In the rest of the world, there have been 18 school shootings in the last twenty years. In the U.S., there have been 18 school shootings since January 1.
It’s a provocative claim that drew more the 130,000 likes on Twitter.
Greenfield, a University of Wisconsin-Madison graduate, may be on the right track generally in contrasting how much gun violence there is in America compared to the rest of the world.
But as for his specific claim, he leaves a misleading impression with the U.S. part and lacks evidence for the part about the rest of the world.
U.S. school shootings
On the U.S. part of his claim, Greenfield told us his 18 school shootings in 2018 comes from the Everytown for Gun Safety Support Fund, as reported by ABC News.
We found that in the immediate aftermath of the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, Politico, TIME, CNBC and other national media also reported on Everytown’s 18 figure. In addition, the New York Daily News claimed 18 school shootings, listing the same incidents as Everytown, and HuffPost reported 18, too.
But there are some major caveats to that figure.
Indeed, when we asked Greenfield for information to back up his claim, he noted to us in his email that the Everytown group’s count « conflates very different incidents, from the harmless to the deadly. »
As PolitiFact National has reported, Everytown, an advocacy group co-founded by former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg that seeks to prevent gun violence, uses a broad definition of school shooting — that is, any time a firearm discharges a live round inside a school building, or on a school campus or grounds. Its database includes incidents when no one was injured; attempted or completed suicide, with no intent to injure others; and cases when a gun was fired unintentionally, resulting in injury or death. The list also includes incidents on college campuses.
As we’ll see, Everytown counts shooting incidents that are dramatically different than what happened in Florida:
|Jan. 3||East Olive Elementary, St. Johns, Mich.||Man committed suicide in parking lot. No other injuries.
(We found the building was not being used as a school, as East Olive had been shut down more than six months earlier.)
|Jan. 4||New Start High, Seattle||Unidentified shooter fired shots into building. No injuries.|
|Jan. 10||Grayson College, Denison, Texas||Student unintentionally fired a bullet from gun legally possessed by an instructor that struck a wall. No injuries.|
|Jan. 10||Coronado Elementary, Sierra Vista, Ariz.||Student committed suicide in bathroom. No other injuries.|
|Jan. 10||California State University, San Bernardino||Gunshots, most likely fired from off campus, hit a campus building window. No injuries.|
|Jan. 15||Wiley College, Marshall, Texas||Shots fired from car in parking lot, with one shot hitting window of residence hall. No injuries.|
|Jan. 20||Wake Forest University, Winston-Salem, N.C.||One student wounds another student during argument at sorority party.|
|Jan. 22||Italy High, Italy, Texas||Student opens fire in cafeteria, wounding one student before firing at another student and missing.|
|Jan. 22||NET Charter High, Gentilly, La.||Unknown person fired shots at students standing in parking lot. No injuries from gunshots.|
|Jan. 23||Marshall County High, Benton, Ky.||2 students left dead in mass shooting by student. More than a dozen students injured.|
|Jan. 25||Murphy High, Mobile, Ala.||Student fired into the air outside school after argument in school. No injuries.|
|Jan. 26||Dearborn High, Dearborn, Mich.||Individual ejected from game for fighting was shot at in parking lot. No injuries.|
|Jan. 31||Lincoln High, Philadelphia||Man fatally wounded in fight in parking lot.|
|Feb. 1||Salvador B. Castro Middle, Los Angeles||Student unintentionally fires gun in classroom, wounds two students.|
|Feb. 5||Oxon Hill High, Oxon Hill, Md.||Student wounded in parking lot during apparent robbery.|
|Feb. 5||Harmony Learning K-12, Maplewood, Minn.||Student pressed trigger on school liaison officer’s gun. No injuries.|
|Feb. 8||Metropolitan High, New York, N.Y.||Student fired gun into floor in classroom. No injuries.|
|Feb. 14||Stoneman Douglas High, Parkland, Fla.||Ex-student allegedly commits mass shooting; 17 deaths.|
So, there are 18 incidents in which a gun was fired inside a school or on school property.
Three — Italy, Texas, Kentucky and Florida — were mass shootings.
But of the other shootings:
- Nine involved no deaths and no gunshot injuries.
- Two were suicides, with no other injuries (including the one at the closed school).
