Skip to main content

Sign up for our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values. Direct to your inbox.

Emotional Student Victims Lash Out at 'Piece of Shit' Trump in Wake of Latest School Massacre

"We did everything that we were supposed to do...Our government, our country has failed us and failed our kids and didn't keep us safe."

Julia Conley

Students Kelsey Friend (L) and David Hogg recount their stories about yesterday's mass shooting at the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School where 17 people were killed, on February 15, 2018 in Parkland, Florida. Police arrested the suspect after a short manhunt, and have identified him as 19 year old former student Nikolas Cruz. (Photo: Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

Students who survived Wednesday's shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida unequivocally rejected the "prayers and condolences" offered by President Donald Trump—calling on him to enact strict gun control laws instead.

"We're children. You guys are the adults." —David Hogg, student

One student, identified as Sarah on her Twitter account, angrily called the president a "fucking piece of shit" and said of the deaths of her classmates, "Prayers won't fix this. But gun control will prevent it from happening again."

Seventeen people were killed in the shooting in Southern Florida, which was allegedly carried out by a former student, Nikolas Cruz, with a legally-purchased AR-15 assault rifle.

Sarah's sentiments were echoed by David Hogg, a 17-year-old senior at the high school, who told CNN that in light of the 18th school shooting in the first six weeks of 2018, action to pass stricter gun control laws is needed to prevent more mass shootings.

"Ideas are great, ideas are wonderful and they help you get re-elected and everything, but what’s more important is actual action," Hogg said. "We're children," he added. "You guys are the adults."

The students' words directly contradicted those of Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) and conservative commentator Tomi Lahren, who chastised gun safety advocates, lawmakers, and journalists for bringing up gun control legislation after the shooting.

"The reaction of Democrats to any tragedy is to try to politicize it," Cruz, who has received among some of the biggest NRA donations in Congress, told Fox & Friends. "They immediately start calling that we've got to take away the Second Amendment rights of law abiding citizens. That's not the right answer."

Cruz added that victims of mass shootings have told him, "gun control is not the answer."

Strong gun control legislation has broad support across the political spectrum, with 58 percent of Americans telling NPR/Ipsos in October 2017 that they were in favor of banning assault weapons like the AR-15.

In response to Lahren's tweet asking, "Can the Left let the families grieve for even 24 hours before they push their anti-gun and anti-gunowner agenda?" a Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School student also made clear that calls for gun control are not coming solely from "the Left," but from those affected by the violence.

The school community also pushed back against the president's Wednesday evening comments tying the shooting to the shooter's mental health and even suggesting that his peers had not done enough to prevent the shooting.

The FBI had in fact been warned last year about a YouTube comment left by a person by the name of Nikolas Cruz in which he said, "I'm going to be a professional school shooter." School authorities had also warned teachers that Cruz had exhibited threatening behavior toward other students.

On MSNBC, a teacher who hid 19 students in her classroom during the shooting said the community had done all it could to protect itself from an attack.

"We could not have been more prepared for this situation, which is what makes it so frustrating," said Melissa Falkowski. "We did everything that we were supposed to do. Broward County Schools has prepared us for this situation and to still have so many casualties, at least for me, it's very emotional. Because I feel today that our government, our country has failed us and failed our kids and didn't keep us safe."


Our work is licensed under Creative Commons (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0). Feel free to republish and share widely.

... We've had enough. The 1% own and operate the corporate media. They are doing everything they can to defend the status quo, squash dissent and protect the wealthy and the powerful. The Common Dreams media model is different. We cover the news that matters to the 99%. Our mission? To inform. To inspire. To ignite change for the common good. How? Nonprofit. Independent. Reader-supported. Free to read. Free to republish. Free to share. With no advertising. No paywalls. No selling of your data. Thousands of small donations fund our newsroom and allow us to continue publishing. Can you chip in? We can't do it without you. Thank you.

'Congress Must Act': Bernie Sanders Demands End of Filibuster to Codify Abortion Rights

"We must pass legislation that codifies Roe v. Wade as the law of the land in this country. And if there aren't 60 votes to do it, and there are not, we must reform the filibuster to pass it with 50 votes."

Jon Queally ·


Human Rights Defenders Warn Biden Border Policy 'Quickly Transforming Into Trump 2.0'

Like his predecessor, President Joe Biden now being accused of "using racist, xenophobic tropes about immigrants to weaponize Covid-19 against migrants and asylum-seekers."

Jon Queally ·


'Bombshell': Israeli Spyware Used to Hack iPhones of US State Department Officials

Calling the Israel-based spyware maker NSO Group an "in-plain-sight national security threat," one expert warned that "a multi-agency investigation is immediately needed."

Jessica Corbett ·


US Progressive Caucus Hails Honduran Election as Chance for 'New Chapter' in Relations

"We encourage the Biden administration to use this opportunity to make a clean break with previous presidential administrations, which worked to ensure that the 2009 coup d'état succeeded."

Brett Wilkins ·


'The Facts of This Case Are So Egregious': Parents of Michigan School Shooter Charged in Killings

"There were a lot of things that could have been so simple to prevent," the Oakland County prosecutor said of the mother and father now being sought by law enforcement.

Kenny Stancil ·

Support our work.

We are independent, non-profit, advertising-free and 100% reader supported.

Subscribe to our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values.
Direct to your inbox.

Subscribe to our Newsletter.


Common Dreams, Inc. Founded 1997. Registered 501(c3) Non-Profit | Privacy Policy
Common Dreams Logo