Knockin’ on Heaven’s door

As probably the site’s only comic book enthusiast (lapsed) I feel great sorrow, as I’m sure everyone else does, about the events in Colorado. It’s still not known what made the madman go on the rampage. Some in the comic book fraternity say that there is a scene in an old Batman book that mirrors what happened. This was when the scriptwriters at DC comics started writing about more adult-orientated themes in their books; the old Comics Code Authority was washed away. Personally, I don’t think this was the reason for the tragedy. Time will tell.

The broader picture far from the graphic novels is gun control in the States. There are many instances of massacres of this nature and it has to be stopped somehow. I know the NRA carries a lot of weight in the land of the free but something has to be done. The IRA bombing at Enniskillen on Poppy Day 1987 lost the terrorists a lot of support. When will a shooting outrage be one too far for the gun lobby? I’m not a weak-willed liberal in any way but there’s just too many maniacs running about with guns, legally.

Although I’m a Marvel fan born and bred I was looking forward to seeing The Dark Knight Rises. Superhero films can be formulaic and not as good as the books (just like in real literature), this Batman series has been a cut above the rest. I’ll wait till the DVD comes out. And even then, I might give it a miss.

I don’t think I’d be able to concentrate on the film in a cinema not because I feared a copycat killing, the odds are stacked against that. At the back of my mind would be the terror that those innocent people endured. For some it was the last thing they seen.

13 thoughts on “Knockin’ on Heaven’s door”

  1. But in this country, most of the guns used in crime are illegal, so banning them obviously does not work. I suggest that the punishment for illegal possession or use of guns should be FAR more rigorous, to the point of lethal force..

  2. Gun crime is on the rise in this country, FEEG, of that there is no question. Without the stats to back this up, I’d say the majority were tit-for-tat “gangster” shootings. We’ve had our share of lunatic killers but not on the scale of America. It’s a big problem that they have to address.

  3. California has very strict gun laws and extremely high gun crime. Vermont has very liberal gun laws and very little gun crime. Minnesota, Nebraska, Iowa, and North Dakota also have liberal gun laws and very little gun crime. Compare that, again, to New York State, New Jersey, etc. Guns are no more responsible for crime than spoons are responsible for obesity.

    Taking guns from people will only give criminals an advantage. Do you think they care what gun laws say?
    Do you think the gang wars in Los Angeles would be disrupted by restricted access to firearms? Do you really think that the gang wars in Chicago would suddenly end if hand-guns were banned? The US Supreme Court has ruled that the police are also not obligated to protect anyone. Self-defence is the remit, the responsibility of the individual. People must defend their own homes, their own persons. Do you really think that criminals care what the laws say? They will get their guns but their victims won’t.

    Germany, with its strict gun-control laws still has shootings. Finland recently had a shooting — and it has stricter gun control laws. Gun crime is rising in the UK even though most people do not have easy access to guns. As usual those who advocate stricter gun control are seeking, in effect, to penalise those who do obey laws — who do behave responsibly. That is, in the end, the greatest result.

  4. Chris, I couldn’t agree more!

    Comics, films and computer games have made disgusting levels of violence all too accessible to children and young adults. They become hardened to it and behave frequently in an imitative manner. Is any one surprised that they grow up into psychotic killers?
    I’m not in the slightest.
    The rot really set in when the censors abandoned rigorous age controls. You only have to look at the original batman films that are pretty innocuous and look at the clips of the latest offerings, not only violent but sadistic in intent. Very ugly indeed.
    Hollywood needs to stop churning out such perverse crap.

  5. I should also add that ms that are far away from any live in isolated areas that are far away from any police presence. Should something happen they would be long dead before the police could come. The town where I presently am staying is over 70 square miles in size with only 2 dedicated policemen to look out for over 5,000 people. A few other patrols come in from the main towns in the county, but it can easily take 40 minutes for them to arrive. Even in urban areas, including Stockton, California, the sheriff has admitted that he can no longer protect people from violent crime and has started issuing concealed-carry permits as the police are over-stretched. That is an increasing trend in the US.

  6. CO: I can’t help, when I hear demands for more gun control, of people like one of my friends — a 5-foot-tall, 8-stone woman who spends most of the time alone out far from town in the middle of fields where thousands of migrant workers, mostly from Mexico and not always of the best sort, work and live. More than once she’s been threatened by them. Should she be raped and killed because someone feels worried about her having guns to defend herself?

  7. The massacre is indeed a tragedy, my sympathies and prayers are with the people of Colorado.

    The Batman movie opens here on July 27th with a ‘no persons under 13’ age restriction.

  8. Isn’t the US problem now that people get guns because other people have them? The scale of gun ownership and crime, which as Christopher says seems now to be unaffected by local legislation, are beyond anything we can even imagine in the Old Worlde. Schools even have to worry about their kids carrying firearms. Is anybody here going to say that’s OK and there is no need for achange of culture?

  9. Janus: what needs to change IS the culture. (My apologies for using big letters, I’m not quite sure how to put words in italics on wordpress) Guns themselves do not kill, harm, or maim anyone. It’s the people that use them. What shocked me on my first holiday in Asia was the cohesiveness of society there. Even if politics was polarising, as it is in Taiwan especially, people still agree to share the same streets — and air — with each other. In the US that seems less and less the case. In the places that still have social cohesion — be it North Dakota, Nebraska, or Wyoming there is very, very little crime. People can — and do — go about their daily lives without worrying about such things as locking their doors. The most violent states in the US — Florida, Nevada, Louisiana, etc all share numerous broken communities and a general lack of cohesion. People cannot abide being looked at the wrong way and will seek to prevent those who displease them from sharing the same air.

    Colorado, by the way, has had a high number of tragedies. It’s a bizarre place. The vibe of the place is off and I’ve never met anyone from the state I actually liked.

  10. So communities are ‘broken’ and guns are the norm – ergo gun crime. If easily available guns were taken out of the equation wouldn’t the crime be less violent? Europe knows all about broken communities but luckily guns are only involved among a minority.

  11. Janus: guns are not that easily availible. I cannot, for example, simply go to a gun store and buy a gun.
    I first have to undergo a background check. I also have to prove that I’ve completed gun safety courses that meet state standards. Once I do that I have to register the gun and have my vitals entered into a federal database. Every time I buy bullets I have to give my vitals. If I were a criminal I would simply go to the underworld, I’d simply buy stolen guns or guns that were smuggled in from Mexico.

  12. I couldn’t buy a gun either here in WA, I’m not a native, end of!

    Colorado is one of those places where everyone appears to come from somewhere else. True about Nevada and Florida too. Colorado is also excessively expensive for the price of housing. I looked there first when we started to consider leaving Dallas. That plus the beastly heat and drought is enough to drive anyone crazed.

    Society becomes disengaged when there is too much of an influx of people from elsewhere, too quickly to be absorbed into the structure. Exacerbated by different races and religions. Bad enough if they are the same as the hosts, much more difficult if they differ significantly.
    Colorado is full of strange religious cults etc, I think it is the heat!

    Up here where it is a homogeneous white, Christian (normal) farming community with no major city you could leave your doors and windows open for months and nothing would appear except the odd deer or bear! Our windows have been wide open since May! There has been two murders out here in the County in 9 years, one drug gang related hired killing and one domestic murder.

    So it really isn’t a pan american problem, more like a problem in some parts of the USA, especially those that have too many incomers.

    It appears that the perpetrator of this latest crime thinks he is part of the movie and has informed the police that he is the joker. Yeah right! Which rather bears out my no 4.

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