Unfortunately, I engaged in a short discussion with someone perpetuating this speculative belief because they attempted to do just that, politicize the tragedy by shifting the blame from the shooter to those that restrict the use of guns in theaters. These are the actual words used in this "discussion;"
"In the 90 seconds before police arrived at the Aurora, CO crime scene, not one shot was fired at
the deranged perp in self-defense because both the city locally and the movie chain nationally
have strict gun control policies that restrict responsible civilian gun owners from carrying
When I responded "speculation at best..." (and that is all I said), his response was as follows;
"If you take a random sampling of 200 people (the size of the theater) in any state that allows
concealed carry you would find at least a few gun owners prepared to defend their lives. The
only speculation here is your lack of understanding as to how someone like me would respond
to such a threat if confronted with a life or death situation. Stop dreaming, the statistics prove
that gun ownership prevents crime and saves lives."
When I pointed out that the shooter was so well armed, the Aurora Chief of Police himself stated that initial police responders would have been killed and that in the darkened theater, with the shooter protecting himself with body armor and being armed with tear gas, explosives and magazines, he was prepared to kill everyone in the theater. I also pointed out that firing hand guns back at him in the chaos and darkness with flash explosions could have led instead to significant collateral damage. I told him the situation was not like those portrayed in Hollywood and that thinking like Rambo would not have helped in light of the reality of this shooting. His response?
"I know full well what was reported. I stated accurately that there was not one return shot fired
because of the gun control policy in Aurora and of that business. If you think that someone would
not have attempted to use a concealed weapon in self-defense under dire circumstance, then you
automatically assume the role of "victim." The murderer walked up the aisle and it doesn't take a
Rambo to attempt a head shot. I didn't say that the defender would be successful, but a few warriors
(a person with a non-victim mentality) could have made a difference and ended this assault. Telling
me how difficult the situation was does not change the fact that you either live your life as a victim or
as a warrior, you can't be both regardless of your intellectual position regarding gun control. Assuming
that every martial artist, legal gun owner wants to think and act like Rambo is naive, and I don't
appreciate the analogy."
"Attempt a head shot?" The guy was wearing a riot gear helmet with full body protection while racing through the theater. What if the shot attempted to take the shooter killed an innocent the bad guy had fortunately missed? What if fellow gun owners in the crowd saw a flash coming from a dark shrouded shooter and instead shot at you by mistake? What if police arrived, found several shooters and took them all out? Again, all of this conversation from my mere original and complete short response of "Speculation at best..." Bottom line, this entire debate is about nothing more than hindsight speculation. "What if...?" One thing is for sure, making this into a political statement by blaming restrictions on guns instead of the shooter for this tragedy is misplaced and frankly, sad. So what does my friend post today on his Facebook?
"I know I'm not supposed to mention this, but is it REALLY necessary for the President to make a
campaign stop in Aurora, Colorado tonight?"
Need I say more? Sadness abounds in America.