BYH to the one saying that Democrats don't believe in America's borders. Where do they get this stuff? I've never heard...

Ugly theater drama reveals the bad, good


Greenville police and other law enforcement officers responded to the AMC Fire Tower 12 late Friday, Feb. 23, after a report shots had been fired inside the complex.


Sunday, March 4, 2018

The dramatic confrontation and subsequent police response nine days ago at the AMC Fire Tower 12 showed a full range of humanity, from selfish to selfless, in a matter of minutes, with the best possible of outcomes: all parties left the business safe and sound albeit a bit shaken.

Greenville Police Chief Mark Holtzman, with a bit of incredulity, explained how the drama unfolded prior to a showing of “Black Panther.” “Yeah, believe it or not, we believe this entire thing started over assigned seating in the theater. In other words, ‘You’re in my seat,’ that leads to an argument, that leads to a gun being pulled out and at least one round being fired up into the ceiling.”

We don’t know the details of the argument, which party was in the right or wrong, but everyone knows that firing a gun is the absolute worst response to that situation — everyone except maybe the big brain in the blue and white shirt and blue and white hat who police arrested a couple days later. 

Of course he is innocent until proven guilty, but the man simply could have approached the management if someone had taken his seat, or he could have moved if the seat’s rightful owner asked him to please do so. He could have moved even if the exchange was less pleasant.

Instead, Mr. Big Shot and his girlfriend (she was arrested, too) can think only of themselves. They argue and fight, the man fires his pistol and starts a panic — you don’t have to be a behavioral scientist to know that a gunshot in a theater will scare people, especially nine days after a shooting rampage killed 17 people at a school in Florida and stirred memories of the 2012 theater shooting that killed 12 in Colorado.

The incident ruined everybody’s night. No “Black Panther” or any other movie for anyone after that. At the very least, the guy needs some anger management classes, and he doesn’t need to be carrying a gun.

The first police officers entered the building quickly, the chief said, less than two minutes after they were called. This is where the story takes a positive turn. 

The officers did not know exactly what would face them when they entered. Surely the same thoughts movie-goers had of shooters with high-powered weapons and fully loaded magazines crossed their minds. Instead of holding back, or running away, these officers geared up and ran toward the danger. 

In this day and age, it is an eventuality for which local law enforcement regularly trains. Every summer, for instance, they pick a school building and practice their active-shooter response with guns that shoot paint pellets and actors who play bad guys and bystanders. The protocol calls for the first available officer — on or off duty — to push forward as back up scrambles to the scene.

Officers from Greenville, East Carolina University and the Pitt County Sheriff’s Office showed how well their training and efforts to equip them has worked. Within 10 minutes several waves of vested responders with rifles had overrun the business. An active shooter would have had nowhere to hide.

Thank goodness more was not required of these heroic people. We know the sight of them may have surprised and frightened many that night, but by most accounts they performed with great professionalism. We can take comfort that they are ready, willing and able to do their job — a job that in the worst-case scenario risks their lives to protect ours.


Humans of Greenville


Local photographer Joe Pellegrino explores Greenville to create a photographic census of its people.


December 13, 2018

North Carolina corporations, again, are about to get another huge tax break — a break they do not need. It will make it more difficult for the government to meet the obligations it has to provide a quality education to the state’s children and high quality of life to all its…

N.C. Legislative Building

December 12, 2018

In his 1991 confirmation hearings, C-SPAN noted on Friday, former attorney general William Barr declared that "nothing could be more destructive of our system of government, of the rule of law, or Department of Justice as an institution, than any toleration of political interference with the…

Trump Attorney General-2

December 10, 2018

While the National Flood Insurance Program covers only 134,000 households our of North Carolina’s 3.8 million, it will likely pay for repairs costing hundreds of millions of dollars. Add all the damage in other states this year, from Florence and later from Hurricane Michael, which flattened…

Harvey-Flood Insurance-4

December 09, 2018

It is almost a truism in criminal investigations that those who flip early and help prosecutors build their case against higher-ranking figures are shown greater leniency than those who try to gut it out.

Michael Flynn, who served briefly as President Trump’s national security adviser, is…

Trump Russia Probe Flynn

December 08, 2018

In June 1948, after the College World Series and graduation day at Yale, young George H.W. Bush packed up his cranberry-red Studebaker (a graduation gift from his father) and headed the car’s distinctive nose in a southwesterly direction. The little car got him to Odessa and to a shotgun…

Obit George HW Bush-3

December 07, 2018

In the week since the state Board of Elections declined to certify the results of North Carolina’s 9th Congressional District election, journalists and others have begun to fill in the details of a troubling case of apparent ballot fraud. In Bladen County — and perhaps other counties…

Election 2018 North Carolina Congress

December 04, 2018

As many as 670,000 North Carolinians could gain sorely needed Medicaid coverage if Gov. Roy Cooper and members of both parties in the legislature will work together to help them.

Now that voters have restored some balance to the state’s power structure, that idea isn’t so far-fetched…


December 03, 2018

What’s going on in North Carolina’s 9th Congressional District? An election certification is being held up. The person behind the delay is being a bit coy about it. The public is in the dark. That needs to change — and soon.

The state board of elections refused Tuesday to certify…

Election 2018 9th Congressional District

November 30, 2018

On Nov. 6, 1986 the Immigration Reform and Control Act (IRCA) or Reagan Amnesty was passed. This act granted amnesty to those illegal immigrants in the U.S. that met the eligibility requirements of the act.

In passing the act, both Democrats and Republicans in the House and Senate agreed to secure…

November 30, 2018

By making it easier to sue for retaliatory arrests, Supreme Court justices could pump the brakes on “contempt of cop” cases where citizens’ cross words and surly attitudes lead to low-level criminal charges.

The high court heard oral arguments this week in Nieves v. Bartlett, a…

83 stories in Editorials. Viewing 1 through 10.
«First Page   «Previous Page        
Page 1 of 9
        Next Page»   Last Page»