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The truth about about American mass shootings Is the US really facing a gun crime epidemic?

Are guns the issue, or is it people? Credit: Soukup/Portland Portland Press Herald via Getty Images

Are guns the issue, or is it people? Credit: Soukup/Portland Portland Press Herald via Getty Images


May 31, 2021   9 mins

On May 25, one year after George Floyd died under the knee of police officer Derek Chauvin, activists, mourners, and neighbours gathered to honour the anniversary — and ended up face-down on the street themselves. Not dying, but diving for cover, as gunshots rang out on the Minneapolis block that has since become known as George Floyd Square.

Chauvin will go to prison for Floyd’s murder, having been found guilty of murder in a court of law, but the sweeping civil unrest that followed the 2020 killing — and which still continues in some spaces unabated — is its greater legacy. Riots and looting left multiple urban neighbourhoods in ruins; more productive forms of protest led to tangible policy change. Punitive bail policies that target the already disadvantaged have been revoked; new laws have been passed restricting the use of chokeholds and no-knock warrants; more states are requiring the use of police body cameras and mandating the swift release of footage when an encounter with the cops results in violence or death.

But at the same time, an unsettling rise in violent crime over the past year threatens to undermine the cause. Last weekend, multiple shootings occurred in various American cities — and media outlets leaped to declare a crisis. “Bloody weekend in America renews call to stop the shootings,” wrote The Times, which pointed out that the “mass shootings” had “brought total number killed by guns in the US this year to 7,601, with an additional 9,504 dying from suicides.”

“America has already endured 230 mass shootings and 13 mass murders in 2021,” said Axios on Monday. Today, the Gun Violence Archive — a non-profit organisation that tracks all shootings in the US — puts the total number of mass shootings so far this year at 232: the California Bay area saw its worst incident since the early 90s in San Jose on Wednesday. Indeed, since the Times story was published on Tuesday, the Archive has tallied up 257 more deaths caused by guns, bringing this year’s total to 7,858 — or, if you include suicides, 17,626.

Crime and policing have become so fraught, so politicised, that despite the need for urgent action, productive discussion on these topics is a rarity in America. And no issue better illustrates the unbridgeable divide than the debate over gun violence. At one extreme is the gun enthusiast, a card-carrying member of the NRA who owns dozens of weapons — as is his inalienable right, according to the second amendment — and mocks the sissy libs who want to take them away. At the other is the blue-state pacifist, who has never held a gun in his life but nevertheless would like to abolish them entirely, including taking them out of the hands of police. In between them is a landscape littered with bullet casings and dead bodies that both sides shamelessly use as props in an endless, seemingly unresolvable debate about who’s to blame: the guns, or the people using them.

“What’s clear, as the president has said, is that we are suffering from an epidemic of gun violence in this country,” said the White House spokeswoman Karine Jean-Pierre in response to events in San Jose, “both from mass shootings and in the lives that are being taken in daily gun violence that doesn’t make national headlines.” But if you look behind the headlines, the distinction she draws is blurred. CNN, whose headline read, “There were at least 12 mass shootings across the US this weekend,” included a pivotal disclaimer a few lines in: “CNN defines a mass shooting as an incident with four or more people killed or wounded by gunfire — excluding the shooter.” This definition also stems from the Gun Violence Archive, which interprets a mass shooting as any incident in which at least four victims (not including the shooter or shooters) are shot and either injured or killed.

But in shaping its coverage around this definition, the media elides distinctions that are vital to understanding the different ways that gun violence manifests — and arguably misleads readers who don’t realise how much nuance is being lost. The GVA makes no distinction between an incident of terrorism like the Pulse nightclub tragedy; a disgruntled employee “going postal” at his workplace (as happened in San Jose); or a drug-related skirmish in which two rival gang members start shooting at each other and the wounded are innocent bystanders who simply caught in the crossfire. They’re all lumped together under the “mass shooting” umbrella.

But for most people, whose awareness of gun violence centres on high-profile, high-fatality incidents in places like schools or churches, the words “mass shooting” evoke something quite specific: the image of a lone gunman — always male, usually white — firing into a crowd of innocent, unarmed people without warning. A mass shooting is Stephen Paddock raining down bullets from a Las Vegas hotel suite, as a crowd of concertgoers screams and scatters below. It’s Adam Lanza murdering innocent children and teachers at Sandy Hook elementary school with a bag full of semiautomatic weapons. It’s Eliot Rodgers’ incel massacre.

This type of shooting, also known as a rampage or spree killing, is rare as compared with other forms of violence; in 2020, a year in which roughly 20,000 Americans were killed by guns, there were no rampage killings in the US at all. Yet we tend to highlight these incidents above others in discussions about gun violence — or, as CNN did here, use language that evokes them — not just because they’re particularly horrifying, but because they’re easy to politicise. Defining “mass shootings” in an overbroad way allows us to insist that the problem is guns, not crime, and that the solution lies in gun reform, not law enforcement.

This is a narrative generally favoured by politicians on the Left, for whom gun control is a relatively easy issue on which to take a hardline stance without losing voters (whereas a tough-on-crime position can alienate those further Left.) It’s also the one preferred by the Biden administration, which actively steered the conversation in this direction in a recent press conference. When asked about the weekend’s violence, White House press secretary Jen Psaki said:

“Certainly there’s a gun problem. Between mass shootings that get a lot of attention, that we lower the flags, there are hundreds, thousands who lose their lives and that’s one of the reasons the president will continue to advocate for the Senate passing universal background checks.”

Passing major gun control measures was one of Biden’s bigger campaign promises, and universal background checks are just one part of that; the President’s gun reform wish list also includes more legal liability for gun manufacturers, banning assault weapons and high-capacity magazines, and closing loopholes that allow people with records of domestic abuse and stalking to get their hands on weapons. He’s also proposed a gun buyback program and taken aim at kits that allow the creation of “ghost guns,” unlicensed firearms with no serial number, which are popular with criminals. Unfortunately, the background check measures have passed in the House but stalled in the Senate, where Democrats lack the numbers to push them through and can’t seem to convince any Republicans to cooperate across the aisle.

Psaki’s pivot away from rising violence and toward gun reform legislation is a politically savvy move — but it also pivots away from the truth. Even if you believe (as I do) that universal background checks are a great idea, focusing on this and other reforms that primarily affect the sale of licensed firearms is a way of avoiding the complicated nature of tragedies like the spate of shootings last weekend.

Many of these tragedies took place in communities plagued by continual violence, where murders happen so frequently that pop-up shrines to commemorate shooting victims are a common roadside presence, and where perpetrators frequently escape arrest because residents fear retaliation if they talk to the cops. Some were gang or drug-related, and several involved conflicts between multiple armed assailants who ended up hitting innocent bystanders when they were trying to shoot at each other. In Youngstown, Ohio, an altercation at a nightclub spilled into the street and exploded in gunfire that left two people dead. In North Charleston, South Carolina, fourteen people were shot, and one teenage girl killed, after a fight broke out at an “unauthorized concert”; the police are still looking for multiple shooters. In Minneapolis, another nightclub shooting allegedly began with a confrontation between gang members who both pulled guns and began firing.

And because this type of gun violence often involves illegally obtained firearms, gun reform legislation or more stringent background checks would have done nothing to take the weapons out of these killers’ hands.

The “mass shooting” narrative, in which the biggest threat is the ubiquity of the guns themselves, also obscures the tangled web of class, cultural and community factors that create these horrific tragedies — as well as the human cost to ordinary people who live every day with the endemic threat of violence. And the Left’s obsessive focus on more unusual forms of gun violence, whether it’s police shootings or rampage killers, misses the ugly truth that people in communities plagued by crime are far more likely to be killed by a neighbour than they are by a cop.

The prominence of a given death seems to depend more on the identity of the villain than the victim. When police shot and injured Jacob Blake in Kenosha, Wisconsin last year, there were protests, riots, and strikes by multiple professional sports teams, as the whole country rallied around the idea that black lives matter. And yet, the two dozen black children killed in incidents of community violence since the start of 2021 don’t seem to matter to anyone; there are no protests, no namesake legislation, no hashtagged outpouring of rage and grief. Perhaps one of the strangest omissions in this narrative, considering the source, is that both the victims and the shooters in last weekend’s brutality were virtually all people of colour.

Of course, while the Left pivots towards guns-not-violence, the Right will pounce on its own pet issues. The phrase “black-on-black crime” will make an appearance, invoking ugly racial stereotypes while ignoring the anguish of the communities and families who live with such constant grief, fear, and loss. Policies favoured by the Left, from defunding police departments to bail reform, will be blamed for leaving more criminals on the street while giving law enforcement fewer means to deal with them. They will note that it’s not just shootings that are up, but crime across the board: car-jackings, muggings, brutal assaults in broad daylight. They’ll blame progressive lawmakers for empowering criminals to offend with no fear of arrest, from Chesa Boudin in property crime-plagued San Francisco to Jacob Frey in violence-ridden Minneapolis. They’ll be a little too gleeful when one of the police-free autonomous zones in places like Portland or Seattle devolves into chaos that results in someone’s death.

Nobody will offer policy solutions; everyone will point fingers across the aisle. The Blue Lives Matter crowd says, what can police do? Their hands are tied. Their opponents counter that their hands aren’t  tied, they’re just sitting on them — on purpose.

The truth is buried somewhere here, but conversations like these will never reveal it. It’s all heat and no light, all the time. Yes, some politicians are trying to strike a balance on criminal justice reform: NYC mayoral candidate Andrew Yang recently suggested revisiting the city’s elimination of cash bail for non-felony offenders to address the issue of hate crimes, in which perpetrators have gone on to attack someone else as soon as they’re back on the street. He is an outlier, though — and even in deep blue New York City, the mayoral race has become dominated by the issue of gun violence. It’s not a coincidence that Yang’s fiercest opponent is Eric Adams, a more conservative former police officer who has promised to take a tough-on-crime approach to reducing shootings.

Meanwhile, America has settled into two separate, well-worn grooves, forever digging deeper instead of rising up and out in search of common ground. The Right will go on taking ghoulish delight in spiking crime rates, perhaps quietly hoping that it’ll get worse yet, so that come 2024 they can claim that Joe Biden’s America is indistinguishable from the dystopian nightmare of the sci-fi film The Purge — the kind of country where you’d have to be crazy not to have a few guns for self-protection.

And the Left will remain safely ensconced in their white upper-crust neighbourhoods, vowing to “save” their poorer, blacker neighbours from the racist rule of law, whether the neighbours want this or not (and they don’t: across the board, including in black communities, police abolition remains a largely unpopular proposal.) They’ll sneer back and forth about the Ferguson Effect, in which community distrust of police leads the cops to pull back from policing in vulnerable neighbourhoods, which in turn leads to a spike in crime rates (a real and dangerous phenomenon, or a myth that coddles cowardly racist cops, depending on your political sensibilities.) They’ll start another unwinnable war over the second amendment.

And in the meantime, whatever it is that’s causing Americans to kill each other at a nearly 20% greater rate than they were at this time in 2020 will continue to cost lives.

But unless the violence fits the narrative, most of us will never hear about it. Even as national media descended upon Minneapolis to await the verdict in Derek Chauvin’s murder trial, little mention was made of the countless lives lost or upended by violence in the city since last May. Since the death of George Floyd, at least 100 people have been murdered in Minneapolis. Nearly 200 have been shot. Among the dead are several children. The four-block grid now known as George Floyd Square remains closed off, guarded by security checkpoints to keep law enforcement out; possibly for this reason, it is something of a magnet for acts of violence, including drive-by shootings.