- Three were unintentional (although one caused injuries).
Rest of the world
Two researchers — Jaclyn Schildkraut of the State University of New York in Oswego and H. Jaymi Elsass of Texas State University — analyzed mass shootings in 11 countries, covering the period from 2000-14. Aside from the United States, they looked at Australia, Canada, China, England, Finland, France, Germany, Mexico, Norway and Switzerland.
The United States had more mass shootings — and more people cumulatively killed or injured — than the other 10 nations combined, according to their research. While part of this is because the United States has a much bigger population than all but China, the difference can’t be explained by skewed population numbers alone.
But as for the other part of Greenfield’s claim — that there have been only 18 school shootings in the rest of the world over the past 20 years — Greenfield told us he couldn’t recall the source of that information, adding, « yes, I cop to insufficient research. »
Mark Bryant, executive director of the Gun Violence Archive (which the New York Times uses to track school shooting data), told us the 18-shootings figure could be correct in terms of how many mass shootings occur in schools outside of the United States that get widespread news coverage.
But Bryant said there is no way to know — based on the definition of school shootings that Greenfield relies on — how many such shootings occur around the globe.
About 24 hours after posting the tweet, Greenfield took it down.
In the wake of a Florida school shooting that left 17 people dead, Greenfield said: « In the rest of the world, there have been 18 school shootings in the last twenty years. In the U.S., there have been 18 school shootings since January 1. »
By one count widely cited in the news media, there have been 18 incidents in which shots were fired inside or outside of a school or university building in the United States so far in 2018. But only three involved a mass shooting. And the count includes two suicides, three accidental shootings and nine incidents in which there were no fatalities or injuries.
As for the rest of the world, Greenfield had no evidence to back up that part of his claim. And an expert relied on by the New York Times for gun violence statistics told us there is no way to know how many school shootings — using the definition Greenfield relies on — have occurred outside of the United States over the past 20 years.
For a statement that contains only an element of truth, our rating is Mostly False.
February 15, 2018
Any number of school shootings is too many. And, at this time when we are so rightly hurting at yesterday’s brutality in Parkland, Fla., a sensationalist report has gone viral, claiming that there have been 18 such acts this year alone. The factoid has been promoted by countless major media and political figures, as well as by celebrities. Indeed, such a number would mean an unprecedented crisis. But it’s not true. The original source of the figure is Mike Bloomberg’s gun-control advocacy organization, Everytown for Gun Safety. The organization arrives at the figure by defining a “school shooting” as any time a gun is fired at or near a school, college, or university, regardless of whether students are present or anyone is injured. In fact, if one counts only events where a shooter enters a school and shoots someone, there have been three school shootings, including yesterday’s. (The other spree shooting was in Kentucky and a murder happened at a school in Texas.) This information is viewable on Everytown’s site itself, as a click on any location reveals the details and news sources of the incident in question. Everytown’s list includes incidents such as an adult committing suicide in the parking lot of a school that had long been closed down and gun violence in the neighborhood where California State University–San Bernardino is located (it is one of the most crime-ridden cities in the country, with California’s second-highest murder rate.) While such acts are obviously cause for concern in their own right, all that conflating these incidents with “school shootings” does is to create a climate of terror. Suicide and violent crime are very real social problems, but they are not the same thing as school shootings. Yesterday’s events are horrific enough on their own. There’s no need to amplify them by manipulating the public with falsehoods.
No, there haven’t been 18 school shootings in 2018. That number is flat wrong.
John Woodrow Cox and Steven Rich
February 15, 2018
The stunning number swept across the Internet within minutes of the news Wednesday that, yet again, another young man with another semiautomatic rifle had rampaged through a school, this time at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High in South Florida.
The figure originated with Everytown for Gun Safety, a nonprofit group, co-founded by Michael Bloomberg, that works to prevent gun violence and is most famous for its running tally of school shootings.
“This,” the organization tweeted at 4:22 p.m. Wednesday, “is the 18th school shooting in the U.S. in 2018.”
A tweet by Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) including the claim had been liked more than 45,000 times by Thursday evening, and one from political analyst Jeff Greenfield had cracked 126,000. New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio tweeted it, too, as did performers Cher and Alexander William and actors Misha Collins and Albert Brooks. News organizations — including MSNBC, ABC News, NBC News, CBS News, Time, MSN, the BBC, the New York Daily News and HuffPost — also used the number in their coverage. By Wednesday night, the top suggested search after typing “18” into Google was “18 school shootings in 2018.”
