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20151203
We don’t yet know what set off this latest bloodbath, but we know a lot about gun violence in America.

By all accounts, up until the very moment he opened fire, Syed Farook, one of the two alleged perpetrators of America’s latest gun-slaughter, was what the gun lobby lionizes as a “good guy with a gun.” Farook, along with his wife, Tashfeen Malik, allegedly killed 14 people at his office’s holiday party in San Bernardino, California, on Wednesday—the 355th mass shooting on the 336th day of 2015. But the couple had had no previous contacts with the law, according to San Bernardino Police Chief Jarrod Burguan. Neighbors and co-workers described Farook as quiet and polite. He had held a stable, middle-class job as a food inspector for five years. Patrick Baccari, who shared a cubicle with Farook, told the Los Angeles Times that the Illinois native and his family appeared to be “living the American dream.”

It remains a possibility that this was an act of Islamic terrorism. CBS reports that the couple had stockpiled 12 pipe-bombs and thousands of rounds of ammunition in their suburban home. But the fact that Farook shot up his co-workers wasn’t on the radar of counter-terrorism officials and that no group has claimed responsibility for the attack doesn’t appear to fit the pattern. Multiple overlapping motives for their rampage could be at play. Regardless of what motive ultimately comes out, the reality is that Muslims have committed only a minuscule fraction of the mass shootings in this country.................

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