Was There A Lack Of Gun Debate Following Atlanta Shootings?

AP Photo/Brynn Anderson

We’re still reeling from a number of mass shootings in a very short period of time. Boulder seems to have sparked a renewal of the gun debate in the media while Orange, California is barely a blip on the radar.

Yet Atlanta has kind of gotten lost in the shuffle.

Yes, Boulder had a higher death total, but eight people still died in Atlanta. Now, some of the left are upset that the debate didn’t get fired up until after Boulder.

The shootings in Boulder, Colorado, and the Atlanta-area last month that left 18 people dead has reignited the political exchange around gun control.

But that discussion shouldn’t overshadow the stark contrast in the political response to the two attacks or in the news media coverage.

After the shooting in Boulder on March 22, in which an assault rifle was used, President Joe Biden called on Congress to take action to ban them and close background check loopholes. Lawmakers jumped in with official statements and media appearances denouncing gun violence.

The week before, however, after the shootings in the Atlanta area on March 16, where six of the eight victims were Asian women, there were critical discussions on hate crimes, racism and misogyny — and almost none on guns and gun control.

Gun control advocates point out that the racial disparities in the two shootings — all of the Boulder victims were white — likely played a role in the difference in reaction.

“What we’re seeing now is no different from, frankly, what we see every day,” Greg Jackson Jr., national advocacy director of the Community Justice Action Fund said. “When minorities are being impacted by gun violence, it’s purely looked at as a crime challenge, a hate challenge, but not necessarily as the public health crisis that it is and the response that’s required to address this as a crisis and not an individual impact or individual incident.”

Now, the knee-jerk reaction for many is to point out that Boulder had a higher body count and that people tend to react to double-digit fatalities more viscerally. And that is absolutely true.

However, over the years, I’ve come to wonder if these folks aren’t right to some degree.

See, dozens of black kids are killed in Chicago every week, and the media kind of pretends that doesn’t happen, but when 17 mostly white kids are killed at Parkland, the media sits up and takes notice. In Atlanta, the victims were mostly Asian while Boulder were a bunch of white people.

Now, don’t get me wrong. Debating gun control isn’t the right response to any mass shooting, but it’s the narrative that we’re faced with. Besides, if the media and anti-gun zealots are convinced that gun control is the right answer, why are they all seemingly overlooking Atlanta?

It’s funny because this is the same media that tries to frame opposition to gun control as racist somehow.

Maybe it’s just me, but it seems what we have is IMAX-level projection going on here. They only care about victims who are white.

On the flip side, we want every law-abiding citizen who wants a gun to be able to have one and carry it so they don’t become victim, be they white, black, brown, pink with purple polka-dots, whatever. We want people of every stripe and from every walk of life to be able to have a gun.

We don’t want victims at all.

No wonder they hate us so much.

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Apr 15, 2021 2:30 PM ET