On July 20, in Colorado, an individual named James Holmes attended the screening of Christopher Nolan’s third bat-man movie, armed, and allegedly shot approximately 70 of the other attendees, killing at least 14 of them.
By now, this event has gotten so much coverage, and with so much editorial spin, that besides the attendees it is doubtful anybody has a clear picture of what actually happened. And given the reliability of human memory of high stress events like violent crimes, also doubtful the surviving attendees have a realistic picture.
However, the mainstream media is making great cake out of the actions of three particular individuals who were present at that screening; these being men, the same sex as the guy with the gun. These men, rather than killing, chose instead to die. In particular, three men, in the heat of the moment placed themselves between their girlfriends and Mr Holmes, the alleged shooter, protecting them from death at the cost of their own lives.
Our media is now calling them heroes. So what did they actually do that was – not “heroic”, since that word carries far to much emotional charge to be useful. I’ll say what these three formerly living men did was follow their hominid instincts; the same instincts, by the way, that every man has. That instinct is to prioritize the physical survival of women ahead of their own survival.
I’ll say that again – while we read our news and listen to commentary from every smooth faced liar, telling us how masculinity leads to violence, war, rape, every possible negative outcome – all because of penises – let’s pause and take a note that every man (excluding the occasional mental defective such as James Holmes) has the instinct to protect women ahead of himself in times of crisis. I’ll even bet that James Holmes, if he’d been in the audience rather than shooting into it, would have more likely thrown himself protectively in front of a woman than not. I say this because in men, this is instinct. It’s a feature of male behavior which helped our species survive famine and predation throughout our developmental pre-history.
This, by the way, is the same instinct causing news readers to regurgitate the phrase “women and children” every time a group of human beings come to harm and at least one of them has a vagina – in order give the story extra-special pathos. As if the world is populated by first rate humans, and also disposable factory seconds, differentiated by Y chromosome.
These three particular dead men who used themselves as bullet shields to protect their girlfriends, they are heroes. At least, according to the myth making of enforcers of social conformity like William Bennett in his evangelizing article on CNN.com.
What Bennett and other priests of public conformity are doing is re-enforcing the mainstream narrative that a good man is one who suffers, or who dies for the benefit of a human with a uterus. The converse case would be if these guys had conspicuously acted to protect themselves, escaping from the shooting while less agile or alert and slower moving movie goers died? We’d be listening to the preening, strutting, amoral whores of the mainstream media describe them as cowards and shirkers; failed men for not doing their manly duty by dying for the convenience of others.
But let me be explicit about what I see happening. Our mainstream, which is to say, our corporate media – that which bends and fawns for access to the corrupt elected officials and modern robber barons of corporate statehood – is telling you, young man, that in order to be worthwhile, a real man, you’d better be prepared to die without complaint for the child, or the little old lady, or the drug addled slut in the next seat. They matter more than you. Your best and most honorable path ends in you on a slab in the basement of your city’s morgue.
According to ideologues like William Bennett, honor and heroism stands on the fatalistic belief that a man has a responsibility to protect a woman, even to the point of death.
That’s what you’re for gentlemen; provide, protect, and when convenient for other people, die.
This is of course instinct. It’s wired into all of us. All of us with male identity, of course. But you know what else is instinctive? The urge, when faced with competition for resources, opportunity or status to pick up a rock and crush the skull of whoever stands in your way.
And somehow, despite the instincts of a million generations of our cave-man ancestors – almost all of us manage to make it through our variously stressful lives hardly crushing a single skull every month or so. However do we do it?
The instinct – expressing itself variously as chivalry or as fatal self sacrifice — is just one more that no longer has any discernable benefit. It is an encumbrance to any real pursuit of a civilized society in which one class of humans is not legally and socially elevated over another. But Bill Bennett would wrap neanderthalish and fatalistic self sacrifice and devaluation of male identity in the pious cloak of Honor. This much prized Honor being nothing except a perverse system of mind control to compel men to make decisions leading to their own deaths, dismemberment, poverty, incarceration and, service to those who devalue male humanity in favor of male utility.
Anybody telling young men their value is as disposable appliances and corpses on which other people’s convenience, comfort and corporate profits run, deserves all our scorn and contempt. Bill Bennett deserves our scorn and contempt.
“..men need heroes to imitate whom they can relate to in everyday life [...] They need heroes like the Aurora three” 
Men are not humans of lesser worth. They are humans. Those three men are not heroes, they’re just dead. The calculus of death, where one life is traded in celebration for another by preference of a vagina, is pathological and regressive. It must be recognized as the sickness it is. Those who lionized these men, whose fatal and unexamined instinct led to self-destruction; those who held them up as a heroic example to follow, are cordially invited to go first — or to go fuck themselves.