Ronald Weekly is a college student at Xavier University. He was recently stopped by a member of the Venice CA police department, according to his sister, for “riding his skateboard on the wrong side of the street”. What happened in the immediacy of that detention is unclear, but what we know now is that Weekly has suffered a broken nose, broken cheekbone and a concussion at the hands of the Venice CA police department.
At least 4 officers were involved in the gang beating of Weekly, and it’s on YouTube thanks to some quick-thinking bystanders, who unfortunately captured it as a dreaded “vertical video”
Regardless of whatever happened leading up to this, it is pretty clear that the three officers have a handle on Weekly, who is semi-restrained, prostrate, and pinned by two of them, by the time this video cuts in.
Yet at the 22-second mark of this video, you can CLEARLY see one officer wind up and punch Weekly in the face. Regardless of whatever happened leading up to this, that last punch is unarguably criminal battery and that fucking pig should lose his job and benefits, and be charged accordingly.
By the end of the video there are perhaps a dozen police officers or more. At least four of them are trying to usher the onlookers further and further away, keeping the camera as far from the incident as possible. Whatever started this incident, it’s probably safe to assume that it wasn’t worth 12 cops and loads of paperwork and a video about to go viral portraying the Venice PD as just the next group of thugs in uniform.
Whether you are pro-gun or gun-control, the fatal conceit is the belief that your side has an answer to the next Aurora. It doesn’t.
The gun control folks like to suggest that if only nobody had guns, incidents like this would never happen.
Fair enough, but back here in the real world, we understand that “no guns” is not a possibility (mass shootings continue to happen in countries with very strict firearms laws). Firearms are merely a convenient scapegoat that allow us to feel less powerless over situations where we really are quite powerless. Laws against guns are not going to prevent the next psycho from obtaining some, or building a bomb, or something else, just as laws against murder didn’t stop this guy. That’s a perspective that most people ignore.
And although fewer guns, or harder-to-get guns may prevent some incidents like this, the calculus is not favorable overall. In the US, there are between 1 million and 2 million incidents each year where a firearm is used defensively. Even if disarming everybody was within the realm of possibility (which it is not) disarming everybody because there is a 1 in 350,000,000 chance that some ordinary law-abiding grad student goes postal and kills a few people is likely to result in a lot more deaths.
The pro-gun folks, hopped up on internet bravado, will posture some hero fantasy about self-defense and how a few armed citizens would’ve thwarted this attack.
Bollocks. Tactically speaking, there’s little reason to believe that a handful of uncoordinated theatergoers packing Colt 1911’s or S&W Model 10’s would’ve stood much of a chance to resolve the Aurora incident with less bloodshed.
Aurora was a well-calculated ambush; the environment chosen deliberately to ensure minimal immediate opposition, overwhelming firepower plus the element of surprise created panic and confusion, ensuring maximum casualties. It’s important to keep this in perspective, too. Even adequately equipped professionals acting in unison would have had some difficulty in such a scenario.
It’s important that we not allow what happened in Aurora to color our worldview. What happened in Aurora is literally a “27 Ninjas” scenario. It is such a fantastic, extraordinarily rare and unpredictable occurence that any conclusions we might hope to draw from the experience are unlikely to be of much value when transposed on to every day real-world situations.