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2012’s Mass Shooting Sites, Tomorrow’s Haunted Places

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I’m not sure if 2012 had more mass shootings than any other year, but I felt they were more disturbing than any other year. Maybe because the shootings at the theater in Aurora, Colorado and Newtown, Connecticut were so senselessness. I mean, it wasn’t like the shooters had a personal grudge against any of their victims. (That we know of. From what I understand, Adam Lanza didn’t leave much behind on his computer and such for people to try and make sense of his actions –mostly because he didn’t leave much of his computer behind.)

The thing I can’t help thinking about is that we’ve all witnessed history being made. Tragic history. Dark history. True. But history nonetheless.

I also like to think maybe some good can come out of this misery. We can use it as a learning experience when it comes to paranormal tourism and investigation.

SENSITIVITY

One hundred years from now, do you suppose the house where Adam Lanza murdered his mom may have activity? Perhaps it will become a B&B and will be known as the Adam Lanza House and offer accommodations for travelers or ghost hunts for paranormal investigators? Sort of like how the Lizzie Borden House became a B&B that accommodates ghost hunters.

Can you picture tours being given from the house to the school where Lanza massacred 26 innocent people? Does that shock you? Maybe seem insensitive?

Do you think people could’ve imagined the Borden house being turned into a B&B and becoming known for paranormal activity? Or, worse, paranormal tourism?

Or, 100 yeas from now, will some enterprising soul buy the property where either the Newtown mass shootings or the Aurora, Colorado theater shooting happened and charge overnight fees like the property where the Villisca Axe Murders house does? I’m sure no one in 1912 Iowa ever thought what happened in that house would one day be the source of tourism.

RESPECT

In both 1892-1893 and 1912, those murders were akin to the Sandy Hook School or the Aurora Theater mass shootings. They were sensational, macabre, terrifying, and tragic.

So many of the places with dark histories are. The victims may be long gone, many of their loved ones and those most intimately associated with the tragedies are also gone. But they –both the places where the tragedies happened and the people involved– deserve respect just the same.

There is a certain amount of solemnity and sensitivity that should be displayed when visiting any haunted place. So often, though, it’s disregarded. People just want to be scared. They want the thrill of experiencing something from the beyond.

But before there was a beyond, there was a here and now. Just like today. Put yourself in the ghost’s shoes, so to speak. Would you like gawkers and lookie loos coming to your death place to be tantalized by the lured facts of your demise? Probably not.

So keep that in mind during your next visit to a haunted place. It’s history now, but it once was someone’s present. Respect that.

Courtney Mroch
Courtney Mroch, otherwise known as HJ's Ambassador of Dark and Paranormal Tourism, is an author, traveler, and ghost enthusiast. When she's not writing, jaunting, or planning her next trip, it's a safe bet you'll find her on a tennis court somewhere. She currently resides in Nashville, Tennessee.
http://www.courtneymroch.com

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