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Let’s just say no. July 23, 2012

Posted by ourfriendben in wit and wisdom.
Tags: , , , , ,

Here at Poor Richard’s Almanac, as across the nation, we’ve been in shock over the senseless murders of 12 and injuries of 58 moviegoers in Aurora, Colorado. Like everyone else, we’re waiting for the murderer, Mr. Holmes, to explain his reasoning, since, Unabomber-like, he obviously did this to get attention so the world would hear his message: Otherwise he’d surely have killed himself along with his innocent victims. That he instead chose to be taken alive says volumes about his motivation.

What your faithful bloggers, our friend Ben, Silence Dogood, and Richard Saunders, hope the nation takes away from this tragedy is very simple: Stop using violence as a form of entertainment. It was surely no coincidence that Mr. Holmes chose a showing of the horrifically violent “Dark Knight Rises” to unleash his arsenal.

It appalls and astounds us that, while sex and nudity are considered sufficiently taboo to raise movie restrictions to R, violence is not. Consider the graphic torture of James Bond in “Casino Royale,” the cannibalism of Hannibal Lecter in “The Silence of the Lambs,” the endless murder and terror that fuel horror films, the gore that splatters all over action and suspense films. Why is this considered acceptable? And far more disturbing, why is it considered entertainment?

Here at PRA, we hope and pray that studios will pause the next time they’re considering filming a gore-fest. We hope that mystery writers will consider using an actual mystery, rather than murder, to fuel their plots, as Sir Arthur Conan Doyle so often did with Sherlock Holmes. We hope that the writers of horror stories will think through the implications of their plots and put their talents to better use.

But most of all, we hope that audiences will finally just say no to violence. If nobody went, the studios would stop. If nobody bought the books, the authors would find something else to write about. If people focused their time and money on something constructive, rather than destructive, it would change the world. We’re not saying that it could keep someone like Mr. Holmes from launching an attack. But at least it would make sure the rest of us weren’t deadened to the horror.



1. narf77 - August 1, 2012

I think that a natural progression from saying no to violence in the popular media is to say no to guns. Stop the right to bear arms and start allowing your country to learn to negotiate with their enemies rather than shoot them first, and ask questions later. There will always be fruitcakes with delusions of grandeur out there, but if they can arm themselves to the back teeth their path of destruction will ALWAYS be enormous.

Sigh. Such a vexing issue, Fran! I can’t even recall the statistics on how many domestic accidents happen when children happen on their parents’ guns in drawers or wherever and then play James Bond or cowboys and Indians or whatever with the loaded gun. Certainly not being legally allowed to own guns would prevent incidents like the one still making headlines here, where a vigilante shot and killed an unarmed 17-year-old boy who was playing tough. At the same time, denying the general populace the right to bear arms could facilitate the creation of a police state, in which only the government and criminals possess weapons and the rest are sheep to the slaughter. Unless we humans can evolve morally far more quickly than we have to date, this will remain a heated point of debate.

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