Monday, August 20, 2012

We Don't Have a Mass Shooting Problem

The media has reacted with their usual PSH over the fact that we've had three mass shootings this summer: the Colorado shooting that killed 12 - which would have been a "normal to quiet" weekend in Chicago - was preceded by a shooting with five killed at the end of May in Seattle.  And, of course, the Aurora shooting was followed by the attack of a looney at the Sikh temple in Wisconsin.  There's no doubt that the "gay marriage crusader" who shot up the FRC was intending a mass killing, or more than one mass killing, but came across a guy who took a bullet and didn't give up trying to save the folks around him.  Some have speculated the 15 Chick-Fil-A sammiches were not to guarantee an insanity plea, but to shove one in the mouth of, or leave one beside, every victim as a calling card

Planning multiple mass killings, yet not prepared for even unarmed resistance?  Not that I'm complaining, but that's some pretty poor planning skills, there, Scooter. crime writer James Alan Fox has an interesting article on the topic of mass shootings, and shows data to demonstrate this has not been an unusually bad year. 
As Fox puts it:
Without minimizing the pain and suffering of the hundreds of who have been victimized in seneless (sic) attacks, the facts say clearly that the (sic) has been no increase in mass killings, and certainly no epidemic. Occasionally, we have witnessed short-term spikes with several shootings clustering close together in time.
But then, although the data says that there's nothing unusual going on, he says we need to do something about this nothing.
The lack of any upward trend should not stop us, of course, from trying to find causes and solutions for extreme violence. A fitting the legacy to this summer's tragedies would be the expansion of mental health services. We should also have a serious debate about sensible restrictions on gun sales but absent the politics. And perhaps we should all try harder to reach out to those around us who seem to be struggling financially, socially or psychologically. 
"Sensible restrictions on gun sales absent the politics" is made of magic unicorn poop.  We're going to "sensibly" restrict the rights of whole groups of innocent people to have an effect on a freakishly improbable event and it won't involve anger or political fights?  Dude, you must be dreaming.  I quoted Tam above in jest, but let me paraphrase her as accurately as I can in dead seriousness, "I don't care if every other one of the 800 million guns in America killed someone yesterday - mine didn't". 


  1. Speaking of mass shootings, here is a little support for my posts in the past about practicing your pistol shooting at 100 yards:

  2. "We should also have a serious debate about sensible restrictions on gun sales ..."

    Seems like we've been having a serious debate for some years now on the subject and that the 'sensible restrictions' side has been losing. I guess his definition of 'serious debate' is limited to one in which we slide a little further their way. The present outcome apparently doesn't qualify what has been occurring as serious debate.

    1. People are seriously voting with their wallets and lives. Like record NICS checks almost every month.

  3. "Serious debate" is the same as "compromise". It's all one-sided: the progressives want us to "slide a little further their way" as you say, but the movement only occurs in their direction, never towards conservative values (by choice, anyway).

    Even when we supposedly "win", and that they are losing (as in DC vs Heller and in Chicago), they gain ground by having SCROTUS state that "sensible restrictions" of our rights are permissible. They don't mind pretending we have rights, as long as they can continue to restrict them, to tell us when, where, and how we can exercise those rights. And then .gov will punish us when we try to exercise them, by prosecuting and/or vilifying us in the media, as with Zimmerman.