NEW ZEALAND #CHRISTCHURCH MASS SHOOTING LEAVES WORLD IN OUTRAGE
On March 15, New Zealand was hit by the deadliest mass shootings in its modern history, occurring consecutively across two different mosques in the city of Christchurch during Friday Prayer. Perpetrated by 28-year-old Australian-born personal trainer and self-confessed white supremacist Brenton Tarrant who was subsequently arrested and charged with murder, the attack took the lives of 50 people and left 50 others injured. What made it even more outrageous is that the gunman also livestreamed the first attack on Facebook Live, thereby utilizing social media to spread terror on a larger scale. World leaders and celebrities from all over the world took to Twitter to condemn the tragic incident and express their solidarity, prompting the #Christchurch hashtag to the top of Twitter’s worldwide trends throughout the day. In the wake of the incident, New Zealand sought to take immediate action in terms of strengthening its gun control policies, introducing a general ban on semi-automatic rifles. And while the relatively peaceful country surprisingly boasts one the world’s highest rates of gun ownership, it conversely ranks 172 out of 195 countries in terms of deaths from firearms per person.