Home / Robert Farley / During the Previews?!?!

During the Previews?!?!


Good lord.

A moviegoer lost his life inside a Pasco County theater Monday afternoon after a dispute over texting with a retired police officer.

According to the sheriff’s office, the dispute happened before the 1:20 showing of ‘Lone Survivor’ had even gotten underway at the Cobb CineBistro at Grove 16 complex on Wesley Grove Blvd…

Charles Cummings told FOX 13 he heard the victim say he was texting his 3-year-old daughter before Reeves pulled out a pistol.

“Their voices start going up, there seems to be a confrontation, somebody throws popcorn, then bang, he was shot,” said Cummings, who was there to celebrate his birthday. “I heard the victim say, ‘I can’t believe…,’ then he fell on us.

Also, great use of the phrase “lost;” apparently he just misplaced his life, rather than having it taken from him by an angry old man who put a bullet through his chest. I’m reminded of Brockington’s very depressing argument; “if Newtown foments change in the direction opposite to good policy, I’m not sure what can be done.”

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  • Linnaeus

    An armed society is a polite society.

    • grouchomarxist

      I’ll bet he said “Excuse me!” before he shot them.

  • jim, some guy in iowa

    that’s pretty fucked-up. you’d think a retired cop would know better

    • Well, to be fair to the local cop shop, they did let him retire at age 50 (21 years ago) and move to the private sector–where he became the security director of a not-Disney theme park.

      Story didn’t clear up how long it’s been since he left the Top Rent-a-Cop job, but it’s been awhile since he was expected to know better about anything besides public intoxication.

  • Barry Freed

    After hearing what the dispute was about I’m just relieved to hear that LGM’s own SEK wasn’t involved.

  • It’s not just “a Pasco County theater”. Gotta click through to get to the even-more-crazy picture.

    • Oh never mind, I’m blind. But I saw the thing was Wesley Chapel and thought I saw crosses…

  • Jake

    An armed society is a polite society. And if I am subjectively offended by you, I will execute you.

    • jim, some guy in iowa

      not if I shoot you first because you’ve been giving me dirty looks while I text – that’s gotta be a ‘stand your ground’ case

      • McAllen

        Nocco said his detectives considered if this could be a ‘stand your ground’ case but decided the criteria did not apply.

        I mean, I’m glad they decided “stand your ground” didn’t apply, but the idea that this could be considered justified even for a moment kind of boggles my mind.

        • jim, some guy in iowa

          me too, to the point if I don’t make bad jokes I’m going to be really freaking depressed about people

          • efgoldman

            …if I don’t make bad jokes I’m going to be really freaking depressed about people

            Not mutually exclusive, for better or worse.

        • What worries me is that even though the police might not think it justified, the disturbing possibility exists that it will not only be used at trial but win.

          • Jake

            The big difference in this case from Travon is that when the Gunslinger tries to claim that he thought he saw the victim reach for a gun / reach for his gun, the victim’s wife, herself a victim, will be able to rebut.

            • Malaclypse

              The big difference in this case from Travon is that the victim is not a black teenager.


          • efgoldman

            Maybe the guy was reading old SCOTUS decision, and his copy left out “shout….”

            • Theater wasn’t even crowded.

              Ol’ Crankypants could have just moved to another seat. Among other options to avoid bloodshed at the multiplex.

              • Warren Terra

                Apparently he left the viewing room entirely in search of a manager before returning to confront and then execute the texting father. So moving seats would hardly have been a great exertion.

                • OK, now I’m really curious as to why he isn’t being charged with plain old first degree murder. What about this scenario doesn’t scream premeditation?

                • rea

                  OK, now I’m really curious as to why he isn’t being charged with plain old first degree murder.

                  I don’t know how it works in Florida, but here in Michigan, second dergree (or “open”) murder is the common initial charge, with the decision about charging first degree being made later on in the case.

              • Randy

                That’s where “stand your ground” will come in.

        • Warren Terra

          I mean, I’m glad they decided “stand your ground” didn’t apply, but the idea that this could be considered justified even for a moment kind of boggles my mind.

          One of the things I learned about “stand your ground” after the death of Trayvon Martin was that the law as it exists in Florida (and therefore presumably also elsewhere, these legislative campaigns are coordinated and share advisors across state lines) punishes a police department or a prosecutor’s office if they treat a shooting as suspicious and a “stand your ground” defense is later upheld – the acquitted defendant (or possibly the unindicted suspect?) is explicitly invited to sue them for having questioned the shooting. Given such factors, you can see why they’d have to ben over backwards to contemplate possible “stand your ground” defenses, even when it’s a cranky old man shooting the unarmed daughter of a toddler for daring to distract from a trailer.

