By St. Louis Post-Dispatch

This past Saturday, an armed St. Louis resident on a bathroom break at a St. Charles QuikTrip shot and killed a knife-wielding robber, possibly saving the life of a store clerk. On Sunday, at an Indianapolis-area shopping mall, another armed civilian shot and killed a gunman who had just killed three others and could have killed more.

While both are cases of demonstrable courage and heroism, and might appear to vindicate the National Rifle Association’s much-touted “good guy with a gun” theory of addressing America’s violence epidemic, the triumphant chorus from some quarters should look at the facts. A New York Times analysis last month of how most active-shooter crises end drives home what a lightning strike these scenarios are. And the outrageous new details about the hundreds of good guys with guns (and badges) who failed for more than an hour to stop the grade school massacre in Uvalde, Texas, is instructive.

Recommended for you