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12/20/2013 10:27:33 AM
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New Research Published on Mass Shootings

http://hsx.sagepub.com/content/early/2013/11/27/1088767913510297.full.pdf Lots of ammunition here (excuse the pun) for all sides. Highly encourage you to read the paper (it's not that long). Here's the dot-point version where I've highlighted the more contentious issues in bold: - Mass murderers very rarely just snap and start killing people. They plan for days, weeks or months. Random attacks are the rarest form of mass murder. - Witnesses to mass shootings often report that the perpetrators are calm, relaxed, and/or smiling. - Motives include: revenge, power, loyalty, terror, and profit. Revenge is by far the most commonplace motivator. [b]- Mass shootings and mass murder are not on the rise (see Figure 1 on page 5). However, the number of victims in each attack varies considerably each year.[/b] - Pervasiveness of technology which permits near-immediate reports in shootings has increased the public's fear, anxiety, and belief that the problem of mass shootings/murder is getting worse. - Media overexposure and obsession with "record-setting murder" has the possibility for an individual to identify, empathise, or admire a perpetrator. - There is little research of the "copycat effect" as it relates to mass murder, as it is mostly related to suicide. [b]- There is no hard evidence that mass murderers are drawn to similar crimes. They may influence them, but are not the inspiration.[/b] - The media should not obsess over "large and record-setting" body counts and avoid sensationalising sensational events. [b]- There is no causal link between consuming violent entertainment (ie. video games) and violent behaviour. (I realise this is already well known but at least you have something to point to now).[/b] - Mass shooters are most commonly: male, Caucasian, and older than murderers in general. They also share similar characteristics: depression, resentment, social isolation, tend to externalise blame, fascination with violent entertainment, and interest in weapons. However, the preceding characteristics are prevalent in the general population. - Profiling/checklists for mass shootings tend to over predict with a large number of false positives. - Aggressive attempts to single out potential troublemakers may make things worse. [b]- Greater access to mental health services may not work for individuals on the fringe. Those with the tendency to externalise blame see themselves and victims and the problem in others.[/b] [b]- If urged to seek counselling, a would-be mass murderer would likely resist angrily (because they don't see themselves as having a problem).[/b] - No clear relationship between psychiatric diagnosis and mass murder has been established. [b]- Most mass murderers do not have criminal records or a history of psychiatric hospitalisation, so they would not be disqualified from purchasing weapons legally.[/b] [b]- An examination of 93 mass shootings from 2009 to 2013 found no indication that any of the perpetrators were prohibited by federal law from possessing firearms. In only 10 of the 93 cases was there concern for the perpetrator's mental health that had been brought to the attention of a medical practitioner before the shooting.[/b] [b]- Several mass shooters have used firearms purchased, borrowed, or stolen from a family member of friend.[/b] [b]- The 1994 federal ban on assault weapons had virtually no effect on mass murders.[/b] [b]- The overwhelming majority of mass murderers use firearms that would not be restricted by an assault weapons ban, especially semiautomatic handguns.[/b] [b]- Limiting the size of ammunition clips would compel a gunman to pause to reload or switch weapons, potentially giving others a brief window of opportunity to escape or intervene. (This is backed up by two other sources)[/b] [b]- A study of the effect of right-to-carry laws and the incidence of multiple-victim homicide between 1977-1999 showed that right-to-carry laws neither encouraged nor discouraged mass shootings.[/b] [b]- It is hard to imagine that a vengeful student who is willing to die by police gunfire or his or her own hand would be dissuaded by knowing the faculty of a school were armed. They may even welcome the idea of a shootout with their teachers.[/b] [b]- It is ill-advised to encourage college students to carry guns on campus given the low rate of serious violence there and the high prevalence of substance abuse and depression among students.[/b] [b]- School shootings have an "exceptionally low probability of occurring" that excessive levels of security are not warranted.[/b] [b]- Most school security measures are a minor inconvenience for those determined to cause mayhem. For example, two middle school students pulled the fire alarm and waited for students to come outside before targeting them.[/b] [b]- Many schools, especially those in urban areas, already have security personnel, often equipped with firearms. However, school resource officers as a deterrent to mass shootings is too limited as they cannot be everywhere. For example, there were school resource officers at Columbine High School in 1999.[/b] - If armed guards or teachers really are a worthy strategy for protecting children, then this approach would dictate arming coaches, athletic directors, and even bus drivers to also protect them before and after school. (This appeared to be highly rhetorical in the text) Details of the paper:[quote]Written by James Fox and Monica DeLateur, both criminologists at Northeastern University. They received no funding for the research, authorship, and/or publication.[/quote]