          • efgoldman

            …even when it’s a cranky old man shooting the unarmed daughter of a toddler for daring to distract from a trailer.

            If the kid had been crying or babbling or just taking out loud, as toddlers are wont to do, would the asshole be justified in shooting her?
            Of course he would!

            • sop

              You are allowed to shoot people who bring toddlers into R rated movies as soon as they enter the screening room. If you forgo this option and let them sit down, then you are only allowed to a)tase the child after two loud “shussshes” b)kill the parents after two ‘do you minds” and two loud “shusshes”
              Parents who bring young children to adult movies are horrible monsters but you need to operate within the established framework in order to co-exist in a polite and just society.

          • I didn’t know this, oddly enough since I had to research them once when my campus crank published an op-ed on them when I edited that page for the rag, but this makes good sense and explains a lot.

            • To clarify: it makes good sense that that’s why they’d consider it, not it makes good sense to allow people to sue because a prosecutor was doing his job. The latter is just ducking fumb.

          • Nocomment

            Don’t forget, popcorn was (allegedly) thrown! Retired officer may have felt threatened. Therefore a lethal response may have been required to protect himself and other patrons.

          • Police brutality and violations of rights remains a constant even though they can be sued for that.

            I think the possibility of being sued gives the police an excuse to take the shooter’s word for it, but the fear of being sued doesn’t enter into it.

            Isn’t Florida where a woman was sentenced to a decade or so because she fired a warning shot in an attempt to scare off an abusive ex spouse? Did not hit him, I believe she fired the gun into the air, but that got her some sort of attempted murder conviction.

            • DrS

              Marissa Alexander

              She’s out on bail awaiting a new trial, since November.

              She’d been given a 20 year sentence.

  • wjts

    Another murder by someone whose right to pretend he’s living in a Charles Bronson flick trumps the right of a man not to be murdered, the right of his wife not to see her husband die in front of her, and the right of a three-year-old to grow up with a father. Fucking gun nuts make me sick.

    • rea

      the right of his wife not to see her husband die in front of her

      To add a bit to the horror, he shot him through her hand.

      • DrS

        Holy. Fucking. Shit.

      • BigHank53

        Well, you know, she might have touched his penis gun, and gotten girl cooties on it.

  • Deggjr

    Let the punishment fit the crime.

    • Colin Day

      Life imprisonment with the MST3K people laughing at bad movies?

      • Ian

        That would be a reward.

  • Larry Lennhoff

    I’m really frightened by how many of the comments on the OP talk about how the victim shouldn’t have been texting.

    • CaptBackslap

      Maybe they didn’t see that it was still the previews

      • Previews

        I thought this was a grimly amusing thread of the comment section tertiary to the anti-cell phone vigilantes. They sound like the people in the sensible center. Like, okay, okay, SOME people think go along get along and SOME people think you should be murdered for texting at the cinema.

        But surely both sides can find common ground that summary executions should at least not take place until the opening credits!

    • jim, some guy in iowa

      the conditioning is working. the gun makes the guy who shot it right – because he wouldn’t have used it otherwise. this is another one of those things that makes me increasingly sure the point of carrying guns isn’t self protection, but intimidating other people

      • efgoldman

        …that makes me increasingly sure the point of carrying guns isn’t self protection, but intimidating other people

        No, he point of carrying the gun, every-fucking-where you go, is just what the armchair psychologists have always said it is: a penis substitute for the actually or metaphorically impotent.

      • They’re the People of the Gun. It’s only a matter of time before they start complaining about the cops arresting armed robbers. “It’s not illegal if there’s a gun involved! The gun makes it a holy act!”

        • Davis X. Machina

          Any divinity worth his/her/its salt can demand, and receive, human sacrifices.

          • Snarki, child of Loki

            Loki demands a drone strike on a gun show, then.

            • jim, some guy in iowa

              don’t ordinarily do that “+1” thing, but yeah

        • grouchomarxist

          Yeah, all we need now is a giant, flying stone head: “The gun is good! It shoots the seeds of death.”

        • “The Gun is Good! The Penis is Evil!”

          … ’cause it’s tiny.

          • The prophet Nostradumbass

            Two Zardoz comments in a row, heh.

            • And you people mock.

              • Malaclypse

                Zardoz is the kindest, bravest, warmest, most wonderful movie I’ve ever seen in my life.

    • efgoldman

      talk about how the victim shouldn’t have been texting.

      Amore useful (and less harmful) overreaction might have been to grab the kid’s phone and stomp it into the floor. Same desired effect, no felony charge, no dead guy. And possibly justifiable.

      • Or perhaps moving to another seat to avoid the entire issue.

        As a sometimes-cranky person I have found that this is better for everyone around me.

        • This case could establish a pre-emptive right to exercise stand your ground.

