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Forty-eight percent of Americans blame the mental health system “a great deal” for mass shootings in the U.S., unchanged from January 2011, according to a new Gallup poll.
At the same time, fewer blame easy access to guns now (40 percent) than two years ago (46 percent), which not makes the mental health system the perceived top cause of mass shootings.
Other cited causes, and the percentage of Americans who blame them for mass shootings, include:
- Drug use (37%)
- Violence in movies, video games, music lyrics (32%)
- Spread of extremist views on the Internet (29%)
- Insufficient security at public buildings, including businesses and schools (29%)
- Inflammatory language from prominent political commentators (18%)
Gallup conducted the poll Sept. 17-18, two days immediately after a shooting at the Washington Navy Yard in Washington, D.C., in which a lone gunman – a government contractor and former Navy reservist – killed 12 people.
Learn more about the poll here.