Mass shootings in the US are consistently followed by calls for action – and then political paralysis. That’s because people refuse to see nuance, experts say

In the week since the mass shooting in Las Vegas left nearly 60 people dead and hundreds injured, Americans have spoken out in outrage and grief, demanding action. They have asked, again: why can’t the US pass any gun control laws?

At the same time, just as they did after Sandy Hook and San Bernardino and Orlando, these passionate advocates have endorsed some gun control laws with very little evidence behind them, even some policies that experts have labeled “fundamentally not rational” or a “hysterical” violation of civil rights. The great bipartisan gun control victory of this year may be new restrictions on “bump stocks”, a “range toy” used to make a semi-automatic rifle fire more like a fully automatic rifle, which arguably should never have been legal in the first place. That won’t do much to reduce America’s more than 36,000 annual gun suicides, homicides, fatal accidents, and police killings.

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