          Isn’t reasonable to think that if the shooter had moved to another, less desirable seat, the texting bully would have been empowered to be louder, engage in even more uncivil texting behavior violating the shooter’s rights to the complete immediate compliance he has the right to expect as a gun owner? Further, if he had capitulated to the disrespectful, texting lawlessness in the theater, there’s a real possibility that this texting bully would stalk him and his family to his home since the weakness of acquiescing to the bully would mark him as an easy target. So why should the shooter have to wait until the bully texts him a mushroom cloud before acting?

      • Warren Terra

        it’s the f’ing trailers. Violence is never justified to punish a mere social miscue, but it doubly isn’t justified when the only damage is to your viewing of the f’ing trailers.

        • DrS

          “You have disturbed my enjoyment of these commercials”

      • I don’t think it’s ever justifiable to accost someone and destroy their property due to mere annoyance.

      • KatWillow

        If the person texting his kid was being really annoying, the correct thing to do is get the theater Manager. No yelling, grabbing, punching or shooting.

        • MAJeff

          Defer to legitimate authority? Sissy-man!

          • Legitimate authority who is, most likely, a third of the shooter’s age.

    • charluckles

      Get ready for days of long winded intricate explanations for how the problem here was the cellphone and not the gun.

      • Snarki, child of Loki

        But the only thing that can stop a bad guy with a cellphone is a good guy with a cellph…. no wait, that’s not what the NRA wants to say. Hmm.

    • vigilante mindset

      rampant poor behavior in public spaces + desensitization to gun violence = witless comments
      The commenters are relating to being annoyed by the cell phone user but can not properly process the murder. The lack of empathy and tact is troubling but not surprising.

      • BigHank53

        1. In a just world,
        2. people receive the treatment they deserve, and
        3. bad people are killed.
        4. I, personally, am not dead, so
        5. therefore I am a good person.

        It’s easy to find the holes in that syllogism, but there’s more than one reason why teaching critical thinking isn’t popular.

  • DocAmazing

    “He was instrumental in establishing the department’s first Tactical Response Team”

    This is the part that makes it less surprising. Tactical/SWAT teams have proliferated across the US in a truly frightening and absurd manner. They bring to police work a military bent–the notion that cops are patrolling a conquered and subject population. That a guy who helped to make the department more Shock & Awe and less Protect & Serve would go into a movie (about SEALs, no less) strapped isn’t as out of character as one might hope.

  • Mothra

    I’ve noticed that before-instead of saying someone was murdered, they say that the victim “lost” their life-which is just idiotic. Are reporters/newspapers that afraid of gun nuts that they reflexively think like this?

    • jim, some guy in iowa

      fox “we report you decide” news

    • efgoldman

      Are reporters/newspapers that afraid of gun nuts that they reflexively think like this?

      I think lots of news editors are reluctant to use “murder,” which is a specific legal construct. Also “lost his/her life” is one of those ready made journalism 101 cliches that are just lying around in the desk drawers and coat pockets of reporters and editors, ready to be grabbed and dropped into a story at any moment.

      • It’s not a reluctance, you can’t use the word murder (or rape, etc) until/unless the person is convicted.

        Unless you want a libel suit that is impossible to defend.

        But you can say any number of things besides the man lost his life. That’s like saying the victim of a knifing lost his blood.

        • You can use the active verb “kill,” as in “The asshole killed the person sitting in front of him.” No one is denying that basic fact.

          But that requires a spine.

          • Yep. I was just explaining the issue of libel for journalists because people often do wonder why the language gets a bit vague.

            What’s odd is in this instance there’s no dispute about who did what, so they could even say he was shot by another or the town drunk or whoever the man is.

            Lost his life is something you usually hear with accidents.

            • Sorry, I accidentally shot you while aiming at the press.

          • ninja3000

            I’m pretty sure I’ve seen the NY Daily News use the phrase “shot him dead” or “…was shot dead” any number of times in some of their reports of the many, many NY murders over the past few decades. It’s a true statement, it doesn’t imply anything else other than that a guy was killed by a another person who used a gun. I mean, “shot him dead” is a killer hed!

        • Brenda

          Right, but you could say “was killed” and avoid that issue.

          • efgoldman

            Right, but you could say “was killed” and avoid that issue

            Right, except for the three or four editors left in this country who actually care about passive voice.

            • The passive voice is cared about…eh, never mind.

              • efgoldman

                Didn’t we do this at great, and ridiculous, length just the other day?

                • (a) I have the memory of a goldfish. (b) I’ve been drinking. (c) I’m doing data analysis for some research.

                  Summary: Did we?