On March 6 of this year, when one man was shot and killed just steps from the same place where Chauvin killed Floyd, police reported meeting resistance when they tried to enter the scene. But when shots rang out yesterday, sending those who came to honour George Floyd’s memory diving for cover, it was a different story: according to witnesses, the police never showed up at all.


Kat Rosenfield is an UnHerd columnist and co-host of the Feminine Chaos podcast. Her latest novel is You Must Remember This.

katrosenfield

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Matt Hindman
MH
Matt Hindman
2 years ago

There is just one tinsy winsy little problem. A lot of those Middle America right wingers are enjoying the show because IT DOES NOT AFFECT THEM IN THE SLIGHTEST. Violence is skyrocketing in America’s progressive cites and has hardly changed a bit in rural America and flyover country. Even as the economy struggled and crime went up, little of it was violent crime. It has seriously been a wonderful bit of schadenfreude to watch panicking white suburbanites clear out gun store shelves after they smugly told us no one ever needs a gun and now find out much hassle those supposedly “reasonable” laws are.
I appreciate the argument Mrs. Rosenfield is trying to make and I understand that she wants Americans to come together to solve problems. The problem is that it does not affect both halves of America equally. In rural America and flyover country we are surrounded by guns and ammunition, well over 400 million of them in fact. Just to let that sink in, there are only about an estimated 150 million guns in circulation with the worlds militaries and that also means there are more guns than there are people in America. Many of them are so called scary “assault weapons,” which are just semiautomatic rifles and no, they have existed for well over half a century now. There is nothing new about them and despite what the Left would have you think, they are very rarely used in crimes. If you think you can just ban them and they will go away, you are dreaming. See as far as Middle America is concerned, why would they change things if they A, like their guns, B, strongly believe in the right to self-defense, and C, see few examples of their misuse?
Now compare that to many of America’s cities. Drive byes, gang shootouts, and carjackings are common. Gun control is strict and useless. Hardly anyone is doing background checks. Violent criminals are often just allowed to go free. I do not want to be mean, but I am just tired at this point. Leave us alone and deal with your own problems.

Last edited 2 years ago by Matt Hindman
Rasmus Fogh
RF
Rasmus Fogh
2 years ago
Reply to  Matt Hindman

Very good point: “The problem is that it does not affect both halves of America equally.” Large cities and flyover country have different situations that require different policies. Trouble is that a lot of things you might want to do to deal with this kind of problem cannot be done locally, as long as guns, taxpayers, shoppers and workers can move freely between jurisdictions. Which is why violence-plagued cities cannot ‘leave you alone and deal with their own problems‘.

As for “Violent criminals are often just allowed to go free”, the US already has the highest incarceration rate in the world (of countries with reliable statistics) and is notorious in Europe for its harsh punishments. Don’t you think putting even more people in prison might get you into diminishing returns?

Last edited 2 years ago by Rasmus Fogh
Fraser Bailey
FB
Fraser Bailey
2 years ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

But violent criminals are often allowed to go free in the US. Indeed, they were released on to the streets during Covid – and they wonder why homicides etc are through the roof. The problem is that the jails are full of people who were put away for years and years for committing two or three minor drugs offences, largely due to the 1990s Crime Bill authored by Joe Biden.

Matt Hindman
MH
Matt Hindman
2 years ago
Reply to  Fraser Bailey

Giving harsh sentences to minor drug offenders while letting violent criminals walk free. I mean when you put it like that, the American criminal justice system sounds kind of insane doesn’t it?

Last edited 2 years ago by Matt Hindman
Galeti Tavas
Galeti Tavas
2 years ago
Reply to  Matt Hindman

“IN Uk they lock up the victims and free the criminals’. Put like that UK justice seems insane, but that is because the statement is NOT true, and your statement is also untrue.

Galeti Tavas
VS
Galeti Tavas
2 years ago
Reply to  Fraser Bailey

“The problem is that the jails are full of people who were put away for years and years for committing two or three minor drugs offences,” This is really myth. There used to be ‘Habitual Offender ‘ laws, and ‘Three Strikes and you are Out’ laws, but this is not the situation now, it takes a lot to get hard time.

objectivityistheobjective
OO
objectivityistheobjective
2 years ago
Reply to  Fraser Bailey

That is false. The three strikes and your out law refers to felonies, not misdemeanors. Drug offenses that are classified as felonies are possession with the intent to sell. Possession for personal use is a misdemeanor and do not fall under the three strikes law. And there are no non-violent drug dealers. Selling deadly drugs to addicted people is a violent act. Coercing 14 year old to use drugs so they become addicted is a violent act. Drug dealers should go to prison for life on the first offense.

Matt Hindman
MH
Matt Hindman
2 years ago

I know a lot of people are in prison in California because they counted low level theft in their three strikes. A lot of non-violent addicts found themselves serving long sentences over it. On the other end of the scale I know of places like Chiraq (local nickname for Chicago, let it sink in) where criminals who committed serious violent crimes were let off with a slap on the wrist. At the end of the day American prisons are full of many people who need rehabilitation and at the same time we have a lot of violent criminals who need to go to prison until they are old and grey.

Fraser Bailey
FB
Fraser Bailey
2 years ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

You state that the violent gangs in the cities travel to more rural areas on a regular basis in order to commit crimes, which is totally false. Contrary to your assertion, the ‘violence-plagued cities’ can leave alone and for the most part they do. The violence is very localized, even within the cities so the problems can be addressed locally. It’s just that their is no will to address them. Meanwhile, The rich white liberals stay safe in their nice neighborhoods while voting for policies that guarantee the never ending deaths of poor black people.

Rasmus Fogh
RF
Rasmus Fogh
2 years ago
Reply to  Fraser Bailey

You misunderstand me. I take it as given that the violence is indeed localised. The remedies are another matter. One solution might be to make it hard for teenage gang members to get guns – but that is impossible as long as guns are easy to get just outside the city. Other solutions might require money – i.e. higher taxes, which is impossible as long as the taxpayers can just run away to the suburbs where rates are lower. Meanwhile people outside the cities still share in the advantages the cities offer, from jobs to wealth creation to centralised services.

I entirely take you point that the rich white liberals are insulated from the inner-city violence – just like the rural republicans are. What I doubt, and what you would need to argue for, is that a republican mayor or governor could solve the problem of violence, given the economic social and racial situation the city has. In short, cities do not have crime because they vote Democrat – they vote Democrat because they have the voters, economy, and social situation they have, which also leads to higher crime.

J Hop
JH
J Hop
2 years ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

They aren’t getting them outside of the city! That would require a background check, and if in another state, them shipping the gun to an in-state gun shop where you would be required to pass your state of residence background check. They are getting them out of the back of a van. Something like 80% of gun homicide in Chicago is committed with an illegal firearm not bought in a gun shop.

Rasmus Fogh
RF
Rasmus Fogh
2 years ago
Reply to  J Hop

I bow to your superior knowledge. I was thinking more in the abstract. In Europe you can make it quite hard for gang members to get hold of guns, because there are no good sources nearby. As long as guns are freely available in the next state over, it must be in practice impossible to keep them from moving to where people want them, legally or otherwise.

J Hop
JH
J Hop
2 years ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

Fair enough. I’ll conceed that we are heavily armed. Just not that being heavily armed = high crime. I don’t think that the illegal guns are following the same channels as legal guns, though I’ll concede I don’t know the stats on that. It would be interesting to know how many formerly legal guns have the regstration numbers filed off and end up on the black market as opposed to how many enter the country, say, from a cartel sneaking them over the border.

regnad.kcin.fst
regnad.kcin.fst
2 years ago
Reply to  J Hop

I doubt that many guns come from abroad. Who would produce them? Very few countries have the laws of the USA, which allow any fool to buy a gun.

J Hop
J Hop
2 years ago

Mexican cartels import guns over the border. Also, there are background requirements here, so no, “any fool” cannot buy a gun. My heavily armed neighborhood has low crime. Violence hs class and cultural roots. Those who aren’t brave enough to face those uncomfortable truths focus on gun ownership and ignore the statistics.

regnad.kcin.fst
regnad.kcin.fst
2 years ago
Reply to  J Hop

But where do the cartels get the guns?

Matt Hindman
MH
Matt Hindman
2 years ago

Cartels get guns wherever they want to get guns. Sure they get some guns from the United States like handguns, and some rifles. They already have the smuggling and distribution network for drugs. Might as well bring some guns across along with your profits. Hell, the United States government even encouraged it. Look up Operation Fast and Furious some time for a beautiful feeling of outrage. As for the cartels they are also rocking GPMG’s, assault rifles, RPGs, grenades, and I think even a few MANPADS. Hint, you will not find those in a gun store.
Also to clarify a few things. FBI statistics have shown that most inner city crime is not caused by guns out of state. Even with strict gun laws most are obtained locally and those that are not were often stolen and trafficked. Most gang members use cheap, lower quality handguns. Killings with rifles, including so called “assault weapons” only number less than 5% of gun deaths (I’m pretty sure the number is lower but I do not have the statistics in front of me). The reason for this is that they were often straw purchased, and because you are going to ask, no they are almost never prosecuted.

Last edited 2 years ago by Matt Hindman
Fraser Bailey
Fraser Bailey
2 years ago

Well Obama gave them quite a few under operation Fast & Furious. Research it.

Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
2 years ago
Reply to  J Hop

Are those background check requirements not what Texas is now removing? Or did I misunderstand that?

Jake Jackson
Jake Jackson
2 years ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

Texas is now the 20th state to remove its statewide requirement to obtain a permit to carry a concealed firearm. I can argue both sides of that, but one thing is true: These laws have NO bearing on background checks or legal eligibility to possess a firearm.

Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
2 years ago
Reply to  Jake Jackson

That is one more thing I have learned from this debate. Thanks.

Andre Lower
Andre Lower
2 years ago
Reply to  J Hop

Of course – it had to be the mexicans! There we go, now we know who is to blame.
I wish we all could be that insightful…

Last edited 2 years ago by Andre Lower
Annette Kralendijk
Annette Kralendijk
2 years ago
Reply to  Andre Lower

If it’s a Mexican cartel, yes it’s probably Mexicans. Would you expect a Mexican cartel to be run by Thais?

David Hartlin
David Hartlin
2 years ago

There are many gun producers around the world and if you have money you can buy.

Jake Jackson
Jake Jackson
2 years ago

The laws of the USA do not “allow any fool to buy a gun.” You clearly know nothing about our laws.

Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
2 years ago
Reply to  J Hop

In western Europe even illegal guns are quite hard to get. It is possible (of course) but it takes some serious criminals, with contacts. That cuts down on both shootings and suicides. Just to say that it is possible to reduce illegal guns, at least as long as legal guns are not too common. Admittedly it is kind of hard to see how the US could ever get there from the current starting point.

Just for fun, a couple of UK anecdotes:

  • Recently a dedicated Muslim terrorist sympathiser, let out of prison after finishing his sentence, decided to do a killing spree. He armed himself with a fake suicide vest and – a knife, and so managed to kill only two people before being overpowered by three bystanders with improvised spears.
  • There was a somewhat exaggerated fuss about a man called Mark Duggan. He was stopped by armed police in an intelligence-led operation, since it was known that he was transporting a load of illegal weapons for a criminal group, and was shot after leaving the car and moving fast, with his hands close to his jacket pockets. The point is that the load of illegal weapons consisted of – one single-shot converted starters pistol.

