July 22, 2012

"Three young men are being hailed as heroes for their old-fashioned chivalry and courage under fire in saving the lives of their girlfriends."

Matt McQuinn, 27, Jonathan Blunk, 26, and Alex Teves, 24 — each died protecting a woman in the Aurora theater massacre. That is, out of 12 individuals who died, 3 were men instinctively performing the traditional, masculine protective role.

96 comments:

Unknown said...

God bless them and my prayers go out to their families and the families of all the victims of this evil POS.

Daniel Fielding said...

Men, especially thos who are "manly" men, not the effete, metrosexual types favored by modern women in academia, or in NYC, always do the right thing when called upon. And these 3 men, unfortunately died doing the right thing. Godspeed to these brave men. RIP.

Brian Brown said...

Oh gosh, what a moral conundrum for the feminists!

If Obama's Julia were in the theater, who would have dove in front of her? A bureaucrat from the Social Security Administration or perhaps someone from Planned Parenthood?

virgil xenophon said...

Daniel, I'd go even further and opine that it's 100% instinctive, and, imho, solely genetically-driven, having little to do w. sociocultural conditioning.

MadisonMan said...

Men, especially thos who are "manly" men, not the effete, metrosexual types favored by modern women in academia, or in NYC, always do the right thing when called upon.

Evidence that these brave men were not metrosexual types?

It's horrible what happened to them.

edutcher said...

Like 9/11, people remembered the police and fire guys (many with those Irish and Italian Catholic surnames) who went charging up the steps toward the fires.

Being a metrosexual just isn't where it's at.

virgil xenophon said...

Daniel, I'd go even further and opine that it's 100% instinctive, and, imho, solely genetically-driven, having little to do w. sociocultural conditioning.

Maybe. I'm betting upbringing has something to do with it.

MisterBuddwing said...

Men, especially thos who are "manly" men, not the effete, metrosexual types favored by modern women in academia, or in NYC, always do the right thing when called upon.

"Always"?

Sorun said...

Evidence that these brave men were not metrosexual types?

They took their girlfriends to a midnight showing of Batman.

campy said...

"Always"?

Of course. If they don't, it proves they're not true "manly" men.

Lyle said...

"Metrosexual" men can and do protect women. A lot of it is just instinct and that doesn't really change because of what kind of jeans or scarf you are wearing.

Men or men; women or women.

MisterBuddwing said...

I wonder where the late hairdresser Vidal Sasoon (who fought in the Israeli War of Independence) fit into the "manly man" universe...

Wince said...

Kind of makes up for the whole Fred Willard thing, although I'm sure he would have done the same thing had the gunman entered the XXX-rated Tiki Theatre.

John said...

Yes, some were heroic and tried to protect their own... but, where were the selfless when evil needed to be confronted? How could a crowd of that size not have a handful willing to confront the madman not to protect a loved one but to protect the unknown innocent. There is a difference. The difference does not diminish the acts of bravery that occurred but it does speak to the mindset of people who expect others to do for them that which they are unwilling to do for themselves. Now, all the liberals in the room need raise their hands and humbly file off to slaughter when called.

MisterBuddwing said...

How could a crowd of that size not have a handful willing to confront the madman not to protect a loved one but to protect the unknown innocent.

Not to make light of anything, but it's kind of hard to confront a heavily armed man who's firing away when you have nothing. (Does this sound like an argument in favor of concealed carry? It's not meant to be, but at times like this, I'm not sure what to think.)

virgil xenophon said...

@edutcher/

Dunno, its been my personal experience (I've had a few life-threatening situations involving others than myself, trust me, e.g. an IRA bombing of a bus in London one evening in 1971) that it all happens so fast that there is no "thought" involved, i.e., deciding to act--a decision which is the product of upbringing, social conditioning, etc.--rather it is automatically, unthinkingly, reflexive.

Rabel said...

"How could a crowd of that size not have a handful willing to confront the madman..."

A good question, but I suspect that his extensive planning accounted for the possibility that one or several people would come at him and he positioned himself to prevent that.

virgil xenophon said...

**"...others besides myself..."

Can Of Cheese for Hunter said...

