On Wednesday, 19 students and faculty members at Stoneman High School were shot and killed by gunman Nikolas Cruz. Cruz was a former student at the Parkland, Florida high school and was labeled as a threat and not allowed on campus. He was expelled due to disciplinary issues with his teachers and classmates.
In September of 2017, six months before the mass shooting occurred, the Federal Bureau of Investigation was warned about Cruz and his behavior both online and physically. He posted pictures on Instagram with knives and firearms.
While conducting an interview with local Parkland news, a student said, “We all predicted he was gonna shoot up the whole school.” The Associated Press reported security guards were in the high school at the time of the shooting, but did not act accordingly.
Let’s get this straight. If you’ve seen the narrative of the amount of school shootings there’s been this year, you’ve been fooled. Mainstream media outlets such as NPR, CNN, and MSNBC have claimed that there has been a total of 18 school shootings thus far in 2018.
So far, there have been only two mass shootings: Benton, Kentucky and Parkland, Florida.
1.) A man committed suicide using a gun in an elementary school parking lot when the school was closed and there were no children present in Clinton County, Mich., on Jan. 3.
2) Shots were fired at New Start High School near Burien, Wash., on Jan. 4. No one was hurt or injured, and no suspects were apprehended.
*3) A 32-year-old man shot a pellet gun at a school bus, shattering a window, in Forest City, Iowa, on Jan. 6. No injuries were reported, and the suspect was apprehended.
4) A Grayson College student confused a real gun with a training gun and accidentally fired a bullet into a wall on Jan. 10. No injuries were reported.
5) A 14-year-old seventh-grade student shot and killed himself inside the bathroom of Coronado Elementary School in Cochise County, Ariz., on Jan. 10.
6) Gunshots were fired at a campus building at Cal State San Bernardino on Jan. 10. No injuries were reported.
7) Two people in a car exchanged gunfire at a Wiley College dorm parking lot on Jan. 15. No deaths or injuries were reported and no suspects were arrested, however, one bullet was fired into a dorm room with three students inside.
8) A Winston-Salem State University football player was shot and killed at a sorority party following an argument in Winston-Salem, N.C., on Jan. 20.
9) A 16-year-old male student shot a 15-year-old female student in the cafeteria at Italy High School in Italy, Texas, on Jan. 22. While the victim was injured, she was expected to make a full recovery. The shooter was arrested and charged with two counts of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon. This one we would probably all refer to as a proper “school shooting.”
10) An unknown assailant in a pickup truck drove by the NET Charter High School in Gentilly, La., and shot at a group of students on Jan. 22. A 14-year-old boy was initially thought to have suffered a gunshot graze, but it turned out to be an abrasion.
11) A 15-year-old male student shot and killed two students and wounded 18 others at Marshall County High School in Benton, Ky., on Jan. 23. The shooter was apprehended. This is a mass shooting.
12) A 16-year-old student fired a gun at another 16-year-old student during an altercation at Murphy High School in Mobile, Ala., on Jan. 25. No injuries were reported and the suspect was taken into custody.
13) Shots were fired in the parking lot during an altercation between two nonstudents during a basketball at Dearborn High School in Dearborn, Mich., on Jan. 26. No injuries were reported, and no suspects were arrested.
14) A 32-year-old man was shot and killed in the parking lot outside Lincoln High School in Philadelphia, Penn., on Jan. 31 during what police believed to be an altercation between students from rival schools. No suspects were arrested.
15) A 12-year-old female student accidentally fired a real gun thinking it was a fake gun. Four students were injured, including one who suffered a gunshot wound to the head, at Sal Castro Middle School in Los Angeles on Feb. 1. The 12-year-old girl was taken into custody.
16) A teenage boy was shot in the chest and nearly killed by another student who conspired with the boy’s ex-girlfriend in the parking lot of Oxon Hill High School in Oxon Hill, Md., on Feb. 5. The suspect was taken into custody and charged with attempted murder.
17) A third-grade student pulled the trigger of a police officer’s holstered weapon at the Harmony Learning Center in Maplewood, Minn., on Feb. 5. No injuries were reported.