There are some advantages to living in a low-gun society.

Galeti Tavas
VS
Galeti Tavas
2 years ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

“There are some advantages to living in a low-gun society.” Tell that to White South Africans. If they have no gun they are done. If USA was unarmed it would be completely lawless, life would be like Venezuela.

Annette Kralendijk
AK
Annette Kralendijk
2 years ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

“In western Europe even illegal guns are quite hard to get.”
not these days. Most of the illegal guns in Europe, which law enforcement, particularly in France and the UK recognize, come from Eastern Europe or the Middle East and North Africa. Criminals can get illegal guns, don’t kid yourself that they can’t.
“There are some advantages to living in a low-gun society”
If you don’t want to own a gun, yes.
“Just to say that it is possible to reduce illegal guns, at least as long as legal guns are not too common.”
One doesn’t have much to do with the other unless you have some evidence that shows that lots of legal guns are being sold to criminals. Your assumption appears to be that all guns start as legal weapons and then become illegal weapons. But there isn’t any evidence for that.

Last edited 2 years ago by Annette Kralendijk
Rasmus Fogh
RF
Rasmus Fogh
2 years ago

If you are a criminal with contacts abroad or to other connected criminals, of course you can get weapons. Anything else would be a miracle. The point is that if you are a random teenager who wants to be a badass it is much harder. And if you carry that weapon around with you, you can get arrested for it. That does cut down on the spontaneous gun duels – and keeps the police less edgy when doing stop-and-search.

My assumption is that you cannot make it hard for the wrong people to get guns unles you make it a bit harder for everybody. For a random suburban teenager background checks might well be enough. But whatever the trade flows are now, it just does not sound realistic to do much about the supply of guns to gang members, as long as the country is awash with legally held guns.

Annette Kralendijk
Annette Kralendijk
2 years ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

“The point is that if you are a random teenager who wants to be a badass it is much harder. And if you carry that weapon around with you, you can get arrested for it. “
It probably used to be much harder but not these days. And if you carry an illegal gun around with you in the US you can get arrested for it as well.
“My assumption is that you cannot make it hard for the wrong people to get guns unles you make it a bit harder for everybody. “
Yes I know that’s your assumption but the reason it’s incorrect is that all guns do not begin as legal guns. The vast majority of gun crime is not committed with legal guns.

Last edited 2 years ago by Annette Kralendijk
Annette Kralendijk
AK
Annette Kralendijk
2 years ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh
  • “Recently a dedicated Muslim terrorist sympathiser, let out of prison after finishing his sentence, decided to do a killing spree. He armed himself with a fake suicide vest and – a knife, and so managed to kill only two people before being overpowered by three bystanders with improvised spears.”

if only those Charlie Hebdo employees had been as brave, eh? Is it better to be killed by a suicide bombing, though?

Last edited 2 years ago by Annette Kralendijk
Kathy Prendergast
Kathy Prendergast
2 years ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

How do you explain a place like Switzerland, where nearly every household has at least one legal firearm?
Violent crime – including gun crime – in the US is very highly concentrated in large urban, mostly Democrat-run centres, like St. Louis, Minneapolis, LA, Baltimore, and (notoriously) Chicago. It is not correlated at all with rates of legal gun ownership.
Take away all the crime in those places, and you’d be left with a violent crime rate similar to that of most European countries.

Last edited 2 years ago by Kathy Prendergast
Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
2 years ago

In civilian guns per head you have
1) US 120 guns, 7) Canada 35, 10) Finland 32, 14) Austria 30, 17) Norway 29, 19) Switzerland 28, 22) Sweden 23. Switzerland is not that unique for civilian guns, apparently (though they do send military weapons home with their army reserve). Do you have a reference for your ‘every household has a gun’ quote – not that it matters enormously? In Sweden, as it happens, well over 90% of the firearms are rifles or shotguns – long guns.

For people to shoot each other , you need a shooter and a gun. Guns alone are clearly not enough. On the other hand you can surely avoid a number of homicides and suicides if people do not carry guns around, and they are hard to get hold of in a hurry when you feel like using one. You would need to do something about the most violent cities and neighbourhoods independent of gun control, no disagreement there. On the other hand I believe suicides in Europe diminished significantly as countries switched from (poisonous) city gas to (non-poisonous) natural gas, and poisonous drugs became harder to get hold of; the same would likely happen if you reduced the number of guns. Even if you managed to pacify Detroit there could still be gains from having fewer guns – not that I think you would be interested.

Last edited 2 years ago by Rasmus Fogh
Sue Sims
SS
Sue Sims
2 years ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

Rasmus, you haven’t read or reproduced your source correctly. It doesn’t show ‘guns per head’ (as anyone seeing your statistical breakdown of guns per country must surely have realised*) but ‘guns per hundred people’. I’m not saying that this destroys your argument, with which I largely sympathise, but – get the numbers right.
*It should leap to the eye that the average individual in the USA couldn’t possible own 120 guns!

Rasmus Fogh
RF
Rasmus Fogh
2 years ago
Reply to  Sue Sims

Oh Shoot! That is the kind of thing where you just miss what you are actually writing, because you know what you really mean. Of course it is guns per 100 people.
Thanks for correcting it.

Jake Jackson
JJ
Jake Jackson
2 years ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

You also know nothing about the dynamics of suicide.

Annette Kralendijk
AK
Annette Kralendijk
2 years ago

Yes, exactly. It’s not legal gun owners shooting people, that’s where Rasmus makes his mistake. He seems to believe that 16 year olds in Detroit (who cannot buy a gun legally anyway) are driving around suburbia purchasing guns from legal gun owners. So if legal gun owners lose their guns, somehow that Detroit teenager won’t be able to get a gun. That’s seems to be his theory anyway.

Last edited 2 years ago by Annette Kralendijk
Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
2 years ago

Whereas you seem to believe that legal guns with legal owners are totally isolated form illegal guns with illegal owners, and somehow you could take the illegal guns away form the illegal people without any of the easily available the legal guns ever migrating to the wrong users. To me that sounds like emptying half a swimming pool of water – without putting in a divider. But we are unlikely to agree on this.

Last edited 2 years ago by Rasmus Fogh
Annette Kralendijk
AK
Annette Kralendijk
2 years ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

“Whereas you seem to believe that legal guns with legal owners are totally isolated form illegal guns with illegal owners”
yes
”, and somehow you could take the illegal guns away form the illegal people without any of the easily available the legal guns ever migrating to the wrong users.”
yes. Although unless you lock up everyone using an illegal gun in a crime, eliminating the illegal guns won’t work. What we have to do is eliminate those who use guns in crimes. But essentially yes, there would not be a market for legal guns suddenly opened up to criminals if illegal guns were hard to get. Legal gun owners want their guns. They don’t have them so they can sell them to criminals.

Last edited 2 years ago by Annette Kralendijk
Johnny Sutherland
JS
Johnny Sutherland
2 years ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

In western Europe even illegal guns are quite hard to get. It is possible (of course) but it takes some serious criminals, with contacts.

I assume you’ve tried <G>

That cuts down on both shootings and suicides.

If someone wants to commit suicide lack of a gun will not stop them.

Annette Kralendijk
Annette Kralendijk
2 years ago

True. Japan has a very high rate of suicide with few legal guns.

Rasmus Fogh
RF
Rasmus Fogh
2 years ago

I assume you’ve tried <G>

As I’ve posted elsewhere, there is an example of a Muslim terrorist who wanted to do a killing spree and armed himself with a knife. Also of a criminal group who went to great trouble getting hold of and transporting a single-shot converted starters’ pistol. Anecdotal, yes, but a pretty good indication that it is not that easy to get hold of proper weapons.

If someone wants to commit suicide lack of a gun will not stop them.

Of course. But making it harder and more time consuming gives people more time to change their mind. Fewer people kill themselves (or others) that way.

Jake Jackson
JJ
Jake Jackson
2 years ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

This is your error: You are thinking in the abstract, with no knowledge of our laws or the practicalities involved. The comment about guns being available “in the next state over” is the tell here. You abstracted something that, in daily reality here, is barely relevant.

It’s a big country, so there are always exceptions. Criminals have their channels, but they are not the ones you have abstracted.

Rasmus Fogh
RF
Rasmus Fogh
2 years ago
Reply to  Jake Jackson

Would it be fair to say that as of now it is quite easy for anyone who can pass a background check to get (legal) guns? And that it is also quite easy for anyone who cannot pass a background check to get (illegal) guns – at least in the places where a lot of people want them?

My guess is that insisting on legal guns being easy to get is connected to the other kind being easy to get as well. Or, if you like, that it would be impossible to remove access to illegal guns while keeping legal guns easily available – even if the two supply routes are separate for now. But I’ll admit that it is rather academic, since there does not seem to be a lot of push for making either change?

Anyway, thanks for answering. I still prefer to live in a disarmed society, but I am at least less ignorant than I used to be.

Jake Jackson
JJ
Jake Jackson
2 years ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

If you can pass the check (look up Form 4473 if you are interested in the details), then it’s easy except in the worst anti-gun states with more restrictions.

How hard is it to get illegal guns? Hard to answer definitively. My guess from what I’ve read and heard is that it’s similar to other criminal activity. “Easy” for a criminal in the abstract, but not necessarily “easy” in real life given all of the various impairments most criminals have. (Drugs, stupidity, poverty.)

Removing access to illegal guns is, to me, like crime-fighting in general: a never ending task, pursued in the twilight. Two certainties in the real world.

First, no one will succeed in confiscating them. There are roughly 80 million lawful gun owners here, with 450 million firearms and at least a trillion rounds of ammo. Suffice to say that there would be resistance.

Second, no gun control scheme that I know of has kept firearms from criminals who want them. Even background checks have no impact on the availability of guns on the street among criminals, or so I have read. By definition, criminals don’t care about the laws.

Last edited 2 years ago by Jake Jackson
Rasmus Fogh
RF
Rasmus Fogh
2 years ago
Reply to  Jake Jackson

You lot have been quite convincing, but I would still add that there are arguments, US arguments, that suggest that illegal weapons do flow from states with lax gun laws to states with strict gun laws. It would be interesting to hear where you think those illegal guns are coming from.

Last edited 2 years ago by Rasmus Fogh
Jake Jackson
JJ
Jake Jackson
2 years ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

>70% of guns used illegally come from within the state where they are used. And again, it’s illegal to go to another state and buy a gun that would not comply with the home state’s rules.

Bianca Davies
BD
Bianca Davies
2 years ago
Reply to  J Hop

An illegal firearm in the US? I didn’t realise there was such a thing.

Annette Kralendijk
AK
Annette Kralendijk
2 years ago
Reply to  Bianca Davies

Perhaps you need more information than you appear to have.

Annette Kralendijk
AK
Annette Kralendijk
2 years ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

“One solution might be to make it hard for teenage gang members to get guns – but that is impossible as long as guns are easy to get just outside the city.”
Because teenage gang members are known to travel far and wide looking for guns? And no one in places where legal gun ownership is high would notice this?
No gang member in Chicago is buying a gun anywhere but Chicago, which is awash in illegal guns. Why would any criminal have to leave Chicago to locate an illegal gun? It would be a top location to buy one.

