I don’t expect much from Mother Jones, an unrepentant far-left rag, but I thought that the Atlantic was supposed to be a respectable magazine. This story makes me question that. There’s a lot here that could be debunked, but I want to look at just one statement:
“Not one of 62 mass shootings in the United States over the last 30 years has been stopped this way [by an armed civilian],” reported Mother Jones’s Mark Follman, adding that the majority of mass shooters killed themselves. . .
It’s true that most mass shooters kill themselves in the end, but what about the first part? There are at least three problems with it.
The first is a logic error. Yes, mass shootings are rarely stopped by an armed civilian. Of course. Because when an armed civilian stops the incident, he stops it promptly, before it becomes a mass shooting. The civilian, you see, is already there, while the police are minutes away, at best. Those minutes are what gives the shooter the chance to become a mass shooter.
Second, armed civilians avert mass shootings not infrequently. For example, there were two instances the very same week as the Newtown shootings: one in San Antonio and one in Clackamas, Oregon. And there are plenty of others.
Third, mass shootings always take place in gun-free zones (with only one exception in the last half-century). Mass shooters deliberately seek out places where guns are not permitted. Thus, they aren’t very many armed civilians at such places.
In short, Mother Jones’s claim — echoed by the Atlantic — might be narrowly true (although I don’t know that), but it certainly doesn’t demonstrate anything like what they suggest it does.