The New York Daily News made three major mistakes over the weekend. The first was joining all the liberal Anthony Jeselnik wannabes in mocking prayer and people who pray. The second, while not related to politics, illustrated the kind of crappy people the NYDN employs, as they made fun of Mets GM Sandy Alderson for having cancer. Third, they suggested that Nicholas Thalasinos was just as much to blame for the San Bernardino shootings because he was a Messianic Jew and politically conservative.
It’s important to place this weekend’s Hail Mary by the NYDN into some financial context. They are, basically, screwed. They have gone through massive layoffs in the last year and as a last ditch attempt at staying afloat, have ditched their NY-centric tabloid model in favor of an Internet tabloid model that will increasingly not focus on New York City. The end result of this is that they are desperate for clicks from any source to stay afloat. And if the choice between anger clicks and no clicks is the choice between staying afloat and bankruptcy, then the NYDN choses anger clicks. Keep that in mind as you decide whether to click on any of the links in the first paragraph.
So to address all of the controversy caused by at least one of their weekend screw ups, the NYDN has decided to respond with juvenile sarcasm instead of facts. This, allegedly, is the cover for today:
I guess it’s supposed to be facially obvious to everyone who reads the NYDN that everything is not awesome with respect to guns, an impression that you are supposed to have from getting your “news” from the NYDN.
The main problem, of course, is that the NYDN is resorting to sarcasm because they don’t have actual facts on their side. Because the truth is that while there have been many more media-sensationalized killings this year, with respect to gun violence overall, everything IS pretty awesome. In fact, gun violence in America is way, way down, as the Washington Post reported this weekend:
Premeditated mass shootings in public places are happening more often,some researchers say, plunging towns and cities into grief and riveting the attention of a horrified nation. In general, though, fewer Americans are dying as a result of gun violence — a shift that began about two decades ago.
In 1993, there were seven homicides by firearm for every 100,000 Americans, according to a Pew Research Center analysis of data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. By 2013, that figure had fallen by nearly half, to 3.6 — a total of 11,208 firearm homicides. The number of victims of crimes involving guns that did not result in death (such as robberies) declined even more precipitously, from 725 per 100,000 people in 1993 to 175 in 2013.
Older data suggests that gun violence might have been even more widespread previously. The rate of murder and manslaughter excluding negligence reached an apex in 1980, according to the FBI. That year, there were 10.8 willful killings per 100,000 people. Although not a perfect measure of the overall rate of gun violence, the decline in the rate of murder and manslaughter is suggestive: Two in three homicides these days are committed with guns.
I don’t think anyone has taken the “News” portion of “New York Daily News” seriously for quite some time now, but as long as they’re going to keep “News” in the title they should trouble themselves to do at least a little bit of investigation into actual facts. This used to be what reporters were, you know, paid for, and failure to do so overall is a major reason why there are fewer and fewer around. Especially at the offices of the New York Daily News