If most of the people in the Aurora CO theater were carrying concealed weapons, what do you think would have happened in the Colorado massacre?
When James Holmes opened fire on the crowd watching The Dark Knight Rises early Friday morning, July 20th, people in the audience must have felt like sitting ducks. It’s easy to jump to the conclusion that if you’d been there and had a concealed weapon with you, you might have stopped the carnage with minimal loss of life. That thought came to my mind.
But would that really be the solution? First, let’s remember that Holmes was dressed head to foot in black body armor. In a dark theater, he would have been nearly invisible and heavily protected by the tactical gear he was wearing. To make matters worse, his first action was to toss two canisters of irritant gas, making people’s eyes tear up and filling the air with smoke.
Imagine that half the 200 person audience had been carrying. After his first shot, someone two rows behind you rises up and fires in the general direction of the front of the theater. Nobody knows whether he is a good guy or part of the plot. Immediately, a half dozen other people open fire, some in the general direction of the first shooter and others at the second person to fire. Within minutes, there is a full-fledged Gunfight at the OK Coral but with over 100 shooters involved instead of just 1.
Stray bullets would be zipping through the walls into the adjacent theaters in the metroplex. One can imagine that some in those adjacent theaters might return fire through the wall. How many would have ended up dead or wounded? What evidence can we present that having more people heavily armed in a society protects human life and inhibits violent crime? Does the actual evidence point to exactly the opposite?