The Cullman Times
James Eagan Holmes is fast becoming a familiar name across the United States as the suspect in Friday’s shooting rampage at an Aurora, Colo., theater.
Details about Holmes, 24, are starting to surface. From all reports, he had everything to gain in life. He was scholarly, quiet, and raised going to church with his family. Unlike many people his age, he didn’t appear to be active in all the social media plug-ins such as Facebook and Twitter.
The night of the shooting, Holmes easily blended into the movie-going crowd. He bought a ticket for The Dark Knight Rises and sat down. But just a few minutes into the film, he slipped out an emergency exit door, leaving it propped open, and gathered his weapons and protective gear.
Upon re-entering the theater he set off tear gas and began to open fire with a variety of weapons, spilling the blood of innocent people who were caught in a carefully planned deathtrap.
By the time Holmes walked away, 12 people were dead and 50 others were wounded. Police found him at his car, where he also declared that he was “The Joker,” a notorious villain from the Batman series. He also told police that his apartment was set with explosives, which police soon confirmed.
Perhaps an explanation for the carnage Holmes unleashed will soon be known. Maybe the young man carried no real motive into the theater. The violence that has been unleashed by young people in the United States in recent years defies any type of reasonable explanation, from Columbine to Virginia Tech to this latest outbreak.
Some reports have surfaced that Holmes had difficulty finding a job after college, and then decided to extend his education. Is that a reason for such violence? Many Americans are unemployed or underemployed in this sagging economy.
So many heinous acts occur in this country and around the world every day that show a declining respect for life. The terror that the victims of Friday’s shooting experienced will live with the survivors forever. Time may bring some healing into their lives, but will the shooter and others of his deteriorated state ever feel remorse?
The moral decline that has enveloped society shows its ugliness in many forms, but Friday’s horror stands as one of the most cruel and senseless acts to befall an American community.