Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School lost way too many loved ones on Valentines Day this year. How many of those students hugged and kissed their parent's goodbye that morning, received valentines from their friends, and ended up in body bags? 17.
While this is a matter of gun control and mental illness that certainly needs to be discussed, this is not about that.
The worst part about it all is that it could have been prevented in more ways than one:
Nikolas Cruz, 19, openly displayed his desire to maliciously hurt other people.
He had behavioral issues, was expelled from school, wasn't allowed to bring a backpack onto school grounds, posted explicit content about his love for weapons on social media, was said to be abusive to his ex-girlfriend, and violent towards her boyfriend.
A young adult who lived a troubled childhood; it is the perfect script.
What deepens his narrative is the YouTube comment he made about wanting to be a professional school shooter. Ben Bennight, a YouTube blogger, noticed the sick comment, decided he couldn't ignore it, and informed the FBI.
That was in September. That was 5 months ago.
The FBI questioned Bennight about his association with the person who posted the comment, except there wasn't any. Bennight was a spectator, a decent human being who took into consideration real threats and acted upon them in order to make sure nothing stemmed from it (he should be awarded for his efforts).
FBI Special Agent in Charge Rob Lasky was unable to identify the person who made the comment, therefore, nothing was done to prevent the future ramifications which occurred February 14th, 2018.
How much attention was given to this cyber threat by the FBI? Did the FBI pursue this further and contact YouTube to request information on the account that was used to post the comment? Did the FBI do everything on their checklist to ensure that this wasn't actually a threat? If Nikolas Cruz was able to purchase a weapon, why couldn't the FBI search his name in their databases or even Google for Christ's sake to figure out who this suspect was?
The national campaign, "If You See Something, Say Something" was put into place to raise public awareness of terrorism and terrorism-related crime, and report suspicious activity to law enforcement. Bennight saw something and he said something and yet nothing was done. The case was thrown into a pile and forgotten.
The FBI is supposed to protect the American People and be ahead of the threat, but they were ignorant to this foreseen tragedy. The lives that were lost, were not taken seriously. The lives that were lost, were not important enough to the FBI.
The 17 people who died, the 14 people who were injured, their families and friends, teachers, and the community.. they were failed.