It is taken as a given among the anti-gun left that all of America’s schools are in danger of constant mass shootings. But this article of faith is more myth than fact and even National Public Radio recently debunked the left’s narrative on shootings in schools.
Firstly, the truth is that school shootings are statistically still rare in the general scheme of things. Even the liberal Washington Post noted this fact. In March, Harvard professor David Ropeik noted, “the statistical likelihood of any given public school student being killed by a gun, in school, on any given day since 1999 was roughly 1 in 614,000,000. And since the 1990s, shootings at schools have been getting less common.”
So, why the hysteria that every American kids is constantly at risk of being gunned down in school? Well, because it fits the anti-gunners’ agenda, of course.
Facts don’t matter to liberals. And even liberal NPR found that the latest round of “studies” on school shootings were a steaming pile of trash.
NPR looked into the 2015-2016 numbers on school shootings recently published by the Department of Education. The department claimed 240 school shootings occurring in the year of the study. But NPR found that two-thirds of those supposed incidents never happened.
This is interesting…NPR reached out to the 200+ schools that reportedly had school shootings in 2015 and found that more than two-thirds of these government-reported incidents never happened. https://t.co/k1yg0KTd55 pic.twitter.com/KDipG8ytJL
— Natalie Johnson (@nataliejohnsonn) August 28, 2018
This spring the U.S. Education Department reported that in the 2015-2016 school year, “nearly 240 schools … reported at least 1 incident involving a school-related shooting.” The number is far higher than most other estimates.
But NPR reached out to every one of those schools repeatedly over the course of three months and found that more than two-thirds of these reported incidents never happened. Child Trends, a nonpartisan nonprofit research organization, assisted NPR in analyzing data from the government’s Civil Rights Data Collection.
We were able to confirm just 11 reported incidents, either directly with schools or through media reports.
In 161 cases, schools or districts attested that no incident took place or couldn’t confirm one. In at least four cases, we found, something did happen, but it didn’t meet the government’s parameters for a shooting. About a quarter of schools didn’t respond to our inquiries.
Most of the school leaders NPR reached had little idea of how shootings got recorded for their schools.
For example, the CRDC reports 26 shootings within the Ventura Unified School District in Southern California.
“I think someone pushed the wrong button,” said Jeff Davis, an assistant superintendent there. The outgoing superintendent, Joe Richards, “has been here for almost 30 years and he doesn’t remember any shooting,” Davis added. “We are in this weird vortex of what’s on this screen and what reality is.”
Even the ACLU found that report to be problematic. The Southern California ACLU were only able to confirm fewer than a dozen of the incidents in the government’s report. The group also found that 59 percent were errors.
Wow, that is some failure. And what a waste of tax dollars that study turned out to be. But you know darn well that anti-gun nuts will use this fake news report for all its worth to push their agenda.
Finally, Paul Bedard just published a piece today debunking yet another lefty “fact.” Many liberals have touted the claim that the U.S. accounts for 31 percent of all mass shootings in the world. But Bedard now reports that the real number is only just over one percent (1.43 percent in fact)!
But chances are you’ll see that lie of 31 percent far more often than the real number.
Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston.
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