Last edited 2 years ago by Annette Kralendijk
Rasmus Fogh
RF
Rasmus Fogh
2 years ago

The point is that there would be no hope of emptying Chicago of illegal guns, as long as they are cheap and plentiful just outside town (not that I am aware that anyone is trying). With eager buyers and simple (if illegal) supply, the market would take care of the rest.

Annette Kralendijk
Annette Kralendijk
2 years ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

No one is leaving Chicago to obtain an illegal gun though. If you wanted to obtain one, you’d GO to Chicago. Illegal guns are not cheap and plentiful in suburbia.
There aren’t people roaming around suburbia trying to buy illegal guns. You’re missing the key. The illegal guns are awash IN Chicago, not outside of it.
You seem to believe that if Chicago were somehow emptied of illegal guns (which would require emptying it of criminals too) that legal gun owners in suburbia would set up yard sales and sell their legal guns to criminals from Chicago. But legal gun owners want their guns.
You cannot really understand much until you grasp the difference between legally owned guns and illegal ones. Understand what criminals are committing gun crimes with.

Last edited 2 years ago by Annette Kralendijk
Jake Jackson
JJ
Jake Jackson
2 years ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

There is no difference between cities, suburbs, and rural areas when it comes to legal gun availability. All purchases of new guns are accompanied by a federal background check, and in blue states with state-level checks on used guns, these apply statewide.

It is illegal to cross state lines to make a gun purchase that’s not legal in the buyer’s home state. Also, any gun that’s sold and then shipped — new or used — must be accompanied by a federal background check before it can be picked up. These rules apply in all 50 states.

In practice, the armed criminals (mainly in the cities) typically get their guns in the city, on the street, from other criminals. Thus, illegal guns are actually more available in the cities. As a rural resident with legally purchased firearms and the requisite array of state-level permits for carrying a concealed handgun, I can confidently say that someone not known to a seller would have a significant degree of trouble in finding a legal gun owner willing to transfer a gun to a stranger outside of the well-known legal channels.

That challenge would be especially tough in the countryside, where everyone tends to know everyone else. There ARE rural criminals, for sure, but the practicalities are aligned against them. If I were a criminal in search of illegal firearms, I’d head to one of the big cities where we used to live.

Most of the people who yammer about all of this don’t even begin to know what they are talking about.

Last edited 2 years ago by Jake Jackson
Chris Sirb
Chris Sirb
2 years ago
Reply to  Fraser Bailey

The problem is not that they are rich, but that they are Leftists and cannot help themselves because of ideological possession.

J Hop
JH
J Hop
2 years ago
Reply to  Fraser Bailey

True, and it’s even localized in cities. I lived in Chicago in a very safe neighborhood about one mile from a neighborhood with daily shootings. Night and day within one mile.

regnad.kcin.fst
regnad.kcin.fst
2 years ago
Reply to  J Hop

Almost all cities are like that. We lived in St Louis, which is having a gun-killing thing right now. I can tell you the exact location where the nice white people live, and the exact street where the change happens.

J Hop
JH
J Hop
2 years ago

It’s not always white neighborhoods. I’ve lived in mixed race neighborhoods that were low crime too, but they were more often working class.

regnad.kcin.fst
GT
regnad.kcin.fst
2 years ago
Reply to  J Hop

Sure. BTW, I’m from Arlington Heights, so know something of Chicago. And, yes, plenty of mixed race areas. Let’s be clear – it’s more class than race. Many on the lower class are black, many blacks are in higher classes.

J Hop
JH
J Hop
2 years ago

Agreed. Class and culture.
And I was born in Evanston. 🙂

regnad.kcin.fst
GT
regnad.kcin.fst
2 years ago
Reply to  Fraser Bailey

Gangs in the inner city ALMOST NEVER travel to rural areas. They may travel to inner ring suburbs, but not out into the country.

Annette Kralendijk
Annette Kralendijk
2 years ago

Yes, I got a chuckle at the idea that no one would notice inner city gang members roaming around rural areas looking for guns.

Kathy Prendergast
KP
Kathy Prendergast
2 years ago
Reply to  Fraser Bailey

Inner city criminals are mostly terrified of rural areas, with their trees, grass, cows, and gun-totin’ rednecks, and would never venture into them voluntarily.

Jake Jackson
Jake Jackson
2 years ago

And for good reason. Try it in our county, and it’ll be a one-way trip.

Jon Redman
Jon Redman
2 years ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

Incarceration rate is a meaningless figure unless you also consider crime rate. The US rate of the one is high because so is the other.

Annette Kralendijk
Annette Kralendijk
2 years ago
Reply to  Jon Redman

Yes but sometimes Europeans think that committing a crime, having a trial, being convicted, etc. are not required before one gets incarcerated in the US.

Galeti Tavas
VS
Galeti Tavas
2 years ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

Rasmus, you are a great poster, but you just fail to understand USA. I am originally from London, so know USA from both sides, and have lived all over – and what you Europeans do not understand is….
USA IS DANGEROUS AS THE UNDERCLASS ARE VIOLENT. Middle Class Americans are more law abiding then British. Crime in Middle class areas, and country, are safer than UK. The Crime comes from certain classes.

If you reduced the prison population you would have a big rise in crime, USA has TOO FEW in prison actually. You look at USA with glasses of European lenses, and they utterly distort the reality. USA is a mix of third world kind of areas mixed near Blue Collar, and Middle Class, and Wealthy. I recommend you watch the sanitized version of the rougher side of USA by watching ‘The Wire’ and a couple of the Netflix/Prime documentaries on Poor Rdeneck towns in West Virginia, or poor Hispanic sections of LA or El Paso.

What you just do not understand is USA is a mix, and like most mixes it is stratified, and as long as you remain in your strata that is what you get.

Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
2 years ago
Reply to  Galeti Tavas

You could be right – as you say I do not know the USA so I could not tell either way. I am certainly not making any policy proposals. I cannot but wonder, though. The US already has more people in prison overall than any country with reliable statistics – third world included. If most of the prisoners come from a few strata, the incarceration rate for those people must be even higher. And unlike, say, China, all those prisoners are not enough to ensure law and order. How many prisoners would it take to bring inner-city crime down? If you doubled the prison population, what would it actually help? It may be, as you say, that there is no other way of managing, the way things are. But one would sort of hope that it might be posssible to find a strategy that led to better results than the current one.

Annette Kralendijk
AK
Annette Kralendijk
2 years ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

“The US already has more people in prison overall than any country with reliable statistics”
and? What is it you think this signifies?
“How many prisoners would it take to bring inner-city crime down?”
well, it would require imprisoning anyone who commits a gun crime and not letting them out.
“But one would sort of hope that it might be posssible to find a strategy that led to better results than the current one.
You’re assuming that leaders in US cities with lots of gun crime want to stop it but where is the evidence for this? Like you do, most Americans look at US cities that are violent and shake their heads, happy that they don’t have to live in them. People get the lifestyle they vote for. If you want to live in fear of being shot, well, you get to do that. Vote for someone like Bill deBlasio and you can live surrounded by violent criminals.

Last edited 2 years ago by Annette Kralendijk
Kathy Prendergast
KP
Kathy Prendergast
2 years ago
Reply to  Galeti Tavas

Those “poor redneck towns”, as dysfunctional as they are, still have nowhere near the violent crime rate – or at least the murder rate – of large inner cities.

Jake Jackson
Jake Jackson
2 years ago

In our rural county, there’ll be one murder every couple years. Almost always among meth users.

Annette Kralendijk
Annette Kralendijk
2 years ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

“Large cities and flyover country have different situations that require different policies”
why would policies have to be different? Seems like a policy (actually a law) that punishes gun crime would work in large cities the same way such policies/laws work in “flyover country”.

Kathy Prendergast
KP
Kathy Prendergast
2 years ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

“…the US already has the highest incarceration rate in the world (of countries with reliable statistics) and is notorious in Europe for its harsh punishments. “
Well, Europe is notorious in the US for its leniency and shocking lack of harsh punishment for even the most diabolical of crimes, eg. sentencing mass murderer Anders Brevik, who killed over 70 people, most of them teenagers, to a mere 20 years.

Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
2 years ago

If we had a much higher crime rate than you, that would suggest that maybe we should try to imitate you. As it is, you have a much higher crime rate than we do. Of course it is not so simple, the number of crimes probably depends mostly on other things. But does your approach really work so well that you want to double down on it?

Annette Kralendijk
Annette Kralendijk
2 years ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

“If we had a much higher crime rate than you, that would suggest that maybe we should try to imitate you.”
You don’t have to have a high crime rate to incarcerate criminals. You just have to be willing to incarcerate those who commit crimes. Wouldn’t preventing anyone who commits a gun crime from doing so again bring the crime rate down?

Last edited 2 years ago by Annette Kralendijk
Annette Kralendijk
Annette Kralendijk
2 years ago

Yes, that was truly shocking that people would accept a sentence like that as adequate.

Annette Kralendijk
AK
Annette Kralendijk
2 years ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

“Don’t you think putting even more people in prison might get you into diminishing returns?”
how can putting people who commit gun crime in prison lead to diminishing returns?

zac chang
zac chang
2 years ago
Reply to  Matt Hindman

Coming from a country that doesn’t allow any idiot to buy military grade weapons I just wonder if you have any concept of how backward and retarded America looks from here with its gun ownership laws?You know what real freedom is? Its the freedom to know that you can go to school or walk down the street without being murdered by a mentally ill 16 year white supremacist toting a machine gun.

Last edited 2 years ago by zac chang
Johann Strauss
Johann Strauss
2 years ago
Reply to  zac chang

You’re talking out the back of your head. First you cannot buy military grade weapons in the US. So called assault semi-automatic rifles are nothing more than regular rifles dressed up to look bad ass. Second, the suburbs and countryside in the US is incredibly safe, and a good deal more so than many areas of London, for example. Crime is generally localized to the cities, and specifically to certain neighborhoods which is indeed a tragedy.

Chris Sirb
CS
Chris Sirb
2 years ago
Reply to  zac chang

You are coming from a country where the govern executes decent people for having a different opinion, creed, religion or ethnicity. It has to be very safe there. The problem is not the “White supremacism” it is gang related activity, culture, as it was mentioned in the article, and fatherlessness. Reality matters more than ideology.
When communists took over my country, as long as the population had weapons, commies could not take over the country. After they disarmed us, we were under their boot. I hope that you understand the concept of freedom better, as long as you live in the West (as it seems)!

J Hop
J Hop
2 years ago
Reply to  zac chang

Is this what you think most of America is like? I thought non-American’s were supposed to be more enlightened? This would be like me posting that I don’t want to go to Italy because I fear getting hit in the face with flying pizza dough being thrown by a mustached guy named Luigi in a stripped shirt while singing Amore.

kathleen carr
kathleen carr
2 years ago
Reply to  zac chang

Switzerland has the highest gun ownership in the world .As I presume they don’t use chocolate bullets , its what you use the guns for- hunting in the rural areas-that counts. In the cities they seem to use their illegal guns on other people for target practice.