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  • Kek

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  • I'm going to make a single response regarding the media involvement in these attacks. To address the idea that the media plays some role in the reasons for them: First of all, the study notes that the overwhelmingly main motivator in all of these attacks is revenge. If the perpetrators of these attacks were really interested in "getting famous", revenge would not be the most commonplace - it would probably be terror. Secondly, while the study notes that media overexposure can lead to an individual to identify, empathise, or admire a perpetrator, it also notes that a perpetrator is not inspired by similar crimes, only that they may be influenced by them. The inspiration comes from elsewhere, but from where exactly? I believe it's the point above this one. Lastly, the study notes that the incidence of mass shootings has remained fairly constant from 1976 - 2012. During that time, media pervasiveness (ie. the availability of near-immediate news reports through the Internet) has also increased. If, media [over]exposure were the main cause for mass shootings, why has the incidence of them not increased as well?

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  • Good study. This actually changed my opinion on magazine capacities. I'm not sure [b]banning[/b] higher-capacity magazines would be effective in reducing deaths in mass shootings, but it seems magazine capacity definitely plays a role.

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  • Thanks for posting this, Dazarobbo. This cleared up a lot of misconceptions.

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  • It's mainly the news's fault because the focus mainly on the death and destruction and try to find something to blame

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  • Obviously the solution is to go back to using muskets. You can't go on a killing spree if it takes you 10 minutes to reload a round that's likely to miss anyone further than 20 feet from you. Bust it with a musket!

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  • Edited by Suppressor: 12/21/2013 8:40:49 PM
    That is a very nice summary of the key points. [quote]- Limiting the size of ammunition clips would compel a gunman to pause to reload or switch weapons, potentially giving others a brief window of opportunity to escape or intervene. (This is backed up by two other sources)[/quote] I'd like to request you correct the word "[i]clips[/i]" to "[i]magazines[/i]", in your post. I'd also contest this point. Magazines are not difficult to manufacture or modify, and given that this research suggests that these crimes are planned and thought out for days, I doubt the lack of legal availability of standard and high capacity magazines would prevent their acquisition by the attacker. Even if an attacker does use lower capacity magazines, (depending on the type of firearm) reloading is not necessarily a time consuming process, and would not limit the amount of harm an attacker could cause. For example, during the Virginia Tech massacre (the deadliest shooting incident by a single gunman in U.S. history), Seung-Hui Cho shot and killed 32 people and wounded 17 others using a .22-caliber Walther P22 semi-automatic handgun and a 9 mm semi-automatic Glock 19 handgun with 10 and 15 round magazines. The Dawson College shooting (covered later) is also a good example of this. [quote]- The overwhelming majority of mass murderers use firearms that would not be restricted by an assault weapons ban, especially semiautomatic handguns.[/quote] Even if such a restriction was placed on these other firearms: Restricting the availability of certain firearms and putting other legal restrictions on their ownership, storage, transportation etc .. also don't prevent these types of attacks. For example, the Dawson College shooting in September of 2006 in Montreal Canada. Kimveer Gill shot 19 people using a Beretta Cx4 Storm carbine, a Glock 9mm handgun, and a 14-inch Norinco HP9-1 shotgun. The majority of shots (55/60) were fired from the Cx4 Storm carbine, and the other 5 from the handgun. [url]https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dawson_college_shooting#Weapons[/url] [quote]All of the weapons Gill had in his possession can be legally purchased and owned by a civilian in Canada. However, because of the Cx4 Storm's legal classification, specific criteria must be met for different configurations of the carbine.[citation needed] As manufactured by Beretta, the Cx4 Storm is a semi-automatic, pistol-calibre center-fire carbine with a 422mm barrel length. As such, it is categorized as "restricted" in Canada. Any person with a Possession and Acquisition Licence (PAL) with restricted-class privileges may purchase this weapon, subject to the approval of the Chief Firearms Officer of the respective province.[19] Kimveer Gill did in fact have a restricted-class PAL and his weapons were registered with the Canadian gun registry. Therefore, he owned the weapons legally under Canadian law[20] though he did not obtain an Authorization To Transport (ATT) to bring the firearm to the school so it was transported illegally.[/quote] The attacker had obtained a licence from the federal government to purchase firearms, undergone multiple and daily background checks, undergone a phone interview with the federal government, (to obtain restricted class) had at least 2 references contacted and interviewed by the federal government, and had the purchase of each of the restricted class firearms (Cx4 and Glock) approved for transfer to him by the province as well as registered to him. In addition to the above conditions, magazines designed for semi-automatic handguns must be limited to a capacity of 10 cartridges of the type for which the magazine was designed. None of the above stopped someone who developed criminal intent from perpetrating a massacre, the number of people shot, not being legally allowed to bring the guns there, and actually using 10 round magazines (which are actually standard capacity magazines with a pin in them). My few points, overall still an interesting read.

