Articles and Opeds
Rep. Deutch Op-Ed: To the Stoneman Douglas Community, I Hear You and I Am with You.
Today, Congressman Ted Deutch (FL-22), representing Parkland and Coral Springs, published an op-ed in the Sun Sentinel in which he pledged to the Stoneman Douglas community to "do everything in my power to make this time different. I will be with you as we demand: Never again."
"To you, the parents who will forever worry that school simply isn’t the safe place it needs to be...
"To my South Florida community, who feels the personal pain of an attack on our neighbors and friends...
"As you grieve and mourn, you’ve been clear about one thing: You want action.
"I hear you. And I will do everything in my power to make this time different. I will be with you as we demand: Never again."
The op-ed can be read here and below.
This community wants action after school shooting. I hear you.
Congressman Ted Deutch
Throughout these painful days for our community, I’ve spoken with dozens of Stoneman Douglas students.
One clutched my arm, with tears streaming down her face as she recalled horrific scenes no one should ever encounter.
Another looked me squarely in the eye and pleaded for more than thoughts and prayers; condolences that will ring hollow if there is not change — in Tallahassee and in Washington.
To you, the students — the young adults — of Stoneman Douglas High School, who will forever live with the memories of lockdown and gun shots and unspeakable violence...
To you, the parents who will forever worry that school simply isn’t the safe place it needs to be...
To my South Florida community, who feels the personal pain of an attack on our neighbors and friends...
As you grieve and mourn, you’ve been clear about one thing: You want action.
I hear you. And I will do everything in my power to make this time different. I will be with you as we demand: Never again.
The brave students of Stoneman Douglas are setting an inspirational example for grown adults, self-proclaimed civic leaders, in Washington.
We demand action. We know that we can stop this from happening in other communities. We have legislation drafted, introduced, and supported. We should vote — next week — to ensure that those who need help receive the mental health care they need, to require background checks on every sale and transfer, to keep suspected terrorists from buying guns as easily as everyday Americans buy groceries, to outlaw bump stocks and other devices that enable automatic rates of fire, and require that everyone be 21 in order to buy a gun.
In the U.S. House, the Speaker controls what bills get a vote. We demand that these bills, all of them popular, all of them bipartisan, be given a vote. It’s time for the people that members of Congress represent see how they vote. It is time to know whose side they are on.
Now is the time.
Like so many others before, the gunman who stalked your halls used an AR-15 semiautomatic rifle to fire more than 100 rounds of ammunition, and dropped his weapon within minutes of firing the first shot. This gun isn’t necessary for hunting or for sport. It is a weapon of war designed to maximize killings.
Twenty-four years ago, it was Republican Presidents Ronald Reagan and Gerald Ford, along with Democratic President Jimmy Carter, who urged Congress to pass an assault weapons ban.
Fourteen years ago, that ban expired, and our country was flooded with assault weapons. We are drowning in these weapons and the blood they have spilled.
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We need to get these weapons of war off our streets. We need to reimpose the assault weapons ban.
We cannot let ourselves lose hope.
We can take meaningful action on mental health, school safety, and yes, gun safety.
For those who say it is too soon, who always say it is too soon to make change, you must live with the knowledge that it is too late for the grieving parents, too late for the survivors who will live with this forever, and too late for the Marjory Stoneman Douglas community.
We must remember the 17 angels that we lost. And we must join together to demand action to strengthen our country and make our communities safe. The students will lead us — to the March for Our Lives on March 24, to the halls of power, and, ultimately, to the change our nation so desperately needs.
Congressman Ted Deutch represents Florida's 22nd district.