Neil deGrasse Tyson
has issued an apology on Facebook
after coming under fire for a controversial reaction to the recent mass shootings in El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio. The scientist and television personality originally posted the following comment on Twitter
: “In the past 48 hours, the USA horrifically lost 34 people to mass shootings. On average, across any 48 hours, we also lose 500 to medical errors, 300 to the flu, 250 to suicide, 200 to car accidents, 40 to homicide via handgun. Often our emotions respond more to spectacle than to data.”
Tyson’s response sparked backlash as many social media users felt his comment diminished the tragedies of the two mass shootings. The August 3 shooting took place at a Walmart
in El Paso, Texas, and left 20 dead and more than two dozen people wounded. A second shooting occurred August 4 in Dayton, Ohio, killing nine people and leaving 26 others injured.
“My intent was to offer