It is a horrifying statistic. And it is wrong.
Everytown has long inflated its total by including incidents of gunfire that are not really school shootings. Take, for example, what it counted as the year’s first: On the afternoon of Jan. 3, a 31-year-old man who had parked outside a Michigan elementary school called police to say he was armed and suicidal. Several hours later, he killed himself. The school, however, had been closed for seven months. There were no teachers. There were no students.
Also listed on the organization’s site is an incident from Jan. 20, when at 1 a.m. a man was shot at a sorority event on the campus of Wake Forest University. A week later, as a basketball game was being played at a Michigan high school, someone fired several rounds from a gun in the parking lot. No one was injured, and it was past 8 p.m., well after classes had ended for the day, but Everytown still labeled it a school shooting.
Everytown explains on its website that it defines a school shooting as “any time a firearm discharges a live round inside a school building or on a school campus or grounds.”
Sarah Tofte, Everytown’s research director, calls the definition “crystal clear,” noting that “every time a gun is discharged on school grounds it shatters the sense of safety” for students, parents and the community.
She said she and her colleagues work to reiterate those parameters in their public messaging. But the organization’s tweets and Facebook posts seldom include that nuance. Just once in 2018, on Feb. 2, has the organization clearly explained its definition on Twitter. And Everytown rarely pushes its jarring totals on social media immediately after the more questionable shootings, as it does with those that are high-profile and undeniable, such as the Florida massacre or one from last month in Kentucky that left two students dead and at least 18 people injured.
After The Washington Post published this report, Everytown removed the Jan. 3 suicide outside the closed Michigan school.
The figures matter because gun-control activists use them as evidence in their fight for bans on assault weapons, stricter background checks and other legislation. Gun rights groups seize on the faults in the data to undermine those arguments and, similarly, present skewed figures of their own.
Gun violence is a crisis in the United States, especially for children, and a huge number — one that needs no exaggeration — have been affected by school shootings. An ongoing Washington Post analysis has found that more than 150,000 students attending at least 170 primary or secondary schools have experienced a shooting on campus since the Columbine High School massacre in 1999. That figure, which comes from a review of online archives, state and federal enrollment figures and news stories, is a conservative calculation and does not include dozens of suicides, accidents and after-school assaults that have also exposed youths to gunfire.
Just five of Everytown’s 18 school shootings listed for 2018 happened during school hours and resulted in any physical injury. Three others appeared to be intentional shootings but did not hurt anyone. Two more involved guns — one carried by a school police officer and the other by a licensed peace officer who ran a college club — that were unintentionally fired and, again, led to no injuries. At least seven of Everytown’s 18 shootings took place outside normal school hours.
Shootings of any kind, of course, can be traumatic, regardless of whether they cause physical harm.
A month ago, for example, a group of college students were at a meeting of a criminal-justice club in Texas when a student accidentally fired a real gun, rather than a training weapon. The bullet went through a wall, then a window. Though no one was hurt, it left the student distraught.
Is that a school shooting, though? Yes, Everytown says.
“Since 2013,” the organization says on its website, “there have been nearly 300 school shootings in America — an average of about one a week.”
But since Everytown began its tracking, it has included these dubious examples — in August 2013, a man shot on a Tennessee high school’s property at 2 a.m.; in December 2014, a man shot in his car late one night and discovered the next day in a Pennsylvania elementary school’s parking lot; in August 2015, a man who climbed atop the roof of an empty Texas school on a Sunday morning and fired sporadically; in January 2016, a man in an Indiana high school parking lot whose gun accidentally went off in his glove box, before any students had arrived on campus; in December 2017, two teens in Washington state who shot up a high school just before midnight on New Year’s Eve, when the building was otherwise empty.
In 2015, The Post’s Fact Checker awarded the group’s figures — invoked by Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) — four Pinocchios for misleading methodology.
Yet many journalists rely on Everytown’s data. Post media critic Erik Wemple included the 18 figure in a column Wednesday night, and Michael Barbaro, host of the New York Times’ podcast “The Daily,” used the number to punctuate the end of his Thursday show.