                • ditto on a and b, on c I am working on robot parts in Autodesk Inventor, and would like to shoot somebody that was involved in writing that software/

                • ninja3000

                  Yes, it was did by we.

            • I know it’s a vain hope, but I would hope that any editor would recognize the equivalent passivity of “lost their life” in spite of its grammatical shape.

              • You hope that because you are, deep inside, an optimist.

          • This is exactly how a local museum gets around the problem of who, exactly, shot the protesters at Kent State.

            “Four students were killed while protesting . . .”

            • wengler

              That is actually factually incorrect. Only 2 of the 4 killed at Kent State were protestors.

              • Well, then there you go – obfuscation compounded by inaccuracy.

        • KatWillow

          So its socially acceptable to SHOOT and KILL another person, but not to accurately report it?

      • fka AWS

        Died. Died. Died. Journalists are trained to used “died.” Not “lost” not “passed away,” no euphemisms. Died has no legal weight, it’s a simple fact. The victim died. Stupid writers and editors should know better.

    • CaptBackslap

      mostly afraid of writing without leaning on hackneyed phrases

      • efgoldman

        … afraid of writing without leaning on hackneyed phrases

        If it wasn’t for hackneyed phrases, most papers and especially TV News departments wouldn’t have any phrases at all – they’d have to mime the news, with [probably hackneyed] subtitles.

    • McAllen

      I know, right? Like if someone gets mugged we don’t say they “lost” their wallet and cell phone.

      • On the other hand, when someone gets their news from Fox, we say they’ve “lost their mind.”

        • efgoldman

          we say they’ve “lost their mind.”

          Yeah, bt unlike the guy who “lost his life,” there’s some (very, very tiny) chance they could find their minds again.

        • if they were actively selecting Fox as a news source, there was little mind to lose.

    • jim, some guy in iowa

      skimming through search results, the only two places that used “lost his life” are both “myfox” news stories. the rest, from the networks and newspapers, all are using variants on “shot and killled” – some word it a bit more specifically to the ex cop than others…

    • ADHDJ

      Freed. The verb should be “freed”, as in his spirit was freed to join the Great Galt’s Gulch in the sky.

      The deceased is a man who will never have to pay taxes again, never have to deal with EPA and OSHA regulations, never have to face the indignity of seeing the government help out poor people. No more government confiscation, no more redistribution, no more political correctness.

      Really, if you think about it, in freeing the deceased from the nanny state and a culture where you can get fired just for saying the N word, the killer was doing the guy a favor.

  • Holy shit the comments on that article are mostly anti cell phone.

    • Hell, I’m anti-cell-phone. But it doesn’t occur to these nimrods that there are anti actions short of murder.

    • Manny Kant

      “Never, ever, ever read local news organizations’ comments section” is a good rule of thumb if you want to maintain your sanity.

    • whetstone

      And the New York Times is ON IT: “Cinema executives acknowledged during a trade conference last year that they debated whether to accommodate younger viewers by allowing text messages during some movies.”

      This line got excised, perhaps because it made the point just too stupid and offensive: “The New York Times notes that the killing has “underscored the increased debate about when to use smartphones in public.”

      As usual, what Billmon said.

  • Thank goodness the 2d Am. gives us the right to defend ourselves from mild annoyances. Inattentive waiters, noisy kids and people who try to get on an elevator before everyone else has gotten off BEWARE.

    • efgoldman

      I’m waiting for the inevitable story of a little old lady shooting some kid on the bus who wouldn’t give up his seat in spite of the little sign on-the window behind him.

      • DocAmazing

        Hey, he deserves whatever he Goetz.

        • Hey – Bernie was frightened by scary brown people. That excuses anything.

          • Davis X. Machina

            They had a screwdriver!

            Any Doctor Who fan knows you don’t let someone draw down their screwdriver on you, not if you’re strapped.

            You could wind up in some other arm of the galaxy.

            • “Do you think we are assembling a cabinet?”

            • T McJ

              Hey! Those guys could have made his glasses reaaalllly wobbly (to borrow from Bobcat Goldthwait).

  • Stand Your Ground! You just know this republican asshole was a shitty cop. Enjoy your retirement, dickhead! Your family will hate you forever. He’ll rot in jail till he’s dead. Sucking on the government teet his whole, useless life. Probably a faux news aficionado. Good thing these old republican bigoted pricks are dying at the cyclic rate.

    • The Tragically Flip

      I’m struggling to find the term…”relief” is wrong, but somehow a related concept, that the victim and perpetrator are both white which at least takes away 900 different gun nut excuses for this, and ensured the perpetrator was actually prosecuted.

      It’s just gun nuttery on trial here. A “responsible gun owner” until one day he got mad and wasn’t one anymore.

      • The Tragically Flip

        oops meant to be a reply to the thread, not the person above.

