After the sentencing of Parkland shooter Nikolas Cruz24, to life without parole for his massacre of 17 people (14 children) in 2018, parents of the young victims came forward to blast the decision to spare him the death penalty. Fred Guttenbergwhose 14-year-old child was shot dead Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School on February 14 that year, immediately started Twitter in the wake of the October 12 decision. “If this is true, any juror issue should be investigated. This is not how justice should be served,” he tweeted alongside a link to an article Mediator. Fred continued his thoughts in a 23-tweet essay, saying in part that the experience left him “in tears.” “For now, I’m happy that it’s over and that my family and I will finally be able to visit Jaime at the cemetery,” he wrote.
Former Republican presidential candidate and one-term Illinois congressman responded via the platform, with praise for Fred. “God bless you @fred_guttenberg,” he wrote. “I’m so sorry you lost Jaime.” Joe’s video link included sentencing comments from Fred urging voters to make their voices heard in the upcoming midterm elections, and to elect representatives who will introduce gun safety legislation. “The next thing I’m doing going forward is everything I possibly can to remind people how important the next election and vote is, because we do have the ability to do things in this country to reduce gun violence through our vote and our gotta do it,” Fred said in the emotional video.
God bless you @fred_guttenberg. I’m so sorry you lost Jaime. https://t.co/av2a3v2YM0
— Joe Walsh (@WalshFreedom) October 13, 2022
David Hogg, 22, a former student at the school who was a senior at the time of the shooting, also took to the social media platform to respond. “Also for stop please [sic] say the shooters name or show his picture,” he tweeted on October 13. “Stop giving him fame. Focus on the victims and supporting their families.” He added another tweet in continuation, reading: “And their families and those who have and sadly probably more who will die by suicide due to the trauma of the shooting.”
David too tweeted out the names of the victims, his partners. “Who really deserves your attention: Alyssa Alhadeff, Scott Beigel, Martin Anguiano, Nicholas Dworet, Aaron Feis, Jamie Guttenberg, Chris Hixon, Luke Hoyer, Cara Loughran, Gina Montalto, Joaquin Oliver, Alaina Petty, Meadow Pollack, Helena Ramsay, Alex Schachter, Carmen Schentrup, Peter Wang . David, who is now a die-hard gun control activist, was met with an outpouring of support in the comments section of his tweet, with several simply writing, “100 agreed.”
Who really deserves your attention:
— David Hogg ☮️ (@davidhogg111) October 13, 2022
Max Schachter, father of Parkland victim Alex Schachter, posted a heartbreaking response in the wake of the decision. “Before the shooting, the Parkland killer said he wanted to kill 20 people,” Max wrote via Twitter. “He stopped after killing 17, including my sweet boy Alex. After that he did not want to die. He wanted to live. Today he got everything he wanted. While our loved ones are in the cemetery.”
Father of slain victim Joaquin Oliver, Manuel Oliver, also under guidance to Twitter to speak out. “Mass murderers: you can live your natural life, you get your 3 hot meals a day, you can shower every day, get medical help, hey, even a hobby or a new education. What a great message this sends, ” he wrote. He also took time to refocus on his son Joaquin. “Time to get back to Joaquin and his amazing movement,” he continued in part. “The world just saw how to get away with murder in a nation whose system is dangerously flawed. Let’s fix this horrible narrative.”
Mass murderers: you can live your natural life, you get your 3 hot meals a day, you can shower every day, get medical help, hey, even a hobby or a new education. What a wonderful message this sends.
— Manuel Oliver (@manueloliver00) October 13, 2022
Finally, the mother of Parkland shooting victim Alyssa Alhadeff also tweeted her thoughts. “Justice, in every sense of the word, did not serve today. It was not served for the families and loved ones of the victims nor for the country as a whole. I didn’t think I could feel more disappointment and sadness.”
Justice, in every sense of the word, did not serve today. It was not served for the families and loved ones of the victims nor for the country as a whole. I didn’t think I could feel more disappointment and sadness. 💔https://t.co/qHU8najn1Y
— Lori Alhadeff (@lorialhadeff) October 13, 2022
Gun safety issues have grown to a fever pitch as school shootings, including the recent Uvalde massacre, continue across the country. Fred did with the HollywoodLife Podcast in a July 2022 interview, and shared his thoughts on the subject in EXCLUSIVE comments. “If you want gun safety, if you want the freedom of choice, if you want to do something about the environment, if you want the right to vote, the only way to save democracy is to go ahead and vote [for] Democrats in this election cycle,” he said HL during the podcast. “Rebuild what was once the Republican Party, and we can worry about who is voting for different parties in a future election. Not this one.”