Top Scoops

Book Reviews | Gordon Campbell | Scoop News | Wellington Scoop | Community Scoop | Search

 

Yet Another Mass Shooter Was A Military Veteran

Thursday yet another mass shooting was committed by a military veteran, this one in Milwaukee. Virtually all military veterans are not mass shooters. Many peace activists are veterans. Many everything under the sun are veterans. But mass shooters are very disproportionately military veterans.

Some mass shooters who are not veterans are acting out a pretense of being in the military and/or are using military weapons. Militarism impacts a society in many ways. But one of them is through the violence of veterans, people who have been trained and conditioned to engage in violence but not always guided successfully into nonviolent post-military life.

Among males aged 18-59 in the United States, 15% are veterans.

Among male mass-shooters aged 18-59 in the United States, 36% are veterans.

A mass shooter is well over twice as likely to be a veteran.

Were this statistic discovered with regard to any unrelated demographic feature, such as red hair or Hinduism, it would be huge news and a topic of intense widespread research. Yet, when it’s discovered that people who’ve been trained and conditioned to kill are more likely to kill (as obvious a connection as one might imagine) nobody cares.

Mother Jones magazine maintains a list of mass shootings here. I’ve modified it here. I’ve modified it in the following ways. I’ve added a column for veteran status. I’ve removed shootings by women or by men outside the age range that makes the statistical comparison possible. I’ve removed a shooting by a foreign-born shooter who could not have joined the U.S. military. This has reduced the list from 118 shootings to 103.

I have not counted as veterans shooters who had been security guards or prison guards unless they were in the military. I have not counted as veterans shooters who were on record describing their future crime in explicitly military terms as if participating in and referencing by name the U.S. military, unless I could determine that they had actually been in the U.S. military. I have not counted as veterans two men who tried to join the U.S. military and were rejected. I have not counted as a veteran one man who worked at a U.S. Navy base as a civilian. I have not counted as a veteran a man who attacked two military locations, despite the obvious role of the military in the crime.

For many of the shooters, I have not been able to determine veteran status one way or another — I have not counted any of those shooters as veterans.

I have included as veterans those trained by ROTC, whether or not they continued in the military beyond that. I have included one man who was a member of the Saudi military being trained by the U.S. military in the United States when he committed his crime.

If people trained and conditioned and given experience burning down buildings were found to be burning down buildings, I think someone would care.

Mother Jones is interested in the gender of the shooters, in their mental health history, and various other factors. None of these factors is a complete explanation of anything, any more or less than veteran status is. Yet they are of interest.

The problem in trying to interest people in the veteran factor, no doubt, is the war culture and the troop propaganda that engulfs the United States. These are reasons for the work of World BEYOND War, including something else that’s now in Milwaukee, namely this billboard:

 

David Swanson is an author, activist, journalist, and radio host. He is executive director of WorldBeyondWar.org and campaign coordinator for RootsAction.org. Swanson's books include War Is A Lie. He blogs at DavidSwanson.org and WarIsACrime.org. He hosts Talk Nation Radio. He is a 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019 Nobel Peace Prize Nominee.

Follow him on Twitter: @davidcnswanson and FaceBook.

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Top Scoops Headlines

 

Gordon Campbell: On The Use Of Existing Drugs To Reduce The Effects Of Coronavirus

So now, we’re all getting up to speed with the travel bans, the rigorous handwashing and drying, the social distancing, and the avoidance of public transport wherever possible. Right. At a wider level…so far, the public health system has ... More>>

Gordon Campbell: On Oil Market And Regulation Crusades

Safe to say, Vladimir Putin did not expect the response he has received amidships from the Crown Prince of Saudi Arabia. Earlier, Russia chose to walk away from the OPEC talks in Vienna that were aimed at reaching an agreement on how to reduce world oil production (and protect oil prices) in the light of the fall in demand being caused by the coronavirus. No doubt, Russia and its allies in the US shale industry probably glimpsed an opportunity to undercut OPEC and seize some of its customers. Bad move. In reply, Saudi Arabia has smashed the oil market by hugely ramping up production, signing up customers and drastically cutting the oil price in a fashion designed to knock Russia and other oil suppliers right out of contention. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On 22 Short Takes About Super Tuesday

With obvious apologies to the Simpsons….Here’s my 22 short takes on the 14 Super Tuesday primaries that combined yesterday to produce a common narrative –Bernie Sanders NOT running away with the nomination, Joe Biden coming back from the dead, and the really, really rich guy proving to be really, really bad at politics. In the months ahead, it will be fascinating to see if the real Joe Biden can live up to the idea of Joe Biden that people voted for yesterday – namely, the wise old guy who can save the country from the political extremism of the right and the left... More>>

Binoy Kampmark: Strong Man Legacies: Burying Mubarak

Reviled strongmen of one era are often the celebrated ones of others. Citizens otherwise tormented find that replacements are poor, in some cases even crueller, than the original artefact. Such strongmen also serve as ideal alibis for rehabilitation ... More>>

Caitlin Johnstone: Humanity Is Making A Very Important Choice When It Comes To Assange

The propagandists have all gone dead silent on the WikiLeaks founder they previously were smearing with relentless viciousness, because they no longer have an argument. The facts are all in, and yes, it turns out the US government is certainly and undeniably working to exploit legal loopholes to imprison a journalist for exposing its war crimes. That is happening, and there is no justifying it... More>>

Gail Duncan: Reframing Welfare Report

Michael Joseph Savage, the architect of the 1938 Social Security Act, wouldn’t recognise today’s Social Security Act as having anything to do with the kind, cooperative, caring society he envisioned 80 years ago. Instead society in 2020 has been reduced ... More>>


Gordon Campbell: On The Addiction To Chinese Student Fees

Last week, Australian PM Scott Morrison extended its ban on foreign visitors from or passing through from mainland China – including Chinese students - for a third week. New Zealand has dutifully followed suit, with our travel ban ... More>>

 
 
 
 
 


 
 
 
  • PublicAddress
  • Pundit
  • Kiwiblog