The Feb. 14 Parkland school shooting which claimed the lives of 17 people and injured over a dozen more has escalated the debate over gun control. Nineteen-year-old Nikolas Cruz has been arrested and charged as the alleged perpetrator. His ability to obtain an assault rifle has many pushing for tighter gun laws. But the gun dealer who unknowingly supplied some weapons to Las Vegas shooter Stephen Paddock said that the answer isn’t legislative.
David Famiglietti told CNN‘s Van Jones during a ride-along interview that the solution to school shootings starts at home. After all, Famiglietti grew up with guns and school shootings just didn’t happen. He said that the parents have failed their children.
“We all had guns in our trucks in high school and nobody shot up the schools,” Famiglietti said. “I think we have to look at what the real problem is. I don’t think it’s the guns. I think maybe we have to look at some parenting.”
Jones and Famiglietti were joined on the ride by two survivors of the Las Vegas Massacre that ended in 58 deaths and 489 injuries. J’Anna Hendricks still supports the Second Amendment while Jill Preston thinks that private gun ownership is a real problem.
Famiglietti defended his right to own and sell firearms. He found out after the Vegas shooting that he had sold “a few guns” to Paddock. The gun dealer said that the transactions were legal. But he called Paddock a “nut job” who should have never been able to buy a gun in the first place.
The Las Vegas-based dealer insisted that limiting access to firearms won’t make anybody any safer. In the matter of school shootings like the one at Douglas High School, the problem isn’t the gun itself. The people who pull the trigger have issues that needed to be addressed.
“Do you understand that if you ban guns tomorrow or the sell of guns or took my guns away, that it don’t help your child’s safety at all?” Famiglietti asked. “Because the guns in the hands of the wrong people are still out there?”
Hendricks and Preston pointed to a failure to enforce gun laws that are already on the books. Preston said that gun violence is an epidemic problem that people are either in denial about or are choosing to ignore. Famiglietti said that no matter what lawmakers do to restrict access to guns and accessories like bump stocks and silencers, the problem still lies in the mindset of the person in possession of the gun.
Van Jones said that other countries around the world don’t have the problems that the U.S. has with gun violence. He asserted that they don’t have access to guns, therefore these horrific mass shootings don’t occur. Hendricks, a stay-at-home mom, blames bad parenting and bullying as motivations for young people to kill. The consensus of the three passengers was that guns are at least part of the problem.
“Everybody will agree that a gun used in a crime or a gun in the wrong hands is part of the problem,” Famiglietti said. “One hundred percent.”