Kathy Prendergast
Kathy Prendergast
2 years ago
Reply to  zac chang

Statistically you have much more chance in the US of being eaten by a shark, struck by lightning, or dying from a dog bite, than of “being murdered by a mentally ill 16 year white supremacist toting a machine gun.”

kathleen carr
KC
kathleen carr
2 years ago

As the entertainment industry is run by cosmopolitan types , they transfer their secret fear of being made to live in the countryside onto their programmes. There are endless films and fictional TV such as Knight Rider Mattlock etc who when the hero comes to the one-horse-town is treated badly by the sheriff ( who seems to be in control of everything) usually locked up , the people are depicted like something out of Deliverance & obviously this fictional version of small time America has taken shape as reality in people’s minds

Jake Jackson
JJ
Jake Jackson
2 years ago
Reply to  zac chang

Ah, a lecture from China. Enough said. LOL

Alex Lekas
Alex Lekas
2 years ago
Reply to  Matt Hindman

A lot of those Middle America right wingers are enjoying the show because IT DOES NOT AFFECT THEM IN THE SLIGHTEST. This says more about you than it does about them. There are no “right wingers” who enjoy the ongoing carnage, especially when kids are among the victims. Come on, man. Do you get excited about violent death in other places?
The sum total of your argument is that the problem is not guns, it’s people and culture, but we’re not allowed to talk about those things.

Last edited 2 years ago by Alex Lekas
Hardee Hodges
HH
Hardee Hodges
2 years ago
Reply to  Alex Lekas

I very much would like the discussion about people and culture. As you observe, the gun isn’t the problem. But, as always, we arrive at the discussion about guns – how easy or hard to get them.

James Rowlands
JR
James Rowlands
2 years ago

What’s clear, as the president ( Biden) has said, is that we are suffering from an epidemic of gun violence in this country,”
He should have added “in the blue states” if he were honest, truly wanted a solution and America to come together on this.
But of course he didn’t.

Last edited 2 years ago by James Rowlands
Fraser Bailey
Fraser Bailey
2 years ago
Reply to  James Rowlands

It’s not even the blue states, it’s the blue cities. But the people in those cities keep voting for it and they wouldn’t want it any other way.

zac chang
zac chang
2 years ago
Reply to  James Rowlands

But of course you didnt actually look at any statistics did you James and just waved your red hat in the air instead.
• Mass shootings by shooter’s race in the U.S. 2021 | Statista

Micheal Lucken
ML
Micheal Lucken
2 years ago
Reply to  zac chang

The whole point of the article was that it acknowledged those statistics of a particular form of shooting but that as a proportion to overall gun violence they were relatively insignificant.

kathleen carr
kathleen carr
2 years ago
Reply to  Micheal Lucken

A similar thing happened here with the Dunblane tragedy. Instead of having an enquiry* , there was a sudden decidion to ban legal guns. This meant that the olympic team have to travel to France to practice , but the illegal teams can practice on whom they want. * As it became apparent this man should have had his license taken away-there were enough complaints for the police to do this-never explained why these complaints were ignored.Obviously legal gun owners can suddenly act ‘crazy’ & kill people-they usually then kill themselves.

Chris Sirb
CS
Chris Sirb
2 years ago
Reply to  zac chang

I don’t think you read carefully the article. Gang related activity causes a “discrete” genocide.

David Brown
David Brown
2 years ago
Reply to  zac chang

That graph is totally irrelevant to what James said: it does not address which states had the highest level of gun violence, just the race of the killer in a tiny proportion of the gun crimes committed in the USA.
You’re like a politician in an interview, who, when asked one uncomfortable question, ignores it and answers another, more congenial, one.

David Redfern
David Redfern
2 years ago
Reply to  zac chang

It’s a pity that when you looked at the data, you didn’t bother applying even the simplest analysis.
At its most basic, the chart you cited demonstrates that while the black community make up less than 20% of the US population, they commit ~30% of the mass shootings of whites.

Jon Redman
HJ
Jon Redman
2 years ago
Reply to  David Redfern

Blacks are 12% of the US population in fact.

Jon Redman
HJ
Jon Redman
2 years ago
Reply to  zac chang

Your link says 53% of mass shootings (not defined) were by white perpetrators. That makes white shooters under-represented – a lot more than 53% of America is white.

Crow T. Robot
Crow T. Robot
2 years ago
Reply to  zac chang

Aside from the relative under-representation of Whites in mass shootings, your reference does not account for the more numerous deaths from shootings that are not mass shootings. In that case, you will find the more massive numbers associated with “inner-city” populations.

Cynthia Neville
CB
Cynthia Neville
2 years ago
Reply to  zac chang

Or, Zac, you never learned to read a report without checking its provenance. If it’s easier for you to understand, I’ll put it this way: see if you can predict the political preferences of ‘Statistica’, the company whose information you quote, by having a good old look at their media partners.

Saul D
Saul D
2 years ago

America has spree shootings that make headlines – and yes male, but not always white – but the deep problem is black victims of black shooters in (often US democrat run) cities – shootings that kill a disproportionate number under 18s (so children effectively). So far this year Chicago to 21st May has had 865 shootings, 195 murders and 658 sexual assaults.
This report is from this week – 21 shooting incidences on Wednesday. Absolutely terrifying for someone living in Europe. https://chicago.suntimes.com/crime/2021/5/27/22456250/2-killed-17-wounded-shootings-wednesday-may-26-chicago
Unfortunately the issue of guns is a U-shaped curve. Either no-one has them to be safe, or if bad guys have them, then everyone believes they need them to feel safe, and rural America is pretty safe. To protect Black American’s lives, reducing the terror of gun violence against Black Americans by other Black Americans would be the place to start.

Annette Kralendijk
AK
Annette Kralendijk
2 years ago
Reply to  Saul D

“So far this year Chicago to 21st May has had 865 shootings, 195 murders and 658 sexual assaults.”
yes. And they keep electing people who won’t stop it. It’s tough to feel much sympathy for them.

Jim Jones
Jim Jones
2 years ago

What are your solutions?

Last edited 2 years ago by Jim Jones
Terry M
TM
Terry M
2 years ago
Reply to  Jim Jones

End the war on drugs. It is the root cause of much of the turf war gang violence that takes place in cities, and it increases the number of encounters between people and police that lead to the George Floyd type incidents.

Ian Perkins
Ian Perkins
2 years ago
Reply to  Terry M

On top of which, lots of guns get exported from the US to Mexico to arm the drugs gangs, with dire results – “black goes south and white comes north” as the Grateful Dead put it.

Matt Hindman
MH
Matt Hindman
2 years ago
Reply to  Ian Perkins

Oh please, the PKMs, RPG-7s, and Colt M4A1s with M203 grenade launchers were already there.

Ian Perkins
IP
Ian Perkins
2 years ago
Reply to  Matt Hindman

if you take the right of the people to keep and bear Arms seriously, surely every well-regulated US militia should have them too.

Kathy Prendergast
KP
Kathy Prendergast
2 years ago
Reply to  Terry M

Even if all street drugs were decriminalized and regulated the way alcohol is now, there would still be massive amounts of unregulated, illegal drugs on the streets, and people killing each other over them.
The killing isn’t caused by the buying, selling, and consumption of drugs, and the enforcement of laws against them; if it were, the murder rate would be just as high in the many parts of poor rural America where drugs are epidemic.

Annette Kralendijk
Annette Kralendijk
2 years ago
Reply to  Jim Jones

First solution would be to move to someplace where the criminals are not in charge. Which many people do. Second……Anyone who commits a crime with a gun needs to be locked up. It’s very hard to commit another gun crime while in prison.

Last edited 2 years ago by Annette Kralendijk
Jim Jones
Jim Jones
2 years ago

I thought you would say some like this, first you blame them electing the wrong people and then suggest they should just move instead, perhaps a bit impractical for everybody. Then the autoritarian solution of just trying to lock up as many people as possible. Do you not think, as mentioned above, that ending the war on drugs might make a difference?

Annette Kralendijk
Annette Kralendijk
2 years ago
Reply to  Jim Jones

Not only do I suggest people move away from poorly managed crime-ridden cities, they are actually doing it, if they can.
if you commit a crime with a gun, yes, you should go to prison. Not sure how that is locking up as many people as possible. You’d still have to commit the gun crime. What would you suggest happen to those who commit gun crimes?

Ana Fernandez
AF
Ana Fernandez
2 years ago
Reply to  Jim Jones

Exhibit A would be NY before and afyer Rudi Guliani and his zero tolerance policy. Thar way you up the risk to commit crimes. Human beings, even criminals are risk sensitive, and will adapt their behavior accordingly (as happened in NY. Singapore is also a good example.) There is also a cultural cause that is more complex. Something like 75% of black inner city children grow up fatherless, no positive male figure, but lots of gangs to take that role. Lousy school systems that don’t make an effort to educate then because math is racist or some such nonsenae. Really terrible cultural role models like rappers and hip hop singers who glorify crime and irresponsible behavior. The welfare system.perpetuates this environment.

Jake Jackson
JJ
Jake Jackson
2 years ago
Reply to  Ana Fernandez

Between 70% and 75% of black children are born out of wedlock. But it gets worse: Between 40% and 45% of black children are born into a household without even a cohabiting father, as in “no father’s name on the birth certificate.”

Jake Jackson
Jake Jackson
2 years ago
Reply to  Jim Jones

What do you mean by “ending the war on drugs?” Be specific.

Jake Jackson
Jake Jackson
2 years ago

Moving is exactly what we did 3-1/2 years ago, from Seattle to the WA State countryside. No one could have predicted the events of 2020, but the response of that city’s so-called leadership did not surprise us one bit.

Fraser Bailey
Fraser Bailey
2 years ago
Reply to  Saul D

‘To protect Black American’s lives, reducing the terror of gun violence against Black Americans by other Black Americans would be the place to start.’
But you can’t do that because it would be ‘racist’.

William Murphy
William Murphy
2 years ago
Reply to  Saul D

Yes, I occasionally follow the weekend death toll as reported in the Chicago Tribune and it is unfailingly depressing.

I used to skim read the physical Tribune (there were hundreds of pages) every Sunday lunchtime, my favourite time of the week during my two years in Detroit. I was able to chill out in a fine Mongolian restaurant, where the white guy frying my food wore a green T shirt declaring: “Proud to be an Irish Mongolian”, and read about part of the weekly slaughter 250 miles to the west (as if downtown Detroit, 20 miles to the east, was not bad enough).

I dimly recall 57 casualties one particularly bad Chicago weekend – 11 dead, 46 wounded, from late Friday to late Sunday.

Lesley van Reenen
Lesley van Reenen
2 years ago
Reply to  William Murphy

And the mayor of Chicago’s response to this violence is decreeing that she won’t grant personal interviews to any reporters that aren’t black or brown. WTF. We see her priorities.

Jon Redman
Jon Redman
2 years ago
Reply to  Saul D

The most expeditious way to do which is to jail as many black Americans as possible. I am not sure how many you’d have to jail but it could be most of them.

Saul D
Saul D
2 years ago
Reply to  Jon Redman

Absolutely not. What is needed is help for the black American community to stand up to thugs and violence, to spike the tumour within. It cannot be imposed from outside. It needs leaders who can build the community forwards as successes and winners, not as victims dependent on external largesse.

Annette Kralendijk
Annette Kralendijk
2 years ago
Reply to  Saul D

Wouldn’t removing the criminal element plaguing the black community be a better solution? Would you suggest any white community stand up to thugs with guns? This is a law enforcement issue. Remove the criminals so peaceful non-criminals can live unmolested by thugs.

Jake Jackson
Jake Jackson
2 years ago
Reply to  Saul D

In my rural county, the crime rate is low. A major reason is that would-be criminals are quite aware that the large majority of people out here are gun owners. People occasionally ask me what my home defense gun is. I reply: “Which room?”

