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17 Killed In Florida School Shooting

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PARKLAND, Fla. (AP) — Parents wait for news regarding the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. Authorities say they're responding to a shooting at a Florida high school; number of wounded unknown., Feb. 14, 2018, in Parkland, FL.  (AP Photo/Joel Auerbach)
PARKLAND, Fla. (AP) — Parents wait for news regarding the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. Authorities say they're responding to a shooting at a Florida high school; number of wounded unknown., Feb. 14, 2018, in Parkland, FL. (AP Photo/Joel Auerbach)
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With Jane Clayson.

Seventeen people are dead in a school shooting in Parkland, Florida. We got the latest on another American gun rampage.

Plus, we talked about some of the themes that often come up in the wake of mass shootings: mental health care, gun control and school safety.

Highlights From This Show:

Scott Poland, professor of psychology at Nova Southeastern University, on mental health access: 

“The reality is mental health services in our country are really only available for the affluent and those with insurance. I was the president of the National Association of School Psychologists and I can tell you with some authority that we simply do not have enough school counselors and school psychologists. And when we want to refer students with serious problems for services in the community, those services are often very lacking.”

Poland on school being a safe place to be: 

“We don't want to give students in our country the impression that schools are unsafe. They're actually safer than almost any places they go. I'm sorry to tell you that most kids in America are actually murdered in their own homes.”

Poland on a study showing that in 81 percent of cases, other people know about a school shooter’s plan:

“We really have to make sure that young people all across the country realize the importance of getting to a trusted adult realize that these shootings can happen. It's just so important that we get over this sense that they've been conditioned not to tell. What does a good person do in this country? They speak up. They see something, they say something, which is a national mantra. Yet many young people still keep the information to themselves. They just don't believe it could happen.”

SUNY Cortland professor Robert Spitzer on background checks:

“Roughly 90 percent of Americans support uniform background checks for purchasing or obtaining a firearm. And we know that the studies are somewhat scant but between 20 and 40 percent of all gun sales and gun exchanges do not include a background check. One of course has to wonder specifically how this teenager got a hold of his AR 15.”

Spitzer on the link between mental health issues and gun ownership:

“The vast majority of gun owners are responsible people who understand that guns are dangerous and they need to be handled properly and carefully. But it is the intersection of firearms with people who have mental health issues and you want to sever that link. That's where laws and public policies can be effective in minimizing those potential trouble spots.”

Guests:

Scott Poland, professor of psychology at Nova Southeastern University.

Robert Spitzer, professor of political science, SUNY Cortland. (@spitzerb)

Carlos Suarez, anchor and reporter for ABC affiliate WPLG in Miami. (@carloswplg)

From The Reading List:

New York Times: 17 Killed In A Deadly School Shooting In Florida — "Seventeen people were killed in a shooting on Wednesday afternoon at a high school about an hour northwest of Miami, law enforcement officials said. The dead included adults and students."

Seventeen people are dead at a Florida high school after a former student opens fire on his classmates. It’s the deadliest school shooting since Sandy Hook. And, it’s the 18th school shooting since the beginning of the year. After each one, there’s a round of grief, resolve, and heated exchanges over gun policies. Then, silence until the next time. We’ll have the latest information from Florida on the suspect and we will look at school shootings as the new normal. --Jane Clayson

This program aired on February 15, 2018.

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