NRA (No Rational Accusation) to blame
For argument sake, let us just imagine for a moment that the school shooting tragedy in Florida was the fault of an inanimate object, the AR 15. Or the fault originates from the ability of American citizens, who law abiding, to acquire such an object. The question then becomes, how did an individual such as Nikolas Cruz slip through the National Instant Criminal Background Check System, NICS, and purchase the gun he used to murder all those students?
Nikolas Cruz should have had a rap sheet that could choke a giraffe. For years before Cruz gunned down classmates and teachers, police were called to help deal with his violent outbursts and threats. The incident reports show over 40 calls were placed to the sheriff’s office in South Florida in which deputies were sent to Cruz’s residence. These reports describe Cruz as suffering from mental illness and being on behavioral medication. One recent incident, the police were called after Cruz had attacked the son of a family friend. He was also disciplined for an assault at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High that ultimately led to Cruz being expelled.
If this behavior had been handled properly by law enforcement and the court system it would have shown up in his background check and stopped him from acquiring firearms. So why wasn’t he run through the legal meat grinder for his indiscretions? We can look directly to the Obama Administration’s “Promise Program” (Preventing Recidivism through Opportunities, Mentoring, Interventions, Support, and Education) which seems to be little more than a “Promise” to create justification to strip us of our constitutional rights.
Under the direction of education secretary Arne Duncan and Attorney General Eric Holder, the Obama-era Departments of Education and Justice issued school guidelines (the Promise Program) that claimed students of color are “disproportionately impacted” by suspensions and expulsions that were deemed discriminatory. According to the directive, any school district whose disciplinary history showed “disparate impact” — affecting disproportionately a greater number of minority students — would be open to investigation by the Departments of Justice and Education, regardless of the severity of the behavior leading to the discipline. Beginning in 2013, Broward stopped referring students to police for over a dozen infractions ranging from substance abuse to bullying, harassment, and assault.
Think about that for a moment. What the Obama Administration was telling schools, it doesn’t matter what the students do, how serious the infraction, if you report the incident you are opening your school district up for federal government scrutiny. The Broward County School administration entered into an agreement in 2013 to pursue the “least punitive means of discipline” against students. Within a year student arrest rates were down 66 percent and the Broward County Schools were in line to hit the federal government jackpot. There wasn’t a reduction in crime, there was a reduction in enforcement.
So just how deeply involved is the Obama Administration in this tragedy. The Promise Program is a collaborative agreement that provides incentives for schools and law enforcement to falsify records, ignore evidence, and commit numerous acts of malfeasance, misfeasance, and nonfeasance in order to manipulate crime statistics and thereby qualify the school for more federal money. Superintendent Robert Runcie was hired in 2011 and paid $335,000 per year to oversee this program. In the case of Broward County Public Schools, the payout to ignore criminal behavior, such as that committed by Nikolas Cruz, was 53 million federal taxpayer dollars.
So tell me again how this tragedy if the fault of the National Rifle Association as Emma Gonzalez, the poster child (key word here is “child”) for the student anti-gun movement has claimed? Because this girl is a student at the school, she is bestowed the status of “Absolute Moral Authority.” She is immune to criticism. Her word is the gospel. It doesn’t matter that her musings lack intellectual integrity or rational justification. The mere fact that she directs the blame toward an organization that does little else but support a constitutionally guaranteed inalienable right, proves what meager understanding of our governmental system she possesses and what insignificance she places on identifying the true culprits and finding solutions. She is merely a political pawn being moved around the board by leftist handlers.
Throughout history in almost every society, there has been a consistent appreciation earned by experiencing the struggles of life, accumulated knowledge, and maturity of character that elevates our elders to a position of honor and respect. Just because helicopter parents allow their lives to revolve around their children thus creating generations whose sense of entitlement and hubris is seemingly endless, is no reason for society to take these neophytes seriously. Any politician (John Kasich) who succumbs to the pressure of a bunch of snot-nosed school children who have exhibited a profound ignorance of the issues at hand and believe that screeching to the media is a viable replacement for intelligent discourse should be run out of town. George Washington, one who legitimately earned “Absolute Moral Authority” once stated, “A free people ought not only to be armed, but disciplined; to which end a uniform and well-digested plan is requisite; and their safety and interest require that they should promote such manufactories as tend to render them independent of others.” Perhaps the sentiment is better professed by George Mason, father of the Bill of Rights, “To disarm the people is the most effectual way to enslave them.”
Today, many children are not held accountable as they are growing up. The progressive push towards moral relativism has blurred the lines between right and wrong. Parents go to extraordinary measures to pass the blame from their kids to everybody and everything instead of teaching their children there are consequences to their actions. Then when one of these kids flies off the rails and does something truly horrible, they continue the blame game in this case towards the AR15 and the NRA.
Hopefully, sanity will win the day and these political hacks will fade into obscurity where they belong. Contrary to what Gonzalez is spewing, the blame for this tragedy belongs squarely at the feet of the Obama Administration, the Broward County sheriff’s department and schools, and parents who refuse to do the difficult task of teaching right from wrong — not the millions of law abiding citizens who comprise the NRA, own guns, and believe in the sanctity of the Constitution!
Area resident Jack Loesch is a longtime teacher at the University of Akron whose columns appear periodically in the Salem News. Read his website at www.TorchnFork.info. He may be reached at: TorchNFork@frontier.com