Mass Shootings

Americans Can't Agree About How Often Mass Shootings Occur, Let Alone the Right Policy Response

A new RAND analysis shows how difficult it is to answer basic questions about this rare variety of homicide.

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Mass public shootings are horrifying, seemingly random events with high casualty counts, and for that reason they attract much more press and political attention than far more common kinds of lethal violence, even though they account for a tiny percentage of homicides and gun deaths. A new analysis by RAND Corporation economist Rosanna Smart and senior behavioral scientist Terry Schell calls attention to some of the ways in which the disproportionate emphasis on crimes like the recent massacres in Atlanta, Boulder, and Indianapolis distorts and confuses the debate about gun control.

Research on mass shootings in the United States begins with the problem of defining them. Seven databases that Smart and Schell discuss use seven different definitions based on five different casualty thresholds, all of which consider the number of people killed and some of which also consider nonfatal injuries or the killer's motivation. Smart and Schell note that "using definitions that differ in their thresholds for the number and type of victims or the circumstances around the incident results in vastly different estimates of how often mass shooting events occur, how the rate has changed over time, and incident characteristics."

Based on the narrowest definition considered by Smart and Schell—which requires four fatalities aside from the perpetrator and excludes armed robbery, gang violence, and domestic violence—there were six mass shootings in 2019. Based on the broadest definition—four people injured or killed, including the perpetrator—there were 503.

The wide range of definitions means that people are often talking about different things when they talk about mass shootings. After last week's attack in Indianapolis, for example, CNN created a graphic that indicated the U.S. had seen 22 "mass shootings in the past month." California Gov. Gavin Newsom tweeted that graphic with the comment, "What 'getting back to normal' in America means after a pandemic." A different CNN tally upped the number of "mass shootings" since mid-March to "at least 45," based on a definition that covers incidents in which "four or more people are shot, wounded, or killed."

CNN's count includes many crimes that do not fit the stricter definitions and do not jibe with what most people probably imagine when they hear the phrase mass shooting. For example, CNN counted a robbery-related shooting at a motel in Gresham, Oregon, that injured four people but killed no one; a drive-by shooting in Stockton, California, that caused five nonfatal injuries; an argument-related shooting at a Dallas nightclub that killed one person and injured seven others; and a shooting outside a sports bar in Philadelphia that injured seven people after "an altercation inside the venue."

CNN's definition is defensible for some purposes. But by presenting this tally in the context of the April 15 attack at a Federal Express sorting facility in Indianapolis, which killed nine people, CNN left the misleading impression that 44 similar crimes had occurred in the previous month. In reality, three of those shootings resembled the Indianapolis attack, meaning that they killed four or more people at random in a public place.

Definitions are also crucial when considering trends in mass shootings. "The data from multiple studies suggest a slight increase in the incidence rate of mass public shootings over the past four decades," Smart and Schell write. "From 2016 to 2018, the annual rate of mass public shooting incidents was about one incident per 50 million people in the United States [based on data collected by criminologist Grant Duwe]. Considering the number of fatalities in these shootings, this corresponds to approximately 0.4 percent of all homicides, or approximately 0.2 percent of all firearm deaths, over that period."

Meanwhile, "using an expanded definition of mass shootings that includes domestic- or felony-related killings, there is little evidence to suggest that mass shooting incidents or fatalities have increased." If news outlets like CNN use a consistent definition, in other words, they cannot reasonably assert that mass shootings are on the rise while simultaneously claiming that "at least 45" happened between mid-March and mid-April.

Another complication in trying to figure out whether mass shootings have become more common is that information about recent crimes is more accessible than information about older crimes, a bias that may create the illusion of an upward trend. "Because it should be relatively easier to identify more-recent shootings with few fatalities, a low casualty threshold will tend to systematically bias estimates of the number of shootings upward over time," Smart and Schell note. "Even when using a higher-fatality threshold, mass shooting data sources that rely solely on news reports to identify cases also appear to systematically undercount incidents from earlier periods."

