Former student of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, Nikola Cruz, 19, took the lives of 17 people after he opened fire with a legally owned AR-15 semiautomatic rifle.
President Trump issued a proclamation ordering American flags to be flown at half-mast through Monday to honor the victims of the mass shooting. But when the GOP posted a photo of the white house, saying, "We're with you, Florida," it was not wholly embraced on Twitter.
We're with you, Florida. https://t.co/csPkMKHhdf— GOP (@GOP) 1518730663.0
The social media kickback originates with the resentment over the administration's unwillingness to impose stricter gun control laws.
Lori Alhadeff, the mother of one of the students killed in the mass shooting, told CNN, "President Trump, you say, 'What can you do?' You can stop the guns from getting into these children's hands! Put metal detectors at every entrance to the schools!"
What can you do? You can do a lot! This is not fair to our families and our children [to] go to school and have to get killed!
The president insisted the problem was mental health issues, suggesting that Cruz was "mentally disturbed," while addressing the shooting in a tweet.
So many signs that the Florida shooter was mentally disturbed, even expelled from school for bad and erratic behavi… https://t.co/3mSYrtTng6— Donald J. Trump (@Donald J. Trump) 1518696761.0
The lack of a discussion on gun control frustrated Twitter.
@GOP florida is your fault.— Elizabeth Story (@Elizabeth Story) 1518732320.0
Lowering flags may be a protocol, but it's not enough.
@GOP Fuck you. You haven't done shit. You've lowered a flag and you think that makes a difference?— Geraldine (@Geraldine) 1518731162.0
@GOP You aren’t with Florida. You literally profit from every single one of these shootings. 30 so far this year.… https://t.co/QW9k31ZJQl— David Chartier 🥃 (@David Chartier 🥃) 1518760483.0
@GOP Why don’t you show the real picture?! https://t.co/CvJU2fir7b— Allen Peacock (@Allen Peacock) 1518747179.0
@GOP Are you going to return all of the money you received from the National Rifle Association?— General S. D. Butler (@General S. D. Butler) 1518758339.0
Many people blame the GOP for ongoing gun violence.
@GOP Your thoughts and prayers are a slap in the face of all the victims. 18 school shootings the first 35 days of… https://t.co/PBjT6PR2bM— RedMasque (@RedMasque) 1518730873.0
@butler_general @GOP Unless they ban politicians from collecting money from the N.R.A., nothing will change..... un… https://t.co/yprsS93yxv— Téa (@Téa) 1518795394.0
Prayers and condolences only offer so much.
@GOP https://t.co/bTjGM109ry— Rolf Boettger (@Rolf Boettger) 1518759026.0
@HappilyHeathen @GOP Don't forget, it comes with the free bonus gift of a moment of silence https://t.co/4U3gb8bkdr— Jennifer Newlon (@Jennifer Newlon) 1518794194.0
What's the outlook for the future?
@GOP Mark this down...when they’re old enough to vote they’re going to destroy you. https://t.co/I6vOneBugB— Dawn M. (@Dawn M.) 1518750358.0
@DawnMacc @margaretsfolly @GOP Some of them are old enough now. A lot of them will be voting on 2020, and these kid… https://t.co/7TUWBv7YV5— Janice W (@Janice W) 1518786093.0
But government action is long overdue.
@DawnMacc @GOP WE should be destroying them! We can't wait on the next generation to get rid of these liars. We fai… https://t.co/seySwFOa5S— Urban Integrious (@Urban Integrious) 1518789309.0
Cruz legally purchased the semiautomatic rifle that he used in the shooting and kept it locked in a cabinet at home.
Cruz's attorney told the Associated Press that there were a lot of 18- and 19-year-olds in the area with firearms. "This is about something went seriously wrong with this kid, and no one can explain it right now."
In September, YouTube user Ben Bennight reported on a comment left on one of his videos to the FBI. A "nicolas cruz" wrote, "I'm going to be a professional school shooter."