Does having a gun make you safer in a mass shooting?
Well, it depends on which left-wing rag you ask.
I’ll put the New York Times in the “possibly” camp with this piece: ”In Shift, Police Advise Taking an Active Role to Counter Mass Attacks,” while Mother Jones disagrees: “New Research Confirms Gun Rampages Are Rising—and Armed Civilians Don’t Stop Them.”
And what’s more interesting is both MJ and the NYT are using data from the same study of 84 mass-shooting events from 2000 until 2010, but reaching the opposite conclusion.
From the NYT:
Research on mass shootings over the last decade has bolstered the idea that people at the scene of an attack have a better chance of survival if they take an active stance rather than waiting to be rescued by the police, who in many cases cannot get there fast enough to prevent the loss of life.
In an analysis of 84 such shooting cases in the United States from 2000 to 2010, for example, researchers at Texas State University found that the average time it took for the police to respond was three minutes.
“But you see that about half the attacks are over before the police get there, even when they arrive quickly,” said J. Pete Blair, director for research of the university’s Advanced Law Enforcement Rapid Response Training Center and an author of the research, which is set to be published in a book this year.
In the absence of a police presence, how victims responded often made the difference between life and death, Dr. Blair said.
In 16 of the attacks studied by the researchers, civilians were able to stop the perpetrator, subduing him in 13 cases and shooting him in 3 cases. In other attacks, civilians have obstructed or delayed the gunman until the police arrived.
But from MJ:
Data on 84 attacks echoes MoJo’s investigation and further debunks the NRA’s “good guys with guns” myth.
[. . .]
Moreover, our investigation made clear that so-called “good guys with guns” do not stop public shooting rampages. Likewise, Blair’s data couldn’t be any clearer when it comes to the National Rifle Association’s favorite myth: He found just 3 cases out of 84 in which an armed individual who had been on the scene used a firearm to stop the shooter. And none of the three were ordinary citizens. According to Blair, in two instances those who intervened were off-duty police officers: one in a case in upstate New York in 2010, and another in a case in Philadelphia in 2005. The third case took place in Winnemucca, Nevada, in 2008; the man there who intervened and shot the rampaging gunman, as I’ve reported previously, was a US Marine.
Notice the edit by MJ where they omit the entire point of Blair’s research that suggests fighting back against an armed individual increases your chances of living through the encounter. Dr. Blair, quoted in the Times makes this perfectly clear:
“The take-home message is that you’re not helpless and the actions you take matter,” Dr. Blair said. “You can help yourself and certainly buy time for the police to get there.”
The Times links to this video produced by the Houston police department and titled “Run. Hide. Fight” as an example of how a city is preparing its citizens to deal with potential future shootings. As the title suggest, Houston is advising citizens to run, hide and then fight back if need be. Here’s screenshot of the office workers fighting back. . .
. . .somehow Mother Jones would have us believe that we’re safer with a “good guy with a fire extinguisher” than a “good guy with a gun?”
If Dr. Blair is correct and the new-normal is that fighting back against a shooter is the best way to survive the attack, Mother Jones is going to have to make a convincing argument why the guy in the simulation above is better off with an aluminum tube than a pistol.