The Abyss of Human Response & The Las Vegas Massacre

This wasn’t the time to stick your flag in the ground and fly it proudly. Unfortunately and predictably, thats what almost everyone did. It seems we live in a society that thrives on people’s opinions being heard and self righteous, boastful ideals being put on display, more so than prioritizing a basic human trait of sensitivity and humanity.

As if the massacre in Las Vegas wasn’t bad enough, how disgusting of a people have we become when the way the average person reacts is running to their side of the crowd, huddling up and playing follow the leader. Let me explain a little more clearly.

The cowardly, evil acts transpired on the night of Oct. 1 2017, and before Oct. 2nd turned my calendar, every social media or news outlet was filled with people who were attempting to state their case and dig their flag deeper in the ground. The Republicans or people who identify with the “right” attempting to preserve their guns and the rite to have them. The Democrat side of things or people who identify with the “left” rummaging to bash the media for not calling this a ‘terrorist’ attack because the shooter was white.

I’ve never been more embarrassed in my life to call myself a human. Listen, 58 souls died that night and guess what? All of them didn’t side with your political party, all of them didn’t have agendas that leaked out their nose. The majority of them weren’t like you.

But..

All of them most certainly had families. All of them were dads, moms, sons, daughters, aunts, uncles, grandparents, nieces, nephews, cousins. You get the point.

Or do you?

I’m not so sure the average person does anymore. Human’s revolting recital to act like an insensitive blob of thoughtless flesh has proven beyond astounding to me. How did we get here? When mass amounts of innocent people are killed by a madman, and as humans we just use the event as a pawn in our chess game to further agendas.

It’s disgusting, unacceptable and reality.

Do you care so much about what others think about you and your political stances that you gladly will use someone’s disaster as your benefit? These are questions EVERYONE needs to start asking themselves. In an honest, humbling manner. What are we as humans if we walk over dead corpses only to gain ground for our beliefs, political gains, and the idea of false-self fulfillment? The answer is quite simple actually, we’re not humans at all .

I understand there is a perception now that you as a person, are so important. So you flock to social media because you must be heard. But the reality is your not important. These victims are and were and you took their precious last moments and reflection/ respect time to walk all over them and spew your prideful ideals out of your selfish mouths. Is it too much to ask the average person to put aside their own motives and be sensitive to people’s lives and the families of the victims? I fear the answer is an astounding, despicable yes.

To the very few I saw respecting the victims, thank you. You are a light in a very dark place. To the majority who plainly showed zero respect, I would say shame on you, but you obviously lack the ability to feel shame.

Below are the majority of identifiable victim’s names, DOBs, and gender. Please spend some time in prayer or solitude for the families of these souls. To us they are just names, to their loved ones, they are so much more than we could ever imagine:

  • Ahlers, Hannah Lassette — 6/2/1983 Female
  • Alvarado, Heather Lorraine — 9/20/1982 Female
  • Anderson, Dorene — 4/16/1968 Female
  • Barnette, Carrie Rae — 12/16/1982 Female
  • Beaton, Jack Reginald — 12/10/1962 Male
  • Berger, Stephen Richard — 9/30/1973 Male
  • Bowers, Candice Ryan — 8/10/1977 Female
  • Burditus, Denise — 6/5/1967 Female
  • Casey, Sandra — 11/1/1982 Female
  • Castilla, Andrea Lee Anna — 9/29/1989 Female
  • Cohen, Denise — 8/2/1959 Female
  • Davis, Austin William — 6/20/1988 Male
  • Day Jr., Thomas — 10/29/1962 Male
  • Duarte, Christiana — 8/7/1995 Female
  • Etcheber, Stacee Ann — 2/26/1967 Female
  • Fraser, Brian S. — 8/20/1978 Male
  • Galvan, Keri — 8/20/1986 Female
  • Gardner, Dana Leann — 7/6/1965Female
  • Gomez, Angela C. — 12/26/1996Female
  • Guillen, Rocio — 12/20/1976 Female
  • Hartfield, Charleston — 5/16/1983Male
  • Hazencomb, Christopher — 9/27/1973 Male
  • Irvine, Jennifer Topaz — 6/6/1975 Female
  • Kimura, Teresa Nicol — 3/24/1979 Female
  • Klymchuk, Jessica — 5/1/1983 Female
  • Kreibaum, Carly Anne — 12/9/1983 Female
  • LeRocque, Rhonda M. — 8/29/1975 Female
  • Link, Victor L. — 9/7/1962 Male
  • Mclldoon, Jordan — 10/6/1993 Male
  • Meadows, Kelsey Breanne — 6/26/1989 Female
  • Medig, Calla-Marie — 8/8/1989 Female
  • Melton, James — 8/2/1988 Male
  • Mestas, Patricia — 7/25/1950 Female
  • Meyer, Austin Cooper — 9/18/1993 Male
  • Murfitt, Adrian Allan — 7/5/1982 Male
  • Parker, Rachael Kathleen — 12/16/1983 Female
  • Parks, Jennifer — 1/18/1981 Female
  • Parsons, Carolyn Lee — 12/28/1985 Female
  • Patterson, Lisa Marie — 6/26/1971 Female
  • Phippen, John Joseph — 10/25/1960 Male
  • Ramirez, Melissa V. — 11/29/1990 Female
  • Rivera, Jordyn N. — 7/22/1996 Female
  • Robbins, Quinton — 3/21/1997 Male
  • Robinson, Cameron — 1/1/1989 Male
  • Roe, Tara Ann — 9/1/1983 Female
  • Romero-Muniz, Lisa — 5/19/1969 Female
  • Roybal, Christopher Louis — 10/9/1988 Male
  • Schwanbeck, Brett — 1/31/1956 Male
  • Schweitzer, Bailey — 4/5/1997 Female
  • Shipp, Laura Anne — 5/9/1967 Female
  • Silva, Erick — 8/19/1996 Male
  • Smith, Susan — 8/24/1964 Female
  • Stewart, Brennan Lee — 2/19/1987 Male
  • Taylor, Derrick Dean — 9/25/1961 Male
  • Tonks, Neysa C. — 7/27/1971 Female
  • Vo, Michelle — 1/10/1985 Female
  • Von Tillow, Kurt Allen — 12/4/1961 Male
  • Wolfe Jr., William W. — 10/15/1974 Male

