Aurora shooting: Jordan Ghawi, brother of victim, says boycott of Cinemark is "ridiculous"
Yesterday, families of those who died in the Aurora theater shooting blasted Cinemark, owner of the site of the tragedy, for insensitively inviting them to an event timed with the theater's reopening. The mother and stepfather of victim Jessica Ghawi joined others in signing a letter to the theater, expressing their outrage and calling for a boycott. But Jordan Ghawi, Jessica's brother, did not. And today he explained why he disagrees with those criticizing Cinemark.
As we reported yesterday, Cinemark, which owns the Century 16 theater in Aurora where twelve were killed and dozens more injured in a mass shooting on July 20, sent a note to victims' families two days after Christmas, saying they could reserve tickets to a "remembrance ceremony" tied to the theater's reopening.
The note was sent via the Colorado Organization for Victim Assistance, a group that has been criticized by families for a lack of transparency in its process of disbursing donations.
In a very strongly worded response, fifteen family members of victims said it was a "ridiculously offensive invitation" and that they would be doing everything possible to encourage people to boycott the "killing field."
Jordan Ghawi, who was active on social media in the aftermath of the shooting, took to Twitter today to offer his take on Cinemark, first saying that he, too, did not appreciate the letter:
In regards to @cinemarkusa and their letter to myself and rest of Aurora families: Yes, their comments were tactless and repulsive.— Jordan Ghawi (@JordanGhawi) January 3, 2013
But that tweet was followed by many others disagreeing with the position of his mother and other victims' families.
However, a boycott of @cinemarkusa is ridiculous. Boycotting the structure of my sister's death allows her killer to "win".— Jordan Ghawi (@JordanGhawi) January 3, 2013
If my sister & the 11 others were killed in a vehicle collison on a Denver highway, would we boycott the DOT or demand it to be demolished?— Jordan Ghawi (@JordanGhawi) January 3, 2013
And referencing concerns in the families' letter that Cinemark -- which is facing lawsuits from some injured victims -- had been unresponsive to families in the past:
Regarding the response letter from the families. Why would @cinemarkusa reply to previous correspondence when some of you are suing them?— Jordan Ghawi (@JordanGhawi) January 3, 2013
And he continued urging against a boycott:
Don't boycott the theatre. Go there, remember what happened there, and let it serve as a reminder that "every second of everyday is a gift".— Jordan Ghawi (@JordanGhawi) January 3, 2013
Continue for more of Jordan Ghawi's comments and response from Jessica's mother and stepfather.