Parkland Parents Release Texas Shooting Statement with a Request for the Media That's Already Been Ignored


There’s nobody who knows the anguish that the parents in Santa Fe, Texas, must be feeling right now after nine students were gunned down in a school shooting Friday. However, if anyone can come close to fathoming the horror, it’s the parents of the Parkland school shooting victims.

In the wake of the Santa Fe shooting, the Parkland parents released a collective statement with one simple request. It was something that any media organization could have followed with the greatest of ease. They didn’t even have to do something to fulfill the request. All they had to do was not do something.

Predictably, they couldn’t even manage to do that.

“The families of the victims killed in the Parkland massacre are deeply saddened that today another group of families, those from Santa Fe, TX, have suffered the loss of a loved one at school,” the statement read.

“All Americans must come together and unite to put an end to these preventable tragedies.”

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“Our elected officials need to enact laws and provide mandatory Federal guidelines for school safety,” they added.

This all sounds pretty uncontroversial. What it said next, however, had the media tossing the statement aside with all due haste.

“We ask that the media covering this event refrain from using the shooter’s name thereby preventing him from gaining the notoriety many of his kind desire,” the statement continued. “Published studies clearly demonstrate this fact.”

“These hate-filled individuals that attack and kill innocent children and school staff should not be glorified,” the families added. “The stories referring to this event should be about the victims, their families, and how we can prevent this from ever happening again.”

Do you think the names of mass shooters should be withheld by the media?

“We mourn and pray for those lost or injured and hope their community will rally to support them as ours has,” they concluded.

So, how did the media respond? Here are some examples of headlines that blared out the alleged shooter’s identity.

“Who Is ——— ———-, the Texas Shooting Suspect?” — The New York Times

“——— ———-: What we know about Texas shooting suspect” — the BBC

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Yes, shooting survivors and the families of the dead have to be afforded unconditional respect in the eyes of the media — unless, of course, they ask the media to not name the shooter. In that case, they can sod off.

It’s worth noting that even before this news release, the policy of the entire Western Journal team has been to refrain from publishing the names of mass school shooters if its clear that part of the shooter’s motive was to attract attention to themselves; the only exception to this is generally if the shooter is named in official documents that we’re excerpting.

We do this for a simple reason, one that’s stated very clearly by the parents of the Parkland victims — it merely encourages psychopaths like this to commit murder. Studies have conclusively shown this. So, did the rest of the media listen?

Of course not. The New York Times dedicated an entire “Nightcrawler“-esque profile to this waste of carbon, as did many other supposedly respectable publications. All of these articles are decidedly similar — they give as much minute, morbid biographical detail as possible about an absolute nobody (didja know he wore a t-shirt that said “Born to Kill” on it and posted a picture of it on his Facebook page? Huh, didja?), combined with a mug shot and/or ominous picture of the suspect, or a photograph of parents and students crying if they can’t dig one of those up.

There’s no reason America needs to be informed about most of this information. By publishing it, the media has become complicit in creating a generation of Travis Bickles, aimless losers who figure their only chance to see their name in lights is mass murder.

I hope everyone in the media who saw this request from the Parkland parents and ignored it slept well last night. I can guarantee the Parkland parents certainly didn’t.

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C. Douglas Golden is a writer who splits his time between the United States and Southeast Asia. Specializing in political commentary and world affairs, he's written for Conservative Tribune and The Western Journal since 2014.
C. Douglas Golden is a writer who splits his time between the United States and Southeast Asia. Specializing in political commentary and world affairs, he's written for Conservative Tribune and The Western Journal since 2014. Aside from politics, he enjoys spending time with his wife, literature (especially British comic novels and modern Japanese lit), indie rock, coffee, Formula One and football (of both American and world varieties).
Morristown, New Jersey
Catholic University of America
Languages Spoken
English, Spanish
Topics of Expertise
American Politics, World Politics, Culture