When the world looks at the United States, it sees a land of exceptions: a time-tested if noisy democracy, a crusader in foreign policy, an exporter of beloved music and film.
But there is one quirk that consistently puzzles America’s fans and critics alike. Why, they ask, does it experience so many mass shootings?
Perhaps, some speculate, it is because American society is unusually violent. Or its racial divisions have frayed the bonds of society. Or its citizens lack proper mental care under a health care system that draws frequent derision abroad.
These explanations share one thing in common: Though seemingly sensible, all have been debunked by research on shootings elsewhere in the world. Instead, an ever-growing body of research consistently reaches the same conclusion.
The only variable that can explain the high rate of mass shootings in America is its astronomical number of guns
The United States has 270 million guns and had
90 mass shooters from 1966 to 2012.
No other country has more than 46 million guns or 18 mass shooters.
This is an important discussion which spawned out of the Texas shootings. Lots came into that thread with half facts and falsehoods. But we have some facts, and stats to back up the reason America has so many mass shootings compared to other countries.
The answer is simple. We have far more guns than other countries.