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Wednesday, December 18, 2013

New Research Shows More Background Checks Will Not Decrease Mass Shootings

You can find the story here

A study by researchers James Alan Fox (Lipman Family Professor of Criminology, Law and Public Policy Northeastern University) and Monica J. DeLateur (University of Penn Department of Criminology) analyzed research and statistics to debunk some myths surrounding mass shootings and what they found will not make the gun ban lobby happy.  Among their findings was "enhancing" background checks, as Obama and the gun ban lobby tried to do earlier this year,  would not decrease mass shootings.  Why?
A recent examination of 93 mass shootings from 2009 through September 2013, conducted by Mayors Against Illegal Guns (2013), found no indication that any of the assailants were prohibited by federal law from possessing firearms because of mental illness.

They also noted that armed guards in schools would not reduce mass shootings either:
28% of public schools already employ armed security personal regularly; there is no way for armed guards to sufficiently protect every single one of their students in an event of a mass shooting.

The NRA and others have suggested what is needed is more armed security in our schools.  Fox and DeLateur are right that you can't put enough armed guards in a school to protect every single student.  But, as we found in last week's Colorado school shooting, having an armed guard in the school (in this case an armed Sheriff Deputy) likely reduced the carnage the shooter could have caused.  And, as many in the pro-rights community have argued, allowing teachers and school staff that wish to be armed to do so, would likely have the same effect.

But here is the real take away from Fox and DeLateur's research:
"However … eliminating the risk of mass murder would involve extreme steps that we are unable or unwilling to take—abolishing the Second Amendment, achieving full employment, restoring our sense of community, and rounding up anyone who looks or acts at all suspicious. Mass murder just may be a price we must pay for living in a society where personal freedom is so highly valued."

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