On Wednesday, the satirical news website posted that story 21 times, filling most of its homepage. Each article referenced a different shooting, with the most recent incident at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas — where 19 children and two teachers were killed — at the top. Other articles had datelines for Atlanta, Indianapolis, Boulder, and others.
In every story, a different resident says the same quote: “This was a terrible tragedy, but sometimes these things just happen and there’s nothing anyone can do to stop them.”
Jason Roeder, formerly a senior editor at The Onion, first wrote the headline back in 2014, but it has been shared widely across social media following mass shootings in the years since.
“The time to stop the next shooting is right now and you are doing nothing,” he said. “You said this is not predictable. This is totally predictable.”
The Onion’s story about the Uvalde shooting ended with the same closing sentence as the other 21 stories about mass shootings: “At press time, residents of the only economically advanced nation in the world where roughly two mass shootings have occurred every month for the past eight years were referring to themselves and their situation as ‘helpless.'”