      • That second part is what no one in my area gets. They all think, no matter how many shooting stories come out, that they (or their dads/uncles/brothers/whatever) would never, ever be like that – but of course, as one points out to them, as far as the legal system is concerned neither did a goodly number of the people involved in incidents like this.

  • Maybe we’re being unfair. If it was a preview for the 300 sequel (301? 400? 300^2? I forget.) then silence would be required.

    • Davis X. Machina

      O Jesus, not that again.

      Moron, labe and all that.

    • Warren Terra

      Couldn’t be a trailer for the 300 sequel – the guy would have shot himself to escape, and would have welcomed the distraction of a glowing cellphone.

    • Bill Murray

      wouldn’t the sequel be ZERO:(

      • Dilios


  • mike in dc

    Well, one key difference between the Martin shooting and this one: The victim is white.
    He was immediately charged with second degree murder, despite no doubt identifying himself to the arresting officers as a retired police officer.
    If a retired police officer is capable of doing this, in a movie theater, during the previews, well, not exactly a ringing endorsement of open carry laws.

    • ?

      If the old guy is not a white, retired police officer is
      he getting charged with 1st degree murder?

      Argument – Leaves for several minutes – Confrontation – Murder
      If the dude is young and black, you know the cops are all thinking he went to his car to get his gun.

      • Rigby Reardon

        The charge could always be upgraded, can’t it?

    • Manny Kant

      I assume it was a concealed carry, right?

  • The Tragically Flip

    Oh shit, that poor little girl, if she ever learns daddy died because he was texting her…oh the horrible self-blame she’ll go through.

    What a fucking travesty.

    • Cheap Wino

      I’m gonna nitpick here because it’s important how things are characterized. He didn’t die because he was texting her. It was the crazy fuck who killed him for no good reason at all. He was texting her because he loved her. It’s important for her to understand that distinction.

      But, yeah, absolutely, “Poor little girl,” and, “What a travesty,” is damn right. Going to be hard for her.

      • The Tragically Flip

        Of course, nit accepted, I meant only that she might interpret it that way, in that irrational part of the mind that blames ourselves for every bad thing that happens if we can contrive anything at all we could have done differently to avoid it. It can be completely irrational, we can know this is so, and yet still haunt us.

  • Ann Outhouse

    I live in Pasco County, over near the coast. Absolutely nothing in that article surprises me, including the consideration of whether Stand Your Ground applies. This is Gun Nut Central, and our sheriff is an inexperienced right-wing wackjob who couldn’t hold a job in public law enforcement, went to work for Rubio, got appointed by Gov. Batboy when the previous Sheriff retired without completing his term, and managed to get himself re-elected in an off-year election against an ineffective candidate.

  • wengler

    The minor argument blowing up into murder rarely happens in a theater, but it happens in a bar every damn day. The politicians that mandate firearms be allowed in bars should be legally responsible for every single expense caused by those that use their firearms in bars.

    • I’m not seeing your point here.

      I mean if I can’t carry a gun into a bar how am I supposed to defend my honor when I finally find that cheating whore of an ex-wife/girlfriend with some god damned SOB who’s rubbing my face in his so-called superiority just because he has a nicer car, a steady job, and doesn’t have the guts to keep her in line the way she should be?

      • The prophet Nostradumbass

        A game of eight-ball? A karaoke sing-off? Beer bongs at 20 paces?

        • Why should they get the fair shot that she never gave me?

    • sharculese

      There was a CineBistro near where I used to live. Part of the appeal was that they had a full bar in the lobby and didn’t allow anyone under 21 in.

      • Plus no metal detector! All the features you want.

  • Nobody gives the shooter any credit for having controlled himself for 71 years despite endless provocations and temptations to use his gun to maintain good public order.

    Like this guy.

    And about the popcorn – those butter stains will NEVER come out. Who’s supposed to answer for that? Tell me, WHO?

  • I take no comfort whatsoever in correctly predicting that Newtown would have absolutely zero short term impact on the place of the gun culture in our society. In the very long run, maybe it will, I hope so.

    Once the federal government passed product liability immunity for gun makers it not only made incremental rational progress impossible, it also signaled that the depth of misguided conviction (i.e. paranoia) and span of irrational support for the gun culture far outweighed the opposition to it.

    The only path I see going forward is to follow cigarettes as the role model. When it becomes a public embarrassment to your peers, prospective dates, etc. to be a gun owner, like smoking generally is, then the tide will be turning.

    • Darek

      The only path I see going forward is to follow cigarettes as the role model. When it becomes a public embarrassment to your peers, prospective dates, etc. to be a gun owner, like smoking generally is, then the tide will be turning.

