In this May 23, 2012 file photo released by British Airports Authority, over 2,400 pieces of baggage are seen lined-up in Terminal 5 at Heathrow Airport during a baggage handling exercise to prepare staff at London’s main airport for the forthcoming Olympic and Paralympic games, in London. Officials at Heathrow are well aware that losing or breaking the bags of high-profile athletes could be a public relations disaster – and have geared up to ensure that doesn’t happen. Heathrow has recruited 1,000 Olympic volunteers clad in bright pink to help and created special teams to deal with oversize items like javelins and bikes. (AP Photo/BAA, File)
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Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) opted to appear at the National Rifle Association convention in Houston, Texas on Friday after multiple Republican lawmakers backed out of making public appearances in wake of the Uvalde school shooting.
Now, Cruz is facing deep scrutiny not only for attending the conference but also for his remarks praising firearms. During the convention, Cruz also offered a number of reasons he believes are to blame for the shooting other than guns.
“It’s a lot easier to moralize about guns and to shriek about those you disagree with politically. But it’s never been about guns,” Cruz said on Friday, after naming tons of excuses for mass shootings, such as “broken families, absent fathers, declining church attendance, social media bullying, violent online content ... chronic isolation, prescription drug, and opioid abuse.”
Speaking of the shooting, Cruz said, “The entire state ― the entire country ― is horrified and grieving." He added, “And it is an evil that has happened too many damn times.”
The lawmaker's remarks have been deeply criticized as many Twitter users have weighed in with their reactions. Some users also pushed back to refute Cruz's claims.
I don't go to church and I've never shot anyone.
I take prescription medication, never shot anyone.
I play video games, never shot anyone.
Maybe it's the guns. #GunOwnersForSafety
— THEE Darth Pooka AntiFa HBIC (@darthpooka) May 27, 2022
- Take drugs when I need to and recreationally smoke pot periodically
- Don't go the church and haven't set foot in one in 30 years
- Play video games...and I:
- Have never committed a mass shooting
— Harrison Lansing (@HarrisonLansing) May 27, 2022
Blame Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny while you are at it. You have blamed everything under the sun except guns, gun manufacturers and the NRA, you know, the folks that send you the checks to act as if they are not at fault.
— millie lencioni (@cubzfab) May 27, 2022
Someone should tell Ted what the common thread is! pic.twitter.com/PAM9wPZfVZ
— Jerry Critter (@JerryCritter) May 27, 2022
So, according to Ted Cruz’ logic, the reason that school shootings are rare in Europe is because they don’t take prescription drugs, they don’t have video games, and they all attend Sunday School and church every weekend. Got it.— BlueDoc501 (@brickstacker75) May 27, 2022
Cruz's remarks at the convention come just days after his previous attempt to blame other factors for the mass shooting. Distancing from the discussions and calls for stricter legislation on gun control, the Texas lawmaker claimed suggested that one solution might be to have fewer doors at education facilities.
“One of the things that everyone agreed is, don’t have all of these unlocked back doors,” he told Fox News Wednesday. “Have one door into and out of the school and have ... armed police officers at that door.”
During his speech on Friday, Cruz also echoed his previous call for more armed law enforcement agents. Those remarks came amid reports criticizing the Uvalde Police Department and its officers' delayed actions to confront and subdue the shooter.
“Ultimately, as we all know, what stops armed bad guys is armed good guys,” Cruz told the NRA. A bipartisan group of lawmakers are reportedly working to craft a proposed piece of legislation that, according to HuffPost, will include: "more stringent background checks, proposals to bolster school safety, and 'red flag' laws that allow authorities to temporarily seize firearms from people who have been determined to be a danger to themselves or others."
Reprinted with permission from Alternet.
A Georgia gun manufacturer is facing scrutiny for its disturbing ad shared just days prior to the mass school shooting in Uvalde, Texas.
According to HuffPost, on May 16, Daniel Defense —a firearm company that manufactures AR-15-style semi-automatic rifles like the one Salvador Ramos, the 18-year-old shooter who fatally shot two teachers and 19 students— posted an image of a young child holding an assault rifle.
With the image, the gun manufacturer included Proverbs 3:5 which reads, “Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old, he will not depart from it.”
On May 16, Daniel Defense tweeted this.
On May 24, two Daniel Defense AR-15s were used by an 18-year-old to slaughter 19 elementary school children at close range inside a locked classroom. pic.twitter.com/7k9LBNAoiN
— Tristan Snell (@TristanSnell) May 27, 2022
Since the deadly Uvalde, Texas massacre, the company's tweet is being seen in a different and less-favorable light. Although the company quickly changed its Twitter account status from public to private, screenshots of the tweet had already been screenshotted.
To make matters worse, HuffPost reports that the disturbing post was actually tweeted on Ramos' 18th birthday which, according to reports, is when he actually purchased his first firearms. In fact, Ramos is said to have purchased a Daniel Defense DDM4 V7 just days before opening fire in the school.
Daniel Defense has also boasted that the firearm is the “perfect rifle for everybody.” According to the police report on Ramos, the teen also purchased a second firearm which has been identified as a Smith & Wesson M&P 15. However, he only carried the assault rifle into the school.
In wake of the shooting and the recirculating Twitter post, Daniel Defense has come under fire for its tendency to develop firearm advertisements that have a connection to religion. Speaking to NBC News, Ryan Busse, a former firearms executive and gun violence prevention group advisor said, “This is how [company founder Marty Daniel] has grown his business: By being on the edge and wrapping this holy-roller thing around it.”
A spokesperson for Daniel Defense also said, “We believe this week is not the appropriate time to be promoting our products in Texas at the NRA meeting.”
Reprinted with permission from Alternet.