Right-wing media figures are blaming everything but guns for the Parkland shooting

On February 14, 17 people were killed in a mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, FL. Right-wing media figures rushed to blame the shooting on “leftist” public schools, the FBI and its Russia probe, and on debunked connections between the shooter, Nikolas Cruz, and antifa and Islamic terrorist groups.

Sarah Wasko / Media Matters

Fox News contributor Tammy Bruce claimed that talking about firearms doesn’t get to the “core issue” of “the human condition.” She and the hosts of Fox & Friends also blamed drugs, virtual reality, and video games for the shooting.

Radio host Michael Savage tweeted that “liberal judges and the ACLU” were to blame.

Fox guest Lou Palumbo blamed “the media, the entertainment industry,” and “the lack of parenting.” 

Fox News contributor Kevin Jackson blamed “Leftist-run schools” and falsely claimed that the shooter was linked to antifa.

Fox News host Laura Ingraham blamed “mental illness”and “broken or damaged families” for the shooting on her show.

The Gateway Pundit suggested that the shooter supposedly being a registered Democrat was a factor. (He was not actually a registered Democrat; the blog was forced to correct their story.)

Townhall’s Kurt Schlichter blamed the FBI’s Russia probe for the shooting, tweeting, “The FBI was too busy trying to undermine the president to bother with doing it's (sic) freaking job.”

The Daily Caller’s Peter Hasson suggested that the shooting was related to Cruz growing up without a father.

Liberty One TV’s Joe Biggs (formerly of Infowars) tweeted that the FBI was “too busy chasing Trump/Russia nothing burgers” to have prevented the shooting.

Pamela Geller falsely claimed that Cruz was connected to antifa and Islamic terrorist groups.

Laura Loomer shared a fake photo of Cruz and speculated that Cruz was a “radical leftist” with potential ties to antifa and Islamic resistance groups.

Infowars claimed that the “MSM” (mainstream media) was “already covering it up” that Cruz was likely a “Democratic voter” and had clothing “similar to the style worn by ISIS fighters in Syria.”