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Tag You’re Racist! The Myth of the White Male Shooter

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“White people — almost exclusively white men — committed some 64% of the shootings….Black people committed close to 16% of the mass shooting…it turns out that whites and blacks are pretty proportionate to their population…”CNN

The Myth:  Whites predominantly are behind mass shootings

Gawker: A Year in Mass Shootings

Vice “Reports”: Poorly researched articles, as this by Vice, share blame. Author Josiah M. Hesse cites Mother Jones, and concludes, “So white men have been responsible for about 63 percent of mass shootings in that span, despite comprising a far smaller portion of the total population.” But the US Census shows whites make up 77.4% of the population. So why does the myth of the “Male White Shooter” persist?

Journalism Creates Myth:  Like other prevalent myths such as “Gun crimes are increasing,” media laziness is to blame. Research shows gun crimes, and all crimes are decreasing. See “No Increase in Shootings” or Steven Pinker’s thoroughly researched The Better Angels of Our Nature: Why Violence Has Declined.

Gun Homicide Rate Down 49% Since 1993 Peak, Public Unaware – PEW Research

Fact Check!  How do we solve this as journalists and individuals? Fact check. For those who do not know how to use Google, there’s a great site called Let Me Google That For You. I’m talking to you, Vice “writer” Josiah (Yes, Josiah, non-Hispanic whites = 63%, but it still doesn’t explain how your shoddy research considers this a “smaller portion”).

What’s Not a Myth:  Mass shooters are predominantly male.

Also: 
The Myth of the Cop Killing “Epidemic”
Crime Prevention Research Center Statistics

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Written by Caleb Powell

October 25, 2015 at 6:10 pm

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