Publicado el 07-21-2012
Could the Aurora Tragedy Have Been Prevented?
The country is experiencing a national tragedy, flags are at half mast and it can be said that everyone is praying for the dead in Aurora, Colorado, and spiritually joining the families of those who were murdered by a mentally sick individual in the early hours of Friday, July 20th. The massacre has left a toll of 12 dead and 58 wounded. This is one more tragedy for Colorado where, in 1999, a few miles away from Aurora, there was the massacre at Columbine High School. Just as in Columbine, this case in Aurora seems to be caused by a disturbed mind.
We could discuss “ad infinitum” if the attack could have been prevented with more restrictions on gun sales. Colorado is a state where in spite of some changes made after Columbine, it is relatively easy to buy a weapon. People in Colorado are allowed to carry firearms in a vehicle, loaded or unloaded, as long as the weapon is intended for lawful uses like personal or property protection. It is required to have a concealed weapons permit, but in that state regulations are lax and the state must issue a permit if the individual complies with all of the requirements.
When the 24 year-old assassin, James Holmes, was detained by police in the theater parking lot, without any resistance, he had an AR-15 assault rifle, a Remington 12-gauge shotgun, and a .40 caliber Glock handgun – a similar Glock was found inside the theater – all of them apparently bought legally in the last 6o days. Through the Internet, he bought more than six thousand rounds of ammunition for the weapons. A huge amount.
The only thing that could perhaps have prevented this tragedy would have been more vigilance in the theatres because it was the premiere of a highly anticipated movie, with violence, for which thousands of tickets had been sold in advance. It could be compared with the security for multitudinous concerts in open venues.
These cases, which fortunately are not many, will continue to happen because when someone wants to do harm he does whatever needs to be done to get the weapons and ammunition, legally or illegally. This brings to mind the need to be always on the alert about what is happening around us and let the authorities know when something out of the ordinary is noticed.
DIARIO LAS AMERICAS sends its condolences to the mourning families and hopes that due process will be followed to punish the assassin.