My wife and I rang in the New Year by taking my mother to Las Vegas to visit our son. As in the past, we opted to stay at Mandalay Bay, the southernmost hotel on the Strip, and closest to where he and his girlfriend live.
As you recall, Mandalay Bay, owned by MGM, is the hotel and casino that had the misfortune of having rented a room to a demented 64-year-old, Stephen Paddock. He used the location this past October to shoot 604 concert-goers, killing 58 of them, and then, presumably himself. We had no misgivings of staying at the hotel, despite the shootings. In fact, I would have had no problem staying in the “Paddock suite” had they offered it to us for free.
One night before dinner, we went up to the 43rd floor of the hotel to have an adult beverage. There is an outer balcony with a spectacular northerly view overlooking the entire neon Strip. It was a pleasant, clear night and Las Vegas Boulevard was a beehive of activity. From our vantage point, we had almost the same view as Paddock did on the 32nd floor, over Las Vegas Village where the Route 91 Harvest country music festival had been held.
As I looked over the festival grounds, one couldn’t help but reflect on the massacre, which became the deadliest mass-shooting in American history. Foremost on my mind was how fortunate we were our son had not attended the concert that night, which featured one of his favorite performers. But beyond that blessing, something else was nagging at me - aside from the poor service given by hotel staff - and I really couldn’t put my finger on it.
The following morning it dawned on me what had been so disquieting. Ask yourself this question – four plus months after one of the most horrific events in American history, and at a time with 24-hour news cycles and investigative reporters on every corner, why do we not know more about how or why this happened? We know every sordid detail of anything going on across this country, most of which we really didn’t want to know about, yet we are not getting much update on this investigation.
Did all of those wounded people survive? If so, the hospitals did a remarkable job. Have any of the gunshot victims or hospital staff been interviewed? Surely there has to be some lawsuits filed somewhere. What has happened to all the “players” in this drama, such as the girlfriend or security guard? Is it just me or does it seem as if a giant wet blanket has been dropped over the entire affair? Another one of those, “Just move along folks, nothing to see here,” moments.
While we know virtually nothing about the how or why, we do know all about the twenty-three guns and the bump stock that Paddock used. Previous to this incident, I had never heard of a bump stock and bet you hadn’t either. Is this what passes for essential information we need to know - or might it be a complicit media intent on abetting the denial of 2nd Amendment rights – just asking? We needed to know the in-depth gun details as much as we need to know the specifics of the spoon used to dish ice cream down our throat. I don’t know about you, but I would trade the gun details for a scoop of how Paddock managed to pull this off or why he did it.
I’m not trying to start a conspiracy and probably wouldn’t believe one if you gave it to me. I don’t believe Elvis is still alive or our government was involved in the 9/11 WTC attacks. I do think Oswald had help, so I can be persuaded if you care to opine. Even the venerable Tucker Carlson went to Vegas to investigate and get some answers, only to come back somewhat reserved on the matter.
There is only one thing I can think of that would make all those investigative folks drop a subject like a hot potato, especially one this loaded. The threat of a lawsuit. I’m not saying this is the answer, so don’t write home to your mother just yet. Having said that, I have come to the conclusion that if I’m ever accused of a federal offense, or one of those defenseless “Me Too” crimes where one seems to be automatically guilty, I might try to hire one of those fancy MGM attorneys.