Policies that aim to prevent mass public shootings, such as expanded background checks and "red flag" laws, often focus on stopping would-be perpetrators from obtaining firearms. But those policies are based on the mistaken premise that people inclined to commit mass murder can be distinguished from millions of other people with similar traits.

"Even if we did have definitive and complete data sources on the characteristics of all mass shooting incidents, it is still likely to be exceedingly difficult to identify useful predictors of mass shootings," Smart and Schell write. "With the exception of male sex, risk factors that appear to be overrepresented among mass shooters relative to the general population are often still uncommon among offenders on an absolute level. Thus, even if one could find a way to prevent individuals with a documented serious mental illness from committing a mass shooting…most mass shootings would still occur because only a fraction of mass shootings are committed by individuals with a documented history of serious mental illness."

Another approach is restricting or banning firearms or accessories that are frequently used in mass shootings. But as Smart and Schell note, "handguns are the firearm most commonly involved in active shootings and mass shootings." They are also the most common type of firearm used by ordinary criminals and the most common type used by law-abiding Americans for self-defense. For the latter reason, the Supreme Court has repeatedly said, handgun bans are unconstitutional.

Smart and Schell cite studies indicating that so-called assault weapons are used in 10 percent to 36 percent of mass shootings. Even if that percentage could be reduced, it is quite unlikely that the result would be fewer deaths, given the arbitrary nature of "assault weapon" bans, which leave would-be mass shooters with plenty of equally lethal alternatives.

Smart and Schell note that "the use of large-capacity magazines (LCMs)"—defined as magazines that hold more than 10 rounds, which are standard for many of the most popular guns sold in the U.S.—"is more common in mass public shootings and high-fatality mass shooting incidents than it is in firearm crimes overall." They say "descriptive evidence that mass shootings involving firearms equipped with LCMs result in significantly higher injury and fatality rates may suggest potential benefits of restricting access to LCMs," although "it may be that the choice to use LCMs reflects more-lethal intentions of the shooter."

The rarity of mass public shootings makes it difficult to assess the impact of these or other policies. "Even if a state passed a policy that had large effects on mass public shootings (e.g., it cut the probability of such incidents in half), it is still unlikely that a study of that policy using appropriate statistical methods would find it to have a statistically significant effect," Smart and Schell write. "This occurs because most states already have zero mass public shootings in any given year, and, when the rate in the pre-period was already at, or very close to, zero, it is not possible to detect a decline in the risk of such shootings that is due to the policy—no matter how large that effect may be. This pervasive lack of statistical power can result in a published literature characterized by exaggerated effect sizes for any effects that are found to be statistically significant, and these significant estimates, in many cases, may misidentify the direction of the true effect."

Where does that leave us? Smart and Schell suggest that the focus on preventing this particular kind of homicide is misplaced.

"Precisely because mass shootings are so rare and it is so difficult to predict exactly who will perpetrate them, the overall costs and benefits of any policy to address them are likely to be driven by the policy's effects on a broader set of far more-common outcomes, such as overall homicide, suicide, domestic violence, and population health," they write. "Improved treatment for mental health problems or suicidality might reduce certain types of mass shootings, but such policies may also reduce far more-common forms of homicide, suicide, and crime and may also improve economic productivity and social well-being. Similarly, policies aimed at reducing domestic violence or preventing crime are worth pursuing for those benefits, and they may also reduce the incidence of some types of mass shootings (i.e., familicides [and] felony-related killings). Focusing efforts on implementing public policies that reduce violence more broadly, rather than making policy decisions based only on the most-extreme forms of such violence, may not eliminate mass shootings but may reduce their occurrence and lethality and ultimately save more lives."

NEXT: A D.C. Blues Bar Ran a Mini-Vaccine Drive for Employees and Performers. Now Its Owner Wants the Right To Reopen.

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  1. At some point, the media is going to have to explain why their progressive audience is wrong s it so much.

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  2. Like the magic 6 foot distance for being anti-social, the number is irrelevant. What matters is having an excuse to evade the second amendment.

