Statement on Parkland, FL Shooting
It is a real tragedy that, almost every week so far this year, somewhere in this country a child has taken a gun to school and shot at his classmates. Because Nikolas Cruz, the alleged shooter in Florida, was able to get an assault weapon, he easily killed 17 people and injured many more.
By all accounts, this school was well prepared and staff members well trained for what has now become a sadly common occurrence in American schools. But all the training in the world cannot stop an angry teen or man with an assault weapon.
Reports indicate that, as so often is the case, there were numerous warning signs that Cruz was suffering terribly; he had even been expelled from school due to his history of violence.
While not every act of violence can be prevented, there’s every reason to believe this one could have been. We must demand accountability from our leaders. They must:
- Ban assault weapons for civilian use. A long overdue first step would be to keep assault weapons away from violent, traumatized young men and boys.
- Invest all the resources needed to identify traumatized children and help them heal.
- Ensure every child who needs it has access to high-quality mental health services.
- Take dating violence seriously. If he had been convicted of domestic violence, Cruz would have been prohibited from owning a gun. Other types of protective orders also could have prohibited his ownership of a gun. Yet none did.
We will not accept senseless violence like this. The inaction of our political leaders simply has to end. We deserve solutions and demand that they address this problem now.
Founder & President