By Ethan Montague
In the wake of yet another school shooting, all of America is fed up.
The media continues to blame shortcomings in gun bans for the attacks, but 94% of mass shooting attacks take place in gun-free zones. The media ignores this data and fails to examine whether the lack of guns attracts these murderers and allows them to prey more easily on vulnerable populations.
Putting facts in perspective raises questions regarding the media’s motivation to play on the public’s fears and push sensationalist headlines. The likelihood of being killed in a school shooting is 10 million to one, yet 60% of the public fears that their child may be killed in a school shooting. Any mass shooting is a tragedy, but is the media reporting matters accurately or relying predominantly on the rhetoric from left-leaning politicians and activists to make headlines, such as this from Axios?
“Time for Congress to put kids over guns’ top Democrat says.”
This same media continues to blame Republicans for defending the Second Amendment, yet has not examined whether bills pushed by current Democrats have escalated the risk of mass shootings.
In 1990, a group of senators, including Joe Biden, introduced the 1994 crime bill containing the “Gun-Free School Zones act” which was then signed into law by Republican President George H.W. Bush. Intended to prevent mass shootings, a plethora of evidence shows it has not. One example, Audrey Hale, the Nashville school shooter, was reportedly dissuaded from a different school upon learning of its increased security.
With almost every mass shooter, it is a gun-carrying law-abiding citizen or member of law enforcement who stops the shooter.
In 2022, the FBI released a report massively undercounting how many armed civilians were able to take down active shooters, reporting 4.4%. However, the Crime Research Prevention Center exposed just how often this happens, 34.4%. With the FBI reporting inaccurately, they are either severely biased or severely incompetent, and it is hard to say which is worse.
I talked to The University of Tampa’s Campus Safety to hear their thoughts on how armed security can prevent threats. Director Kevin Howell felt it clear that gun-free zones attract shooters when presented with the percentage of mass shootings in these areas.
“The 94% alone says it. If you have a gun and people know it, they don’t try anything,” said Howell.
He also noted the rarity of criminals following laws.
“Once you take the guns out of law-abiding citizens’ hands, the only people who have guns are criminals,” he said. “Criminals aren’t following the rulebook, they’re criminals, they do what they please because they don’t care about legal consequences. Why don’t we ban domestic violence too?”
Campus Safety’s Reverend Dr. Samuel Ponce told me that, in the event of a mass shooting on campus, Campus Safety can respond instantly while law enforcement sometimes takes up to 15 minutes just to arrive.
Officer Ponce also pointed out that many security or safety officers have significant experience dealing with threats.
“We prioritize hiring those trained in law enforcement and military, preferably those who have trained in firearms and license to carry,” said Ponce. “They must qualify in testing every year and be up to date with the standards.”
Red-Flag laws are considered a potential solution to the problem as virtually every mass shooter has communicated their intent to carry out a future act online. However, the inability of national police groups like the FBI to successfully use them is mind-blowing.
The Pulse Nightclub shooter was twice investigated by the FBI before killing 49 people. The FBI received two tips about the Parkland School Shooter and police were called to his home 39 times. He then killed 17 people.
There are many similar instances, making trusting the FBI to enforce these laws nationally difficult.
To play Devil’s Advocate, even if banning guns would somehow stop school shootings, it would lead to a much greater degree of violence overall.
In 2020, 45,222 people died from firearms. But, taking a further look at the statistics, the number becomes a bit misleading. Gun suicides were 54%. After taking out unintentional deaths, involving police, or undetermined circumstances, we are left with 19,384 murders with guns. The same year, the CDC released a report that there were firearms used in self-defense anywhere between 60,000 to 2.5 million times.
The report was later taken down due to pressure from gun control activists who falsely accused the study of overcounting. It’s more likely the study undercounted defensive gun uses, since it didn’t include instances not reported to the police.
The massive differences in deaths from firearms vs. preventative use of firearms are not made up by the victims of school shootings, which were 10 deaths that year.
America has at least 465 million firearms, the real number likely being much higher, considering self-made guns or those smuggled in.
It’s unclear just how gun control activists plan to get these off the streets considering they don’t know where most of them are. I personally know a significant number of gun owners who insist they will not give up their guns under any circumstances so the potential for domestic unrest in attempting to take them is considerable.
Time and time again, we have seen regimes use the fear of its nation’s citizens to push unpopular and un-American policies. George H.W. Bush did so with the Patriot Act. Aimed to prevent another 9/11, there is not a single act of terror prevented from that bill, while it is continually used to spy on American citizens. Removing guns at this time would be an even worse bill.
This great nation’s Founding Fathers would be ashamed that our country’s very foundation, the Second Amendment, is being threatened by political and media forces pushing fear instead of solutions upon the American people.
The Second Amendment reads quite clearly, “A well-regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.”
We should not give it up over a media hell-bent on ignoring real solutions to mass shootings simply to push their activist anti-gun agenda.