The last casino on the Vegas Strip, before Las Vegas Boulevard becomes the highway to Los Angeles, is Mandalay Bay and the Luxor with its burnished glass pyramid and the plaster sphinx. Facing the Egypt-themed hotel is where the sniper chose to execute his massacre.
The first police bulletins came in shortly after midnight, local time, and continued into the night. The death toll rose until it became “the worst mass shooting in the modern history of the United States.” That dismal record surpasses the previous one set just last June, when 49 people were killed in a gay nightclub in Orlando.
The trickle of mournful statistics underscores how mass shootings occur with chilling regularity in America and resurfaces that exasperating question: What’s causing this homegrown social psychopathy? In the phenomenon of mass murder, whose catalog is augmented each year by more gloomy statistics, innocent victims are killed in schools, public squares, means of transit and churches.