Thursday, August 2, 2012

Courage and Cowardice - A Colorado Shooting Story

Of course we'd all like to know why that orange-haired loser assembled an arsenal and randomly attacked an Aurora, Colorado theater full of innocent people, killing twelve. But meanwhile, there have been quite a few interesting stories about the victims of this tragedy. One in particular caught my eye.

Jarrell Brooks
In Mark Memmott's NPR article, he describes the truly heroic actions of Jarrell Brooks, an 18-year-old young man who shielded a mother, her four-year old daughter and infant son with his body. Although he was subsequently shot in the leg, he protected them as he guided them out of the theater.

Wow. Would you have been able to do that?

Now the interesting part. The young mother was at the theater with another guy - her boyfriend. Where was he? According to an interview cited in The Denver Post, he said he reacted by "hurdling over a row of seats and running for his life, disoriented."

And after he made his way to safety, I wonder what he was thinking...about the girlfriend and the small children he abandoned.

One young man had the personal strengths of compassion, composure and courage ingrained in his brain.

The other one didn't.

As I think of the billions of human beings on the planet, the diversity of human character is truly mind-boggling. Be sure to choose well the people you associate with.

Post by Dennis E. Coates, Ph.D., Copyright 2012. Building Personal Strength .


Kathleen Scott said...

He's an amazing young man. I loved what he said about the reason he turned back to shield and help the family--he couldn't live with himself if he didn't.

Anonymous said...

In a world that has become full of uncertainty, hurt, sadness , and fear, it's wonderful to see that there are still people that can be kind, strong and couragous - putting others before themselves. This young man will have a special place in heaven!