The families of victims in the horrific Aurora shooting are calling it a "thinly veiled publicity ploy," and that's putting it mildly. Cinemark, the theatre in which 12 people were killed by gunman James Holmes this summer, recently issued an invitation to the families asking them to attend an "evening of remembrance". That doesn't sound all that bad, until you learn that it just so happens to coincide with the theatre's reopening.
According to the Denver Post, most of the victims' families have understandably rejected the offer, and in a letter to Cinemark called it a "disgusting offer." Disgusting it is -- especially because of the timing (during the recent holidays) and how the theatre has reportedly handled the whole horrific incident to date.
A letter signed by the families of eight victims stated:
During the holiday we didn't think anyone or anything could make our grief worse but you, Cinemark, have managed to do just that by sending us an invitation two days after Christmas inviting us to attend the re-opening of your theater in Aurora where our loved ones were massacred. Thanks for making what is a very difficult holiday season that much more difficult. Timing is everything and yours is awful...
They went to on talk about how the theatre has refused to speak to the families without attorneys involvled, and how Cinemark has never reached out to family members to offer condolences, which is unthinkable. It continued:
We would give anything to wipe the carnage of that night out of our minds' eye. Thank you for reminding us how your quest for profits has blinded your leadership and made you so callous as to be oblivious to our mental anguish.
It's not that I believe the theatre should never reopen, nor do I believe it's the theatre's fault that the shooting happened. I personally can't imagine being able to walk in there again and see a movie after what happened, but we also can't let fear and evil win. So reopening may be right for a number of reasons, but to invite the families there to somehow condone it in a big, grand ceremony is all sorts of wrong. The whole thing just reeks of insensitivity ... at best.
Do you think the theatre was wrong to invite the victims' families to this reopening?
Image via Sarah_Ackerman/Flickr