Much like trying to define a mass shooting, deciding what is and is not a school shooting can be difficult. Some obviously fit the common-sense definition: Last month, a teen in Texas opened fire in a school cafeteria, injuring a 15-year-old girl.
Others that Everytown includes on its list, though, are trickier to categorize.
About 6 p.m. Jan. 10, a bullet probably fired from off campus hit the window of a building at a college in Southern California. No one was hurt, but students could still have been frightened. Classes were canceled, rooms were locked down and police searched campus for the gunman, who was never found.
On Feb. 5, a police officer was sitting on a bench in a Minnesota school gym when a third-grader accidentally pulled the trigger of his holstered pistol, firing a round into the floor. None of the four students in the gym were injured, but, again, the incident was probably scary.
What is not in dispute is gun violence’s pervasiveness and its devastating impact on children. A recent study of World Health Organization data published in the American Journal of Medicine that found that, among high-income nations, 91 percent of children younger than 15 who were killed by bullets lived in the United States.
And the trends are only growing more dire.
On average, two dozen children are shot every day in the United States, and in 2016 more youths were killed by gunfire — 1,637 — than during any previous year this millennium.
Voir de même:
Amping up fears only undermines efforts to reconcile parents and civil rights advocates who want to protect the Bill of Rights.
Feb. 16, 2018
No, there have not been 18 school shootings already this year, as CNBC, Politico, The Washington Post, ABC, The (New York) Daily News and briefly a USA TODAY column all reported in the hours since a 19-year-old allegedly slaughtered 17 at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, in Parkland, Fla., on Ash Wednesday.
Fake stats like that make finding a solution to the real problem of gun violence, which has actually struck American schools at least six times this year, that much harder. Amping up fears, and muddying the search for fixes that can cut back the senseless violence, only undermines efforts to reconcile the real concerns of parents and the legitimate desire of civil rights advocates to protect the Bill of Rights.
Everytown for Gun Safety, the gun-control advocacy group responsible for spreading this bogus statistic, should be ashamed of its blatant dishonesty. When parents hear the words “school shooting,” their hearts freeze and their heads fill with images of Sandy Hook: dead and dying grade-schoolers, broken and bleeding in a classroom, helpless teachers crying over their charges and slain colleagues as a black-clad killer switches magazines in his AR-15.
That’s mostly not what Everytown is talking about. At least when The Washington Post reported Everytown’s propaganda, it included some important caveats:
“That data point … includes any discharge of a firearm at a school — including accidents — as a ‘shooting.’ It also includes incidents that happened to take place at a school, whether students were involved or not.”
The Post should have kept including caveats. By Everytown’s criteria, nobody has to be injured and the “shooting” doesn’t actually have to take place on campus, though it does have to be heard on campus or a bullet has to hit somewhere on campus.
►On Jan. 3, a 31-year-old “military veteran who suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder, a traumatic brain injury and depression” shot himself in a school parking lot after he called police to report he was suicidal, according to the Lansing (Mich.) State Journal, part of the USA TODAY Network. (Everytown removed this instance from their report after The Post found that the school had been closed down for months.)
►On Jan. 10, in Denison, Texas, at Grayson College Criminal Justice Center, a student mistook a real firearm belonging to an officer, who was authorized to carry the weapon, for a practice weapon and fired it into a wall. No one was killed or injured.
►On Feb. 5, in Maplewood, Minn., a third-grader pulled the trigger on a police gun while the officer was sitting on a bench. No one was killed or injured.
In eight of the 18 cases originally counted by Everytown, no one was injured or killed. Two were suicides.
Julien Licourt et Horia Mustafa
INFOGRAPHIES – Un certain fatalisme s’installe face à la récurrence de ces tragiques événements et l’impossibilité de changer la loi.
Barack Obama le déplorait lorsqu’il était encore président. Les fusillades meurtrières sont devenues une «routine». Depuis le début de l’année, 18 ont été enregistrées dans les établissements scolaires américains. Parmi elles, sept se sont soldées par des blessées ou des morts, comme mercredi à Parkland, en Floride. Sept depuis le début de l’année, cela représente une par semaine.
