Authorities in Santa Fe, Texas have reportedly found “found pressure cookers and pipe bombs” around the high school where ten people were killed Friday, news agencies have reported, but will gun rights groups and the Second Amendment be singled out for blame in this latest tragedy, activists are wondering on social media.
According to CBS and ABC News, the suspect has been identified as 17-year-old Dimitrios Pagourtzis, a student at the high school. He was reportedly armed with a shotgun and a .38-caliber revolver that apparently belong to his father, according to KHOU News. At his age, he could not legally buy those guns, and certainly not carry them into a school, which is a designated gun-free zone. One report indicated that the shotgun may have been “sawed off.”
“Sawed-off shotguns, pipe bombs, pressure cookers and Molotov cocktails that were apparently recovered by investigators are already illegal,” noted Alan Gottlieb, chairman of the Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms. “This happened in a gun-free school zone, which again demonstrates that violent individuals bent on doing harm to others will always find a way around whatever law we pass.”
Reports indicate that the suspect told authorities he wanted to commit suicide, but said he lacked the courage to carry through on that part of his attack.
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott told a press conference that he will convene a round table next week to involve all interested parties, including Second Amendment advocates, in a search for possible solutions to this kind of crime.
Gun control lobbying groups are already commenting on the shooting. Reason quoted former Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, now head of an anti-gun group, who stated, “It’s time for America to find the courage to take on the powerful and fight for our own safety. We can’t wall ourselves off from the threat of gun violence—it doesn’t work.”
And teen gun control proponent David Hogg, posted this message on Twitter:
CBC reported that “In the 93 days since a gunman killed 17 staff and students at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, there have been 23 more gun incidents at American schools and universities.” However, that Canadian news agency used Michael Bloomberg’s Everytown for Gun Safety data as its source, and according to Hotair.com, “Everytown has long inflated its total by including incidents of gunfire that are not really school shootings.”
Various reports indicate that the suspect may have offered some warning signs about his intentions on computers and in journals. He did post images of a T-shirt that carried the message “Born To Kill,” and a jacket that had Nazi regalia, according to some reports.
In the immediate aftermath of the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., anti-gunners were quick to shift blame to the NRA and gun rights in general. Gottlieb called that incident, and the one in Texas Friday morning “atrocities.”