Don’t Believe the Hype About Gun Shootings in the US

Since the San Bernardino killings last week, many statements of politicians and stories in the media are painting a picture of “gun violence” in America that, on a closer look, appears to be far from reality.

These are some of the messages we hear in constant rotation: Be afraid of your neighbor who has a few guns and some boxes of ammunition; he must be planning a violent attack. Panic about the mass murders epidemic. Dread the explosion of violent crimes of recent years.

The barrage is deafening. But, should it be believed?

It is true people use guns to kill other people, including in mass murders. But, it is also important to not fall for exaggerated claims related to guns and mass murder.

Below are a few observations on guns and mass murder that should be considered when evaluating the fear-building messages that seem to be favored by many individuals in politics and the media:

  • The Nation writer Jon Wiener reports in a Friday article that the “arsenal” of guns and ammunition Syed Farook and Tashfeen Malik owned is within the norm for millions of Americans. Contrary to what many stories in the media suggest, the fact that people possess such guns and ammunition in no way means they are planning to engage in a mass killing or terrorist act.

Continue reading at the Ron Paul Institute for Peace and Prosperity.

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