Currently listening to “Why Kids Kill, inside the minds of school shooters” by Peter Langman. Here’s an interesting quote that, once I heard it, was completely obvious, but it’s very different than the way this is usually presented. This might be a useful reference for anyone in conversation with friends or family about the impact of the availability of guns and the gun culture on the incidence of school shootings.
“…we need to go beyond the soundbite to get a more nuanced look at the factors that are often cited as contributing to school shootings. … Some of the explanations that have been offered are based on faulty information … For example, an oft-cited example in school shootings is the availability of guns, or what is sometimes referred to as the American Gun Culture. Numerous writers have looked at the geography of where school shootings have occurred and attempted to connect the extent of gun ownership, or the attitudes towards gun control in a region, and the occurrence of school shootings. … The availability of guns, however, does not explain school shootings. In fact, when shootings occur in areas where gun ownership is common, the misuse of firearms should be seen as particularly unusual. If every teenager owns or has easy access to guns and virtually none of them commits murder, school shooters are clearly aberrations. Their acts cannot be blamed on the culture because the acts themselves are contrary to the prevalent social norm of law-abiding use of firearms.”
If you have an interest in learning about or preventing school shootings (since prevention is the first and best goal of CC) you may find the debunking of several other popular soundbite myths quite eye-opening - myths about cause including “loner” personalities and side-effects of mood-altering medications. It’s hard to fix, or prevent, a thing if you misunderstand the cause. Lots of unexpected information in this book.