Editorials

EDITORIAL: The timing is perfect for productive discussions about preventing the next Aurora movie massacre

Too soon? Can’t Hickenlooper and others see that it’s too late for the 12 people Holmes slaughtered, the dozens more he injured, and the hundreds that he terrorized?

There’s no denying the pain from the horror accused movie massacre shooter James Holmes inflicted on Aurora is still raw.

For so many of the victims and families, the agony he caused during his July 20 rampage at the Century 16 Aurora theater will never end.

But elected leaders are dead wrong in saying that in the midst of all this suffering, that the community must wait to discuss the massacre, and how to prevent another one.

The Aurora Sentinel and many prominent national and community leaders are renewing calls to look at gun control and other issues in an effort to prevent another senseless slaughter.

That prompted Gov, John Hickenlooper and others to tell reporters that it’s “too soon” to address whether gun control or anything else might protect the public from people like Holmes.

Too soon? Can’t Hickenlooper and others see that it’s too late for the 12 people Holmes slaughtered, the dozens more he injured, and the hundreds that he terrorized?

Too soon? That’s talking politics, not good sense.

This is exactly the time to convene a bi-partisan panel of state lawmakers and others to address how it is that even after Virginia Tech, after Tucson, after Columbine High School, after Binghamton, after Killeen, so many people who send off signals that real trouble is brewing manage to get powerfully lethal weapons and carry out plans to slaughter people?

These politicians dismiss Colorado residents who don’t want to fall behind the fatalism of those who shrug and say there’s nothing we can do to prevent another senseless massacre.

Colorado and the rest of the country are gearing up for fall elections, and there’s every reason to insist candidates for state legislature, Congress and the White House answer questions about how legislation limiting access to the most lethal of weapons might limit or prevent massacres as they’ve limited them in other parts of the world.

Colorado needs leaders like Hickenlooper and others to explain that gun control isn’t an all-or-none proposition. Just because the U.S. Constitution permits the rights of citizens to carry guns, it doesn’t mean we all have the right to carry weapons of mass destruction, which is what Holmes legally toted into Aurora’s fateful theater.

Colorado needs leaders like President Barack Obama to lead discussions about ways to track who has what kind of ammunition and how much.

No one but the government can lead the state and the country in discussions about how better to spot people like Holmes and act in some way to keep them from carrying out murderous plans.

In a country where we pat down old women at airports and make a scene when  airline passengers bring the wrong size of toothpaste in their carry-on luggage, surely we can require school officials and others to drop a dime when students make it clear that things are going very, very wrong.

It’s simply too jaded to believe that we must resign ourselves to live in a society where we must be afraid to go to the movies, or send our children to school, or attend a political rally.

It is unacceptable to resign ourselves to the insistence of some that America’s special brand of freedom carries a price tag of allowing our to neighbors to carry out mass murder. That’s not freedom; it’s extortion.

It’s not too soon, but absolutely the right time for political candidates and elected leaders to lead discussions about what we can do to prevent the next round of terror. Now, while the public is as tuned into the issue as are the special interest groups that have created the policies and laws we all currently live and suffer under.

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  • Gofastgo

    Although the Sentinel has written many wrong-headed columns of how great Obama is and what should be done to ‘prevent’ another massacre as the one in Aurora, (these conservations always come up after such an event), this one may take the cake. 

    Has the Sentinel read it’s own paper?  Dr. Fenton and a ‘team’ of people formed to ‘prevent’ just this sort of behavior was formed (and many others I’ve found across our nation) after VA. Tech and other murderous rampages on college campuses and in our military (the military overlooked Hassan because he was a Muslim, would have been politcally incorrect to throw him out, but they cracked down AFTER he murdered 32 and wounded many others at Ft. Hood)

    “we must take steps to make sure this never happens again’.  How many times have you listened or read those words?  Thousands of times in my life.  The funny part about this article is that ‘teams of experts’ were formed to prevent this type of behavior, look how well it worked.  As far as gun control, it doesn’t work and won’t work, please just stop with the ‘gun control’ talk.  We are already regulated to the point of ridiculousness, and you want more ‘checks and pat downs’?  I’ll pass.

  • theQ

    There is no mechanism you can put in place to stop this sort of thing..you would have to have every public function controlled with law enforcement…impossible to do…impossible to pay for….stop breeding these idiots is you only hope.

  • Frank25

    Laws are written to punish (and hopefully send message to copycats not to do same thing), but will never have any effect until parents have authority over the children, and children grow up not wanting to tarnish the family name.  Our churches teach “only their religion will get you to heaven”, and having attended many over my 83 years, I know this to be a true statement.  Yet most religions originally came from what is now middle east.   People have developed different ideas and practices.  Our ancestors came to this continent to get away from constant wars in Europe, Famine, and killings.   But last 4 years, have moved us closer to European ways.  Society teaches our children “not to obey parents”  and they grow up with divorce, family and societal conflict.   Hope and Change was not a solution, and I see too many who no longer have trust in government, leaders, peer groups, or the law.   I personally don’t see how we will get out of this in my lifetime, no matter who we elect.  i know i don’t want 4 more years like last 4.  We need leadership from top down, not from behind with delays and indecision.   Government has too much control over citizens, environment, our living, AND THEY DO NOT KNOW HOW TO CONTROL  THEMSELVES.

  • J Blair

    several witnesses reported a second shooter. See “The James Holmes Conspiracy” on youtube

  • http://twitter.com/WinningGold ET Mom

    A good start is to have access to the information. Now they are saying that Holmes saw 3 mental health professionals at CU. What happened there?.

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