Un certain fatalisme s’est emparé d’une partie des Américains. Si la tuerie survenue mercredi fait bien la une de tous les grands sites d’information, les médias consacrent globalement moins de place à ce type d’événements que par le passé. Et ce malgré le bilan dramatique de 17 morts à Parkland.
Un rapport du FBI portant sur les fusillades de masse, établi sur 160 incidents étalés entre 2000 et 2013, montre que près d’un quart se déroule dans l’environnement scolaire. Et la tendance est à l’augmentation. L’agent qui l’a rédigée affichait il y a peu son pessimisme dans les colonnes du New York Times : «Nous sommes devenus insensibles à ce genre de fusillades, et je pense que cela continuera […] À chaque fois qu’on tire dans une école, on réagit de manière viscérale. Mais au fond, je ne pense pas que la société n’aborde la question des fusillades plus sérieusement qu’avant, et c’est un tort.»
290 fusillades dans les écoles depuis 2013
L’ONG Everytown for gun safety répertorie les incidents liés aux armes à feux dans les écoles. Elle en relève 290 depuis 2013. En reprenant ces chiffres année par année, on constate une progression assez claire. Le début de l’année 2018 laisse craindre que cette hausse ne sera pas enrayée.
Dans 55% des cas, la fusillade entraîne des morts et des blessés et dans 24% des cas, elle ne fait aucune victime. Dans 4/5e des drames survenant dans les établissements scolaires donc, le tireur avait l’intention de nuire aux autres. Le reste regroupe les accidents et les suicides.
En détaillant ces chiffres par zone géographique, on se rend compte, sans surprise, que le Texas ou la Floride, États particulièrement laxistes sur la législation des armes à feu, occupent la tête du triste classement. On sait en effet qu’il existe une corrélation entre contrôle des armes à feu et nombre de morts.
Cette progression inquiétante du nombre de fusillades à l’école, associée au manque de volonté politique de faire changer les choses, induit cette banalisation et ce fatalisme face aux drames qui se répètent. Pendant son deuxième mandat, Barack Obama avait reconnu son impuissance face au lobby des armes, la NRA, estimant même que ce blocage serait la plus grande frustration de sa présidence. Cette résignation fataliste, qui gagne surtout les partisans d’une meilleure régulation, pourrait s’illustrer par ce dessin de presse:Le discours porté par le lobby des armes peut paraître, vu d’Europe, ubuesque. Il se résume bien souvent à réclamer davantage d’armes après chaque tuerie, estimant que si les personnes en avaient été munies, elles auraient été en capacité de se défendre, et donc de survivre. Un argument utilisé par Donald Trump, alors candidat à la primaire républicaine, lors des attentats de Paris en novembre 2015. Un autre dessin circulant sur les réseaux sociaux, émis par le lobby des armes, résume bien cette pensée:
Laurence Nardon, responsable du programme Amérique du Nord à l’Ifri, rappelle que la question relative aux armes est inhérente à l’histoire américaine. «En Europe, depuis le Moyen Âge, le contrat social veut que la sécurité soit déléguée à l’État. La déclaration d’indépendance américaine a été motivée par la question des taxes, mais aussi sur le droit de porter des armes, que réprouvait l’Angleterre. Dans la conception américaine, ce n’est plus uniquement à l’État d’assurer la sécurité mais également aux citoyens eux-mêmes. Cette question est devenue la pierre angulaire de la vision sociétale des conservateurs libertariens, notamment depuis leur radicalisation dans les années 1980. C’est le modèle du Far West. Et qu’est-ce que le Far West, sinon un système où il n’y a pas d’État?»
Actuellement, les États-Unis sont confrontés à une période de dérégulation très forte du droit de port d’arme, notamment à cause de l’influence de la NRA au Congrès. Tout n’est cependant pas gravé dans le marbre. Laurence Nardon rappelle que durant certaines périodes, la régulation des armes a été bien plus forte aux États-Unis qu’elle ne l’est aujourd’hui. Souvent à cause de tragiques événements: dans les années 1930 suite à la prohibition et à la volonté de contrôler la mafia, dans les années 1970 après plusieurs assassinats politiques ou encore dans les années 1990, à la suite de l’attentat contre Ronald Reagan. La chercheuse juge toutefois peu probable une inflexion de l’actuelle politique avant une trentaine d’années.