I was brought to tears reading the newspaper this morning.
There were heroes. and this...

Mom of two lost to a mad man...
The father of Rebecca Wingo, 32, confirmed that his daughter died in the Aurora theater shootings. Steve Hernandez wrote, "I lost my daughter yesterday to a mad man, my grief right now is inconsolable.
I hear she died instantly, without pain; however the pain [I feel] is unbearable."

sakredkow said...
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Bob said...

From Robert A. Heinlein's address to the US Naval Academy (his alma mater) in 1973, The Pragmatics of Patriotism:

The time has come for me to stop. I said that "Patriotism" is a way of saying "Women and children first." And that no one can force a man to feel this way. Instead he must embrace it freely. I want to tell about one such man. He wore no uniform and no one knows his name, or where he came from; all we know is what he did.

In my home town sixty years ago when I was a child, my mother and father used to take me and my brothers and sisters out to Swope Park on Sunday afternoons. It was a wonderful place for kids, with picnic grounds and lakes and a zoo. But a railroad line cut straight through it.

One Sunday afternoon a young married couple were crossing those tracks. She apparently did not watch her step, for she managed to catch her foot in the frog of a switch to a siding and could not pull it free. Her husband stopped to help her.

But try as they might they could not get her foot loose. While they were working at it, a tramp showed up, walking the ties. He joined the husband in trying to pull the young woman's foot loose. No luck - -

Out of sight around the curve a train whistled. Perhaps there would have been time to run and flag it down, perhaps not. In any case both men went right ahead trying to pull her free...and the train hit them.

The wife was killed, the husband was mortally injured and died later, the tramp was killed - - and testimony showed that neither man made the slightest effort to save himself.

The husband's behavior was heroic...but what we expect of a husband toward his wife: his right, and his proud privilege, to die for his woman. But what of this nameless stranger? Up to the very last second he could have jumped clear. He did not. He was still trying to save this woman he had never seen before in his life, up to the very instant the train killed him. And that's all we'll ever know about him.

This is how a man dies.

This is how a man...lives!


And for those of you thinking that "metrosexuals" won't die bravely, you're forgetting Todd Beemer, the gay man who led the charge at the cockpit of Flight 93 on 9/11: "Let's Roll."

MisterBuddwing said...

Would Heinlein have done the same? Would I? (You'll forgive me for hoping I never find out.)

lemondog said...

"How could a crowd of that size not have a handful willing to confront the madman..."

How does one know that there was not a handful who were cut down?

John said...

"How does one know that there was not a handful who were cut down?"

One doesn't know - but if there were one might have expected to hear about it by now.

lemondog said...

In all that panic and confusion?

John said...

"A good question, but I suspect that his extensive planning accounted for the possibility that one or several people would come at him and he positioned himself to prevent that."

You may be right. Certainly there are the impediments of rows of seats which naturally funnel people on set paths. Still. If you are confronted by evil is there no recourse but to cower and attempt to flee?

The rough men who are willing to do violence to protect innocents are not typically going to fret over the possibility of things going wrong. Things have already gone wrong.

Gary Rosen said...

Bob - slight correction. The gay man who resisted the hijackers on flight 93 was not Todd Beemer but Mark Bingham.

edutcher said...

virgil xenophon said...

@edutcher/

Dunno, its been my personal experience (I've had a few life-threatening situations involving others than myself, trust me, e.g. an IRA bombing of a bus in London one evening in 1971) that it all happens so fast that there is no "thought" involved, i.e., deciding to act--a decision which is the product of upbringing, social conditioning, etc.--rather it is automatically, unthinkingly, reflexive.


I agree with you on the issue of suddenness, but some things are conditioned, I think.

Consider military training, battle drill.

I recall reading something by Jack London in which he said being able to act in an emergency was due in part to having been through something similar before and knowing how to handle it (he was speaking of nautical emergencies and had been an avid sailor in SF Bay).

Granted, some people have steadier nerves than others, but there are countless stories of the big, tough, macho guy who freezes in an emergency and it's the little, wimpy milquetoast that saves the day.

You never know until you're in it what you'll do.

Bob said...

