In the immediate aftermath of the shooting, a familiar, shameful charade of exploitation unfolded yet again, seeking to reassert the "gun control" agenda amid both national public opinion and across America's legislative bodies.
Yet the engineered, concerted, deceitful propaganda campaign launched by the corporate media and America's political circles fails to put into perspective the recent shooting and the greater "gun control" debate.
Instead, a mad rush has ensued to exploit anger, sorrow, and fear to once again attempt to snatch from responsible Americans their right to bear arms based on the criminal actions of a single individual.
Drunk Driving Kills 20 Times More Per Year Than Mass Shootings Have in 30 Years
The Washington Post, along with other mainstays of Western propaganda, have repeatedly summed up the history of mass shootings and gun violence in articles following in the wake of violent episodes. Usually, these statistics are presented in a vacuum without reference intentionally to deceive the reader.
In their most recent article, "11 essential facts about guns and mass shootings in the United States," they claim that in the past 30+ years, 574 people have been killed in mass shootings. While in their article they attempt to make this number sound enormous, to put it into perspective, the US Center for Disease Control (CDC) reports that in the year 2013 alone, 10,076 were killed by drunk drivers. That is about 20 times more people killed in a single year due to drunk driving than in the past 30 years due to mass shootings (mass shootings being defined as 3 people or more killed in a single spree).
The Post amid its disingenuous spin, claims:
In this post, adapted from previous versions* that we released after mass killings in the past, we explore America's unique role among advanced countries as a place where support for guns is widespread -- and violence involving firearms is equally widespread. There are some perhaps surprising findings -- gun ownership in the United States is declining overall, for instance. But despite mass killings -- which have occurred with increasing frequency in recent years -- support for gun rights is still resolute in America.
Essentially, the Washington Post argues throughout its article that gun ownership is increasingly unpopular, the primary cause of higher levels of violence than other industrialized nations, and that mass shootings are a major problem. Yet clearly when placed alongside other senseless causes of death, mass shootings while clearly better at grabbing headlines, are also clearly not our greatest challenge.
Violence in America is Caused by Socioeconomic Factors, Not Guns
America has guns. America is a violent country. Guns cause violence. This is perhaps the most elementarily absurd argument imaginable, yet it is in fact the cornerstone of the gun control agenda. Yet when we examine violence and access to legally acquired weaponry, there is little correlation.
|UN's 2011 Homicide Study - .pdf available here.|
A visit to either country reveals an entirely different culture, education system, infrastructure, and socioeconomic paradigm. This is why despite Japan having a much larger population, even total homicides are lower than the comparatively more violent but less populated United Kingdom - with homicide rates in the UK nearly 3 times higher than those in Japan.
According to the UN's study, which includes the most recent annual data available, Japan, with a population of roughly 130 million, had a mere 506 homicides over the stretch of a single year. Conversely, the UK, with less than half of Japan's population (53 million) had 722 homicides. The rates per 100,000 people for Japan and the UK are 0.4 and 1.2 respectively. The UK, despite being an unarmed population, and having virtually no gun violence, still has 3 times the murder rate than the nation of Japan. Those that are murdered in the UK or Japan, are just as dead as any human being murdered by a gun in the United States. And clearly, this indicates that the presence of guns, or their banning, is not a significant factor driving homicides and violence.
The United States suffers from more poverty, more disparity in income, more blight and stagnation across its economy and education system - particularly in the inner city and the south - than even the UK. This is why the United States is more violent than other industrialized nations, not because of the availability of weapons. And despite the fact that the United States has both more guns and more violence than other industrialized nations, it is still a relatively less violent nation than many others in the developing world, including nations that have far fewer guns per capita.
Gun Control is About Dominating Lives, Not Saving Them
The inconvenient reality regarding the true nature of violence and its relationship with guns is entirely sidestepped by the gun control agenda, primarily because the gun control agenda is about disarming the American public thus removing an obstacle toward totalitarianism, not to preserve innocent lives. This fact is highlighted best by incessant calls to ban semi-automatic rifles termed "assault rifles" by the media.
Yet despite their vilification, "assault rifles" account for the least number of deaths per year due to gun violence. In fact, according to the FBI's own statistics, rifles of any kind (including "assault rifles") account for fewer deaths per year than murders involving bare hands and feet. Clubs also are used more frequently in homicides in the United States than rifles of any kind, including "assault rifles." The obsession with banning the least dangerous of all firearms, but also firearms best suited for defense during civil disorder as well as a check against tyrannical government, exposes the gun control agenda for precisely what it is.
The tragedy in Charleston is a tragedy indeed. Gun violence, along with all other forms of violence and irresponsible behavior are problems society must deal with, but not at the expense of the rights of responsible, free citizens. This includes drunk driving, by far a more pressing issue than mass shootings, yet it too must be solved without infringing on the rights of grown adults who are capable of responsibly consuming alcohol.
Those who take up social crusades by preying on people's emotions and hovering over tragedy like carrion-eating vultures in an attempt to collectively punish the rest of society for the ill will and deeds of a single individual represent a much greater threat to our way of life than any deranged shooter. This is because such people distract our collective attention away from solving the socioeconomic and cultural factors that will continue to drive violence with or without the presence of firearms in society, depriving us of our rights and liberty, all while inviting future tragedies to unfold.
Racists will still devise ways to kill people they deem as "undesirable." To defeat racism, we must deal with it directly, not attempt to deprive it of every possible avenue toward violence.
At the end of the day, killing another human being with a firearm is already quite illegal. To prevent people intent on doing so regardless of the law, we must target the root cause of their homicidal intent. Those who understand this best also so happen to be those who stand the most from exploiting continued violence and using it as a pretext to further diminish the rights and power of the American people. It is up to gun owners to both act as ambassadors for responsible firearm ownership, as well as serve as the vanguards in their local communities against the root causes of violence used as a pretext to strip Americans of their rights.