Parents of Santa Fe, Sandy Hook Mass shootings speak out in wake of Uvalde massacre

Parents from Santa Fe High and Sandy Hook Elementary School are speaking out following Tuesday’s deadly school massacre in Uvalde. They believe more needs to be done to address gun access and mental health.

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It was just a week ago that Rhonda Hart mourned four years since her daughter Kimberly Vaughan was one of 10 people shot and killed at Santa Fe High School.

"I'm really angry," Hart said. "We were absolutely lied to in June when we met with Greg Abbott. June 2018, he promised us there would be more school safety and more gun safety laws coming."

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Tuesday’s news of Uvalde’s massacre of 19 elementary school children and two teachers brought back painful reminders for Rhonda.

"They enacted that permit-less carry which is like inviting more ants to the picnic," Hart said.  

In the aftermath of Santa Fe, metal detectors were installed at the high school. But Rhonda believes, the solution is getting guns off the streets.

"I can’t say enough about universal background checks, safe storage, and extreme risk protection laws," Hart said.  

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Others think it’s too late for that. For example, Cody McCubbin, who served on the school board during the 2012 Sandy Hook massacre, where 20 elementary kids and six adults were shot and killed, says he believes the focus should be on mental health. 

"If you got rid of 1,000 guns a day and didn't produce anymore, it would take 5000 years before you get rid of them all," said Cody McCubbin. "Sandy Hook in Newtown, we had a massive mental facility there that was shut down in the 1980s because of funding. Until we start grappling with that problem, this is never going away because the gun issue is that nobody's going to give up their guns. Nobody's going to do it. It's just not going to happen."

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The National Rifle Association (NRA)'s annual convention is scheduled to happen in Houston this weekend at the George R. Brown Convention Center downtown.  

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In a statement this afternoon, the NRA addressed the Uvalde mass shooting:

"Our deepest sympathies are with the families and victims involved in this horrific and evil crime. On behalf of our members, we salute the courage of school officials, first responders, and others who offered their support and services. Although an investigation is underway and facts are still emerging, we recognize this was the act of a lone, deranged criminal. As we gather in Houston, we will reflect on these events, pray for the victims, recognize our patriotic members, and pledge to redouble our commitment to making our schools secure."