California has the most strict gun control laws in the nation. If gun control were going to stop shootings of any stripe, it would do so in California. After all, the even limit which handguns can be purchased within the state and have a complete assault weapon ban. Surely they’d be immune to the perceived epidemic of mass shootings, right?
Well, not quite.
You see, over the course of just three days, the state had three high-profile shootings. All of them met the definition of a mass shooting the media seems to prefer.
Ten people were killed in three mass shootings in California in just four days, marking a particularly brutal wave of gun violence incidents in the state.
On Thursday morning, a 16-year-old student from Saugus high school in Santa Clarita, 30 miles north of Los Angeles, shot five classmates and then himself. Two of the victims, a 14-year-old boy and a 15-year-old girl, succumbed to their injuries, as did the gunman.
On Saturday morning, a gunman in San Diego killed his estranged wife and three of their children, boys ages three, five and 11. A fourth son, age nine, was on life support over the weekend, and the gunman also died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound.
The following night, four people were shot dead in Fresno, 200 miles north of LA, after a shooter entered a backyard party and fired into the crowd. The victims in the Sunday evening attack were men between the ages of 25 and 35, according to police, who said six others were injured and expected to survive.
Including the gunmen, 12 people died, and at least 10 others were injured in the three tragedies, with countless additional students, families and communities terrorized and traumatized by the attacks.
“The failure to protect our communities, families, and children is a waking nightmare that needs to end,” the former congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords said in a statement Monday. “If we don’t act, generations of Americans will expect gun violence to be a public safety threat that could change their lives no matter where they live.”
The problem with Giffords’s statement, though, is that California has virtually every bit of gun control her group pushes. They have universal background checks and red flag laws. They have assault weapon bans and magazine restrictions. They have all of it.
Yet in three consecutive days, we have three shootings in a state where this isn’t supposed to happen.
If gun control laws are the answer to mass shootings, as the media likes to define them–typically four or more people shot rather than four or more people killed in a single incident–then California should be virtually free of them. It’s not.
As of earlier this month, California had almost twice as many mass shootings since 1982 as gun-friendly Texas. That list was compiled as of November 6. That wouldn’t include any of these most recent shootings, though only the murders in San Diego would likely make that list. After all, they appear to be using a more sane definition than that the media prefers.
Regardless, California, with a third more in population, has almost twice as many mass shootings as a gun-friendly state like Texas.
Gun control doesn’t work. How many more people have to die before lawmakers in the state come to understand that it just doesn’t work. If anything, it prevents people from defending themselves. That should never be the case.
Of course, I don’t expect Giffords to grasp that. She’s too much of an anti-gun jihadist to see the plain facts laid out before her.
That doesn’t mean others have to follow her down that path.