Voir de plus:
Un utilisateur de la plateforme de vidéos YouTube avait alerté le FBI l’an passé après avoir visionné un message posté par Nikolas Cruz, patronyme utilisé par le principal suspect de la fusillade de Parkland, qui a fait 17 morts. Dans ce dernier, le tireur menaçait explicitement sa volonté de commettre une fusillade dans un lycée.
« Je vais devenir un professionnel de la tuerie en milieu scolaire », avait écrit en commentaire d’une vidéo un abonné qui se faisait appeler Nikolas Cruz.
Il s’agirait du jeune homme de 19 ans qui a été inculpé ce jeudi après être revenu dans son ancien lycée à Pakland en Floride pour déclencher une fusillade faisant 17 morts.
Une capture écran envoyée au FBI
« Quand j’ai vu le commentaire dans mes notifications […], ça a attiré mon attention. J’en ai donc fait une capture d’écran que j’ai envoyée au FBI », a expliqué jeudi Ben Bennight, un utilisateur YouTube, à CNN.La police fédérale américaine a confirmé avoir reçu un signalement concernant ce commentaire en septembre 2017.
« Le FBI a procédé à des recherches dans des bases de données, mais n’a pas été capable d’identifier avec plus de précisions la personne qui a posté ce commentaire », a déclaré l’agence dans un communiqué.
Ben Bennight a expliqué au site BuzzFeed News qu’au lendemain de sa signalisation, des agents du FBI se sont rendus à son bureau pour lui demander s’il possédait plus d’informations sur l’utilisateur qui avait publié ce commentaire.
« Je n’en avais pas. Ils ont fait une copie de ma capture d’écran et c’est la dernière fois que j’ai entendu parler d’eux », a-t-il expliqué à BuzzFeed.
Après la fusillade qui a fait 17 morts, mercredi, dans un lycée à Parkland en Floride, le FBI a reconnu une défaillance, alors que le tireur avait été signalé comme dangereux aux autorités.
La police fédérale américaine a reconnu ce vendredi ne pas avoir pris les mesures qui s’imposaient après avoir été avertie en janvier de la dangerosité potentielle de Nikolas Cruz, l’homme qui a tué mercredi 17 personnes dans un lycée de Floride.
Le tireur signalé au FBI par un proche
Le FBI a précisé avoir reçu un appel d’un proche de M. Cruz, qui a décrit le comportement déviant du jeune homme de 19 ans et son intention de tuer des personnes. Cette information « aurait dû être traitée comme une menace potentielle » et « la procédure en vigueur n’a pas été respectée », a ajouté le FBI.
Un utilisateur YouTube confiait jeudi à BuzzFeed avoir lui aussi signalé le tireur aux autorités. Il avait repéré sur la plateforme de vidéos en ligne un commentaire explicite du jeune homme de 19 ans qui assurait vouloir commettre une fusillade dans un lycée.
Le tireur avait été renvoyé du lycée
L’informateur, qui n’a pas été identifié, a également livré au téléphone des détails sur le fait que Cruz était armé et qu’il publiait des messages menaçants sur les réseaux sociaux.
Le jeune homme de 19 ans avait été renvoyé du lycée Marjory Stoneman Douglas, situé dans la ville de Parkland.Il a ouvert le feu mercredi au fusil semi-automatique dans les classes de cet établissement, ses balles fauchant une trentaine de personnes, dont 17 sont décédées, parmi lesquelles une majorité d’adolescents.
Face à la gravité de l’absence d’une enquête qui aurait pu empêcher ce massacre, le directeur du FBI, Christopher Wray, s’est engagé à « aller au fond du problème ». M. Wray s’est également dit prêt à revoir les procédures en place, dans une déclaration jointe au communiqué.
Une arme achetée dans une armurerie
Interpellé peu après sa fusillade, Nikolas Cruz a été écroué. Il est poursuivi pour 17 meurtres avec préméditation.
Lors d’une brève comparution jeudi devant une magistrate, M. Cruz est apparu prostré entre ses avocats, les membres entravés par des chaînes, avec un visage aux traits encore juvéniles.
Face aux enquêteurs, il a reconnu avoir mené son attaque avec un fusil d’assaut et des chargeurs de munitions qu’il avait légalement acquis dans une armurerie et qu’il transportait dans un sac à dos.