    1. Having recently done some driving in Mass., I can understand why people would be inclined to go shooting there.

      1. You have to embrace it. When someone cuts you off, give them a “thumbs up” and hope to get them back before you have to exit. Cutting someone off in Mass is just their way of saying, “Howdy”!

        1. People who cut off an 80,000 lbs truck deserve the lesson in physics they’re asking for.

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      2. That place is filled with Massholes.

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        1. Yeah, but I’m looking out for KARen, here.

        2. The trannies in Leeds do more than just suck. If you have enough quid.

    2. What if it’s just a chick that identifies as a shemale?

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  4. Years ago there was a mass shooting on my friends’ street. It shocked me to my core. There I was watching the news and suddenly there’s my friends’ house in the midst of chaos.

    It was in the news. But no one remembers it, no one acknowledges it. It was lost in the memory hole were inconvenient incidents that don’t fit the narrative go to die.

    Why? Because the shooting was in Germany.

    While it’s true that there are more mass shootings in America, it is NOT true that mass shootings only occur in America. They also happen in countries with the strictest gun control laws.

    1. You remember incorrectly.
      – Tony

      1. Speaking of whom, I’m surprised the little cock sucker hasn’t shown up yet.

  5. “handguns are the firearm most commonly involved in active shootings and mass shootings.”

    Go figure! Not many people can hide an “assault rifle” on their person. Even a compact sub can cause an unsightly bulge unless you are wearing a trench coat.
    A burkha with velcro releases does work very well though. You can wear body armor and could hide a little person with an MP5 under that get-up.

    1. My favorite movie [actually series] quote of all time:

      “If your sitting down there had better be a dwarf under there!”
      Al Swearingen

      1. quo usque one of the best lines ever. it should be quoted more frequently.
        some one should make a best quotes of Al Swearingen.

  6. SleepyJoe should outlaw mass shootings. Problem solved.

  7. There’s one thing we agree on, mass shootings are only committed by straight white men.

    1. No, only the ones we want to talk about.

    2. John Lee Malvo’s response to that comment, “Bullseye!”

    3. Mass shooting are defined as 4 or more victims. Blacks are overwhelmingly in the lead.

    4. Orlando Pulse Nightclub disagrees.

    5. The narrowest definition:
      “four fatalities aside from the perpetrator and excludes armed robbery, gang violence, and domestic violence”

      is not much different in practice from:
      “four fatalities aside from the perpetrator and excludes shootings by known violent criminals and other POC”

      And any wider definition counts mostly events that won’t be reported in the media like a mass shooting. A straight white man without a serious criminal record murdering 4 strangers without serious criminal records is far more widely reported because it’s shockingly different from the usual crimes.

  8. Most people know who you are talking about if you mention Harris and Klebold, but not so many remember Kip Kinkel, who attacked his own high school the year before. And that is because a person that almost nobody remembers, a 17 year-old named Jake Ryker, tackled Kinkel and jammed his hand into the hammer of Kinkel’s pistol despite having been shot in the chest moments earlier. Ryker is still alive today.

    Chris Mintz led his class out of Umpqua Community College when shooting started and went back into the school to help, getting shot 5 times for his courage. The shooter did not get the opportunity to kill another victim after Mintz stood up to him. Mintz is still alive today.

    At the Clackamas Mall in Oregon, Nick Meli, who was legally carrying concealed, drew down on the shooter, who subsequently ran off and killed himself without firing another shot at bystanders. Meli is still alive today.

    The media has failed us again and again.

    They give the shooters the notoriety they so desperately crave and completely fail to honor the heroes. The names of people who stopped shootings should be mentioned in every article that covers one. People must be encouraged to stand up to the bastards.

    Meanwhile, the names of shooters should be smeared with shit and tossed on the trash heap. Every article should contain at least one blatant lie about their tiny penises, their obsessions with feces and the fact that they breast fed until the age of 6. Whatever it is they hate the most, smear them with that. Dylan Roof had an extensive collection of Ebony Studs gay porn mags. Mohammed Atta had a freezer full of bacon.