MisterBuddwing said...
Would Heinlein have done the same? Would I? (You'll forgive me for hoping I never find out.


One can hope that Heinlein would have done the same. No one can know for sure who hasn't been placed into that terrible scenario. We can surmise that any Medal of Honor holder would do so without any hesitation, having already proved that they would.

Shanna said...

And big damn heroes they are. Anyone who puts their life at risk to protect another is amazing.

edutcher said...

PS Anent Bob's statement, "And for those of you thinking that "metrosexuals" won't die bravely, you're forgetting Todd Beemer, the gay man who led the charge at the cockpit of Flight 93 on 9/11: 'Let's Roll.'", who says Bingham was a metrosexual?

John said...

"In all that panic and confusion?"

Certainly and probably only under panic and confusion. Just as there are people who would enter a theater and strike down so many - in the general society there must be some at the other end of the spectrum.

My surprise is in that a crowd of that size had seemingly none willing to risk everything for people they did not know. Were they waiting for someone else to come to their defense? I would expect that from most. But again, in a group so large I also expect one of two - different people. You know? Rugged individualists who would see what was happening and act aggressively to stop it.

Bob said...

Gary Rosen said...
Bob - slight correction. The gay man who resisted the hijackers on flight 93 was not Todd Beemer but Mark Bingham.


Thanks for the correction. That's what happens when you rely on memory rather than looking it up to make sure.

Chip S. said...

Among those men this thread is about was
Matt McQuinn
, about whom the only question here three days ago would probably have been...metrosexual or hipster doofus?

Oh, and John gets my vote for the Internet Tough Guy Hall of Fame.

John said...

"Not to make light of anything, but it's kind of hard to confront a heavily armed man who's firing away when you have nothing. (Does this sound like an argument in favor of concealed carry? It's not meant to be, but at times like this, I'm not sure what to think.)"

I agree on all counts. That such action is difficult is way I would not expect it from many, certainly not a majority.

The question can be simplified - confronted by evil do we expect another to act or do we act. Hard... sure.

Bob said...

edutcher said...
PS Anent Bob's statement, "And for those of you thinking that "metrosexuals" won't die bravely, you're forgetting Todd Beemer, the gay man who led the charge at the cockpit of Flight 93 on 9/11: 'Let's Roll.'", who says Bingham was a metrosexual?


You're just quibbling. Gay men have always been stereotyped as effeminate and less than manly, even if the reality is quite different. Metrosexuals are likewise stereotyped as effeminate and less than manly. I simply went with the more usual stereotype than the one that was used in comments here in this thread.

John said...

"Oh, and John gets my vote for the Internet Tough Guy Hall of Fame."

Thank you Chip. I will put it in an appropriate place.

edutcher said...

I'm quibbling about nothing.

Even in homosexual relationships, one is assertive and one is submissive, the same as in heterosexual relationships.

Bob wants to fight about this and wants somebody to say they're all like Rex Reed.

Trashhauler said...

Heinlein lived in a different era. One has to wonder if "women and children" first still applies. Surely, children and women who are loved ones. But, as people are increasingly insisting, women deserve to be treated as equals on the battlefield, as elsewhere. So, maybe, "loved ones first?"

Ralph L said...

who says Bingham was a metrosexual?
Wasn't he a rugby player? Metrosexual implies 'whipped to me.

It would be nice if the media would have talked about these men more than the killer.

Cedarford said...

And for those of you thinking that "metrosexuals" won't die bravely, you're forgetting Todd Beemer, the gay man who led the charge at the cockpit of Flight 93 on 9/11: "Let's Roll."

