So obviously we've seen some horrifying mass shootings lately, like the one in El Paso and the one in Dayton. And of course, there is an ever-growing hysteria over "white supremacist terrorism." And of course, this is a problem as the El Paso shooter was clearly a white nationalist.. But looking at the Mother Jones Database of mass shootings (counted by those with at least three fatalities that were not for criminal reasons), there have only been two from my count in the United States since Trump was elected; El Paso and Pittsburgh. That amounts to 34 deaths. 34 too many for sure, but we do need some perspective here.
It should also be remembered that the Dayton shooter was an Antifa-supporting leftwing terrorist. (Which would not be the first of his kind.)
Indeed, going off the Mothers Jones database, there have been 114 mass shootings from 1982 to 2019 with 934 fatalities, or about 25 a year. This number has been ticking up, but that still only amounts to about one sixth the number of Americans who die each year from peanuts.
OurWorldInData.org has a great chart that illustrates the difference in media coverage and actual risk from various causes of death. I should note that "mass shootings" doesn't even make the list while "homicide" can barely be seen.
And as far as the "white men do mass shootings" meme goes, that is just false and based on what appears the be stupefying inability to know what "per capita" means.
From first appearances, it would seem whites are overrepresented in mass shootings in the United States. Here is Statista.com's breakdown of Mother Jones' database:
But again, what does "per capita" mean?
If we drop the four mass shootings where the race is unknown, 64 of the 110 shootings have been by whites. 64 divided by 110 equals 58.2 percent. According to the Census Bureau, non-Hispanic whites make up 60.7 percent of the population. So whites are slightly under-represented. (And even more so since the country was more white back in 1982 when the database started.)
Finally, if you just count all mass shootings (counted as three or more injuries for any reason), whites made up only 29 percent of the 72 mass shootings so far in 2019. So yeah, white men do not do all mass shootings or even close.
But regardless, while mass shootings are a definite problem that we need to work on solutions for, please calm down everyone.
"Every day is a new life to the wise man."
The Righteous Mind
Star Slate Codex
Consulting by RPM