    They don’t mind being called ‘hate-filled’ because they want people to know. They don’t mind being labeled racists, because they know that it will foster more division. The ones that live don’t object to being labeled crazy, because it works in their defense.

    The media fails us by fueling fear. They fail us by explaining the motivations of killers. They fail us the most when they don’t encourage resistance. Resistance saves lives. Flight 93 FTW!

    1. “The media fails us by fueling fear.”

      They believe their job is to fuel fear. It is certainly their stock in trade.

      1. It is their job to fuel fear. Fear attracts attention and sells advertising. Even at a site called “Reason”.

        1. And numerous studies have shown a direct correlation between a person’s political views and not only their baseline level of fear, but how they react to those fears. It wouldn’t surprise anyone that the more staunchly conservative a person is, the more likely they are to be motivated by fear.

          A third of the country believed Donald Trump’s scare tactics around immigrants in general, and MS13 in particular was justification for building a monolithic, end to end wall all along the southern border. Never mind that while experts agreed there were places where a physical barrier would be most effective, they also noted that in many places it would be nothing but performative: an expensive, if absurd act to look like they were doing something in order to make the terrified halfwits feel better. The fear raging in the less educated, more provincial-minded rural folks was all it took to convince them against reason to support the political theater. That is one tiny example of how unwarranted fear, stoked and amplified by the fake news media motivates those who can not, or simply refuse, to think critically.

          Add this piece to that pile of nonsense. Parsing the terminology used to classify whether a multiple shooting constitutes a “mass shooting” is a great way to find flaws with the only reasonable response of mandating the “well regulated” section of the 2nd amendment. It answers the question of “Why is America alone in the developed world when it comes to the problem of rampant gun violence?” with a simple, “We don’t even know how many mass shootings there are, so until we can agree on a definition we should not consider it a problem”. And the scared conservatives will clutch their guns, ignore the “well-regulated” justification for the right to bear arms, and keep an eye out for another nugget of wisdom from Q. Oh, and they’ll offer thoughts and prayers too when the victims look like them.

          1. It would surprise me that conservatives are more fearful than liberals. The most compliant, obedient sheople in this age of covidmania have been Leftists…scared 24/7…

            1. Uttering such nonsense after a the past year+ of unceasing COVID paranoia takes quite a bit of chutzpah.

              There’s also been numerous studies that show liberals have a much lower risk tolerance threshold in all manner of things (i.e. they scare more easily). Conservatives might have a higher tendency towards revulsion, but it’s liberals that are more apt to govern out of fear.

              1. Revulsion and fear are conflated so liberals can pretend I’m afraid of gays and trannies.

          2. Actually, that would surprise me a great deal. The studies I’ve seen show some stark differences in the root sources of morals and ethics between conservatives and liberals but fear has never been identified as a significant difference. Citation, please.

            The rest of your comment seems like it’s based entirely on parodies of conservative opinions rather than their actual views. You also seem to be willfully ignoring all the examples of fear constantly raging through liberal circles.

            One last tidbit for you to digest. The average level of education among farmers is rather a bit higher than the average level of education among urban populations.

          3. Well regulated means “to keep regular”. As in know how to shoot, clean, and store your arms. Not sure why you retards can’t understand that. Or “shall not be infringed” for that matter.

          4. numerous studies have shown a direct correlation

            Thank you so much, Freethinksman, for your completely unsupported appeal to authority. You must have felt some of my passion for the topic and figured you better get right in there and smear some shit on it before it got some steam.

            Feel free to go fuck yourself. At your convenience of course, because we are using big words to impress the unintelligent. Monolithic performative provincial-minded parsing terminology gobbledegook freethinkcumstain.

          5. You probably won’t give this comment a fair consideration because all indications are that you have constructed a self reinforcing world view, but your understanding of gun violence and the second amendment are demonstrably false.