      I wouldn’t be shocked if stand your ground is then used to justify shooting people who dared to mock a gun owner. After all, those laws have always been about protecting the fragile egos of small-dicked men who can’t back down lest they be seen as sissies.

      • KatWillow

        It seems the authors of “Stand Your Ground” and other pro-firearm laws are actively working to destroy our already sick, blighted society. Then, I’m guessing, The Kocks and their brethren will rebuild the US to their crazed libertarian standards. Or maybe they’ll just make the 99% their slaves.

    • postmodulator

      Funny you should mention that. I was just thinking the other day that I’ll probably get shot for lighting a cigarette eventually. (I really am trying to quit, I promise.)

      • The sellers of e-cigs claim smoking is a right in their ads, so it must be true! Therefore you can shoot anyone who tries to stop you from smoking. But if someone tried to bum one off you and you said no, could they Stand Their Ground against the discomfort of nicotine withdrawal you were inducing and shoot you? To say nothing of the issue of failing to return a borrowed lighter. Maybe you should get an opinion from the Supreme Court of FaceBook first.

        p.s. Not that you should be shot, but when you’re ready to quit, I highly recommend the Patch. If you’re in the states I believe you can get the first box free from your state QuitLine.

        • postmodulator

          I tried the patch about ten years ago and it didn’t work for me. I’ve had better luck in the past with lozenges and gum.

          • I think the patch improved (says the repeat quitter). For one thing, they didn’t itch like blazes this time, so I was able to do the full course.

            But I should have said I believe the states provide a NRS of some sort.

          • pete

            The patch drove me nuts, and I think I figured out why: It supplied a constant amount of the most addictive single element, rather than the spike/crash routine my body was used to. I moved on to nicotine gum, and from there eventually to regular gum; the whole process from last-ciggy to last lousy piece of rotten chewable took about six months, maybe a little more, about three years ago (or was it four now?). Good luck figuring out what works for you! PS, yes I still have twinges, but they’re mild and easily overcome.

  • One consequence of a conviction here could be proliferation of this.

    Countries should not manage their finances like a household.

    That’s clearly wrong. However . . . .

    Households should manage their armament like a country. Specifically, like a country engaged in an arms race with an existential threat.

    Develop your own triple threat strategy – non-glint commando knife in your boot, Glock in your hand, and a mop up taser to complete the submission of your wounded prey obnoxious neighbor. And don’t forget kevlar vest pajamas for weathering the initial thrust of nocturnal home invasions from illegal immigrants while you gather your firepower to repulse them.

    Use your paranoia as a competitive advantage, don’t let others try to neutralize it. Join a support group. If you ever think that letting your guard down is appealing turn to Faux News on cable.

    • I’d like to see Farley do some research on how a viable strategy for power projection in rural America differs from power projection in the exurbs, as well as from a repurposed urban bomb shelter.

      And whether the principles of diplomacy and their practical application should vary by locale or situation.

      For instance, should farmers in Nebraska threaten drone attacks on Chicago to protect their way of life? Is it viable to ask the neighbors to lower the volume on their stereo after midnight or is it better to simply fire a warning shot? Of what caliber? What should be done if your adversary engages with illegitimate interlopers in attempts to settle natural disputes in their favor. Like calling 911 during skirmishes or filing frivolous lawsuits after close physical encounters, etc.

  • shah8

    One thing that depresses me even further is the tolerance for gun trolls to disrupt every single gun incident that is dairied at DKos. It was particularly bad with this story.

    • postmodulator

      The gun trolls are really milking it.

  • MikeN

    Trust you liberal gun-control fanatics to totally miss the point. If the guy that was killed had been carrying, he should have been able to get the drop on a 71-year-old guy. And his wife, too-instead of ineffectually putting her hand up, she could have put a couple of rounds into the old dude first.

    But no, they’re one of those wimpy left-wing couples who head off to a movie theater unarmed, even after Aurora. I bet the mom lets her kid go to kindergarten without packing, even after Newton.

    • What do you expect going into a movie theater unarmed and wielding a cell phone like some elitist snob? And relying on your woman to defend you – that’s criminally wussified.

