Can’t get it out of my head. That story about those two young people who went to a movie back in California, only to be executed by a guy who came up behind them and shot them in the backs of their heads. It was the latest “Purge” movie, and the sound was so loud that none of the other moviegoers heard the shots being fired. The young couple were found by a cleaning crew that showed up after the movie ended.
Made me think back to a similar incident at a movie theater in Aurora Colorado a few years ago with 12 dead and 70 injured, 58 from gunfire. This time only two were killed. An 18 year-old and a 19 year-old, both allegedly murdered by a 20 year-old, all attending a movie with a rancid plotline designed to target their demographic.
You have to wonder if the shooter was following suit with the screenwriter’s rank imagination.
We were still in Los Angeles, when the Aurora shooting took place. I remember having concerns about going out to a movie, especially in the afternoon in that big theater with only a few moviegoers in the seats. I remember wondering if some loon with a gun might wander in and just open up, just as the gunman had done in Aurora. If someone opened up on you out on the freeway you were at least in your car. But there, in a theater, you had nothing between you and the gunman. No car to hide in. You couldn’t step on the gas to try and get away.
It feels as though it just keeps getting worse. It feels as though nothing is being done to stop the slaughter as fear continues to grow.
I thought about fear yesterday, as I spotted a black pickup on a local highway. It was all decked out in black and white, flying a big black and white “Don’t Tread On Me” flag from a pole in the truck’s bed. The words “We The People” were stenciled in the rear window next to a big white skull with teeth that looked like they were melting from the skull’s lower jaw. I later learned the skull is from some comic, that it represents a character called the “Punisher,” and wondered exactly what message the truck’s owner is attempting to convey, although I’m pretty sure it has something to do with fear.
Even now I have friends who are buying guns while newspapers run stories about the country’s ongoing ammunition shortage. My fellow Americans, it seems, can’t get their hands on enough guns and ammunition.
For its part, Hollywood, keeps pushing the “Purge” and other films of a similarly murderous ilk while the country remains on a psychological razor’s edge from the Covid pandemic. At the same time, facts be damned, millions of Trump supporters refuse to accept reality about the pandemic or the validity of the election or our need for gun control. Never wanting to let a bad thing pass them by, the Russians apparently continue doing all they can to seed social media with disinformation designed to tear us even farther apart.
You’ll have to forgive me for being a little concerned.