If you are watching the news this morning, you know that the Denver area is once again at the center of the world's attention for a mass shooting, this time in a movie theater, filled to capacity with people who had waited with great anticipation, buying tickets weeks in advance, sitting in lines for hours beforehand, for an action movie about a caped crusader whose parents were killed in the alley behind a movie theater.
The story of Batman, in any incarnation, is always about the triumph of the human spirit over the evil of mankind, without supernatural or alien abilities given to other comic book heroes.
There will be no revelations here, no explanations that can ever make any sense. We will look for them, will try to ascribe motives or influences that can explain how this could have happened, so we can "make it stop" or keep it from happening again. We will fail. There is no answer to "why" that will ever come close. On the television this morning, just now, reports that the shooter's mother was woken up by media calling and, when she was told what had happened, responded, "You have the right man."
The stories of the dead, just now filtering in, a 6 year old, a 24 year old intern at a local station whose last Facebook status was joking about having to persuade a guy to go see "The Dark Knight Rises" with her, and the wounded, will fill our hearts, especially the children and the teenagers. So many in surgery now, in critical condition, and so many more traumatized, their glassy eyes recounting again and again to reporters desperate for news, what they saw, or didn't see. So many thought it was a prank, or something the movie theater was staging, so early into the film, in the middle of an action scene. So much chaos, so real.
I have stood at the door of my 19 year old's room this morning, sound asleep after getting home after 3:00 this morning from what he posted on Facebook as the greatest movie he's ever seen. I have fought the urge to wake him and hug him. I imagine the calls and the panicked aftermath that so many parents got in the middle of the night.
But the human spirit will triumph nevertheless.