Most days there’s an alert on my phone: Washington DC Police post an update on the latest shooting in the American capital.

‘Shooting’

‘Suspect arrested’

‘hospitalized victim’

Here is the latest, from the Washington Police Department, released a few hours ago: “An arrest has been made and additional suspects are being sought for a felony of assault with a dangerous weapon (pistol) that occurred on 10/9/22, in 2600 block of Birney Place, southeast.”

Note that they don’t even call it a shooting anymore. It’s “an assault with a dangerous weapon (pistol)…”

My son’s school sent an urgent email to the parents on Friday.

We were being informed that another nearby school had gone “into isolation” (yes, schools in America do that sort of thing) because gunshots had been heard. It turned out that these were not shots in the school itself, but in the vicinity (in the relative scales of severity of the shot, of course it is better or less bad).

Now I don’t go anywhere without checking where the exits are. I did this today at my son’s swim class. Two exits: one rear and one side.

It is absolute madness. What a way to live.

But then just look at the stats. It’s truly astounding and an all-American problem. Yes, there are mass shootings elsewhere – the horror of events in Thailand just a few weeks ago reminds us of that.

But America’s problem with guns is an isolated one.

This last shoot at Club Q in Colorado marks the 26th American mass shooting this month, according to the Gun Violence Archive which records gun-related violence in the United States.

This year there were a total of 601* mass shootings in America represent a steady increase year over year. In 2014 there were fewer than 300.

Here is the breakdown:

2014: 273

2015: 336

2016: 383

2017: 348

2018: 336

2019: 417

2020: 610

2021: 690

2022:601

This year, nearly 40,000 Americans have been killed in gun-related incidents (including homicides, accidents, and suicides).

By the time you read this, all those figures will be obsolete.

America has a big, big problem.

*a mass shooting is defined as a shooting in which four or more people are killed or injured.

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