Today, The Washington Post ran a headline, “No, there haven’t been 18 school shootings in 2018. That number is flat wrong.” Actually, the number is not wrong – it just lacks some important context.
A group called Everytown for Gun Safety defines a school shooting as “any time a firearm discharges a live round inside a school building or on a school campus or grounds.” Using this definition, the statistic includes cases of guns being fired on school grounds even after hours or when class is not in session. In other words, they are using a literal definition of “school shooting,” as opposed to a colloquial one.
Naturally, weapons enthusiasts tried used this minor kerfuffle to support their argument. That’s odd to me. It’s like arguing, “People were just firing guns at schools, not actually shooting anyone else!” Even if that were true, is that really the country we want to live in?