Dr. Lott Opposes How the National Media Covers Mass Shootings
On July 21, 2022, Dr. John Lott, President of the Crime Prevention Research Center, appeared on Talk Back and answered questions about gun violence. He spent the first part of his visit discussing the benefits of concealed carry permit holders.
“Everybody from the Associated Press to the New York Times saying that these cases of a concealed carry permit holder or somebody legally carrying a gun stopping these attacks just virtually never happens, which is false,” Lott said. “I actually did a report while I was at the US Department of Justice, showing that about 43% of these attacks when they occur in places where guns are allowed are stopped by concealed carry permit holders.”
Lott vehemently disagrees with the way the national media covers mass shootings in the U.S.
“I have to tell you, I'm kind of at the end of my rope when it comes to just how the media covers these types of cases,” Lott said. “You can't read these people's manifestos or their diaries and not come away with the certainty that these people are doing it to get media attention. The more media attention they think they can get, the more they want to do this. They know the more people they kill, the more media attention that they're going to get.”
Based on his research, Lott has learned that mass shooters are very selective about their targets.
“If you read the Buffalo shooters manifesto, he clearly spent a lot of time talking about why he picked the target that he did,” Lott said. “He picked the target because he wanted a place where victims weren't going to be able to go and defend themselves. He talks about his goal of picking a target where he doesn't think any of the victims are going to have concealed handguns for protection. Does the media mention that at all? No.”
On July 20, 2022, the House Judiciary Committee advanced the Assault Weapons Ban Act of 2021 which would ban the sale, import, manufacture, or transfer of certain semi-automatic weapons.
“With regard to the rifle ban, I will just mention that it hasn't passed the house yet,” Lott said. “It's been going through the House Judiciary Committee. I assume it will pass the House. But it's very unlikely that it's going to pass the Senate. I don't think it's going to become law. The Democrats are just trying to, you know, flex their muscles and kind of play to their base before the November elections just to say, you know, if we had more power, this is the type of stuff that we would get through.”
You can learn more about Lott’s work here.