With the horrific events that took place at the University of California, Santa Barbara, national attention is turning yet again to the plague that is gun violence in America.
In the week before the UCSB shooting, at least 80 Americans were murdered throughout the country. These, however, did not make national headlines. Instead, the stories remained local.
Whether it is a fatigue from hearing of incident after incident, or just an unwillingness to cover a story that does not capture worldwide attention, the media simply does not put the same amount of attention of the massive amount of deaths that take place every day.
[box type=”shadow”]”There’s a grim calculus in the heads of journalists about what makes a shooting newsworthy,” said Mark Glaze, executive director of the Bloomberg-backed Everytown for Gun Safety. “The total number killed and injured tends to be variable one. The role of young people as perpetrators or victims is a close number two.” Glaze argued that press coverage was actually becoming more comprehensive, with reporters “actually paying more attention to the 33 daily gun murders in America than they did five or 10 years ago.”[/box]
Despite the media not covering every gun death, which would be nearly impossible, the FBI and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) have kept track.
[box type=”shadow”]But instances such as the one at UC Santa Barbara are rare in respect to gun-related homicides. In fact, FBI data shows that there were 900 people who died in mass shootings from 2006 through 2012. By contrast, firearms were used in 11,078 homicides in 2010 alone, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.[/box]
The Huffington Post compiled a list of local stories, that they were able to find, of gun deaths in the week prior to Roger’s rampage. For a complete list, click here.
It is easy to lose faith in passing sensible gun laws. Despite 90% of Americans of all political parties supporting reform, Republicans and the NRA continue to block progress. However, the more attention that is drawn on the issue, and the more people that speak up, the higher the chance that Washington will get the message.
The reason things did not change after the Newtown massacre is because Democrats sat home in 2010. We have the power to change things in 2016, but we must vote. Nobody is advocating to take all guns away from every American. However, with 10 Newton’s occurring every single day, sitting back idly is simply not an option.
Richard Martinez, the father of victim Christopher Martinez, rallies a crowd of 20,000 behind his, “Not one more,” campaign.
h/t Huffington Post.