As CNN reports, when it comes to gun massacres, the United States is tragically exceptional: There are more public mass shootings in the United States than in any other country in the world, according to a study published recently.
Between 1966 and 2012, there were 90 mass shootings in the United States. Mass shootings are defined for the study as having four or more victims and don’t include gang killings or slayings that involve the death of multiple family members. These shootings include the Pulse nightclub shooting in Orlando in June 2016 — the worst mass shooting in US history — and others in an Aurora, Colorado, movie theater and at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, both in 2012.
The 90 US mass shootings are nearly one-third of the 292 such attacks globally for that period. While the United States has 5% of the world’s population, it had 31% of all public mass shootings.
“People have been a little surprised by these statistics,” said Adam Lankford, an associate professor of criminal justice at the University of Alabama, who did the analysis. Lankford presented his work at the American Sociological Association’s annual conference last year and said it’s the first research of its kind to do a global comparison.
I love holidays, and I love the one that celebrates America’s independence, but how can we really celebrate when we know we are the most violent country in the world?