Réussissant à se fondre parmi les élèves évacués, il est ensuite allé s’acheter à boire dans une sandwicherie Subway, puis s’est arrêté dans un McDonald’s, avant d’être interpellé.
Le débat sur les armes à feu ressurgit
Ce rebondissement vient alourdir le climat pesant autour du déplacement attendu en Floride du président Donald Trump, que des proches des victimes du lycée de Parkland exhortent à agir contre les armes à feu.
Parmi les parents parvenant à surmonter leur désespoir pour s’exprimer devant les caméras, Lori Alhadeff a suscité une vive émotion par l’intensité de ses suppliques. Elle a perdu sa fille de 14 ans, Alyssa.
« Des actes ! Des actes ! Des actes ! », a-t-elle crié sur l’antenne de CNN, en interpellant directement le locataire de la Maison Blanche.
« Je viens de voir ma fille, au corps froid comme la glace. Elle a reçu des tirs dans le cœur, dans la tête, dans la main. Morte ! Froide ! Elle ne reviendra pas », a martelé Mme Alhadeff, à l’issue d’une veillée ayant rassemblé des milliers d’habitants.
Le président parle d’un acte de « déséquilibré »
Le président Trump, qui avait été activement soutenu dans sa campagne par les lobbys des armuriers, s’est pour l’instant gardé d’établir un lien entre la dissémination des armes à feu dans le pays et la fusillade qui a semé en quelques secondes la mort et le chaos au lycée Marjory Stoneman Douglas de Parkland.
À l’inverse, M. Trump a insisté sur les perturbations mentales de Nikolas Cruz, en soulignant vouloir porter ses efforts sur le terrain de la prise en charge des personnes souffrant de troubles psychiques.
« Je vais me rendre en Floride aujourd’hui pour rencontrer des gens parmi les plus courageux sur Terre – mais des gens dont les vies ont été totalement anéanties », a tweeté le président.
M. Trump n’a pas précisé quand il allait rencontrer les victimes, mais il a prévu de se rendre dans sa résidence de Mar-a-Lago, qui se trouve non loin de Parkland, pour le long week-end de President’s Day.
En tout cas, il est attendu de pied ferme. Le long de la route vers le lycée, des pancartes récemment posées affichent : « No guns 4 kids » (« Pas d’armes pour les enfants »).
Voir par ailleurs:
Here we are.
In 1974, Israel endured the Ma’alot Massacre in which “Palestinian” terrorists took 115 people hostage at Netiv Meir Elementary School. Twenty-two children and three others were killed and 68 injured. Israel now requires schools with 100 or more students to have a guard posted. The civilian police force handles the entire security system of all schools from kindergarten through college. The Ministry of Education funds shelters and fences, reinforces school buses, and hires and trains guards.
And yeah, they’ve got guns.The lawful purposes for carrying guns are very clear: protect school personnel and students, create a sense of security, deter the ill-intentioned, and provide self-defense.
Common sense. Except to the illogical dullards who claim that “adding guns to schools won’t fix anything” and are fixated on the NRA and the ridiculous notions that gun laws magically stop criminals and crazy people from obtaining one of the 300 million guns in our country.
But more to the point, Israel’s Police Community & Civil Guard Department have a preventative care program that encourages safe behavior and offers violence protection strategies in normal situations. Yet students are also trained in how to respond to an active shooter situation.
Ben Goldstein, an American who made aliyah to Israel, and now serves as volunteer security and supporter of IDF soldiers, says America is behind the curve. Nevertheless, he says, it doesn’t take much for students and teachers to protect themselves.
“Barricade, barricade. Are desks movable? Is the teacher’s desk movable? Can they barricade inside of 20 seconds? If the shooter gets in, the kids should take whatever they’ve got and attack. They can’t just sit there frozen or they will die. America does earthquake drills, why not active shooter drills? More kids have been killed by shooters than earthquakes.”
Barricading works, says Goldstein.In an active shooter situation, where a gunman is roaming a campus, five minutes is a lifetime, enough time for law enforcement to get to the scene. “In those five minutes, the shooter will have to move from class to class, reload, clear malfunctions, all that stuff takes time. And during gunfire lulls, kids must be taught to do something. Don’t freeze.Moving once gets you out of that deer-in-headlights space. Take command of the classroom.”
