On September 24, The New York Times cited a study containing gun-related incidents with no fatalities as proof that “mass shootings” are on the rise.
The Associated Press followed suit on September 25, citing the same study and making the same claim.
The problem–the study being cited is an FBI study on “active shooter incidents” (ASI), not “mass shootings” in particular.
According to the study, ASI’s increased during the time period of 2000 to 2013. However, the same study says fewer than half of the incidents fit the “federal definition of ‘mass killing.” In order to reach the level of “mass killing,” three people or more must be killed.
To put it another way, 60 percent of the ASI’s in the study resulted in two deaths or less.
This is not to say that the loss of two lives is acceptable or that the loss of one is okay. But it is to say that the FBI study was not a look at “mass shootings” but incidents where a shooter attempted to harm others in various settings.
There were no fatalities in over thirty of the ASI’s contained in the study.
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