How The Media Frames Inconvenient Shootings

If 13 people are shot, would that constitute a mass shooting?

Now, if you use the definition I generally do–a shooting where four or more people are shot and killed in a single incident–then probably not. At least, not if no one died.

As Cam reported yesterday, a shooting that left 13 people injured took place over the weekend in Chicago, one of the most dangerous cities in the nation. In his post, Cam noted that the “gun violence victim” was really a 22-year-old man who attempted a carjacking and got shot for his troubles. Hardly the poster boy for good behavior.

However, that wasn’t the only media failure.

There was a mass shooting that took place in Chicago, Illinois, over the weekend that left at least 13 people injured but networks like CNN, which often break into regularly scheduled programming to cover mass shootings wall-to-wall, appeared to cover the Chicago incident only as an element of regular news.

Technically speaking, there is no definitive definition for a “mass shooting” — a fact often repeated by critics of gun control organizations, who often artificially inflate the number of mass shootings and school shootings by including multiple victim incidents and shootings that take place within a certain distance of school grounds.

The group “The Gun Violence Archive,” which purports to keep track of mass shootings as a way of pressing for more stringent gun control laws, defines “mass shooting” “as when four or more victims are shot or killed – not including the shooter,” according to Yahoo News — a definition which allows the group to make outrageous claims, like that there were more than 250 mass shootings in the first six months of 2019.

Oddly enough, the Chicago incident would qualify under many groups’ definition of mass shooting, but isn’t prompting the same kind of coverage as shootings with fewer victims, perhaps because Chicago has strict gun control laws that prohibit most individuals from owning guns, outlaw the sale of guns within the city limits, and allows for the confiscation of weapons obtained and owned illegally.

No, they didn’t offer it that kind of coverage. Then again, why would they? As writer Emily Zanotti notes, Chicago has some of the most strict gun control laws in the nation governing it. For 13 people to be shot would illustrate a complete failure of gun control laws and that’s something the mainstream media simply can’t abide.

Instead, they frame the deceased as a victim of gun violence when he was shot in self-defense, then ignore the fact that a shooting took place that conforms to their preferred definition of mass shooting so they don’t have to discuss how all those gun control laws failed completely.

Convenient, to say the least.

This is why so many pro-gun folks simply can’t take the mainstream media seriously. They routinely push an anti-gun narrative, then try to gloss over news that’s detrimental to that cause, all while still claiming to be unbiased and simply reporting “facts” when they’re nothing of the sort. They’re biased actors trying to replace journalism with activism.

Look, I know I’m biased. I write someplace where everyone knows my bias. They can see it plain as day so they at least know where I’m coming from. They can look at my biases and take those into account when reading my posts.

Yet CNN and other news agencies are still pretending to be neutral observers and reporters. If this doesn’t illustrate just how full of it they are, though, nothing will.