I’ve been ringing the alarm bells about the aftermath of the tragic shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School on February 14. Shooter Nikolas Cruz shot and killed 17 people—and launched a massive call for new gun laws, despite the fact that the shooting could have been prevented if it weren’t for an abject failure of local, state, and federal officials to enforce the law. They want a new so-called assault weapons ban, limits of magazine sizes, and universal background checks. Seems commons sense, right? Well, the first two are just window dressing and won’t do anything to stop mass shootings. If they were passed by Congress and signed into law and another shooting occurred with a handgun, it’s just a way to prime the anti-gun Left to make a case to ban those as well. Long guns constitute a VERY small fraction of total overall gun homicides in America; together murders from shotguns and rifles are way less than 1,000 a year—and that figure has been consistent for years.
So, let’s be a bit more upbeat about the future of gun politics. With young Americans becoming the face of the anti-gun movement, their peers are not so much in the gun control camp. In fact, a new USA Today/IPSOS poll found that less than half of students age 13-17 support expanded background checks and new gun laws:
They’re young, fierce and — at least for the moment — the most prominent voices in America’s debate over guns.
But not all members of “Generation Columbine” cling to the rhetoric making household names out of some of their peers, those students calling for tighter gun control after the deadly Feb. 14 shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla.
Many American high schoolers do not blame school shootings on guns and don't argue the answer is tighter restrictions on firearms. It's a view at odds with many of their classmates, yet born from the same safety concerns.
“There’s many things that go into a solution for this, and it’s not guns,” said Melanie Clark, an 18-year-old high school senior from Tallahassee. “We’re definitely in the minority for believing that it’s not guns.”
A USA TODAY/Ipsos poll taken after the Parkland shooting found fewer than half of students 13 to 17 think tightening gun laws and background checks would prevent mass shootings. The Pew Research Center, in an April 2017 poll, found 39% of people 18-29 said protecting gun rights is of chief importance. Compare that to 58% who favor gun control.
Pro-gun high school students told USA TODAY the school shooting problem is complex, but they maintain guns aren’t the problem. They say more can be done as it relates to school security, mental health and background checks. Some argue those calling for gun control are uninformed about and unfamiliar with firearms.
As the publication noted, even after this shooting, “high schoolers still like their guns.”
So, there is some hope that outside the newsrooms of the liberal news media, the cities, and the coasts, the majority of young Americans are not with the Kasky-Gonzalez-Hogg crew that’s working to strip Americans of their Second Amendment rights, even if that’s not their intention, as they’ve said repeatedly. They don’t want to ban all guns, just some. Yeah, well, in liberal circles, if you give them an inch, they’ll take a mile. And their colleague Delaney Tarr made that explicitly clear during their march in D.C. last weekend. The powers that be that fund this movement will push for a gun ban, and that goal will inch closer to reality if the Democrats win in 2018. Again, right now, the GOP should be nervous. This movement is part of the overall Resist craze that’s infecting the Democratic Party. They’re energized and they’re ready for revenge. At the same time, it appears that even young Americans aren’t sold on the anti-gun Left’s agenda. And this is not a new find. In December of 2017, less than half of those age 18-34 supports a new assault weapons ban.