            2009 to 2015 the EU suffered 303 deaths from mass public shootings. The US had 199. Accounting for population this is roughly the same fatality rate (0.62 US vs 0.60 EU). Injuries had a substantial gap, with EU countries having 680 injuries versus 197 for the US (rates of 0.61 for the US and 1.34 for the EU). You’re just as likely to be killed in the EU from a mass shooting, and more likely to be injured. If you instead measure ‘mass attacks,’ the EU actually FAR surpasses the US in deaths and injuries. Bombings, vehicle attacks, edged weapon attacks, and fire attacks are all higher in the EU (well, maybe not fires after 2020 lol). The US is ranked 11th in the world for mass shooting fatalities per capita (behind countries like Belgium and France), and 12th for mass shooting frequency per capita (Austria, for example, has a higher population adjusted frequency rate).

            As for 2A, “A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free State(,)” is a prefatory clause. Among anyone with formal English literature studies this is obvious. “the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed” is the operative clause. Given the construction of the amendment and the surrounding documentation, by both letter and intent the amendment does not require service in a militia in order to own small arms. It guarantees the citizenry the right to own all armaments big and small. You may not like that, but that is the meaning and intent of the writers (Madison and Mason, with input and in an effort to appease the anti-federalists).

          6. Serious case of TDS you got there, asshole.
            Perhaps you can stuff it up your butt to provide the company your head is asking for.

    2. Perhaps it’s part of the truth of why the media can’t find the elusive “good guy” with or without a gun who stops mass shootings. The mass shooting that’s stopped before it progresses to the definition of mass shooting certainly isn’t worthy of reporting by the media.

      1. The media can’t find their ass with both hands and Google Maps instructing them, “Make a u-turn as soon as possible.”

        All three of those heroic acts took place within 100 miles of where I lived in a state with only 2 million people. There are a lot more out there that I never heard about. 2 of the 3 guys I listed stopped shooters without a gun of their own.

      2. Maybe because a bad guy with a gun is the only thing that can stop a good guy with a gun?

        It’s funny how often the “good guy with a gun” thing is trotted out by gun nuts as though honorable intent is somehow proportional to shooting accuracy.

        1. Of course, 89% of mass shootings occur in gun free zones where there are technical not supposed to be guns (and thus unlikely to be any ‘good guys’ with guns). Regardless, 15% of mass shootings are stopped by legally carrying civilians. Do you actually know anything or have anything factual to present to us here?

        2. Freethinksman, I think you are posting comments on what you believe to be a MSNBC site or VOX articles. You are in the WRONG echo chamber. I am guessing you are the guy that says “only law enforcement need guns” but 2-seconds later say “defund the police!”

      3. 15% of active shooter attacks during 2014-2019 were stopped or mitigated by citizens legally carrying guns. When you dig into the topic the coverage is far worse than you even think now. The media misses something like 90% of these incidents, and even the FBI only acknowledge the role of the ‘good guy’ in about half of the reports for those incidents.

        1. I came to understand how the media cover active shooters stopped or mitigated by citizens legally carrying guns 19 years ago with the Appalachian School of Law shooting. A Nigerian immigrant shot 6 students, killing 3. The AP report was worded to imply that other students stopped him by wrestling for his gun or something. Actually, two cops attending law-enforcement classes ran to their cars and got their guns; the shooter surrendered as soon as one of them appeared. If they’d been allowed to wear their issue weapons in class, they may well have stopped it much sooner…

          It’s not that journalists conceal or minimize self-defense use of guns whenever they can get away with it. It’s that most of them are so brainwashed they can’t even understand self-defense with a gun.

    3. > Every article should contain at least one blatant lie about their tiny penises, their obsessions with feces and the fact that they breast fed until the age of 6.

      But, those aren’t lies. I heard that Roof’s favorite activity was bottoming for hung black dudes. And Atta “ate bacon” in terms of sucking the cocks of hogs.

