I didn't find out about the Aurora shooting until after I posted my review for The Dark Knight Rises. My wife and I caught an early showing, I banged out my thoughts when we got home, and then I turned on the television. I was tempted to take the review down, but the more I thought about it, the more I realized that my review needed to stay up. Not because it's the greatest review in the world, but because I won't let the act of a madman stop me from living my life.
I'm not sure how many people in that early morning crowd knew about the shooting. No one was talking about it or nervously joking that it could happen there. I think we were all in the dark, but I know that by the end of the day yesterday, everyone who planned to go see The Dark Knight Rises knew about what happened. And I'm certain that some of them decided to stay home.
It's an understandable reaction. A tragedy like this happens and it makes us afraid. That fear extended beyond some people staying home. Whenever there's a shooting like this, you have people calling for a ban on all guns. Or you have people who think that more people with guns in the theater would have helped. Some are calling for increased security and metal detectors at movie theaters and a ban on dressing up in fun costumes.
Over the next few days and weeks, we're going to hear people spouting off about why this really happened and what can be done to prevent the next tragedy. No matter what their position, it can usually be summed up like this: I don't want to be afraid anymore. We need to do something so I'm no longer afraid.
I'm not saying this to be insensitive to the victims of this tragedy. My heart goes out to them, because it is a tragedy and we all should be saddened by it. What I am saying is that we can't let this madman win, and he wins if we all are afraid because of him. We can't live our lives based on knee-jerk reactions, and we can't let fear rule the day.
That's why I'm impressed with the appeal from Ain't It Cool news to go see a movie this weekend. To show people like this maniac they they will not make us afraid, that they will not make us cower in fear. Not only that, but if you were planning to go see a movie, if you like going to a movie, then you owe it to yourself to go and do the thing you love. Life is about living.
If you truly want to honor the victims, don't give in to fear. Instead, realize that life is fleeting and precious and do your best to make the most of it. Don't let the media pundits and talking heads and bloviating blowhards make you afraid to leave the house. Don't let them use this tragedy to manipulate you. Don't buy into their fearful worldview. Instead, realize that you're better than that. You're going to live, you're going to go out, and if it's what you want, you're going to go see a movie.