We, as Americans, are seeing images of teachers and students in school parking lots, surrounded by police and S.W.A.T, having just survived a school shooting. Living in the politicized age that we are in, this quickly became an argument over different issues.

Many took to social media to share their opinions and began debating on the stances that they took on this tragedy. From a quick Facebook check, it seemed fair to say that those who view themselves as more progressive wanted stricter gun control, and some were going as far and to demand the banning of all firearms. The opposition, mainly conservatives, expressed 2nd amendment violations and how gun laws are flawed in cities like Chicago, but ultimately argued to stop blaming the gun.

Who and what is to blame for the school shooting that left 17 innocents dead and another 15 injured?

Are we to Blame the gun? A lack of urgency on behalf of the FBI and now the Broward deputies that stood outside the school and did nothing while the shooter went on his rampage, are they to blame? Did psychotropic drugs play a role as they seem to do in these mass shootings? Maybe mental health issues need to be taken more seriously or to counter that, have we as a society become too afraid of speaking out in fear that we aren’t being politically correct? Maybe it’s Video Games according to Kentucky Governor Matt Bevin.

First, let’s address that last point regarding life imitating art. Living in 2018 with people who try to troll or who are trying to be edgy, isn’t acceptable and shouldn’t be brushed off as kids being kids.

Ever since the Columbine massacre in 1999, any signs or talk of a potential school shooter should be taken one hundred percent seriously. While on the topic of Columbine, there are similarities between Parkland and Columbine in each of their aftermaths.

Who or what is to blame for such a crime? In 1999, it was video games like "Doom" or musicians and their work, most famously Marilyn Manson.

Blaming a form of art for inhumane crimes comes off as lazy and an easy scapegoat. Kentucky Governor Matt Bevin, Congressman Brian Mast, and CNN political analyst Andre Bauer are pushing blame on video games, violent movies, and the rap industry.

Again, this is cheap and doesn’t do anything to help the issue because this strays away from actual issues that need to be addressed.

Stop blaming arts and entertainment on these tragedies because in fact there are deeper and darker truths behind these cases. At the same time, this way of thinking does more damage because the shooter/s are never held responsible for the heinous crimes because these arguments shift blame elsewhere. Now with that cleared, it seems to most people that it’s either one issue or the other but in fact, it seems to be a handful of all these problems.

To place blame solely on one topic is counterproductive to me because there are many key elements that played a factor in this tragedy. The one aspect that should shoulder the majority of the blame in this instance is the fault of the FBI and the Broward deputies at the scene.

The Parkland's shooter left clear warnings

According to USAToday.com, the shooter left a clear warning sign in the comment section of a YouTube video. “I’m gonna be a professional school shooter.” The FBI was contacted by Ben Bennight whose video was commented on by the shooter back in November 2017. It wasn’t until after the shooting had occurred that the FBI reached back to Bennight - but why? Why after the fact when every red flag imaginable was there for you to step in and make a move?

We, as a society, should be able to sit down and have a conversation on how to deal with these tragedies. One side says stricter gun laws because officials have stated that the AR-15 that the shooter purchased was all legal, and there was no violation of gun laws.

This is tricky because the fact of the matter is that the shooter had no previous criminal record. Therefore his background check was cleared. There were no gun laws that were broken, yet a school was still shot up.

I don’t see a lot of mainstream media pointing the blame on the police officers who stood outside and allowed the shooting to continue or the FBI failing to act on red flags prior to this. The discussion of 2nd amendment rights can be had but the discussion of authority failing to do its job needs to be had as well.

This makes a strong case for those not wanting certain weapons banned as Ben Shapiro, editor-in-chief of The Daily Wire, explained: “… And then, there were armed people from the Broward County sheriff’s there, four of them apparently and they didn’t do anything about the shooter.

And I’m supposed to hand over my gun to you? I’m supposed to hand over my ability to defend myself to you?”

Armed police officers or veterans, not teachers

I think possible solutions in this situation could be as followed: One, psychiatric tests could be given to those purchasing firearms before the final transaction. Then, possibly have an armed police officer or retired veteran on school grounds in case of dire situations like these. Workers in agencies, like the FBI and local authorities, need to be more competent and must be held accountable for letting someone slip through the cracks despite having them on their watchlist.

The point of the second argument would be that instead of waiting for police to respond (and even enter the building) there would already be a trained and armed person already on the scene.

I don’t like the idea of teachers having firearms because they don’t have the training that someone like a retired veteran would have. President Trump went as far as calling to arm teachers in classrooms and I completely disagree with that notion. You are asking teachers who make about 55,000 dollars a year to be able to teach and control a classroom, now with a weapon in it, and be able to use that firearm to execute someone in a dire situation. I don’t like those odds.

Authorities need to be held accountable for failures

This is a tragic situation and I don’t know anyone who doesn’t believe that but this virtue signaling on both sides of the argument needs to stop. Not wanting to hand over your weapons doesn’t equate to not caring for dead children and wanting to tighten up certain loopholes doesn’t mean you’re anti-American.

I truly do believe that the Broward police officers, as well as the FBI, need to have more blame placed on them because of how much they let slip in this case. Even at the very moment that they were at the door of the school, with shots being fired, they still failed. This was part of your job when you signed up for it, knowing you would place yourself in situations like these and that argument is not being discussed enough in my eyes. Those in positions of authority need to be held accountable for what transpired on that Valentine’s Day in Parkland, Florida

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