Christchurch Shooting Footage: Why You Shouldn’t Watch The Video, And What To Do If You Did

Dimi Reider in Newsweek:

Police stand outside a mosque in Linwood, Christchurch, New Zealand, Friday, March 15, 2019. Multiple people were killed during shootings at two mosques full of people attending Friday prayers. (AP Photo/Mark Baker)

The very fact terrorists exploit people’s interest in dramatic events should caution you against typing in that search string, and certainly against sharing it with others.

Firstly, by doing so you’d be playing up to the narcissism of someone who couldn’t come up with any more adequate way to generate renown than to massacre innocent people. Whatever false modesty Tarrant might profess in the tedious manifesto ascribed to him, a quality shared universally by terrorists of all ilks is the desire to stand out from the crowd, to be seen—if only by themselves—as heroes and possibly martyrs. There’s plenty to be said for simply declining to oblige their desire for notoriety.

Secondly, it is difficult to imagine a more intimate moment in any person’s life than dying. Tarrant not only brutally brought this moment forward for dozens of innocent people, who had so many more years to live and so much more than him to give to their families, communities and to the country they made their home. He was determined to humiliate them, to make them look like targets in a video game. If you want to know more about the victims, wait for their life stories to emerge. By looking through the killer’s helmet camera, you are adopting his gaze, and actively participating in this indignity.

Thirdly, and as importantly, just because you’re not at the scene and not in any immediate risk, this does not mean that you will not be affected.

More here.