The lone gunman with the bewildering arsenal, the stories of heroism and tragic death, the queues outside blood banks, the ubiquitous thoughts and prayers, the rising gun stocks and surging gun sales, the visit by the President, a memorial.

Repeat. It's all such a sorry routine.

Las Vegas took me back to my own memories of Oregon, Orlando, and the numerous shootings I covered while reporting in the United States.

It was 18 months ago, standing in the heat outside the taped-off Pulse nightclub, that I decided I might be ready to move home for a bit.


Sandy Hook was the worst. That was the moment; the horror that I was sure would bring about change.

But 20 middle-class kids were each shot in the face and America's lawmakers picked their loyalties.

They cynically waited until the world's media was distracted by the Boston Marathon bombing to comprehensively reject the proposed changes to federal gun laws in the US.

I've said before that I've given up on change. There's no way to reason with insanity.

Some pledge the Second Amendment and some push a ludicrous personal safety argument. But it's money that stops America from coming to its senses. The power of the gun-lobby. There's no way to reason with cash.

The only way anyone ever changes their mind from adamantly pro-gun to pro-regulation is if they're personally affected and traumatised by an avoidable act of gun violence.

People need to run for their lives.

They need family members to fall, or to witness bullets hitting flesh before they'll change minds.


I'm always depressed by whoever comes out and says now isn't the time to talk politics.

More than 30 people are murdered by guns every day in America, so if grief is any reason for politicians to bite their tongues we'd never be out of mourning. Las Vegas might break the macabre record for mass death, but statistically the massacre amounted to a normal weekend.

There was one image in Las Vegas that oddly stayed with me. It wasn't a body, or a Swat team, or survivors smeared with blood. It was a grim report from the casino floor inside the Mandalay Bay Resort.

The morning after the massacre, with survivors still staggering about the venue, a handful of lonely punters fed money into the slots. Yes indeed, some things never change.