President Trump hosted a listening session with parents and survivors of high-profile mass shootings at the White House on Wednesday.
Citizens affected by the mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, Sandy Hook Elementary, and Columbine High School were in attendance.
Trump's listening session on gun violence is one of the most extraordinary public roundtables with a president I've ever seen. Citizens literally begging the president to take action.— Garance Franke-Ruta (@thegarance) February 21, 2018
He survived the Florida school shooting and has an emotional message for President Trump. pic.twitter.com/MKWZnSjK7s— AJ+ (@ajplus) February 22, 2018
President Trump shared some of his own ideas on how to better protect students, which included arming teachers.
Trump suggests "concealed carry for teachers," says it would stop a shooter very quickly.— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) February 21, 2018
Marjory Stoneman Douglas reportedly had an armed guard who never encountered the shooter https://t.co/JX30AOhiqY (Clip via CBS) pic.twitter.com/yVYLlN1MgG
This is really something - Trump's most enthusiastic proposal, in his "listening session" on school shootings, is: A) encouraging teachers and coaches to carry guns; B) sending a company of armed veterans into schools.— Daniel Dale (@ddale8) February 21, 2018
Nicole Hockley -- mother of 6-year-old Dylan Hockley, who was killed during the shooting at Sandy Hook -- told the president that she would rather arm teachers with ways to prevent shootings in the first place than with a weapon.
"Let's talk about prevention," Hockley said. "There is so much we can do to help this person before we reach this point."
Mother of Sandy Hook victim, Nicole Hockley, asks Pres. Trump take action using legislation available to him to prevent further gun violence: "Consider your own children. You don't want to be me. No parent does." https://t.co/B2lbSB6Wix pic.twitter.com/HQ3IB85gdN— ABC News Politics (@ABCPolitics) February 21, 2018
Mother of child killed in Sandyhook presses Trump on funding for mental health, swift passage of stop school violence act, help for at risk youth -- "You have the ability to do that. There is legislation for that right now.. This is not difficult."— Jacqueline Alemany (@JaxAlemany) February 21, 2018
The president also talked of a need for more mental institutions and stronger background checks.
Trump’s ideas so far:— Sam Stein (@samstein) February 21, 2018
More guns at schools — and teachers being trained in firearm usage.
More hospitals for the mentally ill
Stronger background checks.
Trump says they are going to look into age of purchase in background checks, mental health and mental institutions "we are fighting hard for you and we will not stop... thank you for pouring out your hearts because the world is watching"— Shannon Pettypiece (@spettypi) February 21, 2018
Noticeably absent from this conversation were the MSD High students that have been making headlines for their advocacy since the Valentine's Day shooting.
I want to know why Emma Gonzalez and the Parkland students in the national spotlight aren’t at the President’s listening session. The focus seem to be focused on everything but easy access to guns.— Shannon Watts (@shannonrwatts) February 21, 2018
According to one of them, Cameron Kasky, they were not invited to the president's listening session. However, they did attend a CNN Town Hall with Senator Marco Rubio later Wednesday evening.
We uh... were not invited.— Cameron Kasky (@cameron_kasky) February 21, 2018
But we have important things to do and talk about, we don’t have time to thank these people for taking half a step in the right direction.
Watch the CNN town hall tonight. Trust me. #NEVERAGAIN #MarchForOurLives https://t.co/tuQdpnbW1T
Florida school shooting survivor Cameron Kasky challenges Sen. Marco Rubio: "Can you tell me right now that you will not accept a single donation from the NRA?" https://t.co/LiU42QFBEv #StudentsStandUp https://t.co/p6jlUGFxOs— CNN (@CNN) February 22, 2018
What are your thoughts on all of this?
Glad someone made this point at the very emotional White House event: "There are a lot of young people with mental illness who are kind and compassionate."— Niall Stanage (@NiallStanage) February 21, 2018
So much of Trump's listening session on school shootings has focused on ways to increase security at schools via police, metal detectors, arming teachers. If history has told us anything, it's that this will not necessarily stop shootings, but work to criminalize kids of color.— Rebecca Klein (@rklein90) February 21, 2018
Trump's proposal during his "listening session" to arm teachers and bring more guns into our schools is beyond preposterous. That's like saying the solution to lung cancer is to smoke more cigarettes. #ParklandStudentsSpeak— Eugene Gu, MD (@eugenegu) February 21, 2018
I had to shut off the "listening session" with Trump on school shootings when they started talking about putting armed teachers and volunteers in schools. NO! The answer is gun control, not more guns. This audience was definitely stacked.— Andrea Klausner (@womansworkk) February 21, 2018
Were the people in this listening session instructed to not mention the NRA or the EO that Trump reversed last year?— Lyle Miller (@Lyle_Miller) February 21, 2018
LIVE: Pres. Trump holds a listening session on gun violence in the wake of last week's deadly school shooting. https://t.co/YfXJADZ4LT— ABC News (@ABC) February 21, 2018