There is no other way, says Goldstein, and “sometimes children must take matters into their own hands.If the school has no proper security – two guards in case one gets shot, and no active shooter protocol, and no doors to withstand an attack – then the child needs to run as fast as they can AWAY from the shooter.”
Because right now, America is the deer-in-headlights. Gun control debates are a distraction and impractical, and criminals ignore laws anyway.Crazy people are obviously not being dealt with properly – students at Parkland even predicted this would happen.
The only solution is for America to toughen up. We have a pugilist for a president, and that is long overdue. Now its time for President Trump to fight for our children by wielding government power in the proper manner, to do something that any reasoned American would agree with.
Instead of handing out participation trophies, let’s make our kids into the self-reliant, pro-active defenders of themselves and others.
Mr. President, the time is now.
If you think that our schools are under siege like never before, take a statistical trip back in time.
With the high school massacre in Parkland, Fla., several days gone but hardly forgotten, the time seems right to examine closely some of the statistical hype that made frightening news alongside details of the horrific shooting.
In print and on TV, Americans were bombarded with facts and figures suggesting that the problem of school shootings was out of control. We were informed, for example, that since 2013 there has been an average of one school shooting a week in the U.S., and 18 since the beginning of this year. While these statistics were not exactly lies or fake news, they involved stretching the definition of a school shooting well beyond the limits of most people’s imagination.
Everytown for Gun Safety reported that there have been 290 school shootings since the catastrophic massacre in Newtown, Conn., more than five years ago. However, very few of these were anything akin to Sandy Hook or Parkland. Sure, they all involved a school of some type (including technical schools and colleges) as well as a firearm, but the outcomes were hardly similar. Nearly half of the 290 were completed or attempted suicides, accidental discharges of a gun, or shootings with not a single individual being injured. Of the remainder, the vast majority involved either one fatality or none at all.
It is easy to believe that school shootings are the “new normal” as has been intimated, or that we are facing a crisis of epidemic proportions. When schools are placed on lockdown based on an active shooter alert (which many times is a false alarm), cable news channels immediately inform their viewers of the danger, and word is tweeted and retweeted to millions, most of whom have no direct connection to the event.
And when gunshots ring out, we hear the sounds replayed from cellphone recordings and watch through satellite feed as terrified survivors flee the scene. It makes a lasting impression, to be sure.
For all those who believe that schools are under siege like never before, it is instructive to take a statistical road trip back in time.
Since 1990, there have been 22 shootings at elementary and secondary schools in which two or more people were killed, not counting those perpetrators who committed suicide.
Whereas five of these incidents have occurred over the past five-plus years since 2013, claiming the lives of 27 victims (17 at Parkland), the latter half of the 1990s witnessed seven multiple-fatality shootings with a total of 33 killed (13 at Columbine).
In fact, the 1997-98 school year was so awful, with four multiple-fatality shooting sprees at the hands of armed students (in Pearl, Miss.; West Paducah, Ky.; Jonesboro, Ark.; and Springfield, Ore.), that then-President Clinton formed a White House expert committee to advise him. Nearly a decade later, President Bush convened a White House Conference on School Safety in the wake of multiple-fatality incidents during his administration.
Of course, I don’t mean to minimize any of the one-per week on average school shootings, but they should not be conflated with the most deadly but rare events.
Unfortunately, most readers and viewers don’t appreciate the distinction when statistics including non-fatal school shootings are cited whenever there is mass killing at a school.
Notwithstanding the occasional multiple-fatality shooting that takes place at one of the 100,000 public schools across America, the nation’s schools are safe. Over the past quarter-century, on average about 10 students are slain in school shootings annually.
Compare the school fatality rate with the more than 100 school-age children accidentally killed each year riding theirbikes or walking to school. Congress might be too timid to pass gun legislation to protect children, but how about a national bicycle helmet law for minors? Half of the states do not require them. There is no NRA — National Riding Association — opposing that.
I’m all for shielding our kids from harm. But let’s at least deal with the low hanging fruit while we debate and Congress does nothing about the role of guns in school shootings.
James Alan Fox is the Lipman Professor of Criminology, Law and Public Policy at Northeastern University, a member of USA TODAY’s Board of Contributors and co-author of Extreme Killing: Understanding Serial and Mass Murder.