opinion

This is not the time to be sharing crazed conspiracy theories about the Las Vegas shooting.

Just a few days ago a 64-year-old man armed with an arsenal of high-powered guns shot and killed 59 people and injured almost 500 more.

Now is the time for grieving those victims killed while attending a Las Vegas country music festival.

Now is the time for rallying around the families who lost loved ones in an act of senseless violence.

Now is the time for US citizens and those in positions of power discussing tighter gun control in their nation. Better yet, now is the time to be acting on these discussions and doing all possible to ensure this kind of atrocity can never happen again.

Now is not the time for raising conspiracy theories.

But that’s exactly what Chloe Lattanzi has done in a bizarre Instagram post, shared on Thursday.

Next to a photo of herself next to a steaming pool, surrounded by snow-covered trees, the 31-year-old daughter of Olivia Newton-John sends her “prayers” to the victims, but also shares her doubts that Stephen Paddock was the sole perpetrator of this mass murder.

"My heart and prayers go out to all in Las Vegas affected by this absolute tragedy. My heart goes out to all the world. I must say I do not believe the accused man is the one who did this," she says.

"This may upset some, but I think there's a much bigger darker organization behind this abhorrent event. Look into it. It doesn't add up."

Lattanzi then gushes about the beauty in nature, but fails to give any background or explanation to her theory.

Of course, lack of credible evidence has never stopped conspiracy theorists before. But let's put the actual act of suggesting the theory aside and instead focus on the timing of this.

This is a time when the US and the world is reeling from another mass shooting, which is in fact, the worst of its kind. Ever.

Listen: Mia Freedman and Amelia Lester discuss the shooting at Las Vegas’ Mandalay Bay Hotel that left 59 people dead.

We've been told it's not appropriate to be talking of "politics" at this time, but parents who have lost loved ones and US politicians like Democrat senators Elizabeth Warren and Chris Murphy will not be silenced.

Chloe may think she's adding to the debate, but what she's really doing is offering up a distraction. Something that detracts from the discussion about what is really at the heart of this issue: America's lax gun laws and its leaders' unwillingness to do anything to tighten them out of fear of angering the country's powerful gun lobbyists.

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The problem is that by bringing up a baseless conspiracy theory, she offers Americans something to focus on that isn't the cold, hard reality of the situation.

She and others spouting these theories allows people to shift their attention to something erroneous instead of what would be the difficult task of regaining control from the NRA over the wild systems that have allowed men like Stephen Paddock and Adam Lanza and Omar Mateen to get their hands on high-powered weapons and wield them against innocent victims.

Because what we need to be focusing on now, is doing everything we can to ensure this is the last time we need to talk about a tragedy of this kind.

Now that Grand Final weekend officially behind us, it's likely you're probably thinking one of three things.
1. Thank goodness that's over and I can reclaim my television.
2. I am counting down the days until the cricket starts. Or Tennis. Or any other tournament to watch next.
3. There was a Grand Final?
Whatever your feelings about all things sporty, we want to know (yes, even if it's number 3) - take our quick 10-question survey to tell us!

MMSurvey
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