Top Criminologist: “No Evidence of an Epidemic of Mass Shootings”

   08.15.19

Top Criminologist: “No Evidence of an Epidemic of Mass Shootings”

In a recent post on Reason.com, leading criminologist James Alan Fox assures us there is no evidence of an epidemic of mass shootings. Rather, media coverage of such things — always with an anti-gun slant — sensationalize them and sow fear among those who pay attention to such broadcasts. And sadly, that seems to include most Americans.

Fox is a criminologist at Northeastern University, and is called “the leading researcher on [mass shooting crimes] for the past 35 years.” In the podcast embedded in the post, he says the facts point in the opposite direction, saying gun crime is actually way down.

The number of incidents and casualties are simply too small to make such claims and, he stresses, the media coverage of shootings often ends up creating a false sense that gun violence — which is at or near historic lows — is ubiquitous and growing.

In a wide-ranging interview with Nick Gillespie, Fox explains the common characteristics of mass killers, why violent crime involving guns has declined over the past several decades, and how cable TV and social media contribute to a false sense of panic.

In the podcast, he explains the difference between a “mass killing” and a “mass shooting,” and says the terms are used poorly by reporters in order to stir up public fear immediately following any sensational crime of this nature. Bad and misleading data is also used to create graphs and other scary-looking things, because they include smaller crimes as well as private crimes involving family matters and gang-related and/or drug-related violence.

It’s well worth a listen, and I recommend you visit Reason.com to do so.

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Editor & Contributing Writer Russ Chastain is a lifelong hunter and shooter who has spent his life learning about hunting, shooting, guns, ammunition, gunsmithing, reloading, and bullet casting. He started toting his own gun in the woods at age nine and he's pursued deer with rifles since 1982, so his hunting knowledge has been growing for more than three and a half decades. His desire and ability to share this knowledge with others has also grown, and Russ has been professionally writing and editing original hunting & shooting content since 1998. Russ Chastain has a passion for sharing accurate, honest, interesting hunting & shooting knowledge and stories with people of all skill levels.

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