Given the amount of time I’ve spent in a car between Friday evening and this morning, I’ve been following along with Twitter discussion about the Aurora mass killing. The truth is that both sides like to present simplistic rhetoric. On our side, you still see plenty of “If only one of the theater goers was armed, this would have been prevented!”
I’ve been reading about how elaborately his guy planned, and I have to say, this looks an awful lot like a Kobayashi Maru scenario to me. How often to you practice shooting in a dark theater filled with tear gas? This isn’t to say that I want some pant wetter from the Brady crowd telling me I can’t carry a gun, because I’ll take my odds with a gun as opposed to without, but I’m afraid I rank this scenario up there with hearing your door break down, grabbing your defensive firearm, only to find yourself pointing a gun at a SWAT team that got the wrong address. I support your right to be armed, but I wouldn’t bet on your coming out of that scenario unscathed.
A gun only improves the odds. It doesn’t guarantee victory. Society is always going to be vulnerable to paranoid schizophrenics who are high functioning enough to plan, and intelligent enough to plan well. As Joe Huffman points out, it could have been much much worse. You could double or triple the number of people carrying firearms, and that’s not going to change.