Jul 21 2012

James Holmes’ Father Goes To Colorado, and Reflections on TV News, TMZ, and Kids Doing Journalism


James Holmes, the man accused of shooting dozens of people at a screening of The Dark Knight Rises, will get a visit from his father.

From where did I get this news? TMZ.

Yes, that TMZ. Weird Al did a song parody of Taylor Swift’s ‘You Belong With Me’ called ‘TMZ’ on his recent album Alpocalypse. Whenever I hear “TMZ”, I think of that song. (This is why there’s a Weird Al video at the top of this post.) I certainly don’t think “trenchant news reporting”. So I was surprised to find that this particular TMZ broadcast did a nice job of reporting on the Colorado shooting.

Here are some of my thoughts about the awful event in Colorado, how it was covered in the media, and kids practicing the ancient art of journalism from their bedrooms.  Read more »

Jul 20 2012

Colorado Shooting Not About Midnight Movies

I have a request. Please stop talking about taking kids to midnight movies in relation to the horrible Colorado shooting.

I’m saying please.

This isn’t directed at anyone in particular. And of course by writing this I am doing exactly what I’m asking others not to do.

My point is that while it does seem like a bad idea to take very young children to a midnight movie, especially one like The Dark Knight Rises, which in my opinion is not a kid-friendly superhero movie the way The Avengers is, that just isn’t a fair topic to bring up right now. People have been killed. Many more have been wounded. Take a breath and stop thinking about this awful occurrence as something that has anything to do with superhero movies.

I’m not even sure this is a good time to discuss guns. I’m serious. Is it really such a bad idea to let the victims have a couple of days of mourning before everyone uses this horrible event as a jumping off point to discuss, well, anything?

I’m not talking about censorship. I’m talking about restraint.