After three were wounded and one was killed on October 9 at Northern Arizona University (NAU), Vice magazine ran the headline: “Yet Another Mass Shooting Has Left One Dead and Three Injured at Northern Arizona University.”
The problem is, there wasn’t a mass shooting. Rather, it was a parking lot brawl between rival groups, and at some point during the brawl, 18-year-old Steven Jones allegedly shot and killed another person. The fight was contained to the parking lot, and the school was not even placed on lockdown, yet Vice described it as “just the latest in what seems to be a never-ending series of mass shootings on American soil.”
Vice then turned to Shooting Tracker—the website which counts any shooting where four people are wounded as a mass shooting—and suggested the shooting at NAU makes “the 299th” mass shooting of 2015. Yet it wasn’t a mass shooting.
Vice said, “The shooting comes on the same day that President Barack Obama is scheduled to visit the families of those killed in an October 1 shooting at a community college in Oregon, after which Obama said Americans had become ‘numb’ to this sort of tragedy.” Except that this was not the same kind of “tragedy” as witnessed at Umpqua Community College—this was a fight, not a “mass shooting.”
Vice went on to report that Democrats are responding to mass shootings by trying to “make it more difficult for people” to get guns. They also reported that gun control proponent Gabby Giffords plans to begin a push next week to expand the definition of “domestic violence” so as to bar a whole new demographic from firearm ownership.
Follow AWR Hawkins on Twitter: @AWRHawkins. Reach him directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.