By now, all of my readers are unquestionably aware of the shooting in a theater in Aurora, Colorado during a screening of the new Batman movie, so I will not go into any real specifics regarding that – I know nothing that is not in the news, and there is not much information I would consider to be "factual" floating around there yet.
I would, however, like to say two quick things.
First, my rights should not and will not be restricted due to the actions of one murderous madman. I am not responsible for anyone’s actions other than my own, and I patently refuse to be held accountable for anyone’s actions but my own. Sure, punish this guy to the fullest extent of the law with my full and unwavering support, but the very second you start muttering about punishing everyone by way of increasing "gun control" on the basis of this one incident, you lose any support you might have had, much less the high ground itself.
The simple truth is I murdered no one last night. Tens of millions of law-abiding, firearm-owning American citizens murdered no one last night. As such, you have no right, no reason, and no standing to limit, restrict, regulate, control, legislate, or otherwise abrogate my personal, individual, and Constitutionally-protected rights in any way. None. So piss off.
Furthermore, given the apparently-"sophisticated" bombs the murderer rigged his apartment with, it is positively ludicrous to assume greater "gun control" would have derailed him from his intended path of murdering nearly a score of innocent people – a bomb would have accomplished that far faster, and probably would have racked up a larger kill count. I guess he wanted the more "personal" nature of shooting them down with a gun…
Second, to my fellow pro-rights activists, this is one situation where it is very difficult to honestly say that a lawfully-armed citizen could have ended the situation with fewer people dead. The possibility unquestionably exists, but consider the circumstances: dark theater, shootout scene of the movie currently on the screen, packed the to the everloving gills, shooter dressed all in black, shooter leading off with two cans of something that may or may not be OC/tear gas, mass panic, everyone rushing for the exits, etc. etc. etc. The odds of being able to (a) identify the shooter, (2) get a clear line of sight, and (iii) draw, take aim, and make anything even approximating a clean, accurate shot are about nil.
This is not to say it could not have happened, just that it was very, very unlikely. This, of course, is not to say that theaters should ban firearms on their premises, or no one should carry to a theater; I am simply looking at the facts of the situation as impartially as I can. Trust me, I would definitely prefer that this situation had resolved itself with far fewer casualties – one of them the murderer himself – but we cannot just automatically say that armed private citizens definitively would have prevented this incident or cut it short.
This situation sucks hard enough to jump-start a Hoover no matter how you look at it; my sympathies and prayers are with the victims and their families and friends today. But please do not exploit their tragedies as an excuse to punish those who had absolutely nothing to do with it.