Normally I try to avoid bringing news and big media into my posts, because you folks can get that stuff elsewhere and I usually can’t provide a unique insight on the stuff that has been chewed up by mainstream news.
But today it’s different. Today I am yawning at my desk because I was up late at the candlelight vigil in Aurora, Colorado last night. I was there with a wall of people organized by a friend of a friend to provide comfort, support and protection from abuse for the families of the victims of the theater tragedy of 7/20/2012.
Jamie was by my side. We wore our batman logo tshirts and carried a sign:
The message we want to send to the world, to our community, to the families and friends of the victims, is this:
Batman didn’t cause this tragedy. Video games, television, did not cause this tragedy. One man’s depravity, whatever the cause, ended or changed the lives of at least 70 people in a single night, but they were all there to see the message offered in TDKR: Anyone can be Batman. From the ashes of great tragedy, from the bitter dregs of terrible loss, heroes arise and will stand up against any darkness that falls. Aurora is a strong community and will become stronger because of this. Colorado has been through tragedy before, and we will rise up.
How do we react to the terrible, senseless loss of life? Some people say that God took their lives, but I don’t like to believe that everything has a reason. Senseless, bad things happen all the time. But I encourage you–get to know your neighbors. Show respect for your fellow human beings. This kind of violence occurs when a person either does not feel respected, or does not respect others. Say hello. Give a nod as you pass people on the street. Wave hello (with your whole hand). Maybe my perspective is skewed, but in Japan–where I was returning from on that tragic day–people consider the group most important. They have a close knit family group, but they know their neighbors. And it is one of the safest places in the world, where crime is concerned. I don’t think we should merge cultures, by any stretch. But we certainly should be reaching out to those around us. Building a stronger safety net for the people in our community.
Most importantly, to my friends around the world, some of whom knew about this terrible event before I did, who were calling and emailing us from across the ocean to verify that we were OK, know this:
There’s a little bit of Colorado in all of us. Whether we live in the plains, on islands, or in the mountains, we all have the same blood flowing through our veins. We are all a community, and we are all Colorado.We will rise again, stronger.