On Sunday, one or more gunmen started shooting into a crowd of people at a Mother’s Day parade in New Orleans. They have not yet been captured though video footage exists of one of them firing into the crowd and later police identified one person they are looking for.
What surprises me is that this attempt at mass killing has not received nearly the amount of news coverage as the Boston bombing. There are many similarities: a predictable gathering of a large number of people, an attempt to kill many of them, assailants who have not been immediately apprehended, and video footage of the crime. It is true that one difference is that fortunately no one has died so far in New Orleans and the number of injured is lower, but surely what makes both stories newsworthy is the common factor of an attempt to harm large numbers of random people at a festive gathering?
Is it that a bomb being used as a weapon, even if a crude homemade one, is inherently more frightening to people than using guns? It is true that gun killings in the US are pretty routine but surely an attempted massacre at a parade for Mother’s Day, of all things, is pretty sensational? Have we got so used to mass gun violence that we just yawn and move on?
Perhaps if the perpetrator(s) turns out to be a Muslim, then the media noise level will ratchet up.