================
I know Bush and Giuliani pushed the Hero meme hard after 9/11 but it doesn't work long-term, after all the emotional pathos is wrung out.
There are many men and some women that are drawn to risky jobs due to prestige, higher pay, nice government benefits & pensions, job security...and excitement. While there were some heroes, amongst the office workers NOT in risky jobs as well as the cops and firefighters
NOT ALL WERE HEROES.
Nor were the caring nurturing healers flying in, in the aftermath, all Heroes.
(Some firefighters died while loading up their engine truck with stolen designer jeans, laptops, boxes of jewelry they bravely rushed in and grabbed, while mere civilians rushed away from the fire. A documented scandal that W Langweische of the Atlantic reported on. Other firefighters laughed at cops saying the order to evacuate had been given, they were in no danger on the 46th floor, 40 stories away from the fire)

Flight 93 was even more a stretch. It was simply fight and possibly live, or do nothing and die. No different than when some settlement is surrounded by enemy and sure the enemy will butcher all inside, man the walls. Shooting, launching arrows, throwing rocks in a desperate effort to stay alive. All. Women, men, children all trying to survive. Heroes and non-heroes. Gays and straights.
This sad scenario has played out tens thousands of times as doomed people cornered by the enemy are triggered to fight, since there is no flight from danger.

Bob said...

edutcher said...
I'm quibbling about nothing.

Even in homosexual relationships, one is assertive and one is submissive, the same as in heterosexual relationships.

Bob wants to fight about this and wants somebody to say they're all like Rex Reed.


No, neighbor. You want to fight about it. I'm done here, unless to comment on the Heinlein aspect of it. I won't be trolled, flamed or baited. Piss off.

Bob said...

Trashhauler said...
Heinlein lived in a different era. One has to wonder if "women and children" first still applies. Surely, children and women who are loved ones. But, as people are increasingly insisting, women deserve to be treated as equals on the battlefield, as elsewhere. So, maybe, "loved ones first?"


Heinlein tied "Women and children first!" into his defintion of patriotism, in the same address at the US Naval Academy:

Patriotism. An abstract word used to describe a type of behavior as harshly practical as good brakes and good tires. It means that you place the welfare of your nation ahead of your own even if it costs you your life.

Men who go down to the sea in ships have long had another way of expressing the same moral behavior tagged by the abstract expression "patriotism." Spelled out in simple Anglo-Saxon words "Patriotism" reads "Women and children first!"

And that is the moral result of realizing a self-evident biological fact: men are expendable, women and children are not. A tribe or a nation can lose a high percentage of its men and still pick up the pieces and go on...as long as the women and children are saved. But if you fail to save the women and children, you've had it, you're done, you're through! You join tyrannosaurus rex, one more breed that bilged its final test.

sakredkow said...
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John said...

"One has to wonder if "women and children" first still applies."

The million dollar question! And after we acknowledge the world may now be different - why?

Valentine Smith said...

John Gotti was a metrosexual. It's not a testosterone thing, it's more a dandy thing.

I took my fists o a gunfight once. I lost. But not before knocking the guy on his ass.

Joe said...

Cedar makes a good point. In times of great stress, conflict or moral temptation, some people rise to the occasion while others shrink and fail. Any reader of history knows that it is difficult to determine ahead of time who will do what; there have been those who demonstrated great courage at one point in life only to betray themselves later, as well as the other way around. (That said, I've learned to be skeptical of braggarts who continually assure you of their bravery and moral superiority.)

Joe said...

Incidentally, "women and children first" is idiotic. "A few trained personnel first" is the smartest move so you have trained people on both sides to prevent panic and to solve problems that may arise.

traditionalguy said...

That's what men do. It's time to praise good men who give their lives so that others may live.

Baby Boomers did understand that from the reports of the WWII Vets. This generation needs that lesson too. And it ain't super heroes. It's real men.

The year Hollywood voted a fictional chick flick called Shakespeare In Love best picture over Saving Private Ryan was Hollywood's announcement that real men are no longer of any value.

But real men like these are also why terrorist murderers will not defeat a Democracy full of such free men. Not in Norway and not in Denver.

Anonymous said...

Manly men, instinctive - please.

While these guys were protecting their women, Jamie Rohrs was running for his life. Rohrs fled the theater leaving his 4 month old baby, girlfriend and her 4yr old to fend for themselves. Note the disgust and scorn in the comments for this guy.

http://www.nypost.com/p/news/national/escaping_massacre_will_altar_pair_Tx6PqW8UBbG2Hy3lIZ6tqM

Anonymous said...

Turns out that while Rohrs was running for his life, another man Jarell Brooks, 19 was helping Rohrs family get out of the theater.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/07/20/jarell-brooks-aurora-hero_n_1690579.html

bagoh20 said...

