Friday, July 20, 2012

A horrible event concerning my favorite media, in Colorado this morning


I heard about the incident at the Aurora, CO Batman midnight show this morning when I turned on ABC’s “Good Morning America” (yes, on an "idiot box").  Let me say, for the record, that last night I tweeted, whimsically, that it was 12.01 AM (EDT) and that I would not go to a screening party. It was time for bed.  The incident had not occurred and I had no idea that it would.

Yes, I do look forward to seeing Christopher Nolan’s “The Dark Knight Rises” as soon as things settle down.  Nolan is one of my favorite directors, with “Inception”, “The Prestige”, and “Memento”.

Being a “media” person myself in retirement, I do worry about the “moral” implications.  Some of us live in a bit of a fantasy bubble, watching and reporting the actions of others – objectively to be sure – but not in full empathy with persons who face demands on them that we did not personally experience.  We live in an asymmetric world, where one aggrieved party, who sometimes feels exploited or that his “lifeforce” is undermined, can try to bring everyone else down. (Sometimes the party is a person, sometimes a radical group, religious or otherwise, sometimes a small country, like North Korea.)  I used to hear a lot of "pinko" rhetoric about “exploitation” from the radical left in the early 1970s, as I was coming of age myself as a young working adult.  I can remember clandestine meetings of the “People’s Party of New Jersey”, in a slummy, drafty Newark NJ rowhouse, where others complained that “salaried professionals” like me, supposedly the middle class, were part of the “problem”, not sharing the very personal land bodily sacrifices of the proletariat masses.  I was quite struck by this kind of Maoism, how preoccupied it was with some absolute kind of justice on a personal level, and by how such “justice” could never be implemented without an authoritarian system that by definition would become corrupt.  (That’s “The Revolution” of JJ Abrams, I fear.)  Freedom – even libertarianism – would eventually become the best antidote to corruption and exploitation, even if it allows individual people to “get out of things”. 

I recall another oddity in my life: back in 1976, my first "trick" (in NYC) ranted all evening about "the abuse of the media".  That still rings in my memories. 

As to the details of the event, some of it horrific, I have to leave the major media outlets to cover it today.

The first tweet that I saw this morning, by the way, was from Piers Morgan. The CNN interviewer wrote “Lunatics like this will always try and get guns. It should be 100,000 times harder than it is for them to do so.  That’s my point.”  And it sounds as though this psychopath mixed fiction and reality. The media now reports he wanted to "become" The Joker. 

The latest MSNBC story is here

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