Reviving this tradition, here is an article I came across in the past week that I find astonishing:
Weapons and Mass Shootings (Washington Post)
An illuminating excerpt (caption to a graphic, actually):
From 1984 to today, mass killers have utilized 22 shotguns, 23 revolvers, 29 rifles, and 77 semi-automatic handguns. According to Mother Jones, more than three-quarters of these have been legally purchased.
Before too much discussion gets going, a few disclaimers:
First, I am not in favor of a blanket ban on gun ownership. I’m not opposed to the responsible use of guns for hunting, or even responsible ownership of guns for “self-defense.” By responsible, I mean having adequate training and safety measures for the gun-owners to not be a danger to themselves or others, i.e., having a gun safe that works, keeping your guns in the safe, and being appropriately careful about how you handle, clean, use the weapon, etc.
Second, I am well aware that gun-violence is never going to end. I’m not some pie-in-the-sky optimist who thinks if we tighten down the reigns we’ll eliminate murder altogether. But I do think that the number of mass-shootings we experience (which is unparalleled in the rest of the “civilized” world) tells us that there is something wrong with our policies, though I don’t claim to know exactly what that something is or how to fix it.
For me, this article demonstrates pretty profoundly that the claim “tighter controls only hurt law abiding citizens” is patently false. If more than three- quarters of the weapons used to perpetrate mass killings were purchased LEGALLY, then over-regulation is clearly not the problem and there is probably room for stepping up the regulations we have in place already.
Would love to hear what others take away from looking at this data.