  • Pingback: And Here Was A Good Guy With A Gun. Now What? - Lawyers, Guns & Money : Lawyers, Guns & Money()

  • K

    Wow. You hear idiots from the right wondering “w-why do they want to take our guns, i just don’t know” I know why. People cant keep their fucking iron in their pants when the situation calls for maybe a passive, but firm voice. And a retired cop, so you can’t even try and tell me making sure cops are the only ones armed is the solution. This is why everyone who isnt the type of person to waste someone for texting in a movie theater needs to be able to choose to carry or not. Because it only takes one freak with a gun in a movie theater to cause a mass shooting, but it only takes one reasonable person with a gun to stop it. Everyone is on the second amendment like flies on cow manure. Some people love it, some not so much, but nobody talks about the responsibility that the right to keep and bear comes with. If you decide to use the right, you better be ready for the responsibility as well. As someone who owns many weapons, swords, knives, axes, bows, and guns, i can tell you that the responsibility of owning firearms is much more than with other weapons. Maintenance is just as important as storage. Most self-shooting accidents happen during cleaning. You must clean a gun after shooting it or else it could misfunction, even blow up in your face and kill you. Of course, theres the obvious responsibilities as well, keeping your guns out of reach of children, not capping someone for texting in a theater, keeping your bullets in a safe spot, etc. In a world where you can get waste bagged in a movie theater by an ex cop everybody needs maximum freedom to choose the type of personal protection is best.

    • Malaclypse

      As we, or mother Dana, weave and unweave our bodies, Stephen said, from day to day, their molecules shuttled to and fro, so does the artist weave and unweave his image. And as the mole on my right breast is where it was when I was born, though all my body has been woven of new stuff time after time, so through the ghost of the unquiet father the image of the unliving son looks forth. In the intense instant of imagination, when the mind, Shelley says, is a fading coal, that which I was is that which I am and that which in possibility I may come to be. So in the future, the sister of the past, I may see myself as I sit here now but by reflection from that which then I shall be.

    • Origami Isopod

      Jump off that movie theater roof, K. You’re the goddamn Batman.

  • K

    Im not saying that a glock and a ccp would have saved the texters life, but I’m also not not saying it either, if you catch my drift. If the texter just stuck a gun right back in the face of the ex cop, then you change a murder to a Mexican stand-off. At first look, the two seem similar, both involve people with guns out, and both disrupt the shit out of a good movie, but the murder is going to be loud, and it ends in a dead body by definition. While the Mexican stand off still has the possibility of loudness and death, it isn’t so rigidly bound to such an outcome. Mexican standoffs can actually be quite quiet. This is because a would be assailant was expecting to expend a bullet that costs pocket change and nothing more, thinking the victim is unarmed and when that assumption proves wrong, he decides he wants to live.

    • Deptfordx

      The ex-cop sees the texter drawing a weapon.

      Scenario A: He calmly considers the situation, decides this escalation is unwelcome, begins a dialogue leading to mutual disarmanent and peaceful resolution.

      Scenario B: “Stand my ground, stand my ground!” .

      Which of these seems more likely?

      • The Patriarchy

        The strangest part to me (at the moment) is, why did the 71-year-old escalate to shooting immediately? Why didn’t he simply threaten to shoot the texter unless he stopped texting?

        Various possible answers suggest themselves to me, none of them veryeven slightly appealing.

        • Lee Rudolph

          Sometimes a nymfail is only a nymfail.

          • Is this one of those times?

            • Lee Rudolph

              I plead the FifthSecond.

              • I plead the Fifth Second of vodka.


                • Malaclypse

                  I plead the Fifth Second of vodka gin.

                  Fixed better.

    • Oh. K is a parody. I get it now. No one could possibly be this dumb in real life…could they?

      • rea

        Oh. K is a parody Jen, our local troll.

        • Malaclypse

          I think K is his very own troll, and not a Jennie, but could be wrong.

          • efgoldman

            Yeah, that’s way more text about anything than our JenBob would ever type.

            But Mal, what are you smoking? Are you in Colorado? Little early morning toke before work?

    • Malaclypse

      INELUCTABLE MODALITY OF THE VISIBLE: AT LEAST THAT IF NO MORE, thought through my eyes. Signatures of all things I am here to read, seaspawn and seawrack, the nearing tide, that rusty boot. Snotgreen, bluesilver, rust: coloured signs. Limits of the diaphane. But he adds: in bodies. Then he was aware of them bodies before of them coloured. How? By knocking his sconce against them, sure. Go easy. Bald he was and a millionaire, maestro di color che sanno. Limit of the diaphane in. Why in? Diaphane, adiaphane. If you can put your five fingers through it, it is a gate, if not a door. Shut your eyes and see.

      • postmodulator

        Wouldn’t it mess with the trolls more if we quoted Burroughs rather than Joyce?

        • Malaclypse

          Your jib, I like the cut of it. I am abashed that I didn’t realize immediately that Burroughs was the better choice for responding to meth-addled stream-of-consciousness.

          • rea

            Burroughs is plainly the go-to guy on a thread about gun rights

            • postmodulator

              I bow to none in my slavish devotion to Burroughs’ actual writing, but I never did figure out how a guy drunkenly kills someone with a gun and actually keeps being well-nigh obsessed with guns.

              The documentary that came out, A Man Within, has footage of Burroughs still drunkenly waving guns around. So he didn’t even learn the obvious lesson.

