Long Term Effects Of The Batman Shooting Redux (From Aurora, Colorado)

A few days ago I write about the potential long term effects of the Batman shooting. This will be an update.

By now most who are reading know I live in Aurora, Colorado, about a half mile from the theater where the shooting took place.  Working at home, I’m fairly isolated and therefore insulated from this tragedy which is still unfolding here. I don’t really know who all was shot, what their condition is, who was in the theater and who may be related to one of the victims until I (or my husband) runs into someone who tells us something.

Several days ago we found out that my husband knows the grandfather of one of the boys who was killed and we heard secondhand that the family was having a very hard time.  Today I went to the hair salon and found out one of the mothers had her hair done there to go her son’s funeral. This is how this is touching people here.

On topic, I have written about my manicurist over the years, she has 4 kids between the ages of 12 and 18. Her daughter asked if she could go to the theater that night and she said, no.  “You’re too young,” she said. Later that night, the family was awake (these are young parents) when the kids started getting texts about the shooting.  Yeah, they found out right after it happened…within minutes and they turned on the TV and apparently watched for a couple of hours.

Further, one of that same daughter’s  friends DID go to the theater that night, and she was one of the people shot, but not killed.

“Lemme ask you something,” I said. “How do your kids feel about going to the movies after this?”

She waved her hand. “No,” she said. “They don’t want to go to the movies after this. I don’t think any my kids are ever going to go the movies again.”

I thought it was a strong statement, but she’s a Sadge and if you ask her a question, she’ll answer it.

I don’t think people across the country are taking this in the same way, but I don’t know.  Around here,  people, kids in particular, do not seem interested in going into a theater to think about what happened.

I want to point out one other thing.   Awhile back, I wrote about Charles Manson.  Most know his name but I bet that young people don’t know that prior to those murders, people did not lock the doors of their house. No one used to lock their doors and it was that event that impacted the collective in this way. Just so you know how things change.

How have the children in your city reacted to the murders?


Long Term Effects Of The Batman Shooting Redux (From Aurora, Colorado) — 20 Comments

  1. There are similar stories playing out here – children, people afraid to go to the movies. An article today qouting a person who went, got a little “freaked” and was looking to see where the emergency exits are.

    Very sad state of affairs.

  2. I live in a very small town with a very old movie theatre. We get the newer but not brand new movies here and its very inexpensive $3.50 a person so a lot of families attend every week.

    I now have to avoid the theatre – it makes me sad that something I found so charming and fun when we moved here is now something else in my world to dread and worry about.

    I hope they punish that man to the furthest extent of the law – but it still won’t be enough to help those families and that makes me very sad.

  3. Mine are too little to know what’s happened, unless I tell them. They love going to the movies (we see all G or PG), so I’m trying to figure out how to tell them. It’s gonna have an impact, especially on the oldest, I’m sure. Just trying to figure out the right way to go about it,

  4. For what it’s worth, music4am, if they are too young to know unless you tell them, I don’t think they need to know. They can live in sweet innocence of the horror of some aspects of life a little longer.

    My daughter is also too young to know unless I tell her. I don’t plan to tell her. As for me, I can’t really even imagine going to see that movie in the theater. I’ve worried about copycats, yes. I imagine that I’ll think about it the next time I consider going to an action flick or a movie that has violence.

  5. I don’t have children but went to the movies last Saturday night (a 7:30p show). I was shocked at how many people *weren’t* there. That theater is always packed (it’s a multi-plex). My movie was in one of the smaller theaters, but it was full. Right before the previews started, a younger man got up and checked to make sure the emergency exit door was properly closed. (The shooter apparently had propped the door open in CO.) Other people in the theater thanked him for checking it…

  6. (one more—sorry, thoughts are trickling in) I do remember kids being there but they were younger and with their parents; perhaps they didn’t know about what happened. I don’t remember seeing a lot of teens and that would normally be a *prime* teen hang out spot.

  7. I told my husband about this post, and what I heard in the salon. He’s already aware of my son’s feelings. I told him I would go to a movie and asked him what he thought. “I’d go too, but I’ll be armed.”

    So that’s that. All of us have been in Century 16 in the month prior.

  8. The only reaction I’ve had from any of my kids is from the Aquarian. He was furious. He went to the movies to see Batman two days after for the mere fact of defiance. He said he was tired of criminals dictating what was safe or ok to do and what wasn’t. About 5 friends or so went with him for the same reason.

