A much-heralded and widely cited study of 171 countries over nearly a half century purports to show more guns mean more mass shootings, but critics say the report uses bad methodology in a way that rigs the results.
The study by Adam Lankford, a criminal justice professor at the University of Alabama, was published in the journal Violence and Victims in January has been cited by media outlets — including The New Yorker, The Washington Post and Time magazine. But the study, formally published earlier this year after a draft was released in academic circles, has raised questions about what critics consider dubious methodology.
“The Lankford ‘study’ is nothing more than junk science disguised as research, and never should have been published in a responsible scholarly journal,” Florida State University criminology professor Gary Kleck told FoxNews.com.
The study, titled “Public Mass Shooters and Firearms: A Cross-National Study of 171 Countries,” concluded that “The United States and other nations with high firearm ownership rates may be particularly susceptible to future public mass shootings, even if they are relatively peaceful or mentally healthy according to other national indicators.”