To me a hero is a person who takes great personal risk - that they could choose to avoid - in order to save another.

People who take the risk because there is little other choice are brave and logical. It's important to remember that overpowering your fear is still optional, and it should be respected, when people do it.

Those who will cower and do nothing to help themselves or others are simply a mistake of genetics or culture, a liability, and possibly the majority of us.

What these three men did was heroic. They could have acted solely to protect themselves, but didn't.

sakredkow said...
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Alex said...

According to Objectivism, you have to save yourself.

Alex said...

Now real heroes are like Todd Beamer who took down that flight instead of allowing it to hit another building.

Let's Roll.

Carnifex said...

Richard Pryor said that "If ever someone pulls a knife on you, and all you can do is reach into your pocket and pull out skin...RUN! Run hard and fast! Just run!"

I'm not about to condemn anyone who didn't charge into that gun ire bare handed. For the first few momments everyone thought it was a movie gimmick. Those seconds of delay cost those people their lives. If the allowed carry in this town then someone could have, and probably would have, fought back.

No, he wasn't able to shoot everyone if they had rushed him, but that sort of decision takes time to plan and prep for. The passengers on Flight 93 didn't all decide to rush the cockpit at the same time, and independently.

The chaos that comes about from events like this go back to our roots in history. A tribe of semi-intelligent apes gets attacked by a lion. Some of the apes attack back, some freeze in terror, some run away screaming...All these actions are to insure that some of the apes do survive to continue the lineage. Our immediate reactions is strictly instinctive. Some of that can be trained out of us by culture, whether being raised "manly", or job training (ie firemen/police/soldiers)

Our modern view of men in America is that a man should lay down his life for others. I'm not saying that's wrong, or right, it just is. So those that don't follow the expected behavior is castigated by society as a whole.

Look at the comments about this guy in the link...We know nothing beyond he was seperated from his family, and he is getting crucified. There might be mitigating circumstances, we don't know, but a lot of us are jumping on our high horse about him, judging him. I know when I first read the story I did. Upon calmer reflection, I have to admit, we don't know what happened or why he was seperated from his family, period. It just looks bad to our cultural eye.

vbmony said...

Here is a clue for whether you are a metrosexual or not. If you believe it is mere instinct that drives a man to get in front of a woman and catch a bullet for her, then you are probably a metrosexual.

sakredkow said...
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paul a'barge said...

Question for all the feminists out there: who would die to shield and save you? Hint: no one.

Cedarford said...

Tradguy - "But real men like these are also why terrorist murderers will not defeat a Democracy full of such free men. Not in Norway and not in Denver."

=============

Being "a real man" has little to do with Democracy or freedom. Some of the bravest and best fighters come from cultures that have or had... nothing to do with democracy or freedom.
The Apaches, the Conquistadors, the Spartans, the Nazis (though the Nazis came to power through democracy and strongly believed in Germanic freedom - perhaps not the version of democracy and freedom tradguy envisioned).

SDN said...

"Let us rather thank God that such men lived." Gen George S Patton, Jr.

Mitch H. said...

Of course. If they don't, it proves they're not true "manly" men.

Of course, it's the "no true Scotsman" tautology. Not all tautologies are fallacies, obviously.

I wonder where the late hairdresser Vidal Sasoon (who fought in the Israeli War of Independence) fit into the "manly man" universe...

In the Mark Bingham role of the hard, hard gay, I would guess. (*Not* Todd Beamer - that guy was married and had kids, even I had confused him wigth Bingham until I looked it up just now. Although there's some crazy assholes out there spinning conspiracy theories that Bingham wasn't on United 93, or was a construct of the Truther conspiracy, or some evil imagining along those lines. Assholes.)

Physical courage isn't innate, especially at the drop of a hat. A lot of it has to do with the immediate environment. It's much, much harder to be brave when everyone's running around you. This is why routs are so infectious - once everyone around you is running, you pretty much have to run yourself, by sheer biochemical contagion. This is how people get trampled, especially in the close confines of a movie theatre. Were the lights down when the asshole attacked? Disorientation makes things worse.

