Published at The Nation, February 2018.
There’s a popular myth that mass shootings are the work of “madmen,” and that keeping guns out of the hands of mentally ill people via discriminatory policy decisions will resolve the ongoing epidemic of gun violence in the United States. This misconception persists despite the fact that it’s blatantly inaccurate: Mass shootings account for less than 1 percent of gun deaths in the United States (by the FBI’s definition of four or more deaths in one incident). Moreover, a 2015 analysis of 235 mass murders, including shootings, found just 46 mentally ill perpetrators; factors like “rage,” “hostility,” and being “disgruntled” were more common than mental-health conditions.
Read more at The Nation.