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Andrew Pollack, father of school shooting victim, condemns ‘restorative justice’ at RNC

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VIDEO | 05:47
Andrew Pollack, father of a school shooting victim, presses his case for President Trump’s reelection at RNC

Andrew Pollack’s 18-year-old daughter, Meadow, was killed in the massacre at Marjorie Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., in 2018.

After a gunman killed 17 students and staff at Marjorie Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., the survivors became the big story, not the shooter. Many students in the liberal enclave, as well as family members of the victims, rallied to agitate for stricter gun control laws.

But not all of them. One of those exceptions was Andrew Pollack, whose daughter Meadow was killed inside the school. Pollack pressed his case for President Trump’s reelection at the Republican National Convention on Monday night on the grounds that he thought the school’s liberal policies on student discipline had contributed to his daughter’s death.

“After my daughter’s murder, the media didn’t seem interested in the facts. So I found them myself. I learned that gun control laws didn’t fail my daughter. People did,” Pollack said, blaming “far-left Democrats in our school district” for adopting insufficiently harsh disciplinary measures to catch previous red flags about the gunman, a troubled former student.

“I was just fine with the old approach to discipline and safety — it was called discipline and safety,” Pollack said, criticizing the school’s “restorative justice” policy. “But the Obama-Biden administration took Parkland’s bad policies and forced them into schools across America.” He praised Trump for ending support for those policies, and told listeners their children’s safety depended on Trump being reelected.

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Trump has occasionally wavered in his rhetoric on gun control policies, but his administration has time and again come back to conservative positions against universal background checks and bans on semiautomatic rifles, which have become Democratic orthodoxy.

The Times profiled Pollack in 2019. A native of Long Island, N.Y., who voted for Trump in 2016, Pollack was angered by the media’s close focus on gun policy rather than on other factors leading up to the shooting. Pollack appeared at the White House a week after the massacre.

“I’m pissed,” Pollack shouted in a listening session at the White House. “It’s not about gun laws right now. That’s another fight, another battle. Let’s fix the schools and then you guys can battle it out.”

Pollack was also critical of the student activists who survived the massacre and then called for tighter gun control policies. “They just got famous off the death of these kids,” Pollack told The Times in 2019. “Their agenda was to get famous and spew more of their liberalism ways without looking at the facts.”


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