Parkland students rip DeVos for not looking at the role of guns in school violence

Two survivors of February's Parkland, Fla., school shooting blasted Education Secretary Betsy DeVosElizabeth (Betsy) Dee DeVosTrump admin gave over million in aid to students at unaccredited for-profit colleges On The Money: Waters clashes with Trump officials over 'disastrous' housing finance plan | Dems jump into Trump turf war over student loans | House passes bill targeting anonymous shell companies Democrats jump into Trump turf war over student loans MORE for saying that the White House’s school safety commission will not focus on the role of firearms in violence at schools.

In an interview Sunday with MSNBC’s Joy Reid, Ryan Deitsch and Jaclyn Corin expressed disappointment that DeVos would not charge the commission with looking at gun violence.

“Betsy DeVos needs to understand that there have been over 20 school shootings in 2018 alone,” Corin said. “If our Secretary of Education fails to recognize the role that guns play in our schools, she doesn’t represent the students of America.”

DeVos told lawmakers last week that the commission, which President TrumpDonald John TrumpGraham to introduce resolution condemning House impeachment inquiry Support for impeachment inches up in poll Fox News's Bret Baier calls Trump's attacks on media 'a problem' MORE formed in response to the Parkland shooting, would not look at the role of guns in school violence.

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Trump’s directive for the commission says that it will “study and make recommendations” on numerous topics, including age restrictions for certain gun purchases.

Deitsch said he “can’t respect” DeVos's decision not to examine the role of guns in school violence. Democratic lawmakers on the House Education Committee wrote a letter to DeVos last week asking her for an explanation.

“I just can’t respect that she couldn’t even look at one of the leading causes of death in schools, which shouldn’t be a classic thing in America,” Deitsch said. “This shouldn’t be a classic thing in the 21st century that we’re talking about how many kids are dying in schools and how to stop it, let alone ignoring something as obvious as the gun.”

Deitsch also tore into DeVos for her visit to Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School after a shooter opened fire at the school on Feb. 14, killing 17 people and injuring several others.

DeVos was harshly criticized at the time by students who said the secretary’s visit was merely a photo opportunity.

“I lost all respect for Ms. DeVos after she visited our tragedy,” Deitsch said Sunday, accusing DeVos of violating grieving students’ privacy with her visit.

“She would whisper to staff members,” he said. “She would sit down with grieving students when they were in a private counseling session, fully breaking the privacy session that these students needed after they lost their friends.”