- The Boston Globe featured coverage of the next mass shooting that is likely to take place in the US to make a point about how common such incidents have become.
- The political statement comes as the country continues to reel from Wednesday’s mass shooting at a high school in Florida, in which 17 people were killed and more than a dozen were injured.
- “There are only three things we don’t know about the next [shooting],” The Globe said. “Who, where, and how many?”
The front page of the Friday edition of The Boston Globe featured coverage of a mass shooting you’ve never heard of.
That’s because the shooting hasn’t happened yet.
Shootings are so frequent in the US that the columnist Nestor Ramos imagined what the next one would look like. It wasn’t hard because “mass shootings have become so familiar that they seem to follow the same sad script,” the article read.
“He will be a man, or maybe still a boy,” Ramos said. “He will have a semiautomatic rifle – an AR-15, or something like it – and several high-capacity magazines filled with ammunition. He will walk into a school, or a concert, or an office building. And he will open fire into a crowd of innocents.”
— The Boston Globe (@BostonGlobe) February 16, 2018
Ramos continued with his imagined scenario. The media will broadcast wall-to-wall coverage of the carnage, he predicted. Details about the shooter’s troubled past will emerge. Politicians will extend their thoughts and prayers to the families of the victims, drowning out calls for Congress to do something.
“There are only three things we don’t know about the next time,” Ramos conceded. “Who, where, and how many?”
After this week’s deadly shooting at high school in Parkland, Florida, people on social media started to note a familiar, depressing trend of not just how mass shootings tend to unfold, but also how the media and lawmakers in Washington usually respond.
Just before the end of the school day on Wednesday, 19-year-old Nikolas Cruz walked into Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School with an AR-15 and opened fire, killing 17 people and wounding over a dozen more. Cruz, who has been charged with 17 counts of premeditated murder, has confessed to police that he “began shooting students that he saw in the hallways and on school grounds,” The New York Times reported Friday.
Some students who survived the shooting have called on Congress to act on gun control.
“We need to dig out of this hole … there is something seriously wrong here,” David Hogg, a Stoneman Douglas student, said on CNN Thursday. “Some of our policymakers and some people need to look in the mirror and take some action because ideas are great, but without action, ideas stay ideas and children die.”
Mostly Democratic lawmakers have called for reforms as well, condemning Congress’ inaction.
“This happens nowhere else other than the United States of America,” Sen. Chris Murphy said Wednesday. “This epidemic of mass slaughter – this scourge of school shooting after school shooting. It only happens here not because of coincidence, not because of bad luck, but as a consequence of our inaction.”
Top Republicans, on the other hand, urged more caution.
“This is not the time to jump to some conclusion before we know the full facts, we’ve got a lot more information we need to know” House Speaker Paul Ryan said Thursday at a press conference. “But if someone if mentally ill is slipping through the cracks and getting a gun … if there are gaps there we need to fill those gaps.”