Remember The Time John Oliver And John Howard Told The US To Step Up Its Gun Control?

There have been over 1,000 mass shootings in the US since this episode aired.

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In 2013, a young upstart called John Oliver appeared in a three-part series on The Daily Show about gun control. Do you remember it? You probably do. The segment involved Oliver interviewing former Australian Prime Minister John Howard about his introduction of sweeping gun control laws in the wake of the Port Arthur massacre.

Mass shootings (which are commonly defined as four or more people being killed in a single event) are often presented as the root of America’s gun problem. In actuality, many more gun-deaths are results of suicide, single person homicides, accidents and police shootings, but mass shootings are still a huge problem — there have been 138 of them in the US alone this year, and it’s not even July yet.

According to the Gun Violence Archive (a site that uses law enforcement and government information to collate this kind of data) there have been at least 1087 mass shootings in the US since this episode of The Daily Show aired in 2013. According the CDC, gun violence accounts for about 100,000 deaths a year. The New York Times has reported that Americans are now equally as likely to be killed by a gun as they are to die in a car crash.

As always, one of the tragedies of the Orlando shooting is the incredulity that this could happen in 2016 — how is it still so easy to buy a gun? What unimaginable horror needs to occur to change gun control laws? Perhaps one of the most stinging and desperately sad critiques came from the parents of a child who was killed in the 2012 Sandy Hook mass shooting: “I am sorry that our tragedy here in Sandy Hook wasn’t enough to save your loved ones”.

Just last week in Indiana, President Obama criticised the lack of restrictions on the sale of guns and expressed frustration that it’s easier to put someone on the no-fly list than stop them from buying a gun.

Here are the other parts of Oliver’s original segment from three years ago: