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Old 06-12-2019, 11:11 AM
SenorBeef is offline
Charter Member
Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Las Vegas, NV
Posts: 28,273
I already gave one, Canada. Canada is #7 on the gun ownership per capita ratio worldwide and has basically no mass shootings. When they occasionally have something resembling one, their news media reports the incident but often refuses to even name the shooters, let alone give their whole story and a month of media focus. Finland is another. Iceland. Austria. Norway. Switzerland. New Zealand. All of them in the top 20 civilian gun ownership per capita countries, all with significant amounts of guns.

"But Canada has hunting rifles and shotguns, not assault weapons!", right? When you're shooting up a crowd the gun is nearly irrelevant. I'm a gun guy. I've shot all sorts of guns. I've shot all sorts of "machine guns", "assault weapons", the whole gamut. Most guns made in the last, oh, 80 years or so barely make a difference in the effectiveness of shooting up random people in a crowded area. Non-gun people really don't understand how it works and have some severe misconceptions about how much certain guns are disproportionately powerful. Virginia Tech, which IIRC is the most deadly mass shooting we've had, used regular old handguns. Very likely that if someone was shooting up a school or a movie theater or whatever, a 12 gauge shotgun like your grandpa has would likely be the most lethal weapon.

There's one exception to this - the Vegas shooter - in that case the choice of weapons was integral to his tactics - but for the rest it really wouldn't have mattered.

The reason that the shooters choose "assault weapons", or scary looking weapons, over more conventional weapons is the same reason Dylan and Klebold wore trench coats. They wanted to look cool. They had a certain idea of how their crime should look and be remembered and that usually means using weapons that seem disproportionately scary to an ignorant public. They know it will increase the outrage and their infamy.

And so when in reaction to a mass shooting, we spend 2 months of media time examining the shooter from every angle, and screaming about how we need to ban these dangerous assault weapons, it misses the point entirely. In fact it does the exact opposite of what you nominally intend - it focuses all the attention on a nearly irrelevant detail of the shooting while giving the shooter (and the future shooters that follow) almost everything they crave.

Last edited by SenorBeef; 06-12-2019 at 11:15 AM.