Yesterday Trump held a listening session with students, teachers and families on gun violence. It was a powerful meeting with many moving words, until Trump started speaking. Instead of listening to the victims, Trump pivoted right back to his NRA talking points, and then doubled down in defense of the NRA again this morning.
As Trump holds more listening sessions, thousands of students across the country are waiting for Trump to take action and enact common sense gun reforms to ensure another tragedy does not happen again – so far he’s done nothing.
Students and parents delivered a powerful message and urged Trump to enact common-sense gun reforms.
Marjory Stoneman father Andrew Pollack: “I'm never gonna see my kid again. Never ever will I see my kid. I want it to sink in. It's eternity. It should have been one school shooting and we should have fixed it. And I'm pissed. Because it's my daughter I'm not going to see again. She's not here. She's not here.”
Marjory Stoneman student Sam Zeif: “I turned 18 the day after. Woke up to the news that my best friend was gone and I don't understand why I could still go in a store and buy a weapon of war — an AR — how is that easy to buy this type of weapon? How have we not stopped this after Columbine, after Sandy Hook. I'm sitting with a mother who lost her son. It's still happening.”
But it’s clear that, despite his note card, Trump did not listen. Instead, he took the NRA’s side and continued to regurgitate their talking points.
CNN: “President Donald Trump, after listening to a series of emotional stories and pleas to enhance school safety at the White House Wednesday, floated the idea of arming teachers and school staff, an idea that was met with support from many of the attendees. ‘If you had a teacher who was adept with the firearm, they could end the attack very quickly,’ he said, stating that schools could arm up to 20% of their teachers to stop “maniacs” who may try and attack them.”
At a town hall last night, Parkland community members spoke out against the NRA and Trump’s positions.
Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel: “You just told this group of people that you are standing for them. You’re not standing up for them until you say I want less weapons.”
Broward County Schools Superintendent: “We don't need to put guns in the hands of teachers. “
Then today Trump doubled down and made it clear he sides with the NRA over students and common-sense gun reforms.
Washington Post: “‘ATTACKS WOULD END!’: Trump doubles down on arming some teachers, defends NRA”
NBC News: “Trump defends arming teachers, applauds NRA”
The Hill: “Trump praises NRA leaders: 'They love our country'”
Daily Beast: “Trump Calls NRA ‘Great People’ and ‘American Patriots’”
NRA’s Wayne LaPierre: “To stop a bad guy with a gun it takes a good guy with a gun.”
The NRA said that many in the media “love mass shootings” while Trump has bragged that they boost his poll numbers.
NRA’s Dana Loesch: “Many in legacy media love mass shootings. You guys love it.”
Trump: “Every time a really bad act takes place, like Paris — it happened with Paris, it happens now — but my poll numbers go up.”
Trump: “Take a look at the poll numbers from right after this horrendous and horrible and something we have to stop fast attack. Take a look over the last couple of days because I'll tell you. People are tired. They want to have strength. They want to have intelligence.”