Mass shootings, and casualties from them, are increasing in America

Opposition to gun control is fierce in the US.
Opposition to gun control is fierce in the US.
Image: Reuters/Joshua Roberts
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Late Wednesday (March 9) in the US state of Pennsylvania, two gunmen ambushed a backyard party, killing five and injuring three. Four of those killed, and one of the injured, were women. The gunmen ran away and are still at large. The shooting occurred in Wilkinsburg, a suburb of Pittsburgh.

Before the Pennsylvania shooting, the US had 61 mass shootings in 2016, with 91 dead and 216 injured, according to Mass Shooting Tracker. The latest incident brings the death toll to 96. This year’s totals so far are higher than in any of the previous three years for each category up until March 9. Each year has experienced a steady stream of shootings.

Mass shootings are a regular occurrence in the US, which has far more of them than most developed nations in part because of its relatively lax gun laws—and fierce opposition to gun control.

On Feb. 25, a gunman killed three and injured 14 in a shooting rampage in Hesston, Kansas at the factory that employed him. The weekend before that an Uber driver in Kalamazoo, Michigan shot and killed six people. In December 2015, over a dozen people were killed at a shooting in San Bernardino, California.