDA for an ETHICAL system that keeps us, in small part, from being animals, or celebrates our better instincts for altruism and cooperation. This is what inspired the comics, which were dark and violent, and it’s carried through in the films.

The propaganda works, and has for thousands of years. There may be small increases in violence here and there, but overall violence and mayhem is at an all time low, worldwide, and especially in modern civilization. Yes, there is still war, slavery, killing, etc., but the statistics show we live in the most peaceful time of the past 2,000 years, per capita.

SIATD seems to think it was a stunt planned by the 1% or Hollywood to boost sales. I can’t imagine the perverse paranoid world he’s living in if that’s the case. It’s just showbiz. If you’ve ever been on a set (i have) or in high offices (I have) you’d know these are just people selling a product and in many cases believe in what they’re doing. Batman is the people’s champ and does a lot more good than harm.

There is a time for violence. It is deep in our heritage. All of us live today by the courage of our forefathers to fight. The fights were bloody, the bad guys were craven and depraved, and it does us no harm to relive good vs. evil, blood and all, to remind us of what’s deep within us.

As batman said at the end (SPOILER ALERT)…

“Anyone can be a hero. Heroism lives even in something as simple as an average man putting a coat on a little boy’s shoulders to let him know the world is not ending…”

SIATD, the world is not ending. As Monooq might ask…(removed by poster as result of warning.)