Parkland survivor Kyle Kashuv defies a blue youth tide

Not everyone from the Parkland school shooting is an activist for gun control.  Kyle Kashuv, in fact, is adamant that the Second Amendment is not the problem; government failure is.  He's defying a blue wave to get that word out.

At an American Freedom Alliance conference on guns and school shooting yesterday in Los Angeles, Kashuv, the bright kid who defied the media "narrative" about gun control, came out in favor of the Second Amendment and has begun organizing for it, urging conservatives to fight the moves to grab guns and sway young voters in thrall to leftist blather as a result of the killings.

"Already we know the government can't do its job," he said, pointing out that it failed to protect students with its existing gun laws and safety regulations.  "We already see that more government would mean overreach."

The problem isn't a lack of gun laws, he said, but useless government moves in the name of "protecting" children in the name of school safety.  Government failures – from cowardly cops to misspent safety money, to bad policy on the ground that drove kids into the line of gunfire to corruption – were all part of this pattern of failure.  "Had the government done its job on Feb. 14, this wouldn't have happened."

It's why more gun control is such a bad idea.  Government failures absolutely happened at Parkland, and more gun control would do zilch to fix that.  "So why allow more power to government?"

"We need to hold the government accountable for its failures," he said.

Things aren't helped by the press reporting just one side of the issue, Kashuv said, where the mainstream media "piggybacked on the gun control issue."  He said he had to actually call up Fox News to tell network there was more than one point of view among the Parkland students because the press coverage was so blanket-skewed in favor of the gun control argument.  He didn't say so, but, obviously, that's why the likes of far-left David Hogg and his coevals got a lot of left-wing and Hollywood activist money and managed to get the spotlight.

Unfortunately, this kind of coverage meant not all the facts got out, not even among the students, Kashuv said.

The biggest problem with many young people, including some of his own classmates, was not that they were stupid or evil, but that they were sheltered.

"To be specific, many kids live in a bubble," he said, citing Parkland's own gated-community set-up and low experience with crime and social disintegration that necessitate measures for self-protection elsewhere in much of America.  "Not every community is as safe as Parkland," he said.  That bubble made many vulnerable to what he called the "fake news media" and the one-sided story the media were putting out.  And the problem went well beyond Parkland.

Kashuv wasn't utterly dejected about the situation, but there was the news item that ran yesterday in the New York Times, showing that voter registration among young people has risen sharply, and it skews in favor of the Democrats.  I asked him about it, and he said it did make the battle for supporters of the Second Amendment harder.  Some young people "are simply not informed," he said, and that means his effort to counter this blue wave among them will have to focus on facts.

"The older people get, the more educated," which would work in the organizing's favor.  "We have known about the problems of school safety since 1999," he said, in reference to the Columbine school shooting.  "It's been in the spotlight" repeatedly that the government failed to protect, he said.  Yet "you can't get that [knowledge and perspective] from a high school experience."

There were bright spots: Kashuv cited the sharp rise in National Rifle Association memberships as one example and had a few others.  Another recent poll showed that Millennials are drifting away from Democrats in general as they grow older and more experienced.  Kashuv knows of those who share his point of view already, but many tend to keep quiet out of fear.

In any case, it isn't stopping him.

"Much as we laugh at the left, we have to fight and push for legislation," Kashuv said.  School safety, rather than targeting gun ownership, is the real issue.  He emphasized that with all government failures around school shootings piling up, the time is short.

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