However, the above analysis is based on the absolute numbers of incidents and victims. What about the per capita figures?
This analysis took all of about twenty minutes to do in Excel and resulted in conclusions very different from those offered by the Science for Us blog. The data suggests that there are more victims and incidents today than in previous decades, though that fact is probably more related to the growth in the US population than an increased propensity toward mass shootings. However, it does seem that mass shootings have been (on average) getting more and more deadly.
Nevertheless, one should not lose sight of the fact that these events have not declined along with the firearm homicide rates and could still be considered to occur far more frequently than is desirable. Motivation for sensible gun control measures and other changes to public policy does not rely on discovering a growing epidemic in the data but simply the belief that such needless violence could be prevented. Research continues to suggest that lax regulations combined with a strong "gun culture" contributes significantly to America's incredibly high rate of firearm related crime (compared to other countries). Gun violence, of course, is a complex issue that I think is not simply solved by restricting access but also providing better economic and political opportunities to those Americans more likely to be both the perpetrators and victims of gun violence (e.g., poor minorities). Furthermore, it is not just a civilian issue, police in this country shoot and kill far more citizens than other countries and are increasingly militarized to boot. Regardless, I will save a more in-depth analysis of gun violence for another post.