I would almost feel sorry for the drug addict who makes the mistake of thinking that we are sitting ducks. I hope it never happens, and I have little fear that it will, but if it did, my biggest problem would be cleaning the rug. LOL

Annette Kralendijk
Annette Kralendijk
2 years ago

“And in the meantime, whatever it is that’s causing Americans to kill each other at a nearly 20% greater rate than they were at this time in 2020 will continue to cost lives.”
yes. In democrat run cities. Gun crime in the US doesn’t happen all over. While it’s sad to see it explode in blue cities, most Americans simply aren’t affected by it – it doesn’t happen where they live. There may be plenty of guns around them but not much crime committed with them.
Cities like NY and San Francisco and Minneapolis really should ask themselves why they are covered up with crime while other cities are not. What is it that they are doing differently that leads to high gun crime rates?

Last edited 2 years ago by Annette Kralendijk
Fraser Bailey
Fraser Bailey
2 years ago

‘What is it that they are doing differently that leads to high gun crime rates?’
They are voting for Democrats.

Annette Kralendijk
AK
Annette Kralendijk
2 years ago
Reply to  Fraser Bailey

Well yes and the people who commit gun crime get a vote. They may just be out voting the people who don’t want to live in crime ridden cities. People like that just tend to leave if they cannot afford the security or gated community.

David Stuckey
DS
David Stuckey
2 years ago
Reply to  Fraser Bailey

Life is so simple is it not. Vote Republican and everything gets better! You can’t be that naive can you??

Annette Kralendijk
Annette Kralendijk
2 years ago
Reply to  David Stuckey

It got better in NYC when they voted in a Republican mayor. Now they have a democratic mayor and guess what????.

Alex Lekas
Alex Lekas
2 years ago

“Whatever it is.” Hmmm; has anything happened since this time last year that might have contributed to the spike? Couldn’t have anything to do with months of rioting, a ‘defund’ movement, DA’s refusing to prosecute, eliminating bail, or a thousand other things done by the elected class, almost all of those being Dems.

Lesley van Reenen
LV
Lesley van Reenen
2 years ago
Reply to  Alex Lekas

I have seen that widely discussed. Crime has rocketed in US cities that have defunded the police. Further the escalating violence in certain US cities (we know which ones!) has resulted in more people buying guns to protect themselves.

J Bryant
J Bryant
2 years ago

Interesting article. The byline is “Nobody wants to tell the true story of gun crime in America.” Even the author of this article confines herself to describing the phenomenon and how America’s political camps manage to talk past each other. Unravelling the causes of gun violence would require a much longer article, I’m sure.
America is hopelessly divided. Gun violence is just one in a long list of important topics the left and right can’t meaningfully discuss. Biden might succeed in partially restricting gun ownership, and if the republicans are reelected they’ll try to dismantle his reforms. Nothing will truly change until America finds common ground as a society again.

Annette Kralendijk
Annette Kralendijk
2 years ago
Reply to  J Bryant

“America is hopelessly divided. Gun violence is just one in a long list of important topics the left and right can’t meaningfully discuss”
if you mean divided in the sense that only part of the population bears the brunt of gun crime, yes. But I have to disagree when you say the gun violence is not discussed in the US. Gun violence is continually discussed in the US. I think we could agree that people don’t necessarily agree on solutions but we cannot say that it isn’t discussed.
One place we could start would be in looking at US cities that do not have a lot of gun crime and determine what they are doing that’s different from cities like SF, NY and Minneapolis. It would not take Biden to help these cities, they have the power to tackle gun crime themselves just like every US city with little gun crime. In addition, Biden can’t dispense with the 2nd amendment,

Last edited 2 years ago by Annette Kralendijk
Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
2 years ago

That is an interesting idea. Can you give a list of large American cities with little gun crime? My guess would be that they are too different from SF, NY and Minneapolis in terms of economic situation, wealth, and racial mix, for the difference to be transferable. But it would be worth looking at.

Fraser Bailey
Fraser Bailey
2 years ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

The ones with low levels of gun crime tend to be those that are run by Republicans. Of the top 20 most violent cities, 18 are run by Democrats. The solution is to stop voting Democrat because the inevitable consequence of their belief system is high levels of crime.

Rasmus Fogh
RF
Rasmus Fogh
2 years ago
Reply to  Fraser Bailey

And there are no other differences to note between high- and low-violene cities? Size? Wealth and wealth distribution? Racial composition? Economy? Presence of ghettoes?

Terry M
Terry M
2 years ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

Absolutely there are differences. San Francisco, Washington DC, and NYC are the three wealthiest cities (highest cost of living) in the US, and are among the worst (with Chicago, Detroit) for crime. Why? These are also the cities with the widest income gap between rich and poor. And these are deeply Progressive cesspools. The policies of the decades of Democratic government have created the conditions – including wealth gap – that produce unrest. High taxes drive out the middle class, and over-regulation drives out small businesses, leaving behind the rich who are insulated from the problems, and the poor who can’t get out. And the Donkey politicians are stoking the racial and economic divide on a daily basis. BLM and antifa, that are both anti-democratic, anti-liberty, violent organizations, are not merely permitted but abetted by the local Donkeys. And with no viable opposition, these fools have no incentive to resolve problems. So the people get the government and crime they deserve.
Best way to cut crime: end the war on drugs.

Rasmus Fogh
RF
Rasmus Fogh
2 years ago
Reply to  Terry M

Tell me more: What are the biggest low-violence cities in the US, and how do they look? What are the chances to make NYC or DC more like them? It would be useful to have a working example of how to do it, for comparison.

Annette Kralendijk
Annette Kralendijk
2 years ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

We already have a working example – NYC under Rudy Giuliani vs Bill de Blasio. It’s not like we don’t know what works and what doesn’t. We know that letting criminals roam the streets invites crime. We know that not prosecuting lesser crimes leads criminals to commit greater crimes. We know that stop and frisk works. We know who commits gun crime – its not middle aged women. It’s young men. When you see case after case of young men with criminal histories miles long, someone isn’t doing their job. You don’t see this in more peaceful cities where people expect to live unmolested by gun crime.

Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
2 years ago

Peaceful cities where people expect to live unmolested do not have lots of young men with long criminal records. That is undoubtedly true. It is less obvious how to get rid of those young men, once they are there – or better how to stop producing so many of them in the first place.
It takes more than one example without controls to establish what works – how did the crime rate change in other cities that had neither Giuliani nor de Blasio?

Last edited 2 years ago by Rasmus Fogh
Annette Kralendijk
Annette Kralendijk
2 years ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

“That is undoubtedly true. It is less obvious how to get rid of those young men, once they are there”
It is much tougher to commit additional gun crimes from prison. It seems like repeatedly allowing them to commit crime after crime may not be the best way to handle things.
Since you specifically asked about NYC, I gave you an example of how to lower violent crime and make the city more livable in NYC.

Rasmus Fogh
RF
Rasmus Fogh
2 years ago
Reply to  Terry M

I actually did some work, and checked out the stats. If you order US cities by violent crime, Washington is 24th, LA 32nd, San Fransisco 37th, New york 59th, The highest rate of violent crime is in St Louis , Detroit, Baltimore, Memphis, Kansas City, Milwaukee, and Cleveland, all of which are indeed Democrat.
Of the 20 biggest cities, the lowest violence is in Austin, San Jose, and San Diego, all of which also have Democrat mayors.
The biggest cities with Republican mayors are Jacksonvile (52nd in violence), Fort Worth (57th in violence) and Oklahoma City (30th in violence), all doing worse than New York,

I do not know enough about the US to make this into a coherent story, but it looks like it might be a bit more complicated than just ‘Democrats=violence’.

Last edited 2 years ago by Rasmus Fogh
J Hop
J Hop
2 years ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

Culture plays the biggest role. When you look at places with low educational attainment, high rates of single parenting, long-term unemployment and intergenerational poverty you see high rates of gun violence, whether it’s Appalachia or the inner city. I lived in a heavily armed yet very safe city in Texas and also lived near an incredibly violent neighborhood in Chicago with strict gun laws. The cultural elements above were present in the latter and not the former.

Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
2 years ago
Reply to  J Hop

Sounds right. Thanks.

Michael Dawson
MD
Michael Dawson
2 years ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

Blimey! Someone on this site did some research, instead of just parroting their prejudices. Thank you!

Galeti Tavas
Galeti Tavas
2 years ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

Rasmus, look by racial makeup, there you will find your answer.

Rasmus Fogh
RF
Rasmus Fogh
2 years ago
Reply to  Galeti Tavas

OK, My top seven violent cities are all in the top 25/100 for black population percentage. Next, however, you get Stockton, Albuquerque, Indianapolis, Oakland,San Bernardino and Anchorage, before you get to Nashville, New Orleans, and Minneapolis.

I wont even think about making conclusions about race in the US.

Last edited 2 years ago by Rasmus Fogh
Steven Rubin
Steven Rubin
2 years ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

Until this year the mayor of San Diego was a Republican.

Annette Kralendijk
AK
Annette Kralendijk
2 years ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

“The biggest cities with Republican mayors are Jacksonvile (52nd in violence), Fort Worth (57th in violence) and Oklahoma City (30th in violence), all doing worse than New York,”
in 2020, there were 178 murders in Jacksonville vs 436 in NYC, so NYC is worse. In 3020, Ft Worth had 112 murders compared to 436 in NYC, so NYC is worse.

Last edited 2 years ago by Annette Kralendijk
Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
2 years ago

Come on! Jacksonville has ca. 900 000 inhabitants, and NYC has 8.6 million. Do you really not understand why you get more crime committed in a city with a nine times larger population?

Annette Kralendijk
Annette Kralendijk
2 years ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

And do you really not understand the population demographics?

Jake Jackson
Jake Jackson
2 years ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

Hmm. Someone skipped his arithmetic lessons. LOL

Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
2 years ago
Reply to  Jake Jackson

Someone did – but is it me or Annette?
My calculation is simple:

Jacksonville: 178 murders, 900 000 inhabitants, ca. 200 murders per million people

NYC: 436 murders, 8 600 000 people, ca. 50 murders per million people.

Conclusion, Jacksonville is about four times more violent than NYC, by this count. If I got it wrong, or you have a better calculation, could you please tell me?

Chris Sirb
Chris Sirb
2 years ago
Reply to  Terry M

I think that it is important to establish the proper causal links: the large income gaps cause violence, or violence causes poverty, or (as it is very likely), it is a circular connection. What can break the cycle? By cultural norms, good education, honesty (If you can face it, you can fix it) – but Democrats are more concerned about the image of minorities than to tackle honestly the deep seated cultural problems.
There are Black conservative leaders who speak up, and therefore marginalized. I am talking about Thomas Sowell, Larry Elder, Candace Owens, etc.

Crow T. Robot
Crow T. Robot
2 years ago
Reply to  Chris Sirb

To what extent is income gap causative or merely relational? Income gaps may correlate with crime, but some percent of people with low incomes are there because of unsavory tendencies. The income gap argument is often used as an explanation, but I doubt its validity.

Sue Sims
Sue Sims
2 years ago
Reply to  Crow T. Robot

This is true of so many statistical analyses. People are very keen to assume that correlation means causation, but forget that it can run in both directions, or that the apparent link may be caused by a third factor (like the famous ‘ice cream causes drowning’ example).

aaron david
AD
aaron david
2 years ago
Reply to  Crow T. Robot

I doubt it (gun crime) is caused by any income gap, but rather the lack of opportunity in many of these communities. When whole industries have been gutted or displaced, leaving every member of a family with no work, with not having the resources to leave, the only options are some form of the dole or crime.