18.)A 17-year-old student was arrested after firing a gun into the floor of a classroom of Metropolitan High School in the Bronx, N.Y., on Feb. 8.
19) The shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., on Wednesday that left 17 dead. (Per WashingtonExaminer)
What the MSM is attempting to do is change the definition and your point of view to what a school shooting REALLY is. Now, even though gun crime has dwindled exceptionally, mass shooting have gone up. It seems that every time a mass shooting ensues, Twitter immediately explodes and chooses to take the ‘no more guns’ path. It’s out of the reach of simple, public policy.
We have seen time and time again, like the Manchin-Toomey Bill, the Automatic Gunfire Prevention Act, and the Assault Weapons Ban, have failed because, one, it contains more holes than swiss cheese, and two, it’s not the bill that’s failing.
You see, mass shootings are extremely premeditated; attacks are planned months and months in advance. Nikolas Cruz wore a gas mask and took smoke grenades to set of the fire alarm so kids could streamline into the hallways.
When policies blunder, like the ones above, citizens have the right to have a say. But this is where it stops. It’s the policies that fail. And like we’ve seen on countless occasions, people, not policies, could’ve made a difference. The Columbine School Shooting happened because there was no security presence. Sandy Hook, the Monterrey school shooting, you name it. There are warning signs everywhere. People could’ve made a difference.
San Bernardino perpetrators Syed Farook and Tashfeen Malik spent over a year planning their attack. Their neighbors suspected ‘suspicious activity’, but were afraid to report it. That’s where the people factor comes in.
Whether you believe it’s guns that are the sole dispute of all occurrences, the majority are mental health issues.
The family of Sandy Hook murderer Adam Lanza said it was ‘very difficult to even speak to him’. He lived in complete isolation while blocking one if they tried to enter his room and even closed off his windows with black plastic bags.
Sutherland Springs church assailant Devin Patrick Kelley was brimming with alarms and missed opportunities. If a security presence was at the church, the scenario would’ve changed drastically. Kelley showed many signs of aggression and was ‘fascinated with mass murders’. In fact, he once put a gun to his ex-wife’s head, saying “Do you want to die?”
Seung-Hui Cho, the Virginia Tech killer, was known to be greatly troubled. He stalked and threatened female schoolmates on a day to day basis. In 2005, a court ruled that he was “an imminent danger to others,” but he was released for outpatient care.
Orlando nightclub shooter Omar Mateen was investigated by the FBI twice, and was found to be affiliated with middle eastern terrorist groups Hezbollah and Al-Qaeda.
The list could extend until you run out of breath. Simply put, the idea of mental health or political radicalization is so common, with events like the Las Vegas massacre, that it distributes mass shootings into a revolving door.
Every time an event, like the Stoneman High School, happens, we cannot deflect the event to Washington. For one, it gets old very easily. For two, us, as Americans, are still the most vigilant in whatever community we live in. Nicolas Cruz is an excellent example. He bombarded his Instagram feed with weapons of all sorts. If you believe that that is just a teenage phase we all go through, you’re the one who is mentally ill.
Coming from a teenager, like so, I can tell you: that is not a teenage phase. It is not an obsession or hobby a teenager has. It’s a mental issue that aims to harm others. As a child, you’ve been taught to ‘mind your own business’ and whatnot, but this isn’t casual, everyday business. This is a child’s life.
Sexual predators like Harvey Weinstein, Larry Nassar, and Matt Lauer didn’t have good, tough people around them to summon an ounce of courage and prevent someone from being traumatized for the rest of their lives. We didn’t need better bills or policies to prevent this. We needed and continue to need better people.
It is not guns. It is people. It is mental health. It is courage. It is vigilance. It is security. Adding security and reinforcing security measurements to prevent an act like Wednesday’s is crucial. It could be training and arming teachers, employing already trained veterans, or metal detectors, eliminating ones 2nd Amendment right is never going to receive bipartisan support whatsoever.
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Jorge Velasco is founder and CEO of theDailyLead.