By Jason Dearen, Terry Spencer and Allen G. Breed | Associated Press
PARKLAND, Fla. (AP) — Student survivors of the deadly Florida school shooting who hope to become the face of a revived gun control movement are on a potential collision course with President Donald Trump.
Several of the students have criticized the president, whose election was strongly supported by the National Rifle Association and who ran on a platform opposing gun control. Trump spent the weekend at his estate in South Florida, only an hour’s drive from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School where 17 people were fatally shot last week. His only mentions of the massacre came in tweets Saturday contending that the FBI was too focused on the Russia investigation to respond to warnings about the alleged shooter and mocking Democrats for failing to pass gun control.
“You’re the president. You’re supposed to bring this nation together, not divide us,” said David Hogg, a 17-year-old student at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in South Florida, speaking on NBC’s “Meet the Press.”
“How dare you,” he added.
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After more than a day of criticism from the students, the White House said the president would hold a “listening session” with unspecified students Wednesday and meet Thursday with state and local security officials.
Florida politicians, meanwhile, scrambled to produce legislation in response to the Feb. 14 attack that killed 17 people. Nikolas Cruz, a 19-year-old who had been expelled from the school, is being held without bail in the Broward County Jail, accused of 17 counts of first-degree murder.
In a TV interview, Republican Sen. Marco Rubio embraced a Democratic bill in the Florida legislature to allow courts to temporarily prevent people from having guns if they are determined to be a threat to themselves or others.
Gov. Rick Scott, also a Republican, attended a prayer vigil at the First Church Coral Springs, blocks from the shooting site. He is expected to announce a legislative package with GOP lawmakers this week.
Emma Gonzalez, another student survivor, gave an impassioned speech at a weekend rally with a stinging citation of the NRA’s $30 million in expenditures on Trump’s behalf in the presidential election. On Sunday she cited Trump, Rubio and Scott by name in a warning to politicians backed by the NRA.
“Now is the time …read more
Source:: East Bay – National & World