We all seem to have become desensitised

  Forum Editor 09:37 15 Feb 2018
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to mass shootings in America - so much so, that yet another horrific incident at a school hasn't yet been mentioned here.

Donald Trump has sent his usual condolences and prayers to those who have lost loved ones, and Florida Senator Marco Rubio has trotted out the - by now familiar - statement that it is too soon to tell whether tighter gun control laws would have prevented such an outrage.

Donald Trump is on record as saying that his promise to gun-owning Americans is that he will "never, ever" do anything to threaten the second amendment. Pressure will mount, however and it will be interesting to see if it has any real effect. Increasing numbers of American citizens are realising that something has to be done to stop the awful tide of mass killings in their country.

If you take the American Gun violence archive's definition, a mass shooting is any incident in which four or more people are shot by a single person in the same location at the same time. That being the case, there were 307 mass shootings in America in 2017 alone and the five worst incidents in American history have all occurred in the past ten years.

Something is quite obviously going seriously wrong, and it doesn't take a genius to work out that easy access to guns is at the bottom of it. A gun can turn a normally weak, ineffectual person with a grudge into a killing machine and there is never a shortage of such people in any society. In this context the only difference between America and most other countries is that any American over the age of 18 can buy a shotgun or rifle simply by filling in a form. A short phone call to carry out a background check ensues, and the gun is handed over. Children younger than 18 may possess guns that were given to them by parents or guardians as gifts, provided that they have written permission.

Some States allow handguns to be carried openly on the streets or in cars without permits of any kind.

To most of us, it is incomprehensible but in America it is considered a fundamental right and that is the huge problem facing advocates of stricter gun control laws.

  Aitchbee 19:28 15 Feb 2018

Off subject slightly, but I think I heard somewhere that only 10% of all American citizen have a passport. Maybe they [ the majority of American citizens ] do not realise that the rest of the world can manage without a personal lethal armoury of handguns for their day-to-day business.

  Menzie 19:44 15 Feb 2018

Maybe everywhere else should issue a travel advisory for any citizens visiting the US.

While I am sorry for the loss of life; lately Jamaica has had a travel advisory issued by the US and Canada.

This led to a State of Emergency which the media has covered for all of one day before never mentioning it again.

That State of Emergency is still in effect and has been extended but nothing on that.

Back on topic nothing will change, guns are essentially ingrained in US culture and I doubt very much that will ever change. So incidents like this although infrequent will happen again.

  john bunyan 21:05 15 Feb 2018

Infrequent?? 18 US shootings in 2018 and its only mid Feb!!

this year in US

  oresome 21:09 15 Feb 2018

The point is Menzie, they are not infrequent, but happening with increasing regularity, so much so that it's ceasing to be news.

  Menzie 00:16 16 Feb 2018

17 incidents? I withdraw the term 'infrequent.' With it being only two months into the year this kind of thing is happening too often.

  bumpkin 21:44 16 Feb 2018

It is the Yank mentality, I am not sure who is in my bathroom so I will fire 6 shots through the door first.

  Quickbeam 22:25 16 Feb 2018

That's the South African mentality bumpkin!

On the serious side, high school kids in America are now calling for gun restrictions.

  bumpkin 13:04 17 Feb 2018

Let's not split hairs over a few miles:-)

  Devil Fish 01:03 18 Feb 2018

The huge problem facing advocates of change is the NRA have politicians in their back pocket mainly republican,But none the less those politicians that recieve donations from the NRA are not going to rock the boat,so the status quo remains.almost boils down to how many dollars is a life worth.

  Cymro. 16:28 18 Feb 2018

I have cut and pasted this from the Twitter account of T.V. journalist Jon Snow. There is probably a better way of doing it but I thought the statistics would be of interest.

the number of school shootings that have happened since the year 2000 around the world: ENGLAND: 0 GREECE: 1 NETHERLANDS: 1 SPAIN: 1 INDIA: 1 ARGENTINA: 1 RUSSIA: 1 CHINA: 3 MEXICO: 4 AUSTRALIA: 5 CANADA: 5 GERMANY: 5 SOUTH AFRICA: 5 USA 212

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