Last month, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) suggested schools could prevent mass shootings by enlisting more armed officers like banks do.
On Monday, ten days after the senator’s tweet, a gunman armed with an AR-15 rifle killed five people and injured at least eight more at the Old National Bank in Louisville, Kentucky. He bought the gun legally, according to authorities.
Cruz ― who has received hundreds of thousands of dollars in campaign support from the gun lobby over his political career ― sent the tweet in the wake of last month’s massacre at a Nashville, Tennessee, private school. The shooter in that incident was also armed with an assault-style rifle, as well as two other firearms, all purchased legally.
“When you go to the bank and you deposit money in the bank, there are armed police officers at the bank. Why? Because we want to protect the money we save. Why on earth do we protect a stupid deposit more than our children?” Cruz wrote in the March 31 tweet promoting a “school safety” bill he had reintroduced.
“We have an opportunity right now to double the police officers on campus and keep kids safe,” he added.
Cruz is notorious for advocating for more guns after news of a mass shooting. Following the horrific Uvalde elementary school massacre in his home state, which left 19 children and two teachers dead, Cruz suggested there should only be “one door into and out of the school” with armed officers guarding it.
Despite the presence of dozens of responding officers from local, state and federal agencies at the Uvalde shooting, authorities took more than an hour to take out the gunman, who was also armed with an AR-15-style rifle he bought legally.
The Nashville and Louisville shootings have once again amplified calls from Democrats and gun reform advocates for the passage of gun control legislation, such as “red flag” laws to keep firearms out of the hands of people deemed a risk to themselves or others, a ban on assault weapons and stronger background checks.
Cruz was flayed on social media this week as his tweet did the rounds again following the Louisville bank attack.