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  • I find myself agreeing with every point in this. 10/10. Good post.

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  • Its the News's fault. They give out just about every single detail about a mass shooting and make the criminal that shot people a celebrity. If the news didn't do what they do now in situations like this, mass shootings won't happen. IMO

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    • >All the total morons saying if they have lower capacity magazines they'd just shoot more accurately or train until they could compensate for the magazines lack of ammo.

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    • [quote][b]- It is hard to imagine that a vengeful student who is willing to die by police gunfire or his or her own hand would be dissuaded by knowing the faculty of a school were armed. They may even welcome the idea of a shootout with their teachers.[/b] [b]- It is ill-advised to encourage college students to carry guns on campus given the low rate of serious violence there and the high prevalence of substance abuse and depression among students.[/b] [b]- School shootings have an "exceptionally low probability of occurring" that excessive levels of security are not warranted.[/b][/quote] concealed carry enthusiasts confirmed for dumbasses

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    • "Limiting the size of ammunition clips would compel a gunman to pause to reload or switch weapons" Also forces them to make more accurate shots, and if they're at all prepared they could reload or swap weapons rapidly.

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      • Also the magazines part is bullshit The VA tech shooter had multiple 10 round mags on him

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        • Conclusion: All of our attempts to fix the issue; either by banning all weapons, giving guns to teachers or even seeking wider mental health improvements, does nothing to fix the problem and just creates grief for others. And that at this time, there's no real fix, and we basically just have to accept that these things are like forces of nature and just have to accept the loss of human life since they are largely unpredictable. Virtually the only things that we can do is have the media stop reporting on these events and encourage people to report their concerns about friends and family members who appear to be "disturbed" to police.

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        • So mass-shooters display psychopathic and/or narcissistic behaviour? Interesting.

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        • Edited by Veno: 12/21/2013 1:17:58 PM
          In all honesty guns have little to do with this. The same day this shooting happened, some guy from China went a school with a knife and injured around the same amount of people. http://www.cbc.ca/m/touch/world/story/1.1169054

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          • I keep my guns locked in a safe to ensure they can't run out of the house and start shooting people.

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            • A good read, not to sure about the clip size limit though, because with enough drilling and tactics, it hardly matters. And it's easy to make clips.

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            • [quote]Limiting the size of ammunition clips would compel a gunman to pause to reload or switch weapons, potentially giving others a brief window of opportunity to escape or intervene. (This is backed up by two other sources)[/quote] 1. They're called magazines, not clips 2. If a gunman were to take time to prepare for an attack, I would assume magazine reloading would be part of that. For somebody who has practiced, the reload time for them can be 2 seconds. Not enough time to do anything.

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              • Seldom have I be willing to admit a hopeless cause, but; [i]"[url=http://www.ibtimes.com/gun-sales-after-newtown-shootings-newtown-anniversary-charts-1509000]Gun sales at three major U.S. firearms makers soared in the wake of the Dec. 14, 2012, Newtown school slaughter, setting new company records and decisively beating 2012 sales[/url]"[/i] Perhaps we need to turn this on its head, declare a free shoot day (or week) and allow anyone who wishes to have the right to gun ownership to experience that right to its maximum. Declare Nevada the venue, send them all into that one location and allow nature to take its course. Stupidity cannot be countered with reason alone.

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                • And this is why [enter political party here] is stupid, and there should be [more/less] guns.

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                  • Doesn't Israel arm their teachers?

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                    • I'm not even going to give my opinion on this because i know full well ill get hated on for it, but this was an interesting read thank's for posting.

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                    • Interesting. I hadn't considered the arming teachers point. Well, if trying to ID these guys makes it worse, and banning has no effect, and the number of incidents are actually on the decline... We just have to accept thus as a possibility in our lives and move on with our day. In the same way we accept that a drunk driver could plow into our car, or a defective manufacturing process poisoning our daily vitamins. Some thing you just have to learn to live with.

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                        [quote]Gun restrictions and other initiatives may not stop the next mass murderer, wherever he or she may strike, but we can enhance the well-being of millions of Americans in the process.[/quote] I will agree with this and many points mentioned throughout the topic. However, I am pretty curious about the "Copycat Effect" that was mentioned. Would that be a psychological issue? I also notice that in the chart on page 5, that while the shooting victims have increased over the years, the times where it dips a bit, there is a [i]very large[/i] dip in the amount of victims around '92-'94. Would that be attributed to the federal assault weapons ban?

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                        • So there's pretty much no way to detect or prevent mass shootings? aint that interesting.

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