If there is one thing I enjoy, it’s comparative analysis. Previously, we shared with y’all a missive entitled “A Tale of Two Protests” that focused on the liberal, progressive, left’s full-scale attention on Stoneman Douglas HS, as opposed to nothing when it came to Miami Northwestern HS. All one had to do was Google the respective locations of these two schools in order to ascertain the differing responses from the left. One, affluent whites located in the most progressive, socialist county in Florida; the other in the black crime, and gang-ridden neighborhood of Liberty City. Only 45 miles separate the two. Yet, as we presented, the attention given to these two schools, were light-years apart.
Thus, it hit me again: a very clear, and distinct, difference in the response to a similar tragedy. This time, I am referring to Marjory Stoneman Douglas HS, and Santa Fe High School in surburban Houston, TX. Both of these secondary schools were victims of deranged young criminals — one of their own — but the aftermath to these two tragedies is quite telling.
First of all, the media attention was certainly different. I just have to ponder: why is it that CNN chose not do a town hall event a week afterward, like they did in Broward County, Florida? Also, how interesting there’s no grandstanding county Sheriff in the Santa Fe tragedy. There can be no debate that all of the warning signs were missed in both of these tragedies, but there is a difference.
In the Stoneman Douglas HS shooting, the parents, at least the loudest ones, and David Hogg, don’t seem to care about the faults, failures, and shortcomings of the Broward School Board, the Broward Sheriff, and the Sheriff’s Deputy responsible to protect the school. In the case of Santa Fe HS, well, at least the School Resource Officer took action, preventing a greater loss of life. But there is no David Hogg at Santa Fe HS. There are no Time magazine cover shots of students from Santa Fe HS. There is no planned, secretly funded march on Washington, DC or organized classroom walkouts. There are no students calling for “die-ins” at the local grocery store. There is no one calling the National Rifle Association “murderers of children.”
What’s telling about this comparative analysis, is that the response from one group has, indeed, been emotional, but rational. The other group has turned their emotions into politicized, ideological, irrationality. The response from Stoneman Douglas HS has not been focused on the actual cause of the incident, nor presented any viable solutions . . . other than gun control combined with denigrating, and, disarming, law-abiding, legal, gun owners in America. The response from Santa Fe, and Texas, has been about addressing the two most critical issues: mental illness in young students, and access to firearms.
Several parents of young people who lost their lives at Santa Fe HS are bringing a lawsuit against the parents of the shooter, and I concur with that decision. Just as with the shooter, whose father gave his mentally unstable son weapons after they had been confiscated, went on a shooting rampage in a Waffle House in Tennessee, we need to hold parents responsible. This action from the parents in Santa Fe is reasoned, and rational.
In contrast, there is nothing rational about letting your child violate the private property rights of a private sector business, and obstruct people shopping. Publix grocery store, or any of its patrons, had anything to do with David Hogg, or Stoneman Douglas HS.Only the irrational mind focuses on the firearm, the tool used to enact violence. The rational individual focuses on the deranged individual, and their intent to do harm. Click To Tweet
Perhaps a reason the progressive, socialist, left has not been very vocal about Santa Fe HS is because the assailant there used a shotgun, and a .38 caliber revolver. At Stoneman Douglas HS the left was able to cast aside any culpability with the assailant, or failures of law enforcement, and went right to attacking the means used to enact such violence. The point we must understand is that the AR-15, the shotgun, the .38 cal revolver were all just sitting somewhere, inanimate objects. It is when — and only when — there is human interaction that these objects can be used for harm, hurt, and assault. In both of these tragedies the violent nature of the students made these firearms dangerous, not the firearm itself. Never forget that an AR-15 was used by a Texan, Stephen Willeford, who used his AR-15 for good, to stop a shooting rampage of someone using an AR-15. Only the irrational mind focuses on the firearm, the tool used to enact violence. The rational individual focuses on the deranged individual, and their intent to do harm. That’s truly the difference between the tragedies of Stoneman Douglas HS, and Santa Fe HS.
David Hogg is about to set off on a summer bus tour. Why? Has this young boy ever taken time to grieve over the tragedy that took the lives of his classmates? Or, sadly, is he just a pawn of the liberal, progressive, left, a willing tool himself, and, even more appalling, are the parents who are allowing such delusional, irrational behavior? These parents are not honoring the lost, they are allowing their own child to be the victim of emotional abuse by ideological anti-gun purists, not realizing that their son has been transformed into a caricature for comical derision. The parents of Santa Fe HS in Texas are not allowing such to happen, because they are indeed parents.
Then again, Santa Fe is in the greater Houston area, where last year we were given a lesson in how to respond to a tragedy, in the form of a natural disaster. The manner in which the people of Houston, and south Texas, responded to Hurricane Harvey is in direct contrast to what happened in New Orleans, LA with Hurricane Katrina. And again, the liberal, progressive media got one story from New Orleans, but failed to get the same out of Texas. Why? Ladies and gents, it all comes down to the real comparison, the decision we all can make: it’s about whether you choose to be a victim, or a victor. The reaction from Stoneman Douglas HS was, and continues to be, misplaced on being a victim. The reaction from Santa Fe HS is one of being a victor, rising above the tragedy, and fighting to ensure it doesn’t occur again.
Stephen Willeford took action, and, the School Resource Officer (SRO) at Santa Fe HS took action. They are victors, defending the defenseless. Broward Sheriff Scott Israel, and Sheriff’s Deputy Scot Peterson, well, they are disgusting. See, there is no one at Santa Fe HS for the progressive, socialist, left to exploit because Texans ain’t victims.
Here’s something else I would like to see happen going forward: the media should not give any recognition to these school shooters. No pictures, no release of their names, and there should be expedited trials, sentencing, and punishment — death penalty. For the life of me, I do not understand why we have such a delay in exacting justice to those who took the lives of innocent young men and women, and teachers, in just minutes.
In closing, let me say, I love to share pictures with y’all when I go to the shooting range. I love reading the comments because they always give me shooting tips. However, recently I read a comment where someone said I should be ashamed to be sharing pictures of me from a shooting range. To that person I have this response: I am a victor, and will never be a victim. And, when need be, just like NRA member Stephen Willeford, I will move to the sound of the gun. I will engage anyone seeking to hurt innocent Americans with precise, and accurate, fire. I will not be a coward like we witnessed in Broward County, with that Sheriff’s Deputy.
My advice to folks who are anti-gun, and want to repeal the Second Amendment: when trouble comes, y’all, like David Hogg, can run and hide behind Americans like me. We will protect you!
During his 22 year career in the United States Army, Lieutenant Colonel West served in several combat zones and received many honors including a Bronze Star, three Meritorious Service Medals, three Army Commendation Medals, one with Valor device, and a Valorous Unit Award.
In November of 2010, Allen was elected to the United States Congress, representing Florida’s 22nd District.
He is a Fox News Contributor, former Director of the Booker T. Washington Initiative at the Texas Public Policy Foundation, Senior Fellow at the Media Research Center, contributing columnist for Townhall.com, and author of Guardian of the Republic: An American Ronin’s Journey to Family, Faith and Freedom, and, Hold Texas, Hold the Nation: Victory or Death, published October 16, 2018, from Brown Books Publishing Group.