Gun Control Actually Is Not The Answer
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Gun Control Actually Is Not The Answer

The Florida school shooter had a lot more problems than you think.

Gun Control Actually Is Not The Answer
Thom Baur

On February 14th, 2018, a gunman killed 17 people at Majory Stoneman Douglas High School in Florida. In the aftermath, citizens have been pushing for gun control and restrictions on who may obtain them. A good multitude of people seem to believe that gun control alone is the only way to end this violence, but it is almost comical how many other factors come into play.

Let’s ignore politics for a minute and focus on the shooter himself. Nikolas Cruz, 19 years old, was expelled from his high school for “disciplinary reasons,” though one teacher remarked that there were problems with him threatening other students last year.

Before that, he was banned from bringing a backpack to school due in part to him bringing bullets to campus. After his expulsion, he was sent to a school for “troubled” adolescents. Upon scrutinizing Cruz’ social media, authorities found that he posted numerous pictures of himself and his weapons, his face covered by a black bandana and beanies or baseball caps on his head.

Cruz was known to “joke” about killing his fellow schoolmates on multiple occasions, according to an anonymous student. A different classmate, 16-year-old Joseph Charo, stated that “All [Cruz] would talk about is guns, knives, and hunting.” Charo also mentioned that Cruz would brag about shooting rats with a BB gun and shooting things for practice.

Another student, Drew Fairchild, shared a class with Cruz their freshman year and said “[Cruz] used to have weird, random outbursts, cursing at teachers.” Yet another classmate, Nicholas Coke, told of an incident in middle school where Cruz kicked out a glass window and ran from the classroom.

Many of his classmates often joked about Cruz being the kid who would shoot up a school one day.

Now that we have established his social and academic situations, let’s examine his past.

Lynda and Roger Cruz adopted him and his brother as infants. Roger Cruz died over a decade ago. Lynda Cruz struggled to make it work and support the boys but, according to Lynda’s sister-in-law, Barbara Kumbatovic, they had some “emotional issues.” Kumbatovic said Lynda was having trouble with Nikolas in the past couple of years and believed that he was on medication to deal with his emotional fragility.

Just over three months ago, Lynda Cruz passed away from pneumonia.

Nikolas moved in with a friend soon thereafter. The family took him in graciously and gave him his own room, only requesting that he keep his AR-15 locked in a cabinet. Nobody thought it was strange when Cruz slept in on Valentine’s day. He claimed that he didn’t go to school on Valentine’s day.

Unfortunately, he lied.

On February 14th, 2018, Nikolas Cruz killed 17 people at Majory Stoneman Douglas High School.

You cannot look at a case like this and ignore all of the other factors that could have led to Cruz’ violent outburst. He was adopted and suffered emotional issues from that, his father died when he was six, his mother died less than four months ago, and there are many other signs that pointed toward violent and aggressive tendencies.

There is more involved here than guns. Every mass shooter has had some sort of mental illness that encouraged them to commit such horrendous crimes. Not to say they do not have a choice, because everybody has a choice, but never have I seen a completely mentally healthy gun owner try to shoot mass amounts of people.

Violence will only change if we make the change. Our media focuses on violence so much that everybody almost expects something bad to happen after they leave their houses, even though those events are not as common as one would think.

We need to stop accepting everything we hear to be the whole truth. We need to start thinking for ourselves, start looking at situations with as objective a mindset as possible. Until we can start talking to each other without spitting in each other’s faces, nothing will be done about anything. Let’s start listening to each other. Maybe then, we will truly make progress.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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