Jhn1 said...

"Jay said... If Obama's Julia were in the theater, who would have dove in front of her? A bureaucrat from the Social Security Administration or perhaps someone from Planned Parenthood?"

Hardly
The bureaucrat would be holding Julia in front of himself (or herself) as a "meat shield"
there might be room for another layer using Planned Parenthood to hold Julia in front and the bureaucrat hiding behind both.

John said...

Can't we just give everyone who participated a trophy and let it go at that? Isn't that what our society has devolved to? Everyone is a hero and no one is to blame - with the obvious exceptions of course. Sooner or later GWB needs to take the hit.

John said...

I must note that sexuality has nothing to do with any of this and I wonder about those who think that it does. That will be my last word on this subject. No need to thank me for that.

bagoh20 said...

"Being "a real man" has little to do with Democracy or freedom."

I would suggest that free men from cultures that permit free expression are substantially more impressive when they act courageously. The freer you are the more that bravery is chosen, rather than programmed or forced. The less you have the option to be a coward, the less impressive it is that you choose to be brave.

I think some of the greatest courage was among the French resistance in WWII, since the French culture would have punished them very little for falling in line and not taking any risk.

Even more courageous were German resistors who not only would be safer not resisting, but who's countrymen actually considered accepting the Nazi rule to be the only sane option and resistance to be suicidal.

The level of heroic bravery has two sides: 1) how big the risk 2) how easy it would be to avoid it.

Michelle Dulak Thomson said...

Good heavens, some of these comments. It's like ...

"If you used your own body to shield someone else from a murderous lunatic and got killed doing it, you didn't do that. Some atavistic, instinctual nervous response did that."

Unknown said...

I too have thought about why no one tried to stop the gunman. Listening to eyewitnesses describe the event it seems there were opportunities to do so. Several people described pauses in the shooting while the gunman reloaded. One described the shooter walking past "inches from my position", and another woman said "the rifle was just above my head". In any of these circumstances an attack might have saved lives. A rifle is a useless weapon at 12 inches. I know the one time I have been threatened, by a knife wielding purse snatcher in NYC, I took action and chased the man several block before the NYPD stopped me at gunpoint thinking I was the criminal. Incidents happen fast, too fast to think as someone here said, and it's a persons built-in reaction that takes over.

bagoh20 said...

To further explore my point about bravery and heroism, imagine in this theater that a guy and his date are trying to get out. The guy purposefully steps between the gunman and his date to protect her, and they work their way out to safety.

That is brave of him, but he also had a lot of pressure to not jump behind her, which would have been cowardly, and for many, an unimaginable choice.

But, if the girl, jumped in front of him to protect him, I would consider that even braver than him doing it, since she had no such social pressure pushing her to that decision.

Now, imagine after they escape, the guy decides to go back in to help save some others. This is magnitudes braver than the escape, and definite, clear heroism.

If the woman goes back in, it's the ultimate in bravery, since nobody would expect her to do that under any circumstances.

bagoh20 said...

Now the sticky problem of those who are brave in the act of great evil, like the 9/11 hijackers according to Bill Maher.

Is it brave or heroic to do a great evil with no concern for you own safety?

David said...

Cinemark, the owners of the theater, has a policy prohibiting firearms (except police), even legal weapons by CCW license holders.

To Alex 1:56 PM, Which is one reason why Objectivism is morally bankrupt.

jeff said...

"I completely agree with this. I don't understand why people feel they have to hurry up and judge someone they don't know, and condemn them in public.

I'll bet you dollars to donuts too that some of the same ones that will condemn the guy based on this one newspaper story are in the forefront of telling us how you can't trust the media and it's full of liars. "

The first story I read about this guy said when the shooting started, he put the baby down on the floor and went over the rail and out the door, leaving his girlfriend a 2 kids behind. SO which media report is the most correct and how wrong is that guy thinking you cant trust the media and its full of liars? And if the first version is correct, judging him and condemning him in public seems perfectly acceptable.

Cedarford said...

bagoh20 said...
Now the sticky problem of those who are brave in the act of great evil, like the 9/11 hijackers according to Bill Maher.

