U.S. Senator Chris Murphy writes in a commentary published by the Washington Post that in United States “we choose to be an increasingly distant outlier of exceptional violence.”
On awful, gut-churning days such as Monday, I find it important to remind myself that mass shootings happen almost nowhere else but the United States. As we become normalized to the regular pace of massive, execution-style killings–Sandy Hook, Charleston, Orlando and now Las Vegas–it’s critical to understand that the Groundhog Day phenomenon of horrific mass shootings is exclusive to the United States. I find consolation in this fact, because if the problem is particularly American, then the solution can be, too.
Thus far, though, our response to regular mass slaughter has been, quite frankly, uniquely un-American. Our nation, in a short quarter-millennium, catapulted itself to global preeminence by solving the world’s greatest problems and exporting those solutions to the rest of the world. Participatory democracies. Open economies. Web-based communication. All American innovations to the great conundrums of the globe.
But when it comes to perhaps the oldest and most important human concern–the fear of physical harm–the United States does not lead. In fact, we choose to be an increasingly distant outlier of exceptional violence.
Full commentary here.