You might have expected bigger play for a news story reporting that gun homicides in the United States fell a whopping 39 percent between 1993 and 2011. That is one of the findings from a study released this month by the Bureau of Justice Statistics, an arm of the U.S. Department of Justice. You can find the government study online here.
Seattle-area newspaper readers interested in gun rights could easily have overlooked the Seattle Times news story, which appeared low on an inside page. The Washington Post gave the story more prominent play, along with another story about a private study which showed an even bigger drop – 49 percent – in gun homicides.
Why didn’t we hear more about this report from news organizations?
Many in the pro-gun community would almost reflexively say that news reporters, editors, and broadcasters are consciously and deliberately engaged in suppressing news that might show guns in a favorable light. That’s not it, and I speak from my perspective as a former reporter and editor for a major Pacific Northwest daily newspaper. There is no conspiracy in the newsroom. Continue reading