 

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40th Anniversary of Close Encounters

Today marks the 40th anniversary of “Close Encounters of the Third Kind,” Spielberg’s masterwork about UFO’s, obsession, and conspiracy. One of my favorite movies ever released. A theatrical release is also slated to start today through Wednesday, Sept 6!

So many interesting tidbits are coming to surface today regarding production, etc.

Here is one my favs from sci-fi 

“In the movie, the mothership lands, and then the little aliens start coming out. But as it was originally planned, they were supposed to come out and then sort of float around,” Alves says, still a bit bummed he couldn’t make the creatures fly around his massive set. “Flying all those kids would have been very, very difficult. And as it was, to begin with, the set was so big that we had 48 arcs up on that terrace and all these photo floodlights. It was just really, really complicated.”

The next idea was to have “little cuboids of light” fly all over the place. “The little cube things we had on wires, so there were little square lights flying by,” he recalls. “That became too much, so we killed that, too. Today we could do it with CGI. We would have flown the kids and gotten a green screen, put them in a layer and the same thing with the cubes.”

 

Unbelievable stuff. Please read the whole article though. If your interested in Close Encounters, its fantastic.

Hacksaw Ridge (2016)

  • The “speaking from my heart” review:

Before I get all technical, I want talk about Desmond Doss for a sec. I couldn’t help watching him feeling a closeness to a way of thinking that is close to home. I couldn’t help the fact that myself and Doss are almost identical twins when it comes to violence and helping people. In many ways Hacksaw Ridge confirmed a lot for me. Its funny how sometimes the phrase “comfort in numbers” actually rings true. Even though Doss was one man, I felt a sense of  validity after experiencing his unbelievable and unquestionably courageous acts of bravery.

His gospel rang true to me. All too often people like to tag me as “soft”  when considering my stance on war and helping people. Doss and I are mirrored in our thoughts and is that different than the norm? Sure. But ask yourself this? Did he save 75 souls that after the fact could care less of his “softness.”

My point is we need to stop “tagging” people as whatever makes sense to us and throw them in a category jail. We need to start looking at people as exactly what they are: people. Diverse thinking, uniquely made individuals who maybe on their own exhibit an odd piece of the puzzle. But make no mistake about it, they are a piece to a puzzle. Usually an important piece at that.

Bottom line: If you think different than the average, you shouldn’t be ashamed in who you are, the ashamed should be the shamers.

  • The “obligated, technical” review:

After a decade long hiatus and no less amount of controversies, Mel Gibson makes his long-awaited return to the director’s chair and immediately lets his presence felt & relevance known to everyone,his latest is a biographical war drama that depicts the horror of warfare in all its unadulterated glory yet captures it in a fashion that highlights the film’s anti-war themes with clarity.

Hacksaw Ridge tells the story of Desmond Doss, a God-fearing pacifist who enlists in the army to serve as a medic and becomes the first conscientious objector in American history to be awarded the Medal of Honour despite never firing a shot. The plot covers the events that shape up his beliefs, and his service above & beyond the call of duty in the Battle of Okinawa.

Directed by Mel Gibson (best known for Braveheart, The Passion of the Christ & Apocalypto), the film opens with a brief preview of what’s waiting ahead for the viewers before taking a step back to pave the necessary groundwork but once the soldiers are on the battlefield, Gibson unleashes hell on screen with excellent use of his skill set to stage one of the most harrowing depictions of warfare in recent memory.

The technical aspects are ingeniously executed and really assist in enriching the whole experience. Production design team skilfully recreates the required timeline with its period-specific set pieces, Cinematography utilises the camera to great effect and is at its best during the combat sequences. Editing is brilliantly handled & steadily paces the plot but there are few scenes in the first half that it could’ve done without.

Performance wise, the film packs a capable cast in Andrew Garfield, Sam Worthington, Luke Bracey, Vince Vaughn, Hugo Weaving & Teresa Palmer, with Garfield carrying the entire film on his shoulders. Despite coming off as a creepy nice guy in the first act, Garfield is able to finish things off on a high and his rendition of Desmond Doss may as well be his finest performance to date. Rest of the cast chip in with fine supporting work, with Vaughn getting to have the most fun.

On an overall scale, Hacksaw Ridge is one of the most vicious, violent & unrelenting exhibitions of war on the film canvas that presents its returning filmmaker in no-holds-barred mode and delivers a cinematic experience so raw & visceral that it will have its viewers gasping for breath & hiding for cover amidst all the mayhem & massacre that explodes on the screen in the final hour. One of the best films of 2016 that’s impressive enough to garner a spot amongst the greatest examples of its genre, Hacksaw Ridge is an instant classic that comes very highly recommended.

Put Your Phone Down Today

We have a big problem in the world. We don’t look around anymore. We just look down. Today, more than any day, please look up and admire the amazing, once in a lifetime event that is a full solar eclipse. (I shouldn’t have to twist your arm).

It will be much more amazing than your cell phone.

Here is a great video from ‘Smarter Everyday’ to get you ready: