You would be forgiven if you thought there was an epidemic of mass school shootings in America. There is not. There is, however, an epidemic of coverage of these events, specifically the most recent tragedy in Parkland, Florida. CNN, NBC, and MSNBC in particular seem to have given this horrifying event unwarranted coverage, and unwittingly given the shooter undue notoriety.
America’s schools overall are safer today than they were in the early 1990s, with four times as many children killed in schools then as compared to today, according to a new academic study by researchers at Northeastern University. The study points to the relative rarity of school shootings. View the study here: http://news.northeastern.edu/2018/02/schools-are-still-one-of-the-safest-places-for-children-researcher-says/ .
“There is not an epidemic of school shootings,” said James Alan Fox, Professor of Criminology, Law and Public Policy at Northeastern. Fox noted more children die each year from bicycle accidents and pool drownings. Naturally, no one is talking about banning bikes or pools. The excessive coverage and debate taking place is akin to when an airliner crashes. People then question the safety of air travel and demand new laws be passed.
If an individual landed in America from another planet this month, one could easily conclude it’s dangerous to attend school here from watching the television news coverage on some networks. Of course no one is suggesting we ignore the Parkland massacre. However, for perspective, the study did point out there are nearly 55 million school children in America, and over the past 25 years, about 10 students on average each year were killed by gunfire at school.