Jon Redman
Jon Redman
2 years ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

Size? Wealth and wealth distribution? Racial composition? Economy? Presence of ghettoes?

Those would all be caused by Democrats’ obsession with race as well.

Mangle Tangle
Mangle Tangle
2 years ago
Reply to  Fraser Bailey

Cause and effect?

srowlandsimms
srowlandsimms
2 years ago
Reply to  Fraser Bailey

Is there a bias here though since most US cities are Democrat-run? Not criticising your point. I’d just be interested to know

Annette Kralendijk
Annette Kralendijk
2 years ago
Reply to  srowlandsimms

If you look at NYC, when it was run by a Republican, crime fell, including violent crime, under democratic leadership as it is today, violent crime is sky rocketing.

Bianca Davies
Bianca Davies
2 years ago
Reply to  Fraser Bailey

Of course, it’s all about Rep Vs Dems. Explains everything, doesn’t it?

Annette Kralendijk
Annette Kralendijk
2 years ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

“My guess would be that they are too different from SF, NY and Minneapolis in terms of economic situation, wealth, and racial mix, for the difference to be transferable.”
You seem to be making the case that guns are not the problem. That poverty makes people commit gun crime? That would be tough to prove since millions and millions of poor people don’t commit crimes. How do you see race fitting in? Since you brought these up, you must believe they have some bearing.

Rasmus Fogh
RF
Rasmus Fogh
2 years ago

Getting rid of guns would certainly help. People would still be violent, but you kill fewer people, and a lot fewer innocent bystanders, if the violent are limited to using knives or fire extinguishers instead of firearms.

For the rest, you hear it from other debaters. Violence is a lot larger in big cities, and even in particular neighbourhoods. I am sure there are a lot of differences here, wealth, race, culture, family structures, social capital, attitudes, job opportunities, education, drug use, housing, you name it. What happens depends on all those things, and they all interact. It makes no sense to pretend that there is only one single cause, or that a single set of policies would work the same everywhere. Whatever policies work to provide low crime in Honolulu or Stockholm, there is no reason to think that they would work the same in St Louis.

Annette Kralendijk
AK
Annette Kralendijk
2 years ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

”Getting rid of guns would certainly help.”
I agree that getting rid of illegal guns would but since gun crime isn’t generally committed with legal guns, how would that help?  
“Whatever policies work to provide low crime in Honolulu or Stockholm, there is no reason to think that they would work the same in St Louis.”
on the contrary, locking up anyone who commits a gun crime works no matter where you do it.

Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
2 years ago

Jennifer (above) quoted her very peaceful and heavily armed community. Only one murder in living memory – the wife who came home to her hsuband shagging a neighbour and shot them both. Just possibly, might three people have been much better off if the returning wife had not had a firearm to hand?

For the rest, I continue to think you are dreaming if you think you can keep criminals disarmed while legal guns are easily available everywhere.

Annette Kralendijk
Annette Kralendijk
2 years ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

Yes, you think that because you believe that criminals are buying legal guns from legal gun owners. And they aren’t. If you want to buy a gun illegally, you would do that somewhere there are a lot of illegal guns. Like Chicago.
Like Jennifer I live in a very peaceful community and lots of people here own guns. Since we already have almost no gun crime, forcing people who are not committing gun crime to give up their legal guns would not do a thing. And because there is no supply of illegal guns available here, young urban men don’t come here to buy them. They know quite well where to obtain one. In fact, we all know where they’re getting them.

Last edited 2 years ago by Annette Kralendijk
Jake Jackson
Jake Jackson
2 years ago
Reply to  Rasmus Fogh

All of the info is available. If you actually care, go check the numbers for Chicago, and then compare them to San Antonio.

Rasmus Fogh
Rasmus Fogh
2 years ago
Reply to  Jake Jackson

Violent crimes per year per 100 000 people:
Chicago: 1099
Houston 1095
San Antonio: 708
New York: 539
San Diego: 367
All five are large cities with Democrat mayors, I believe.
What was I supposed to conclude?

Fraser Bailey
FB
Fraser Bailey
2 years ago
Reply to  J Bryant

‘Biden might succeed in partially restricting gun ownership,..’
Yes, among the law abiding. The criminals, meanwhile, will have all the guns the want, and the Democrat DAs etc will fail to prosecute them and/or put them back on the streets with ‘no cash bail’. Thus the number of killings will continue to increase. That’s the Dumbocrats for you.

Jonathan Weil
Jonathan Weil
2 years ago
Reply to  Fraser Bailey

This begs the question, why is it that the criminals will have all the guns they want? Could it have something to do with the fact that the country is awash with guns? Could it be that a serious (properly determined, crisis level, massive use of state resources à la vaccine rollout) attempt to do something about this would be the single biggest thing you could do to reduce gun violence?

J Hop
JH
J Hop
2 years ago
Reply to  Jonathan Weil

Yes, but that would require going after the black market for guns instead of tightening background checks, as illegal handguns are used in the vast majority of gun homicides. We are indeed awash in guns available from the back of a van. When Democrats start talking about cracking down on this illegal market I will take their gun control rhetoric seriously, but I’m not holding my breath because that would require jailing a good number of their voting base.

Jon Redman
Jon Redman
2 years ago
Reply to  Jonathan Weil

If you have 400 million guns and 300 million people, and the law abiding aren’t allowed to own them, only criminals will.

Galeti Tavas
Galeti Tavas
2 years ago
Reply to  Jonathan Weil

Not to worry – once currency becomes digital and your phone is your wallet every second of your life will be tracked, every cent you spend, and crime will become very hard, in the nu-Police state you crave.

Annette Kralendijk
Annette Kralendijk
2 years ago
Reply to  Jonathan Weil

“why is it that the criminals will have all the guns they want?”
well, it’s because other criminals are willing to sell them illegal guns. You may be making a common mistake in thinking that all guns in the US start life as legal guns that are then sold by legal gun owners to criminals. But there’s no evidence for this. It isn’t legal gun owners selling guns to criminals, it’s other criminals doing so.

Chris Sirb
CS
Chris Sirb
2 years ago
Reply to  J Bryant

The Left like restrictions, the Right prefers proper education, but as long as the Left pushes Critical Race Theory, do you think real unity can happen? Ben Shapiro was right that the Overton Window needs to be pushed to the center, because the entire press is left leaning (Tim Groseclose, Left Turn) and it alienates a large portion of the population.
Why should a Republican give up his right to own a weapon, when Democrats, Antifa and BLM creates chaos in the country? Perhaps folks in Europe cannot comprehend that some people actually care for their lives and do not wish to die by the hands of anarchists.
Americans look with dismay at the grooming gangs in Europe (especially Britain), where Pakistani men raped and traumatized British women for decades and the brave men of Britain didn’t move a finger. The police was more afraid of being labelled racist. This is the level of abnormality!

Kathleen Stern
Kathleen Stern
2 years ago
Reply to  Chris Sirb

Plus,in Britain the criminals seem able to obtain guns yet the rest of the population are just evulnerable. Soft policing, preference for monitoring people on the internet and light sentencing of violent crime all contribute to growing violent crime. Knife crime and even machete attacks now occur. Huge immigration has also broken down community relations and trust particularly in cities as studies have shown .

rawshark65
MK
rawshark65
2 years ago
Reply to  Kathleen Stern

It’s difficult to know really when crims have real guns or not. One hears rumours… but by their very nature even legal gun owners are discreet about it and Illegal gun owners must be massively so.
I suspect it’s a case of knowing people who know people, if I had the power to order a police raid of their homes I doubt I’d find a gun there – it’s somewhere close by they can get their hands on it but still deniable.
Soft policing is a large part of it too, basically the police don’t get brave with people who’ll fight back – they’ll turn up later camera crews in tow protesting “injustice” or crying racism about how they were “unjustly targeted”.

Colin Elliott
Colin Elliott
2 years ago
Reply to  Chris Sirb

I understand what you are saying, and am grateful the UK doesn’t have what looks like an unsolvable problem to me. I also take the point about the abuse of young girls in some cities; the police didn’t react properly, thanks to perceived public opinion, but the left-wing opinion creators eventually had to retreat, and the police now deal with such problems, although that’s not to say the same fear of being labelled racist isn’t even more pronounced elsewhere since the current ridiculous copying of BLM ballooned here one year ago.
While reading the article, the situation which came to mind as being most similar in the UK is the waxing and waning of ‘stop and search’. In its absence, use of knives (with regular murders) increases and hits the headlines, followed by demands for action. On re-imposition, violent crimes reduce, only to be followed by a campaign of criticism utilising statistics, because it tends to affect young males of colour disproportionately.
This is greatly propagated by parts of the media, including, extraordinarily, the national public service broadcaster. The statistics are, of course, selective, omitting consideration of the local areas and cultures affected, or the activities occurring. Such disproportions also tend to apply to convicted perpetrators, another useful statistic, and to victims, too; not so useful.
Of course care must be taken to expunge racial prejudice from within a police force, but anyone opposing ‘stop and search’ either wishes to carry a weapon, has an ulterior political motive, or is being fooled. I’d also add that encouraging negative feelings towards the police doesn’t help to increase non-white recruitment to the police, or to reduce the idea that they themselves are being stereotyped, or ‘profiled’.

Jake Jackson
Jake Jackson
2 years ago
Reply to  Colin Elliott

This American owns 16 guns, somewhere north of 30,000 rounds of ammo, and 22 long knives, a couple of which I carry on my belt (one at a time), on the other side from the concealed handgun.

“What are you so afraid of?”

“To be perfectly candid, not too much.” LOL

Last edited 2 years ago by Jake Jackson
Fraser Bailey
FB
Fraser Bailey
2 years ago

‘They’ll blame progressive lawmakers for empowering criminals to offend with no fear of arrest, from Chesa Boudin in property crime-plagued San Francisco to Jacob Frey in violence-ridden Minneapolis.’
Well that’s because the progressive law makers are to blame for this state off affairs. They have so much blood on their hands that it defies all belief. They are evil. Another interesting fact is that, apparently, no member of the NRA has ever been responsible for a mass shooting. If true, this is something the MSM will never tell you.

Galeti Tavas
Galeti Tavas
2 years ago
Reply to  Fraser Bailey

It is all a great conspiracy, the Bilderberg Group‘, The Davos Group, the Donor Class.

Try reading ‘The Creature From Jekyll Island.’

You are just a serf to the global masters, and they use their left and Right to fight amongst them selves to stop the people from unifying and getting rid of them, as they have for thousands of years.

Peter LR
Peter LR
2 years ago

That’s frankly depressing: 4 or more people killed or wounded sounds awful. I’m glad to have been born in the UK. Britain must sound like Utopia to US folk where even our police don’t carry guns on patrol.
It’s the suicides too which seem to get dwarfed in discussions: it must be too easy to pull a gun out of a bedside cabinet in a moment of depression or hopelessness and end it all in second.

Annette Kralendijk
Annette Kralendijk
2 years ago
Reply to  Peter LR

Depends on where in Britain, much like it depends on where in the US.

Peter LR
Peter LR
2 years ago

Hello Annette, there were only 12 shooting deaths in London in 2019. In 2014 there were only 4. London homicides are most from knife crime: knives can’t really be banned.