    4. “At the Clackamas Mall in Oregon, Nick Meli, who was legally carrying concealed”

      Why would Meli take the trouble to conceal his weapon? Wouldn’t the apparent lack of a weapon make him a target for any mass shooting maniac on the rampage? Meli would have been safer still had he proudly worn his weapon for all to see. Imagine the comedy if the shooters at the OK corral had to go digging about in their boots, armpits, crotches etc before they could start shooting.

      1. I imagine their sidearms were in holsters. Which is a common choice for those that carry concealed.
        Some folks do open carry. It is quite rare here.

        1. A hand gun in a holster on the hip (like the police for example) is considered to be concealed? That is surprising. What is open carry? Walking about with the gun in your hand like a cell phone or something like that which can be instantly ready to use?

          1. If it is not immediately apparent to a reasonable observer, then it is considered concealed. So, in a hip holster while wearing a shirt not tucked in and covering the weapon, is generally considered concealed.

          2. You should try that

          3. A handgun in a holster does not automatically equate to open carry. There are inside the waistband (IWB) holsters. And as others pointed out, a shirt or jacket can also cover an outside the waistband (OWB) holster. Much of the year I go OWB but it is concealed. A sharp eye may be able to observe printing. Some areas allow concealed but not open carry so printing is a big no-no due to the legality. Both are legal here so if it occurs I’m not violating a law.
            There are also should carry rigs, ankle carry holsters and pocket carry which may or may not involve a pocket holster.

            1. Thanks to you and others for your considered responses. I was also curious which was the more difficult license to get, open or concealed, which you answered. Though it seems to me that license issuers could go either way, as people carrying concealed weapons could gain entry into otherwise places which were off limits, or could conceivable pose a more significant danger to others, who may act differently not being aware of what the carrier is packing.

              1. Thanks to you for your obtuse, irrelevant questions, troll.

              2. I’m not aware of anyplace that issues open carry licenses. At least here, it is legal so as long as you can otherwise own a firearm you can carry open.
                Some places are “shall issue” concealed permits. You apply but the burden is on the issuing office to show you should not get a permit (such as felon, mental health issues, etc). Others are “may issue.” The burden of proof is on the applicant. Such as a business owner that couriers large sums of cash late at night to a deposit box. And places like here have constitutional carry. Where no permit is issued. They tend to treat adults like adults.

                And as for going places off limits, gang members and other criminals can do the same. So do mass murderers such as the Dark Knight Rises killer that targeted a movie theatre that prohibited firearms, the military base shooter and the gay night club in Florida shooter. We have 4 verboten places to carry: hospitals, govt buildings including schools, banks and places that serve alcohol.

  9. The left is always going to throw out roadblocks and cognitive dissonance while brainwashing their followers into submitting.

    You don’t counter Stalinist tactics of the left with only information, you have to reeducate their insane followers. Just putting out news stories isn’t cutting it.

    1. What if any is the right’s one true unroadblocked definition of a mass shooting?

  10. Wow – Look at all the heavily Democratic Controlled gun crime area’s. Is that where all the Nazi (def; National Socialist) “labor camps” are?

    Oh; Yes, yes it is. Maybe it’s just time for Democratic areas to succeed from the USA and move to another country that is already a National Socialist country (i.e. Nazist country). Then they can continue to take all the guns away from the few Non-Nazi citizens and leave the shoot-em up Nazi criminals with guns.

    If you’re a Democrat you do not belong in the USA (PERIOD!). The USA is a Constitutional Union of Republican States.

    1. The Dems weren’t all that bad before Quaker Bert Hoover and his buddy Quaker Tricky Dick Nixon. Those two were what made communism, whiskey and weed popular by attacking them.

    2. It’s this kind of rambling thoughtless nonsense that is responsible for people on the left calling the Trumpublicans idiots. You spout nonsense opinion like it was fact. “Succeed”? Really? Jesus Christ.

      1. but your rambling above about the 2nd amendment and the like is not nonsense?

  11. I think that any shooting of 4+ would speak to the desire for limiting magazine capacity.

    We should probably point out that approximately none of them involve an AR-15.

    1. 4 shooters?

