Congress members taking money from NRA to be named
Two groups that advocate for tougher gun laws are spending $230,000 on a two-page ad in The New York Times that lists about 100 members of Congress who have accepted donations from the National Rifle Association.
The ad bought by Everytown for Gun Safety and Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America is set to run Wednesday. It shows an image of schoolchildren leaving single-file from a school and features a quote from a student at Parkland asking adults to “get something done.”
The groups say the members of Congress listed have taken NRA contributions but “refuse to take action” on gun-control measures.
Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America founder Shannon Watts says politicians who don’t take action to stop gun violence are “complicit in the deaths of our children.”
Shooting victim offered posthumous ROTC admission
PARKLAND, Fla. — U.S. Military Academy officials say they have posthumously offered admission to a 15-year-old last seen holding open a door for other students during last week’s school shooting in Florida.
West Point officials said Tuesday that the Class of 2025 admission offer was an appropriate honor for Peter Wang, a “brave young man” whose lifetime goal was to attend the storied academy north of New York City.
Wang was a freshman member of the Junior ROTC program at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School and reportedly was wearing his gray ROTC shirt when he was killed.
West Point rarely offers posthumous admissions. Potential candidates’ actions must exemplify the academy’s tenets of duty, honor and country.
White House to hold ‘listening session’
Parents, students and teachers affected by past school shootings will attend a White House listening session about school safety this week.
White House spokeswoman Sarah Huckabee Sanders said Tuesday that attendees will include people from Parkland, Florida, where a gunman killed 17 people at a high school last week.
She praised the bravery of victims who saved others and said President Donald Trump believes “it is the right of every American child to grow up in a safe community.”
Sanders says the Wednesday listening session also will include people touched by the Columbine and Sandy Hook mass shootings.
On Thursday, the local officials and law enforcement officers will continue the discussion.
Florida committee wants officers in every school
A Florida Senate committee has endorsed a proposal to put law enforcement officers in every school in the state.
Only slightly more than half of Florida’s more than 4,000 public schools have the resource officers. They are sworn law-enforcement officers and allowed to carry a weapon on a school campus.
The Senate Education Committee voted Tuesday to include the requirement in a sweeping education bill that is now moving through the legislature.
The proposal is expected to also be part of a comprehensive gun bill that Senate Republicans plan to release later this week. GOP leaders have drafted the legislation in response to the shootings at a Florida high school that left 17 people dead.
Florida House votes down motion to take up gun bill
Less than a week after 17 people were fatally shot at a Florida high school, the state House has voted down a motion to take up a bill that would ban assault rifles, effectively killing the measure for this session.
The motion failed by a 36-71 vote.
As the Florida House opened its session Tuesday, Democratic Rep. Kionne McGhee asked for a procedural move that would have allowed it to consider a bill to ban assault rifles and large capacity magazines. The bill had been assigned to three committees but was not scheduled for a hearing. The committees won’t meet again before the legislative session ends March 9.
McGhee said that means the bill would be dead unless the House voted to remove it from the committees and let it be considered by the full House.
Republican leaders in the House and Senate say they will consider proposals including raising age restrictions for gun purchases and the red-flag bill regarding temporarily taking away someone’s guns if they are deemed a threat to others.
Bus breaks down on way to Tallahassee
One of the three buses that were supposed to take school shooting survivors to the state capital has broken down as it prepared to leave.
The bus driver says the air conditioning on the bus is not working and they are trying to get another bus. They hope that the bus will join the other two that have departed for Tallahassee.
The group of about 100 students is making the 400-mile trip to the state capital to pressure lawmakers to act on a sweeping package of gun control laws.
The students plan to hold a rally Wednesday at the Capitol.
Florida teen arrested for threatening video
Authorities say a Florida teen has been arrested and had his rifle confiscated after posting a threatening video online.
A Wakulla County Sheriff’s Office news release says 18-year-old Kane Watson was charged Monday with making threats to do bodily harm and making a false report. Officials didn’t say which school, if any, Watson attended or whether he named a specific target.
Detectives say Watson posted a video to Snapchat that showed a tactical rifle being removed from a case and loaded with a magazine. A caption with the video said, “Don’t go to school.”
Detectives linked the post to Watson. Authorities say Watson admitted to posting the video, explaining that he did it to deal with stress through humor.
Crawfordville is about 435 miles northwest of Parkland, where 17 people were killed last week in a school shooting.
North Carolina students walk out in protest of school shootings
Students who walked out of classes in western North Carolina to protest mass shootings at U.S. schools say teenagers are tired of being ignored on the issue.
The Times-News of Hendersonville reports about 50 students left Polk High School on Tuesday and walked to the school entrance sign where they were greeted by an equal number of supporters.
Student body president Drew Bailey said school shootings are a humanitarian issue. Student body secretary-treasurer Luke Collins said students are tired of living in fear.
Students held cards with the names of 17 people killed last week at a high school in Parkland, Florida, when a former student went on a rampage with an assault rifle.
Polk County Schools Superintendent Aaron Greene supervised the event and helped direct traffic into the school.
Clooneys give $500,000 to students organizing agains gun violence
Actor George Clooney and human-rights lawyer Amal Clooney are donating $500,000 to students organizing marches against gun violence, and the couple says they’ll also attend next month’s planned protests.
In a statement Tuesday, the Clooneys say they’re inspired by the “courage and eloquence” of the survivors-turned-activists from Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. Seventeen people were killed at the school and others wounded when a former student went on a rampage with an assault rifle. Students are mobilizing a March 24 march in Washington and elsewhere to urge lawmakers to enact tougher gun control.
The Clooneys say they’re donating the money in the names of their 8-month-old twins. The couple also says the family plans to “stand side by side” with students next month.