The Washington Post fact-checked President Trump’s claim that “98 percent of all mass public shootings” occur in gun-free zones and gave him two Pinocchios on Thursday.
This means the WaPo believes “some factual error may be involved but not necessarily.”
The outlet reported that Trump based his claims on a study by John Lott’s Crime Prevention Research Center and attempted to poke holes in the study by suggesting some of the gun-free zones Lott referenced were not actually gun-free.
For example, the article claimed the White House cannot be considered a gun-free zone because Secret Service agents are armed on the roof. The WaPo’s claim overlooks the fact that citizens cannot enter the White House with a backpack or a knife, much less a gun, and they have to be scanned numerous times before being allowed in the portion of the White House that is open to the public.
The WaPo also takes issue with Lott’s intimation that Fort Hood and the D.C. Navy Yard are gun-free zones, referencing University of Massachusetts’ Louis Klarevas, who countered Lott by asking how “a place can be a gun free zone if guns are present.”
Klaveras missed the fact that U.S. military personnel are mandated to be gun-free while on bases. Lott explained this, saying, “Regular military members are banned from carrying guns at military bases in the United States, making the bases surprisingly soft targets. The only people who can carry guns on domestic bases are military police, so the situation is much the same as at the Pulse nightclub.”
And so the WaPo’s fact-checking continues, intertwined with a strained attempt to undermine the research on which Trump’s statement rests. In so doing, the outlet moves from trying to prove that some of Lott’s gun-free zones are not actually gun free to trying to label domestic violence shootings as mass shootings, thereby opening the door to raising the percentage of incidents that occur in places that are not gun-free.
After much deconstruction, the WaPo gives Trump two Pinocchios.
AWR Hawkins is an award-winning Second Amendment columnist for Breitbart News, the host of the Breitbart podcast Bullets with AWR Hawkins, and the writer/curator of Down Range with AWR Hawkins, a weekly newsletter focused on all things Second Amendment, also for Breitbart News. He is the political analyst for Armed American Radio. Follow him on Twitter: @AWRHawkins. Reach him directly at firstname.lastname@example.org. Sign up to get Down Range at breitbart.com/downrange.