Is it brave or heroic to do a great evil with no concern for you own safety?

====================
It IS a very sticky problem. We give the Medal of Honor to soldiers that flop on a grenade to take one for the team...Such Heroes!

Objectively, though, we have enemy that also "take one for the team" that involves far more long time sustained bravery or fanaticism in the face of death than a grenade flopper has to face. A Muslim suicide bomber, a Japanese Kamikaze pilot..Sometimes hours to think about their final journey in getting to their final moment of doom. All they have to do is turn the Kamikaze rudder home, pull the battery on the vest bomb or car bomb...but they don't.

Not just the enemy. We had thousands of men that flew bombers over Germany on mission after mission knowing that 89% would die, 7% be shot down and survive before they reached their last, 25th mission.
We had forward observers in Vietnam that became overrun by the enemy that called in B-52 and napalm strikes on their own position in Vietnam and waited many long minutes for the end to come.
We had soldiers ordered to their doom in rearguard actions in Indian wars, the Civil War, Afghanistan to protect retreating buddies that knew they were dead meat..but did it.

traditionalguy said...

Men in a deadly crisis react differently. Some attack the attackers. Others shield the weak with their bodies. Others are clever enough to figure a way to get out and save themselves, because they are not fools like the first two types.

My point is that we need to reward the first two types in public so we will get more of them. The last type can get tenure at Harvard and tell stories about the Consumer Trail of Tears pretense of helping bureaucracy.

Ronald Reagan and George Washington had that first personality trait in common: they were guardian/life savers who jumped in to rescue men and women from a deadly crises at their own peril.

No super heroes need apply.

Carnifex said...

I've only read the one account from Mr. Rohrs. If he did indeed set the baby down and flee then I think everyone would be quite comfortable damning his actions. Regardless, we have a "fog of war" blanketing the events. People are going to remember things differently, or that never happened, or didn't see this woman do that for that person.

To try to determine who is and isn't a hero is kinda gilding a lilly. Those we can identify, celebrate. But determining cowardice, that will be a lot trickier.

Ps
The heroes aren't going to care if they are identified, they'll be happy with just the saving of someone else.

Joe said...

I would suggest that free men from cultures that permit free expression are substantially more impressive when they act courageously.

And yet you use examples of men and women from cultures and/or times that suppressed freedom. Is it not more brave to risk certain death fighting tyranny than to protest in a free country?

History is replete with examples of almost preternatural bravery in cultures we otherwise find abhorrent. (We also find moments of extreme bravery during episodes of extreme folly.)

Ctmom4 said...

"I've only read the one account from Mr. Rohrs. If he did indeed set the baby down and flee then I think everyone would be quite comfortable damning his actions. Regardless, we have a "fog of war" blanketing the events. People are going to remember things differently, or that never happened, or didn't see this woman do that for that person."
Carnifax - he got in his car and drove away. I think that clarifies what kind of man he is.

Mel said...

I know at least 6 men who would have been crawling under the seats to the front of the theater to get the (expletive deleted) with a pocket knife if that's what they had. I am related to four of them, and three of them have SF training. It wouldn't have crossed any of their minds to do otherwise, I know it. (Actually, if the six were in a group, one of them would have stood up and made himself a distraction for the other 5, I think. That's always been his way.)
Me? I'd have had my kids (and anyone I could get to follow them) crawling under the seats toward the back of the theater and playing dead. End of story.

bagoh20 said...

"And yet you use examples of men and women from cultures and/or times that suppressed freedom. Is it not more brave to risk certain death fighting tyranny than to protest in a free country?"

I think you misunderstand my examples. I was using examples of Germany and France as situations where resisting was a hard choice, because of attitudes on your own side. In addition to the risk, you had to buck the opinion of your own fellows who would recommend against resisting out of fear or lack of vigor. The easiest place to be brave is where everyone else is too, such as in England, where everyone was behind resistance. Still the same risk, but an easier decision.

Gary Rosen said...

Unsurprisingly C-fudd goes full Lewinsky on the Nazis.

jmatt said...

It's just part of the male biology and psychology. We know that in times of danger, we're expendable. It's in our DNA.

