Wednesday, April 24, 2013

The Rise of Guns and Mass Shootings still not enough to protect life. Instead, we protect guns.

Mother Jones has done a great job following the gun issue, including this recent story, along with charts:
The research confirms that: Public shooting rampages have spiked in particular over the last few years … Many of the attackers were heavily armed … None of the shootings was stopped by an ordinary citizen using a gun.

Author of the study, Pete Blair, advises law enforcement officials … gathered data on 84 "active shooter events" (ASEs) between 2000 and 2010 in which the killer's primary motive appeared to be mass murder. Notably, the jump in attacks in 2009 and 2010 was prior to the massacres in Tucson, Aurora, Oak Creek, Newtown, and numerous other locations during the last two years. Although Blair's research does not cover 2011 and 2012, he concludes that "our tracking indicates that the increased number of attacks continued in those years." As our own investigation showed, there were a record number of mass shootings in 2012.
Does the rise in gun ownership and the loosening of state laws over the last four years effect increase the carnage? Of course:
The unprecedented spike in these shootings came during the same four-year period, from 2009-12, that saw a wave of nearly 100 state laws making it easier to obtain, carry, and conceal firearms. (We mapped those laws here.)
And do armed citizens come to our rescue now that concealed carry is so common? No.
While our study examined cases in which four or more people were murdered, Blair's dataset includes less lethal rampages in which the median number of victims shot was four and the median number of those killed was two. Blair found that at least 41 percent of the attackers carried multiple weapons. We found that a majority of mass shooters carried multiple weapons, and that more than half of them used assault weapons and high-capacity magazines

Moreover, our investigation made clear that so-called "good guys with guns" do not stop public shooting rampages. Likewise, Blair's data couldn't be any clearer when it comes to the National Rifle Association's favorite myth: He found just 3 cases out of 84 in which an armed individual who had been on the scene used a firearm to stop the shooter. And none of the three were ordinary citizens.

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