  9. I generally don’t go to movies because they are too expensive and I’m not a big movie buff. I prefer to wait until they’re on video because I can watch them on my flat screen with my surround sound and homemade popcorn.

    The shooting, however, won’t stop me from going to the movies. I live in a city with a very high murder rate. I just had a friend lose her brother and cousin in a freak car accident. They were coming from the brother’s 1 year old’s baptism/birthday party. Life is short and you are really never safe.

    My husband read a statistic somewhere that there has been a 25% drop in people going to movies across the US. Not sure where he read that and cannot attest to the accuracy of the statistic but I wouldn’t be surprised if there has been some sort of decrease.

  10. All the kids I know are too little, except for my godson and he doesn’t go to movies.

    I am so sorry about this. I love going to the movies (12th House Neptune) and this won’t change that.

    It makes me sad that fear informs behaviour but at the same time it seems natural that it does. This makes me think of how one idiot’s joke/threat about having poison in a water bottle has affected hundreds of millions of travelers, with their toiletries and ability to carry their own water bottle past an airport security gate. Ugh

    Leoman grew up in the area and era of the Green River Killer and it definitely caused the loss of innocence for many. Same up here with child killer Clifford Olson. Kids were being picked off left and right. How can this not have impact?


  11. I don’t think people across the country are taking this in the same way, but I don’t know. from your post Elsa.

    My husband and I knew two people who died on 9/11. A New York City firefighter at the towers and one in the plane that hit the 1st tower. Not a day goes by that I don’t think of that tragedy, but I don’t think that day resonates w/most people — life goes on and the memory becomes, “oh, yeah, that.” I see the storyline of the Aurora tragedy fading in the news and fading from conversations about current events w/people; if the subject does surface–it’s short-lived. Unless you have a personal connection–which all of Colorado and the especially residents of Aurora– the story becomes another, “oh, yeah, that.”

  12. First, you’ve posted a very profound picture.

    Do you remember for about one week after 9/11, people were so polite to each other? People held the door for you when you entered a public place, churches filled to the perimeter of the structure, drivers let you cue in line in traffic? That faded after about one week. All this fades from most people’s memory; it becomes just another event. Those of us on your site have a different perspective because we study human nature and most members are like-minded.

  13. Gun violence is now a fact of life in the United States, a ‘natural’ event as unpredictable as the weather and there’s nothing we can do about it except go about our lives with the belief that it will never happen to us and gather together in the aftermath to help the victims.

    How can that not take a toll?

  14. My children & I went to the midnight showing *here* and about 20 minutes into the movie I started crying. All I wanted to do was leave and go sit in the car alone. My daughter asked my son what he had done to break mom and I simply told her to be quiet.

    No, the empathy doesn’t ever last for lone unless intimately connected. Physically, like Elsa and her community or like others of us who can sense and feel sorrow on its way ahead of time.

    My family and I went through the Federal Building bombing in OKC. I was at ground zero within 15 minutes to find my sister. My children are unaffected by what has happened in Aurora; they have been inoculated.

    Get rid of the guns and there will be chemicals, knives, fists, rocks, you name it, to deal with. The inanimate objects are not the problem. Humanity’s emotional/desire nature Is.

  15. Because we live in a small rural community, all of the kids felt far from Aurora and the shootings. But this week, a 15 year old was attacked while she was moving pipe. She woke up in the forest, disoriented and lost. She walked until she could find phone reception. It took a community of volunteers to find her deep in the woods far from any paths. Everyone in the community is in shock. We do not lock our doors. We leave the keys in our cars. Our children have a lot more freedom than many other children in the US. Last night, my 13 year old daughter locked all of the doors in the house. She is afraid to go to the park with the 3 yr old that she babysits. Sadly, humanity does have a capacity for evil and it has touched our little town.

  16. I live in Europe in a VERY peaceful country, and I am not sure about children, but even I myself am reluctant to go to the movies after what happened..

  17. Post traumatic stress kicks in about 4-6 weeks after a terrible trauma. If you still feel the same way in September, seek out help processing out the pain. I’m with Josi’s Aquarian- take a stand for good will by going to the movies often. 🙂 Peace and healing to all~

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