Ralph L said...

flew bombers over Germany on mission after mission knowing that 89% would die
US Bomber crew fatalities were bad, but not that bad. I read somewhere that U Boat crews (sorry Gary) had the highest rate in the European theater, and I think it was 3/4ths died, and the 8th Air Force lost about half. How long would we tolerate that today?

leslyn said...

jmatt,

If that were true all the men would have been rushing the gunman. We act on our values, training, love and instinct--men and women.

Contribution: Perhaps the most moving story of courage to save others I have ever heard.

Six Seconds to Live

The speaker (but not his audience) knew that his own son had just died a few days earlier.

DCS said...

Try telling that to Katie Roiphe. She doesn't need a man except as a sperm donor.

leslyn said...

So what? Who cares?

leslyn said...

Corrected link.

Six Seconds to Live.

Palladian said...

Even in homosexual relationships, one is assertive and one is submissive, the same as in heterosexual relationships.

Lol.

The stupid just flows out of you sometimes.

Shanna said...

I'd have had my kids (and anyone I could get to follow them) crawling under the seats toward the back of the theater and playing dead. End of story.

That does seem to have worked in many of these types of situations. If you aren't charging the guy and there is no way to get out, that's probably your best bet.

The setup of a movie theater seems like it would make it hard to charge someone. Kind of similar to a classroom, really. Lots of obstacles, rather than open ground. But I think it would also make it easier to sneak up on the guy if you had time.

Kim said...

Interesting, I just got blasted from my son-in-law and daughter, who was holding my 4-month-old grandson, for even suggesting that Rohrs was an ass for leaving his baby and running. I mean, how dare I judge someone in his position.

I pointed out that we are calling those who saved their girlfriends, and the 19-year-old who saved Rohr's family "Hero", having no problem placing a value judgement on their behaviors.

I guess my first instinct would be to drop on top of my grandson (if escape is not possible). I cannot imagine that not being the first instinct of a father. It was certainly the instinct of the mom.

James said...

Wonder how many women died trying to protect men. Equality!

David said...

These guys preserved civilization.

Largo said...

Alex & David,

According to Objectivism, you do NOT have to save yourself (not in general anyway).

submandave said...

Just think what these brave, chivalrous men could have done had they been allowed to execute their Second Amendment rights...

Sofa King said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Sofa King said...

Alex & David,

According to Objectivism, you do NOT have to save yourself (not in general anyway).


Conveniently, Rand herself discussed exactly this topic:

Concern for the welfare of those one loves is a rational part of one’s selfish interests. If a man who is passionately in love with his wife spends a fortune to cure her of a dangerous illness, it would be absurd to claim that he does it as a “sacrifice” for her sake, not his own, and that it makes no difference to him, personally and selfishly, whether she lives or dies.

Any action that a man undertakes for the benefit of those he loves is not a sacrifice if, in the hierarchy of his values, in the total context of the choices open to him, it achieves that which is of greatest personal (and rational) importance to him. In the above example, his wife’s survival is of greater value to the husband than anything else that his money could buy, it is of greatest importance to his own happiness and, therefore, his action is not a sacrifice.

But suppose he let her die in order to spend his money on saving the lives of ten other women, none of whom meant anything to him—as the ethics of altruism would require. That would be a sacrifice. Here the difference between Objectivism and altruism can be seen most clearly: if sacrifice is the moral principle of action, then that husband should sacrifice his wife for the sake of ten other women. What distinguishes the wife from the ten others? Nothing but her value to the husband who has to make the choice—nothing but the fact that his happiness requires her survival.

The Objectivist ethics would tell him: your highest moral purpose is the achievement of your own happiness, your money is yours, use it to save your wife, that is your moral right and your rational, moral choice.


From http://aynrandlexicon.com/lexicon/sacrifice.html

Largo said...

Thank you, Sofa King.

Nathan Alexander said...

There are wolves, sheep, and sheepdogs.

That theater had one extremely clever wolf too many, and too few sheepdogs. The sheepdogs that were there were muzzled.

Time to get back to the "wild" west, where a man's word was his bond, and defense was an individual responsibility?