What to Know Today

Patriot Academy wants to rewrite the Constitution. In the meantime, it’s teaching supporters to use handguns. Founded by a former member of the Texas Legislature, Patriot Academy began as a summer camp for 16- to 25-year-olds to learn a dubious, Christianized version of U.S. history. In the two decades since, Patriot Academy has expanded its reach and courses in pursuit of a larger goal: The organization, Laura Jedeed writes for The New Republic, “is engaged in a life-and-death struggle to rewrite America’s Constitution — and teaching its supporters how to defend themselves with a handgun, just in case.”

Reported threats to San Antonio schools more than doubled in 2022. Police data recorded 202 threats — including actual, rumored, and hoax threats — to area schools last year, compared with 79 in 2021. District officials told the San Antonio Express-News that they didn’t think the overall danger to campuses has changed, but rather that in the wake of the Uvalde mass shooting, there’s more incentive for individuals to report their suspicions.

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“They’re going to be changed forever”: The rising toll of gun violence on kids and teenagers. Young people in the U.S. are more likely to die by gunfire than any other way. In 2022, The New York Times reports, the chance that a shooting victim in New York City was a child was about one in 10 — at least 16 young New Yorkers were shot and killed last year. According to DCist, 18 teenagers in Washington, D.C., were killed by gunfire in 2022, more than double the previous year.

After surviving gun violence, former gang members fill in the gaps. April Roby-Bell, Larita Rice-Barnes, and Terra Jenkins still have battle scars from running with street gangs in East St. Louis, Illinois, during their youth. Today, the women are staunch advocates for families grieving loved ones lost to gun violence: They plan funerals, provide counseling, host rallies, and bring community members together to talk about solutions. “It doesn’t matter how you start,” Roby-Bell told Cara Anthony of Kaiser Health News, “but it matters how you finish.” 

Capital Gazette victims, families settle with newspaper’s parent companies for undisclosed amount. Survivors and family members of the five newspaper staffers killed in the 2018 shooting had sued The Baltimore Sun Co. and Tribune Publishing for negligence, The Baltimore Banner reports. The shooter, who pleaded guilty to five counts of murder and was given more than five life sentences without possibility of parole, had a long-standing grudge against the Gazette.

Data Point

1,667 — the total number of children and teenagers 17 and under who died by gunfire in 2022. In 2021, that number was 1,569. [Gun Violence Archive]