Guy wrote an excellent interview with Parkland shooting survivor Kyle Kashuv, who isn’t going around with fellow peers, Cameron Kasky, David Hogg, and Emma Gonzalez pushing the anti-gun agenda of the far left. He describes himself as politically conservative and a Second Amendment supporter:
"I'm a very strong Second Amendment supporter and I will continue to be throughout this entire campaign." he tells me. "As of right now, my main goal is to meet with legislators and represent to them that there are big Second Amendment supporters in our community. Through this entire thing, my number one concern has been making sure that the rights of innocent Americans aren't infringed upon." He says that when he visited the state capitol to talk to lawmakers shortly after the tragedy, he consistently asked for guarantees that the constitutional rights of law-abiding gun owners wouldn't be attacked or abridged. He's waded into this debate "kind of reluctantly," he admits, observing that at some point he realized that he was one of the few conservatives in his school who were speaking up in public. "It's not even by my choosing, it's just come to that," he remarks. "I feel somewhat obligated to do this because the other half of America needs to be heard. I'm doing this because I have to."
Kashuv counts himself as a believer in the 'Never Again' cause, but feels ostracized and ignored by those -- including students and the adults supporting them -- who disagree with his conservative politics. "It's quite saddening because I support this Never Again movement in some aspects. Everything that isn't for gun control, I fully support. But a lot of people in the movement, they view it as 'you're with us or you're against us.' There's no middle ground. So either you support them on all of their policy ideas, or you're an enemy. That's sad because I really do love this movement, and I want it to do a lot of good work. But simply because I have a different opinion on what needs to be done [on guns], I'm not represented as a leading member."
The right-leaning student appears uncomfortable directly criticizing his headline-grabbing schoolmates, seemingly worried about fueling a pitched "Right vs Left" battle. But their actions have increasingly grated on him, and Kashuv is starting to push back more forcefully. He was particularly bothered by Hogg's boast on Bill Maher's HBO program that he'd hung up on the White House during a call designed to arrange a conversation with the president about potential solutions. "Simply hanging up, whether it was the president or his assistant -- that's terrible. And then to brag about it on national television? It's extremely counterintuitive to actual change.
So, it’s not shocking that the news media largely ignores his take on this horrible tragedy. On February 14, Nikolas Cruz shot and killed 17 people at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. It’s sparked this latest push for new gun control laws.
Stoneman Douglas High School student Kyle Kashuv: “We have to focus first on what we can achieve, and that is bipartisan change. That is mental health restrictions and deeper background checks.” #TheStory pic.twitter.com/qa3kYqJArW— Fox News (@FoxNews) March 7, 2018
Appearing on The Story with Martha MacCallum, Kashuv isn’t averse to a gun control debate; he just wants to secure our schools first. He also said that he would like to focus on what’s possible legislatively. Stronger background checks and mental health restrictions are a start and it could certainly pass, though Democrats on the Hill could torpedo legislation for exactly that reason. They want to use it for the 2018 midterms and people wonder why D.C. is the way it is. The bill to strengthen the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) has the votes, but Democrats worry that a) it would be the last bite of the apple in the legislative assault on gun rights; and b) give the Trump White House something to hang their hat on for the upcoming elections. In a rather volatile atmosphere, where the Trump tax bill is gaining in popularity and could become an issue for Democrats by November, they have to mitigate the possibility of blowback as much as possible.
Kashuv is more about securing schools first, then having a debate on gun control. When MacCallum asked him about his thoughts on David Hogg, who proudly said that he hung up on the Trump White House, he was visibly irritated.
“I’m trying to control my anger,” he said, noting that it was hypocritical for Hogg to push for change on this issue, only to hang up on the White House who is trying to find ways to do just that. On a side note, it shows that this isn’t about bipartisanship. Hogg hung up on the White House because of Trump. If a Democrat had called, we all know he would have taken the call. This was about scoring points in left wing activism, and he’s surely succeeded in doing that over the past couple of weeks. Kashuv finds the whole game counterproductive to finding real solutions. He later said he hasn’t spoke to Hogg about this.
There were multiple times state, local, and federal authorities could have possibly stopped Cruz from committing this heinous crime. All red flags were not acted upon, which is another issue that should be looked at closely as well. It may not be that we need new gun laws (we don't), it could be that the system needs some reforms, along with competent people to administer the system that could have prevented this strategy.
Earlier today, Kashuv agreed to meet with the National Rifle Association. At the same time, he appears to be making time to meet with Sens. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) and Ted Cruz (R-TX). He's already met with Florida state Sen. Lauren Book, a Democrat.
More than happy to meet with you guys. Let's schedule a meeting. We can work together and make change https://t.co/4dT3AlPIfk— Kyle Kashuv (@KyleKashuv) March 6, 2018
Just got an email from @SenSchumer office. They are trying to find a time for me to chat with the Senator.— Kyle Kashuv (@KyleKashuv) March 6, 2018
Same for @tedcruz office. People do believe in bipartisanship and it will work. I believe in this Country too much to think it won't.