Tragedy at Robb Elementary School in Texas
A mass shooting at Robb Elementary School in Texas left nineteen children between the ages of seven and 10 and two adults dead. This school shooting comes just ten days after 10 people were killed in a mass shooting in Buffalo, New York. (Mass Shootings)
History of Mass Shootings
I saw a post yesterday on a social media platform indicating that in the United Kingdom there have been no mass shootings since guns were outlawed around 1996. In 1996, Thomas Hamilton killed 16 children and a teacher in Dunblane, England.
That’s actually not true. There were the Massereene Barracks shooting in 2009, the Cumbria shootings in 2010, the Northumbria shootings in 2010, the Moss Side shooting in 2018, the Plymouth shooting in 2021.
So, after I saw this claim about the UK having no mass shootings after the gun ban and I found some, I thought the next step would be to find out what the situation had been before 1996. That information has been much more difficult to find. So far, one I’ve discovered happened in 1987, in Hungerford, England. Sixteen deaths. The only other one I could find that is not a murder/suicide situation was the Monkseaton shootings where one person was killed and 14 injured on April 30th 1989.
One other, The Whitehouse Farm murders. Five deaths. August 1985
There are numerous other shootings in the UK which are, from what I could find, all connected to fighting between the Irish and the Irish and the Irish and the British. War and gang type shootings.
So, my conclusion here, based on my initial research is that the gun confiscation in the UK made very little difference to the situation of mass shootings. No significant change in number of these types of shootings and deaths from before the gun ban and afterwards.
A similar situation happened in Australia. There was a violent mass shooting there in 1996. Port Arthur: 35 dead, 23 wounded. Truly, a horrific tragedy. Several years ago a couple of things made me research “the before and after” again. A claim was made by the Prime Minister of Australia about 10 years ago(?) that there had been zero mass shootings since the gun ban after the 1996 massacre. Again, false information. Surprise, surprise -- a politician lied.
There have been numerous mass shootings since. None nearly as massive as Port Arthur but deadly just the same. And another mass killing in Australia about 15 years ago happened with a knife!
Again, I checked for mass shootings before 1996 in Australia and found some. But there was no dramatic change, no significant difference before the gun ban and after. Still lots of shootings. The claim that mass shootings were solved by the banning of guns in Australia is a bit of a stretch.
One other point on this is a comedian I saw some years back, around 2017, comparing the United States to Australia. The reduction of gun murders in Australia had gone down apparently by 50% since 1996. About 30 years after the fact of the massacre this comedian is in the USA asking why Americans would not want the same reduction in gun murders as Australia. Good question!
I decided to see what the comparative data was for the gun murders in the USA. For the same period of time.
Per USA government statistics, the gun murders had gone down, in the same period of time by 49%. With no gun ban.
Gun Violence and Gangs
Another interesting statistic is the fact that gun violence is gang related:
“Black males had the highest firearm homicide rate … Black boys and youths aged 0-19 were over 14 times more likely to be killed by firearm homicide than White (non-Latino) boys and youths, while Black men aged 20-34 were nearly 17 times more likely to be killed by firearm homicide than their White (non-Latino) counterparts.”
And put this data together with:
“According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), gang homicides accounted for roughly 8,900 of 11,100 gun murders in both 2010 and 2011.”
“…That means that there were just 2,200 non gang-related firearm murders in both years in a country of over 300 million people and 250 million guns.”
Guns Or Drugs?
Interesting point is that confiscating guns hasn’t reduced knife fatalities in UK schools. There has been an ever-increasing number of school stabbings in the UK, of which there was a record number just last year (30 teenage homicides). An August 3, 2021 report says:
"In March 2019, knife crime in the UK reached a decade high; and tragically many victims where under 18. In 2019, 45,632 young people aged 10-17 were sentenced for carrying a knife or offensive weapon in England and Wales, with over 1000 of these weapons found on school property. Everything from machetes, hunting knives, samurai swords and even a modified highlighter pen were seized by police on school grounds, with the youngest offender just 4 years old.
Since 2015, assaults taking place in public sector schools have increased by 72%, with physical violence not only being committed against fellow pupils but also teachers. Recent data suggests that nearly one in four teachers have been physically attacked by pupils, with as many as two thirds of teachers considering leaving the profession because of verbal abuse and threats of violence from students. A staggering 18% of teachers report being threatened with a weapon by pupils, with 3% claiming a weapon was brought into school in order to follow through on the threat."
Knife Crime in the UK
Knives instead of guns. Hmmm.
So, this begs the question, is it the drugs and not the specific weapon? Prescription medications? Anti-depressants? Anti-anxiety pills? Street drugs?
There is little doubt that there is a huge connection between gun crime and other types of crime in general and drugs, particularly with inner city gangs.
When talking about outrages such as mass shootings, there is a lot of emotion attached to the subject, particularly when they involve children. Many of the school shootings are committed by young people, many if not all of whom were on prescription medications. These individuals were given mind altering(anti-depressants, anti-anxiety, etc.) medications/drugs that have the stated side effects of ‘suicidal ideation’ and ‘depression’. Side effects are all listed right in the DSM VI*. These side effects can also be found with a simple search online.
Almost one for one, discussions come up of the young people that are doing the shootings as having mental issues and being on one sort of prescribed medication or other. And sometimes having come off them recently, which is worse.
This information is not always easy to find, partially due to privacy medical rules. But it is an important factor considering the potential nasty side effects of these prescriptions.
So, with many fingers pointing at guns as the source of all the violence, no studies get done. It seems that either, those in power don’t want to know or they are just swept up in the mass emotion of these incidents.
What happens if these types of shootings are compared also to mass killings with a knife or someone driving a car into a school playground. Are these people also on some mind altering prescription medication with the side effects of suicide ideation and violent behaviour?
Or do the powers that be just want to go along with the masses and ban guns and hope for the best? That solution hasn’t worked places like Chicago. They have the highest murder rate in the USA and some of the strictest gun laws. Funny thing is that the murders there are again perpetrated by criminals, not law-abiding citizens.
As hard as it is, we have to objectively ask the right questions, taking the emotion out of the equation.
And just remember how much money is behind the marketing of these prescription medications/drugs and also illegal drugs. And the profits!