    2. But an AR-15 looks scary.

    3. V-tech was pistols and a duffel of 10 rounders. Parkland was an AR (a statistical minority), but 15 10 rounders for the sole reason that they packed in his bag better and were more concealable.

      Capacity matters quite a lot if you are surprised and need to defend yourself in a hurry. It doesn’t matter very much when a psycho plans for months, attacks a soft target, and then proceeds to wreak havoc for ~30min-1hr on average.

  12. Minnesota SHOULD have gone GOP in 2016, but for those damned Libertarian Spoiler votes. Installing communist anarchists in the LNC wrecked LP votes but failed to turn Minnesotans into girl-bullying, National Socialists in 2020. Yet MN they did retain its Reefer Madness shoot-first prohibitionism. What better lever for God’s Own Prohibitionists to pull than to amplify that while slipping Judge Amy into the Suprema Corte while lobbying to bring back Dixiecrat Coathanger birth control in the National Televangelist States?

  13. One thing not mentioned in the article: I think the multitude of definitions is useful to the anti-gun movement. For instance, a large number of mass shootings are actually conducted with revolvers. These mass shootings are often crime related or involve family members. By excluding them it is possible to build the mistaken impression that most mass shootings involve large magazines (or any magazines) and semi automatic weapons.

    “According to database A there were 503 mass shootings in 2019. Based on a study of weapons used in mass shootings conducted by organization B, it was found that 66% of all mass shooters used weapon type Q.” Both of those things are true, but organization B’s database only has six shootings in 2019, which means weapon type is just noise.

    1. God help us all if Jerry Miculek ever decides to go crazy. He’ll drill 12 people in 3 seconds with a six shooter.

      1. He cheats, he uses a speed loader.

        1. Ban all high capacity speed loaders!

      2. well when he does lets hope it’s on the biden puppets back door porch.

  14. I thought we’d agreed that the best policy was to stop publishing pictures of the perpetrators of mass shootings. You see, we can trust Americans to freely buy and possess firearms, but we can’t trust them to look at certain photos without going bananas and shooting massively.

    1. It’s the other way around. Many crazy people are encouraged to do crazy stuff because they expect it to get their pictures on TV, so responsible news outlets would stop putting those pictures on TV, or otherwise publicizing crazy murderers. Dean Ing based his short story “Very Proper Charlies” on this idea a long time ago, back in the 1980’s if I remember right, but the idea was out in public before then.

      I think we can consider it proven that no responsible news outlet has been successful since Ing published that story – but I find few signs that one ever existed.

  15. Americans are in almost 100% agreement re a policy response.

    Argue about guns.

    1. “Americans are in almost 100% agreement re a policy response.
      Argue about guns.”

      OK, it’s late enough to assume you’re drunk. Try again tomorrow morning to post something which makes sense.

  16. It’s only a mass shooting if a white dude with an AR does it.

  17. We can’t agree on shit because lies and truth are obfuscated.

    Learn and value discerning the difference.

    Then criminalize lying.

    1. “Then criminalize lying.”

      How many years for lying about the Holocaust, Nazi?

      1. Good question.

        1. If you ever get your wish, you’ll be in the dock in a hurry.

  18. Chronic,
    I have read that the Parkland killer used 10 round magazines. The only place I’ve been able to source that info was from a Miami Herald article published 2/27/18 in which State Senator Lauren Book (D) told the paper, Cruz went in with only 10-round magazines, because larger clips would not fit in his duffel bag. Presumably she was citing law enforcement because in a preceding paragraph the article states, “Several state legislators who visited the school with crime-scene investigators said they learned from police that Cruz’s rifle was not top-of-the-line..”

    However, when the Florida Public Safety Commission released their 458 page report on this horrific incident on 1/2/19, on page 262 (pdf pg 282 of 458) the report states, “Eight 30- and 40-round capacity magazines were recovered from the scene.” And on the following page is a picture of the rifle along with a 30-round magazine and two separate pictures of a 30-round magazine with a swastika carved into the magazine shown in the picture.

