So, just like macabre clockwork.
With Thursday’s mass shooting at the Borderline Bar and Grill in Thousand Oaks, California, there were routine calls for more gun control from the liberal media machine. During their evening broadcasts, CBS and NBC tried to scare the wits out of their viewers by dubiously claiming that there had been 307 mass shooting this year alone, or almost one a day.
But that was a lie.
In a deeply condescending report to end the CBS Evening News, national correspondent Jim Axelrod suggested this latest shooting “reminds us the range of ‘I can’t believe it happened here’ targets is ever-widening, beyond just campuses and workplaces.”
“If we define four or more victims as a mass shooting, then the Boardline attack is the 307th mass shooting this year. Let that number sink in– 307. There have been 11 mass shootings just between Pittsburgh and last night,” he asserted.
In a very “I told you so” tone, Axelrod concluded his report chiding: “Be frustrated, angry, or despairing that it does. Just don’t any longer be surprised.”
Meanwhile, on NBC Nightly News, anchor Lester Holt huffed about how, “less than two weeks ago, we were reporting from the scene of another mass shooting in Pittsburgh.” “In fact, folks, there has been a mass shooting almost every day this year. Stephanie Gosk has more on this seemingly endless cycle.”
After he handed off to Gosk, she too reported that mass shooting-a-day claim. “There have been 307 mass shootings with four or more people shot. 328 people killed, and the year is not over,” she warned viewers.
What they were claiming was false.
According to The Washington Post, there have not been 307, there were 158 mass shootings (or just over half). But that wasn’t 158 mass shootings this year, it was 158 since August 1, 1966! The report was a running tally updated as mass shootings occurred.
But what caused the gross disparity? It’s because The Post’s calculation used what any reasonable person would: “It looks at the 158 shootings in which four or more people were killed by a lone shooter (two shooters in a few cases). It does not include shootings tied to gang disputes or robberies that went awry, and it does not include domestic shootings that took place exclusively in private homes.”
“A broader definition would yield much higher numbers,” they noted. “This tally begins Aug. 1, 1966, when a student sniper fired down on passersby from the observation deck of a clock tower at the University of Texas.”
This wasn’t the first time the two networks were caught pushing bogus mass shooting statistics to scare their viewers. Earlier this year, CBS and NBC (along with ABC) pushed an anti-gun group’s lie that the Parkland shooting was the 18th school shooting this year when it was only a month-and-a-half old.
But it was The Post that proved them wrong back then too. “The figure originated with Everytown for Gun Safety, a nonprofit, co-founded by Michael Bloomberg, that works to prevent gun violence and is most famous for its running tally of school shootings,” they wrote. “Everytown has long inflated its total by including incidents of gunfire that are not really school shootings.”
Again, like macabre clockwork.