Barack Obama correctly claimed yesterday that mass killings such as at Umpqua Community College in Roseburg, Ore., have become “routine,” as have his reactions. He also acknowledged that some will accuse him of politicizing the murders.
However, Obama’s claims about gun violence, including the “facts” he cited to support his call for “common sense” legislation to curb future mass killings, are false. For example, he claimed that “polls” show that “the majority of Americans understand we should be changing these [gun] laws.” Yet, the results of a Gallup survey probing the nation’s response to the stringency of gun laws over a span of two decades tells a different story.
While it is true that the percentage of people who favor stricter gun laws is greater than the percentage of those who favor the status quo or less stringent laws, the trend lines reveal that public opinion has gradually shifted toward a preference for less government intervention.
Obama also remarked, “We know that states with the most gun laws tend to have the fewest gun deaths.”
But Oregon, the state where the murders occurred, just recently strengthened its gun laws.
And– Umpqua Community College, according to its student code of conduct— is a gun-free zone. It states:
Finally, Obama mentioned something last night, which was quite similar to remarks he gave in June after the Charleston, South Carolina shooting. He said:
“Let’s be clear: At some point, we as a country will have to reckon with the fact that this type of mass violence does not happen in other advanced countries. It doesn’t happen in other places with this kind of frequency.”
Yet, data compiled by the now-defunct website RampageShooting.com compared mass shootings in the U.S. to eleven other developed nations, which also evidences the opposite of his remarks. RampageShooting.com’s data reveals that mass shootings occur 21 times more frequently in Norway and two and a half times more often in Finland than they do in America.
In fact, there are five countries that have a higher rate of rampage killings than the U.S.
The facts about gun violence speak for themselves. Sadly, they are absent from Obama’s remarks.
Howard Portnoy is the Editor of LibertyUnyielding. He has written for HotAir, NewsBusters, Weasel Zippers, Conservative Firing Line, RedCounty, and New York’s Daily News. He has one published novel, Hot Rain, (G. P. Putnam’s Sons), and has been a guest on Radio Vice Online with Jim Vicevich, The Alana Burke Show, Smart Life with Dr. Gina, and The George Espenlaub Show.