The shooting at UNLV pales in comparison to the other Las Vegas shooting, one that has gone down as the deadliest mass shooting in modern American history. Still, three people were killed and a campus community was shaken to its core.
That’s bad enough.
Yet it’s no surprise that the anti-gun media is gearing up for their regular push. A mass shooting happened, so it’s evidence that literally everything about our gun laws is just insufficient.
Today, we have it from Vox, which is hardly shocking.
Let’s see what they had to say.
Three people were killed and another injured in a mass shooting at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas on Wednesday.
The shooter, a former college professor in his 60s who reportedly had applied for a job at the university, was killed in a shootout with police. Further details about his motive and the gun used in the attack were not immediately known.
The shooting was one of several hundred mass shootings this year, and it took place not far from the site of the deadliest mass shooting in modern US history, in which 58 people were killed and hundreds others injured at a Las Vegas music festival in 2017.
For the record, it appears he used a Taurus 9mm handgun he legally purchased in 2022. It also seems that he had no history that would have warranted him being disqualified from buying that firearm under pretty much any law being considered pretty much anywhere.
But that’s not going to matter.
No other high-income country has suffered such a high death toll from gun violence. Every day, 120 Americans die at the end of a gun, including suicides and homicides, an average of 43,375 per year. According to the latest available analysis of data from 2015 to 2019,the US gun homicide rate was 26 times that of other high-income countries; its gun suicide rate was nearly 12 times higher. Mass shootings, defined as attacks in which at least four people are injured or killed excluding the shooter, have been on the rise since 2015, peaking at 686 incidents in 2021. There have been 632 mass shootings in the US in 2023 as of early December, including the Las Vegas shooting, and at the current pace, the US is set to eclipse the 2021 record this year.
There are so many problems in this one paragraph.
First, I’m not going to dispute the “gun death” statistic, only point out that most of those are suicides. Removing guns from the equation doesn’t end suicides. Just look at Japan’s suicide rate sometime.
Further, the United States may have a higher rate of gun homicides, but we also have more non-gun homicides as other high-income countries. Oh, that’s their total homicide rate, not just, say, knives.
See, what they did here was simply look at gun statistics. They didn’t look at the overall picture because they can’t get past the idea that guns are the problem. If guns were the issue, then why is our non-gun homicide rate so much higher than other nations total homicide rate? If removing guns impacts suicides, why does Japan have one more than twice what ours is?
Despite that sheer carnage, however, the political debate over how to ensure that guns don’t fall into the hands of people who may hurt themselves and others has long proved intractable. Last year,Congress reached a deal on limited gun reforms for the first time in nearly 30 yearsin the wake of a shooting at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas — the deadliest school shooting since 2012.
But those narrow reforms clearly haven’t stopped America’s gun violence epidemic. The US’s expansive view of civilian gun ownership has been so ingrained in politics, in culture, and in the law since the nation’s founding that there’s no telling how many more people will die before federal lawmakers take further action. In that absence, many red states have loosened their gun laws over the last few years, rather than making it harder to obtain a gun.
“America is unique in that guns have always been present, there is wide civilian ownership, and the government hasn’t claimed more of a monopoly on them,” said David Yamane, a professor at Wake Forest University who studies American gun culture.
So it’s clear where we’re going with this piece.
The author acknowledges we still don’t know that much about the UNLV shooter. What we do know suggests that there aren’t a ton of red flags in his background. He didn’t use an evil “assault weapon” and didn’t have a history of domestic abuse or other kinds of violence that we’re aware of.
So just what would Vox have us do in the wake of UNLV?
Well, who knows?
They go on to talk about Canada banning “assault weapons” after Nova Scotia and how so many states allow constitutional carry–it should be noted, though, that Nevada isn’t one of them–but the truth of the matter is that there’s no reason to believe there are any laws permissible under the Second Amendment that would have prevented UNLV from happening.
None at all.
But that won’t stop them from pushing for more gun control just the same.