The Truth About Mass Shootings in America and Who Commits Them

Prior to 2013, the standard definition of a mass shooting was when three or more are injured or killed in a single incident within a public place. In January of 2013, less than a month after 20 children and six adults were fatally shot at Sandy Hook elementary school in ConnecticutBarack Obama signed legislation that defines a “mass killing” as three or more people killed in a single incident.

Mother Jones, a news organization that tracks mass shooting incidents, conveniently excludes shootings that are a result of gang activity from their tracker. They stopped updating their database early in 2020 when four of the last seven mass shooters turned out to be Black Americans.

But even when these shootings are not included in databases such as the one Mother Jones created, we still find that White males are not overrepresented compared to their population percentage of the United States, 62%.

Other databases recognize the same instances one the Mother Jones database, but diverge when it comes to gang shootings and other single incident gunshot injuries.

The Gun Violence archive database uses the standard definition of three or more injured or killed, and includes these types of shootings. Approximately 90% of total mass shootings where 3 or more are injured or killed are committed by Black males, and overwhelmingly victimize other Black males.

Using the source links from the Gun Violence Archive, Mass Shooting Info breaks down the demographic characteristics of most of those mass shootings by region, state, city, race, and gender of the perpetrators.

In Chicago, there is an epidemic of gang members committing mass shootings at the funerals of their rival gang members, attempting to kill as many family members of their rivals as possible.

Memory-holed from the media are shootings like the one in Chicago’s Greater Grand Crossing neighborhood, where 15 people were shot and multiple dead in a single shooting incident.

Just a few days later, a 21 year-old man walked into a Dallas night club and shot 8 people killing 1.  Only local media outlets covered this story, and this story doesn’t make it onto most databases of mass shootings.

Another shooting at a Pennsylvania bowling Alley around the same time period where 5 people were shot leaving one dead, was also brushed under the rug by the media once the perpetrator was identified.

Just a couple of weeks before the Pennsylvania bowling alley shooting, a 27 year-old man walked into a gun shop in the suburbs of Louisiana and shot 5 killing 3 after employees told the man that loaded guns were not allowed in the store.

Following a mas shooting in Austin Texas in June of 2021, a Texas newspaper said that it was refusing to publish the description that local law enforcement gave of a man suspected of shooting 13 people, because it “could be harmful in perpetuating racial stereotypes.”

The Austin American-Statesman reported that law enforcement had “zeroed in on two suspects” believed to have been involved in the shooting.

At the bottom of the Austin American-Statesman’s report, the newspaper explained that it was not going to give the description that law enforcement provided of one of the suspects.

Mass shooting incidents like this in Chicago, Baltimore, St Louis, and other minority-majority areas of the country are a weekly theme.

According to newly published FBI crime data for 2021, murder rose by almost 30% in 2020 and is still rising in 2021.

Despite some claims that the surge in crime is due to the pandemic, crime rates are increasing only for a few specific categories—namely homicides and shootings—while property crimes and robberies mostly continue to fall. Historically there is no link between short periods of economic disruption and murder rates.

The current surge in homicide is not occurring in most other countries and is only present in certain parts of the United States among certain populations.

The vast majority of economists attribute the crime surge to police demoralization leading to record retirements and transfers.

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