GUNS

Obama Gives An Exasperated 15th Mass Shooting Statement

President Obama has made 15 statements on mass shootings; his most recent messages have been politically charged

Dec 02, 2015 at 6:02 PM ET

When commenting on the mass shooting in San Bernardino, California, President Obama expressed exasperation and made no attempt to veil his political message.

Moments after his national security team briefed him on the unfolding tragedy, Obama sat down for an interview with CBS. He said: “We have a pattern now of mass shootings in this country that has no parallel anywhere else in the world, and there’s some steps we could take, not to eliminate every one of these mass shootings, but to improve the odds that they don’t happen as frequently, common-sense gun safety laws, stronger background checks.”

During his presidency, Obama has made or released statements on fifteen mass shootings in the U.S. President George W. Bush made no direct statement on mass shootings while he was in office.

Here are all the U.S. tragedies that Obama has commented on:

April 3, 2009: American Civic Association immigration center, Binghamton, New York 
June 1, 2009: Holocaust Museum Shooting, Washington, D.C.
November 5, 2009: Fort Hood, Texas
January 12, 2011: Public meeting held by U.S. Representative Gabrielle Giffords, Tucson, Arizona
April 20, 2012: Movie theater, Aurora, Colorado
August 5, 2012: Sikh temple, Oak Creek, Wisconsin
December 14, 2012: Sandy Hook Elementary School, Newtown, Connecticut
September 16, 2013: Navy Yard, Washington, D.C.
April 2, 2014: Fort Hood, Texas
April 13, 2014: Jewish community center, Overland Park, Kansas
February 10, 2015: Chapel Hill, North Carolina 
June 18, 2015: Emanuel AME Church, Charleston, South Carolina
October 1, 2015: Umpqua Community College, Roseburg, Oregon
November 28, 2015: Planned Parenthood clinic, Colorado Springs, Colorado
December 2, 2015: San Bernardino, California

Obama’s statements in these instances have grown progressively more depressing and political. In the wake of the Sandy Hook shooting, Obama stated: “We’ve endured too many of these tragedies in the past few years.” After the shooting in the Navy Yard he said: “We can’t accept this.” In the wake of the Charleston shooting he said, “At some point, we as a country will have to reckon with the fact that this type of mass violence does not happen in other advanced countries.”

After the Umpqua Community College shooting in October, the President didn’t attempt to conceal his political intentions: “So, tonight, as those of us who are lucky enough to hug our kids a little closer are thinking about the families who aren’t so fortunate, I’d ask the American people to think about how they can get our government to change these laws, and to save lives, and to let young people grow up.”

Wednesday’s statement didn’t carry as much emotional weight as the speech made after the Umpqua Community College shooting. Instead, the President appeared drained and disappointed. The delivery only made his message clearer: he’s tired of making political messages about mass shootings.