    I put more credibility in the PSC report (that 30 & 40-rnd mags were used) than I do in a newspaper that states a Senator gave the paper the information that presumably the Senator received from unnamed law enforcement officials (that 10-rnd mags were used).

    Are there any sources independent from the statements of a State Senator (second-hand info) that discuss the 10-round capacity magazine aspect of the incident? I’d be interested in knowing what those are if you have any leads on that.

    Thanks Chronic (or anyone else who might know).

    1. “Are there any sources independent from the statements of a State Senator (second-hand info) that discuss the 10-round capacity magazine aspect of the incident? I’d be interested in knowing what those are if you have any leads on that.”

      Care to even hint as to why the mag capacity is at all relevant?

      1. Sevo,
        I don’t need to hint, I’ll explain it plainly. I’m interested in understanding what ground truth was for that particular incident. I think it was 30 & 40-rnd mags like the PSC reported. These are typical accessories for AR-15’s (at least the 30’s have been for decades), but I’d also like to understand if anyone else stated the killer used 10-rnd mags like the State Senator heard second-hand. That’s it.

        As far as relevancy, whether it was 10 or 30 & 40 doesn’t matter from a policy perspective. There’s too many magazines out there for a “LCM ban” to have any impact on crime prevention, though it would likely impede the ability for law-abiding citizens to defend themselves when crap hits the fan.

        If you know of any other sources for the 10-rnd mag claim please pass them along. Thanks.

  19. Portability and ease of concealment make hand guns by far the most lethal weapons for homicide. Trauma surgeons say that bullet velocity is the one factor that makes wounds more likely to be fatal.

    Based upon that, all legal guns should be long heavy barrel, low velocity, and no automatic features.

    When our FF’s gave us the Constitutional Right to bear arms, the typical weapon of the day was the Charleville Musket. Two shots per minute and a range of about 50 yards. With guns like that, we would have fewer homicides; plus hunting would be a real challenging sport, giving the deer, elk and gamebirds more even odds.

    1. To want to ban handguns is to want to prevent people from defending themselves.

      What on earth besides a loaded .357 gives a frail old woman the ability to adequately defend herself from a few 300lb criminals intending to do do her harm?

    2. Self defense was not given by our FF. Bearing arms is an inalienable right given by our Creator. These rights were enumerated in the Constitution Bill of Rights to insure the Government could not question them. The government is responsible for protecting those rights but can not infringe on them. From what our founders wrote it is more likely the people should be allowed any defensive weapons a government standing army would have access to. They were more concerned with the people having the power over the government if they needed to overthrow it.

  20. “When our FF’s gave us the Constitutional Right to bear arms, the typical weapon of the day was the Charleville Musket. Two shots per minute and a range of about 50 yards. With guns like that, we would have fewer homicides; plus hunting would be a real challenging sport, giving the deer, elk and gamebirds more even odds.”

    First, you are full of shit: The founders “gave” nothing; they simply recognized that some liberties were subject to attempted limitations from lefty shits like you and made sure they were specifically cited.
    Lefty shits almost always, in their ignorance, assume the Constitution ‘grants’ liberty rather than recognizes them; lefty shits are stupid that way, among many other ways.
    And then, fucking lefty shit, at the time, the only way to disseminate information was by a hand-powered printing press. Tell us, oh lefty shit, does that mean that the web should be censored by lefty ignoramuses like you, lefty shit?

    1. Sorry, this is not a separate post, but is a reply to the lefty shit dougwesterman.

  21. So heartbreaking, I’m Afraid
    Hoping in God to interfere

  22. We should all pretend if someone is angry or nuts enough to want to kill a bunch of people they will not find other alternatives if they can’t get a gun. Explosives are harder work but if looking for casualties and gore much more satisfying. Banning the mass shooters favorite gun could lead to unintended consequences. If they can grab a gun and go nuts it is bad. If they have to sit and plan and think it could become a catastrophe. Consider how effective the ban on drugs have been.

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