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1. Mike Huckabee: "We have systematically removed God from our schools."
The former governor of Arkansas, Republican hopeful for president, and Fox News host says we've got no reason to be surprised when adult gunmen shoot up educational establishments.
"We ask why there is violence in our schools, but we have systematically removed God from our schools," Huckabee said on Fox News, discussing the murder spree that took the lives of 20 children and 6 adults in Newtown, CT that morning. "Should we be so surprised that schools would become a place of carnage?"
I don't doubt the governor's sincerity, but among other things, he might want to think about the declining rate of school violence. According to data compiled by the National Center for Education Statistics, schools have been getting safer and less violent at least over the past couple of decades - despite what Huckabee would doubtless consider a period of rising godlessness. During the school year of 1992-93, for instance, the number of on-location murders of students and staff at K-12 public schools was 47 (out of population of millions). In 2009-2010 (the latest year for which data is listed), the number was 25. Over the same period, the rate on victimizations per 1,000 students for theft dropped from 101 to 18. For violent crimes, the rate dropped from 53 to 14. And for "serious violent" crimes, the rate dropped from 8 to 4.
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Next: It's never too late to blame George W. Bush...