When John Lott delved into the data themselves, they could only look at about a third of the time period but found 15 times as many shooters as Lankford did. It seems that Lankford’s study was seriously undercounting mass shootings. If one were to assume that the same multiples were found in the two-thirds Lott and company were unable to examine, that’s a whole lot of shootings Lankford never bothered with.
Of the 86 countries where we have identified mass public shootings, the US ranks 56th per capita in its rate of attacks and 61st in mass public shooting murder rate. Norway, Finland, Switzerland and Russia all have at least 45 percent higher rates of murder from mass public shootings than the United States.
When Lankford’s data is revised, the relationship between gun ownership rates and mass public shooters disappears.
How could that be? One possibility is that guns don’t just enable mass shooters; gun owners can also deter and prevent such shootings. Another is that culture — not gun ownership — is a bigger factor in shootings.
Frankly, I think both possibilities are correct, but that’s just me.
It’s unlikely that this study will get a whole lot of play. It goes against the anti-gun narrative to such a profound degree that it’s guaranteed to cause some serious cognitive dissonance. Anti-gunners will reject it outright, not because of bad methodology or anything, but simply because they don’t like the outcome. They prefer the poorer study that confirms their beliefs. Confirmation bias to an extreme.
Yes, the media will mute this. Their job is to investigate, and inform, but they would rather spin like tops