Government failure

ERIK LATRANYI

Danville

The tragic school shooting in Parkland, Fla., was avoidable.

The Boston Marathon Terrorist Bombing was avoidable.

The Fort Hood shooting was avoidable.

The Pulse Nightclub terrorist attack was avoidable.

The Virginia Tech shooting was avoidable.

The Navy Yard shooting was avoidable.

… and many more domestic and terrorist events were 100 percent avoidable.

But many of our leaders are not interested in why these events happened. They do not care about root cause.

The young man who pulled the trigger in Parkland sent all the signals required to stop him. He was troubled in school. Teachers and students feared he might do this. He was reported TWICE to the FBI for making threats about killing students. The local authorities visited his home 39 times because he was violent. While unconfirmed, he was receiving psychiatric help and drugs, so a mental health professional knew him.

The FBI admitted it did not follow up death threats. The local authorities did nothing. The school, who banned him, did nothing. His mental health provider did nothing.

This event was not a surprise. This event was a failure of government to do its job.

We have laws on the books to prevent the mentally ill and violent from purchasing firearms. Despite what the fake news said, Trump did not repeal those laws.

The Virginia Tech shooter was put on that prohibited list by his mental health provider before he bought his pistols, but the government failed to update the database. The Texas shooter was convicted by the Air Force for domestic abuse and should have been prohibited from buying firearms, but the Air Force failed to communicate those criminal records to the database. The Boston bombers were reported to the FBI and “on their radar.” Even Russia warned the US about the Tsarnaev brothers visiting terrorist camps.

But the government did nothing. Omar Mateen was reported to the FBI before the Pulse Nightclub shooting and attended a mosque known for creating violent terrorists. The government did nothing.

We all know that we have a mental health crisis in this nation. We need to address that and strengthen our laws so we can prohibit more mentally ill people from buying firearms. But we do not need bureaucrats determining who is mentally ill and who is not. That needs to be left to the professionals.

At the same time, we need armed people in our schools to protect our children. Veterans, retired police, volunteer citizens should all be considered for this task. We protect stadiums, museums, and our slimy elected officials with armed guards … our children deserve no less. But we need a conversation about why our government fails so many times to do its basic functions.

Any other conversation, like firearms, is a distraction.

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