Marco Rubio's courage is praiseworthy, but it’s not enough
Rubio was the only Republican representative to face the survivors of the Florida massacre during an Assembly sponsored by CNN, having to respond to angry parents and students about his positions and the positions of his party.
In an unprecedented event, parents of victims, survivors and the entire community of Parkland (Florida) met in an assembly to discuss with legislative representatives and members of the NRA, and address the problem behind the tragedy at the Stoneman Douglas High School.
Democratic Representative Ted Deutch, along with Senators Marco Rubio and Bill Nelson, took center stage to receive questions, complaints, and comments from the survivors and their community, Rubio being the only Republican present, after President Trump and Governor Rick Scott declined CNN’s invitation.
Rubio had the opportunity to speak before the public and defend the legislative difficulty that lies behind the prohibition of arms, in a country where the Second Amendment is defended tooth and nails.
"I think all of us would like to see action. But I want to tell you, what we're going to struggle with,” the Senator said. “We are a nation of people that no longer speak to each other. We are a nation of people who have stopped being friends with people because of who they voted for in the last election. We are a nation of people who have isolated ourselves to only watch channels that tell us that we're right.”
Rubio referred to the fact that in the Trump Era, reaching political or legal agreements has become a definitive impossibility, and where meetings like the assembly in Florida are practically impossible.
Marking distance from the positions of the conservatives and the national right in general, Marco Rubio pointed out the importance of the student movement that has emerged after the terrible shooting at Stoneman Douglas School. "I think you can do much more than change the gun laws," the senator said.
In an exchange of words with Fred Guttenberg, father of one of the murdered girls, Rubio received the whiplash of responsibility when Guttenberg claimed that, "his comments and those of President Trump this week have been pathetically weak."
Rubio, who has been one of the most important recipients of associations like the National Rifle Association, assured that "I absolutely believe that in this country if you are 18 years of age you should not be able to buy a rifle and I will support a law that takes that right away."
For his part, Rubio faced Representative Ted Deutch with the question that divides both parties: "Are you in favor of banning any weapon that can do what the AR-15 can do? Yes or no". Deutch replied without qualms "You bet I am".
After President Trump proposed to arm schoolteachers as a method of defense and to prevent these massacres from repeating themselves, Rubio took another step back, saying "I don’t support that. The notion of my children going to a school where teachers are armed with a weapon is not something that, quite frankly, I’m comfortable with.”
While Rubio had the courage to face an audience that makes the Republican right of the country responsible for the constant massacres at a national level, his voice is one in the middle of a pack of representatives who depend on votes and the support of organizations who insist on allowing the irresponsible culture of arms.
Cameron Kasky, a survivor of the shooting, asked Rubio directly: "Would you refuse to accept donations from the National Rifle Association in the future?"
The Senator finally showed the truth and was not able to say no: "People buy into my agenda, and I do support the Second Amendment. I will always accept the help of anyone who agrees with my agenda."