This article was published by The McAlvany Intelligence Advisor on Monday, July 2, 2018:
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is a fast learner. Just days after her surprising primary victory over the fourth-ranked Democrat in the House, Joe Crowley (slated to become Speaker of the House if Nancy Pelosi’s position opened), she was given an opportunity. She saw it and she took it: the shooting of five people in the offices of the Capital Gazette in Annapolis on Thursday. She tweeted: “Horrifying. This is our nation’s 195th mass shooting – this year.”
This is in keeping with her far-left platform she used to oust Crowley, himself a far-left 10-term Democrat with 100% ratings from NARAL Pro-Choice and Planned Parenthood, and a 0% rating from the National Right to Life Committee. Even though she was outspent 10:1 by Crowley, she defeated him in the primary by a margin of 15 points, making her a welcome icon to the floundering Democrat Party.
It was her platform that made Crowley look almost conservative: Medicare for all, a federal jobs program for everyone, tuition-free public education for everyone, abolition of the hated ICE whose officials have been arresting Ocasio-Cortez’s friends in the 14th Congressional district of New York, along with promises for more gun control and supporting the ending of the privatization of prisons.
And now, following the shooting at the Capital Gazette, she had her chance to go public on one of those promises: guns are the problem, not the shooter. And nearly 200 mass shootings already this year!
Except that no one, including this writer, can find any individual or group that validates that 195 number. Not that it matters, since there is no standard definition of “mass shooting” and so therefore any number will do. When the Washington Post said in late 2015 that there were 355 mass shootings for the year, the figure was so far removed from reality that Mother Jones’editor Mark Follman took the time to investigate the number, and refute it:
At Mother Jones, where I work as an editor, we have compiled an in-depth open-source database covering more than three decades of public mass shootings.
By our measure, there have been four “mass shootings” this year.
CNN has taken the lead in inflating the numbers. Following the mass shooting on Valentine’s Day in Parkland, Florida, the network claimed that there was one school shooting “on average” every week.
Bloomberg’s Everytown for Gun Safety tweeted on that same day that there had been 18 school shootings so far this year. But Breitbart’s AWR Hawkins looked into the matter and concluded “that Everytown had reached the number ‘18’ by counting suicides … and eight non-suicide firearm-related incidents in which there were no injuries or fatalities.”
There’s the Congressional Research Service (CRS) which defines “mass public shooting” as a multiple-homicide incident in which four or more victims are murdered with firearms in at least one public location, including schools. According to that definition, CRS reports that there were 66 mass shootings from 1999 to 2013, with just seven of them happening in schools or college campuses.
And then there’s the Gun Violence Archive which claims on its website that, so far this year, there have been 154 mass shootings. A closer look at this outfit reveals an inherent bias even as its website claims it has none: it just counts every incident involving a gun and then lets researchers draw their own conclusions. Founded in late 2012 by Michael Klein, a wealthy attorney, it claims to “provide free online public access to accurate information about gun-related violence in the United States.”
Klein is also the founder of Sunlight Foundation, which was launched in 2006 with $3.5 million of his own money. Since then Klein has enlisted the financial assistance of a number of Deep State deep pockets, including George Soros’ Open Society Foundation, the Rockefeller Foundation, and Michael Bloomberg’s Bloomberg Philanthropies. Bloomberg, it will be remembered, also helps fund Everytown for Gun Safety.
Even if the Gun Violence Archive has honest intentions about reporting all of the facts on gun violence in the United States, it has a serious problem in supporting its claim of 154 mass shootings. It claims that “GVA uses a purely statistical threshold to define mass shootings based ONLY on the numeric value of 4 or more shot or killed, not including the shooter.” But a download of its statistical conclusions reveals just eleven mass shootings so far this year where four or more individuals were killed by gunfire.
It really doesn’t matter, at least to Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who seems content to have pulled the “195” out of the air. She is counting on that number – unsourced but likely accepted as true by her adoring fans – to confirm her position that guns are responsible for such shootings, while leaving the blame on the shooter entirely out of the conversation.
She’ll fit right in with the far-left crowd currently infesting Congress. As George Bernard Shaw once said, “She knows nothing and she thinks she knows everything. That points clearly to a [successful] political career.”
GunViolenceArchive.org: MASS SHOOTINGS IN 2018
Wikipedia: Mass shootings in the United States
Politifact.com: What we know about mass shootings