Galeti Tavas
Galeti Tavas
2 years ago
Reply to  Peter LR

Peter, just wait – it is Coming! You will find the crime grows exponentionally with the EU shifting culture, OR, and this more likely, the combination of digital currency tracking every single penny, and facial recognition and GPS data makes it a Distopia of epic porportions where freedom is gone and you are basically ‘Pets’ of the elites, fed, kept healthy and crime free, given your drugs, TV, AI, VR, and welcome to the Matrix.

Annette Kralendijk
Annette Kralendijk
2 years ago
Reply to  Peter LR

Yes,London is a violent city, that was my point. According to the BBC 2020 was the sixth year in a row where violent deaths topped 100.

Last edited 2 years ago by Annette Kralendijk
Judy Johnson
Judy Johnson
2 years ago
Reply to  Peter LR

also the number of people one person kill with a knife in, say, 60 seconds, is much fewer than with a gun.

Jim Jones
Jim Jones
2 years ago

Well you completely ignored his point about suicide though, which accounts for almost two thirds of American deaths by gun. This problem doesn’t exist anywhere in the UK and in the US I’m not sure if it’s limited to Democrat run cities.

Last edited 2 years ago by Jim Jones
Alex Lekas
Alex Lekas
2 years ago
Reply to  Jim Jones

Suicide is fairly common in Japan, unlike guns. Maybe it’s not the object.

Jim Jones
Jim Jones
2 years ago
Reply to  Alex Lekas

It’s not the object but it’s much easier to commit suicide if you have a gun compared to not having one. That’s undeniable and statistics in the US reflect that.

Annette Kralendijk
Annette Kralendijk
2 years ago
Reply to  Jim Jones

Japan has almost no private gun ownership and yet has a very high suicide rate. So it’s not the gun.

Jim Jones
Jim Jones
2 years ago

I agreed it’s not the object so I don’t know why you felt the need to make that terrible point. You ignored the other point that I made again, did you even read it?

Annette Kralendijk
Annette Kralendijk
2 years ago
Reply to  Jim Jones

Suicide doesn’t exist in the UK?

Jim Jones
MJ
Jim Jones
2 years ago

Can’t you just go and comment on some American site

Annette Kralendijk
Annette Kralendijk
2 years ago
Reply to  Jim Jones

Sure. And I do.

Judy Johnson
Judy Johnson
2 years ago

You are deliverately misunderstanding him or you have been drinking!

J Hop
J Hop
2 years ago
Reply to  Peter LR

Most Americans aren’t affected by gun crime. I live in South Carolina in a nice lake community that is heavily armed and there hasn’t been a shooting in a decade. That one ten years ago was a domestic. A woman walked in on her husband sleeping with the neighbor and shot him. So I guess it’s more correct to say my neighborhood is safe providing you don’t have an affair. My husband lived in London and then Marlow in his 20’s and experienced the same level of gun crime, none, that he does here in the States. The only difference is that here the neighbors are all armed. It’s not the guns it’s the culture.
Regarding suicides you are sadly correct. It’s much easier to act on impulse and successfully kill yourself when you own a firearm.

Last edited 2 years ago by J Hop
Jon Redman
HJ
Jon Redman
2 years ago
Reply to  Peter LR

our police don’t carry guns on patrol.

and are largely ineffective. They don’t really prevent or solve crime, they mostly just add up statistics on it.

Jim Jones
Jim Jones
2 years ago
Reply to  Jon Redman

How does the police carrying guns prevent crime? The only way this could be possible, is if you had such a large armed police presence that potential criminals were deterred from committing crimes. It’s uncertain if it would even work, it certainly is not desirable if you want to live in free society.

Galeti Tavas
Galeti Tavas
2 years ago
Reply to  Peter LR

I am from London, 40 years in USA, and NO UK is NOT a Utopia! It is dreary, the people are rightly more afraid of crime than Americans outside of the crime neighborhoods (it is safer in 90% of USA than it is in UK). Every thing you do is regulated, there is no freedom except to do the dreary thing –

UK is great to visit, but I would hate to live there. I am there a lot and after 3 weeks I am ready to leave, the entire society is claustrophobic, it is like living in a series of stacked rat cages.

Jake Jackson
Jake Jackson
2 years ago
Reply to  Galeti Tavas

Very interesting comment. I’ve enjoyed my dozen or so visits to the UK, especially when we get out of London, a city with all four cheeks sucked in. I wouldn’t want to live in the UK either, but would honestly say that this is because, in my extensive travels both internally and internationally, I find the U.S., or at least my corner of it, and lots of the rest, to be paradise.

Yes, the vast majority of this country is very safe. Stay away from the central cities, and the Mexican border, and there’ll be no problems. The very safest areas happen to be the same areas where legal gun ownership is most common. Imagine that.

I know, I know. I just called the U.S. “paradise,” as if there’s nothing wrong anywhere. That’s not even remotely the case, but I come by my view honestly and through experience. Europe and Asia are great places to travel, but I do like coming home.

Last edited 2 years ago by Jake Jackson
Hardee Hodges
HH
Hardee Hodges
2 years ago
Reply to  Peter LR

And in the UK there are areas that unarmed police simply won’t enter.

Steve Craddock
Steve Craddock
2 years ago

I think there is a common problem across many western countries in that the laws created by their elected governments require some basic level of enforcement.
However, certain contrarian, and i think incompetent, local leaders have realised they have the autonomous influence to decide which laws to enforce. This is done under the guise of community priorities or other such nonsense.
For a politician this a perfect scenario, they create the crisis that they can spend 4 years or more grabbing headlines about. While quietly behind the scenes their snouts are firmly in the trough of public spending and their true loyalties to corporate entities, and not the people they have sworn to serve, remains quietly hidden.
I think the governments should be forced into a moratorium on new laws until the ones we already have are being enforced.

Galeti Tavas
Galeti Tavas
2 years ago
Reply to  Steve Craddock

The Left is out to Destroy the West, it has been their goal since Marx became a thing with the Wiemar Intellectuals. ‘Frankfurt School’ and all that.

Fraser Bailey
FB
Fraser Bailey
2 years ago
Reply to  Steve Craddock

Exactly. Chicago (or Illinois) has pretty much the strictest gun laws in the US. But those laws are not enforced because the politicians don’t want to upset certain communities. The inevitable result is hundreds of corpses every year.

Jake Jackson
Jake Jackson
2 years ago
Reply to  Fraser Bailey

IL’s gun laws aren’t as strict as you think. Too strict IMO, but most of New England, some of the mid-Atlantic, California, and Hawaii are far more restrictive.

Alex Lekas
AL
Alex Lekas
2 years ago

The truth is that once suicides are stripped out along with inner city gang warfare, this is far less of an issue than people like to pretend it is. Millions legally own guns. If the problem was metal objects springing to life and harming people, you’d know it.
whatever it is that’s causing Americans to kill each other at a nearly 20% greater rate than they were at this time in 2020 will continue to cost lives. What? There is no whatever. There has been the rioting that followed the Floyd incident which led to dozens of murders, and there have been dozens more in the wake of the “defund” movement. The vast majority of the victims are black, as is the vast majority of assailants. This has mostly served to expose BLM as a farce that was built on a lie.
Black people account for 25% of the cases in which cops kill civilians. UNARMED blacks, of unarmed people of any color, is a far smaller raw number. And in case someone is thinking of “well, but blacks are only 13% of the population,” keep in mind they also commit half the homicides, usually against other black folks.

Jake Jackson
Jake Jackson
2 years ago
Reply to  Alex Lekas

As of 2018 (the latest year for which I have the complete data from the Centers for Disease Control, which records deaths from all causes), for every non-Hispanic white male murdered with a gun, 15 non-Hispanic black men were murdered with a gun. According to the FBI, which compiles the data from around the country, 89% of all murders are committed within racial groups. The conclusion should be obvious.

Walter Lantz
Walter Lantz
2 years ago

Canada’s large metropolitan areas are now seeing a rise in gun crime similar to US cities. It’s almost always related to ethnic gang violence. Illegal unregistered guns are easily smuggled in from the US when two countries share the world’s longest undefended border.
Of course there’s much gnashing of teeth and faux outrage from the usual suspects but the only solution they can think of is a ban on legal ownership of hand-guns which already happens to be severely restricted.
If politicians and community leaders haven’t got the intestinal fortitude to call out the criminal element then I’d rather they just say nothing instead of virtue posing nonsense laws that only affect people that were law-abiding in the first place.
As long as being branded with the Scarlet R is considered to be the one unredeemable sin a politician can commit, worse than any other financial or policy fail, there’ll never be progress on this issue.

regnad.kcin.fst
regnad.kcin.fst
2 years ago

I’m a USA citizen. I used to be on the left, but am now right-of-center.
Here is a truth: The USA DOES NOT HAVE a gun problem.
Here is a truth: Many persons in the USA have ANGER PROBLEMS.
In the last few years, most massacres have occurred with legally purchased guns. In many cases, the guns were purchased a long period before the shooting.
What we do see is 1) young men (mostly) who 2) were humiliated and 3) use the weapon to “get back” from the humiliation.
Take the shooting in San Jose. The shooter was a guy who hated his job. He probably had been humiliated there. In the USA, blue collar culture often includes a “roasting” or “toasting” element, in which routine kidding is used to establish camaraderie. Of course, if you don’t get the joke, having some guy tell you something on the toasting side can be taken wrong. I think the killer in SJ took stuff wrong.
I see killers as those in the Culture of Honor. In this Culture, if you are humiliated, you recover your honor by a duel or other feat of arms. I see much of the killers in that way.
As the article notes, a large proportion of the killings involve young BLACK men in the Inner City Culture of Honor.

Alex Lekas
Alex Lekas
2 years ago

What we do see is 1) young men (mostly) who 2) were humiliated and 3) use the weapon to “get back” from the humiliation. I’m also in the US and there are too few people who are unwilling to call out what you posted for what it is – a culture problem. When homicide is seen as a reasonable response to one’s embarrassment, there is no law that can stop that.
A man of gun crimes committed screams the truth, but people don’t want to hear it. I’d suggest that simply ending the drug war would have the single biggest impact of any move, but govt won’t do that. There’s too much money and power involved, and if some inner city children get caught in the crossfire, they are the eggs in the proverbial omelet.

Jake Jackson
Jake Jackson
2 years ago
Reply to  Alex Lekas

What does “ending the drug war” mean? Please be specific.

Neil John
Neil John
2 years ago

Some suspect the recent shooting in London of a loud and obnoxious BLM activist (a video of her getting in a black mans face freely offering violence can be found on YT) was possibly due to her disrespecting one of more of the gang who shot her. “As the article notes, a large proportion of the killings involve young BLACK men in the Inner City Culture of Honor.” also rings true in the UK, usually with knives and machete’s, but also with illegal firearms.

hargreaves0105
hargreaves0105
2 years ago

I’m surprised by your statement that background checks are a good idea; Federal law already requires a dealer to perform a background check when transferring a firearm.
When laws are proposed which target criminals, I’ll listen. Until then, it’s all politics.

regnad.kcin.fst
regnad.kcin.fst
2 years ago
Reply to  hargreaves0105

Most guns used in mass shootings are purchased legally originally. Some are re-sold illegally. But the notion that we can stop mass shootings by controlling gun access is simply idiotic.
The issue is anger cont