              • Malaclypse

                I never did figure out how a guy drunkenly kills someone with a gun and actually keeps being well-nigh obsessed with guns.

                Allow me to bring up George Zimmerman.

                • postmodulator

                  Yeah, I don’t really understand George Zimmerman either. I mean I understand him well enough to know I don’t want him living in my town, but I don’t understand him at all.

    • wjts

      If the texter just stuck a gun right back in the face of the ex cop, then you change a murder to a Mexican stand-off.

      Oh, indeed. The only defense against deaths and destruction that result from the imbecilic juvenile fantasy lived by people like you and Curtis Reeves is a more elaborate imbecilic juvenile fantasy.

  • LeeEsq

    The gun rights idiots are a perfect example of how our political system allows a passionate political minority to defeat a majority. There won’t be any action until there is an extraordinary passionate majority can repeal the Second Amendment.

  • Gee, sure glad we decided to let every walking personality-disorder in this country carry a concealed weapon everywhere they go.

    • rea

      Given your history, I’m surprised you’re not a strong supporter of your right to carry a concealed B-52 to the movies.

      • My posiiton is simple: if you can conceal a B-52 on your person, I’m okay with you carrying it anywhere you want to go. Because I firmly believe that you do not fuck with wizards.

        • Deptfordx

          Well they are subtle and quick to anger

          • Loiosh

            Pfft. No matter how subtle the wizard, a knife between his shoulder blades will seriously cramp his style.
            And is also probably legal under SYG.

      • I took a B-52 out to see a movie,
        Didn’t have to pay to get it in…

  • Matt Minus

    Mark my words, the thrown popcorn will be used as the basis for a SYG defense. The theater was dark, he felt SOMETHING hit him which made him ascared, he only had a split second to respond to this potential threat, and he’d rather be judged by 12 than carried by 6.

    We’ll be reminded by the media that the crux of the matter is whether the shooter felt his life was in danger irrespective of the actual facts. We’ll probably also be informed that, technically, the thrown popcorn was a species of assault, so, while he likely could have been more generous, the shooter was 100% justified in his actions.

    • The Tragically Flip

      My fear is that US gun insanity has now reached a tipping point where courts will find that it is “reasonable” to assume anyone you get into any kind of altercation with is armed, and thus reasonable to draw first, and further reasonable to shoot first if he makes (or you perceive he makes) any kind of move that could be to draw his weapon (which you don’t have to have seen or have any actual reason to believe he has).

      The mere fact that America is gun crazy will now justify immediate and otherwise unjustifable use of guns to “head off” the vague potential that the other guy is carrying and is as trigger happy as you.

      • NorthLeft12

        Unfortunately, there is a great deal of merit in your arguement. Especially when the final arbiters of that level of paranoia will be twelve fellow citizens who are predisposed [depending on some other conditions..if you know what I mean] to agree with that point of view.

        Also, the defence you describe has worked for police forces around the world for years/decades/centuries so why shouldn’t it be utilized by ordinary citizens?

      • Barry Freed

        Exactly this. They’ve made their bed, now we have to lie in it.

      • efgoldman

        The mere fact that America is gun crazy will now justify immediate and otherwise unjustifable use of guns to “head off” the vague potential that the other guy is carrying and is as trigger happy as you.

        As long as the shooter is pale of hue. You forgot that part. And only speaks English, also too.

      • Anonymous

        From the brief synopsis I read, when the murderer returned to the screening room, the victim stood up an asked him if he had complained to the theater management. The defense will try to weave a defense out of that action and the popcorn.

    • postmodulator

      Mark my words, the thrown popcorn will be used as the basis for a SYG defense.

      They are in fact already saying this.

  • Drew

    I heard they’re charging second degree murder? This is first degree, full stop. Leaving and then coming back shows deliberation. I refuse to believe this was a crime of passion/heat of the moment type thing. Too much time elapsing and the leaving and coming back.

    • Just Dropping By

      They may upgrade the charge later depending on the evidence; however, the witness’ statement quoted in the OP weighs against your conclusion about “deliberation” at this point since the witness said the shooter and the victim argued after the shooter came back into the theater.

    • efgoldman

      Someone pointed out way up thread that 2nd degree is the standard quickie charge in MI, which can then be upgraded or downgraded by the prosecutor.

      • rea

        That was me. The point is, garden variety murder is murder two. Murder one is murder + aggravating factors. So, murder two is the usual place to start. At this point, the goal is to have a charge to arraign him on, so they can hold him in jail (or set bail).

  • K

    How can you idiots not see the simple math. One person has a gun in a theater=murder. Two people in a theater with guns plural=awkward silence.

    • One, Two, Many!

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