"Since he was in middle school it was no surprise to anyone to hear that he was the shooter. Those talking about how we should not have ostracized him. You didn't know this kid," she screams, enraged "we did."
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That's Emma Gonzalez, the hero who has been attempting to solve the issue of gun violence and shootings in school. I wonder if she knows that violence and massacres can occur without guns when you push a powder keg to its brink. It seems she at least recognizes or perhaps is just tired of hearing, how this kid was allowed to slip through the cracks. The Parkland shooter was an orphan whose adoptive parents and sister had died, who was bullied in school and ostracized in his community. But Emma wants to make sure Parkland is "the last mass shooting." Ok, fine so when the kids bully an outsider to the breaking point it's going to be a fertilizer bomb in the back of a truck? Hate finds a way, whether it's the type of hate that manifests as physical violence or the psychological violence that can set off physical violence like the tragedy at Parkland.
"Time and time again, we reported him," she explains. I can imagine it now. Ugh, that weird loner kid is being a weird loner again, it's "not just a mental health issue" here, ostracizing loners isn't the problem and besides we're "blaming the victims for what is the shooter's fault." The gun shows, she says, the NRA are to blame, she says. Did the NRA bully Cruz? Did the gun shows ostracize him "since middle school?" And no, Emma, I wasn't paid by the National Rifle Association to point out that bullying kids is wrong and can create monsters.
She admits that Cruz was disturbed and blames "the neighbors" and "the gun shows" and, well, of course, the NRA was to blame. Bullying isn't the problem though. "He wouldn't have killed that many with a knife." Right, ok, you're right, so how about a flamethrower built from a generic lighter and some hairspray? Might not have been as many deaths, but certainly could have been some faces charred to the point that they were forever unrecognizable. Is that what you prefer Ms. Gonzalez?
This kid slipped through the cracks, the system failed him, no one reached out to him except for (judging by his Instagram) some very disturbed and disturbing people who took some sort of sick thrill in seeing a sick boy pushed far beyond anything resembling a safe limit. Emma admits he was ostracized, admits "everyone knew" the kid was the type to do this. Anyone with access to the net who could see his Instagram (a football player still in the school with his IG account private was bragging about his arsenal's size versus Cruz's). Was it the NRA's fault that no one noticed a bullied kid was torturing frogs and his only "virtual friends" were pushing him to further and further degrees of violent ideation?
Sure there were warning signs, but it wasn't their fault. It was the NRA, it was the gun shows. Sure the kids <i>all</i> knew he was a powder keg ready to go off, but "you didn't know the kid." That ostracism was for a reason. And who cares that there were multiple reports to the FBI about his disturbing YouTube posts. Let's blame the gun shows.