With the community of Parkland, FL still reeling after one of the worst school shootings in history, the president of the United States has used the massacre as an excuse to attack the FBI and defend himself from an encroaching probe of Russia’s meddling in elections.
With Donald Trump, there is no such thing as a new low.
“Very sad that the FBI missed all of the many signals sent out by the Florida school shooter. This is not acceptable,” Trump tweeted on Saturday night while spending the weekend at his Mar-a-Lago estate, which is near Marjory Stoneman Douglas High, the site of the shooting. “They are spending too much time trying to prove Russian collusion with the Trump campaign - there is no collusion. Get back to the basics and make us all proud!”
The FBI admitted on Friday that it had been warned about the gunman, 19–year–old Nikolas Cruz, who killed 17 students and teachers on Wednesday and injured several others. In January, a tipster had phoned the FBI to alert them to Cruz’s ownership of guns, erratic behavior, and desire to kill people.
But something else happened on Friday that seems to be more important to Trump than grieving parents, teenagers, and school administrators. Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein announced the indictment of 13 Russians and three Russian nationals on eight felony counts involving a sophisticated intelligence operation aimed at disrupting the 2016 presidential election in the U.S.
Since then, Trump has tweeted nearly 20 times, with more than half of the tweets referring to the Russians and special counsel Robert Mueller’s probe. Only three of the tweets, as of this writing, addressed the Parkland shooting, including the one attacking the FBI.
The others lashed out at Democrats about gun control legislation, blamed President Barack Obama for Russia’s attacks on the U.S., belittled congressman Adam Schiff, and mocked CNN as “Fake News.”
Trump’s anti–FBI tweet was posted the same day he was harshly criticized on social media for his insensitivity to the victims and their families in the wake of the school massacre. While students from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High reacted to their own personal nightmare by bravely demanding that politicians act on gun control legislation, Trump spent the little time he devoted to the issue by praising first responders and members of law enforcement.
He also skipped a day of golf.
After a brief visit Friday to a hospital and sheriff’s office near the school, Trump shared photos that showed first lady Melania Trump and him broadly smiling with hospital staff and police officers. Trump is flashing a thumb’s up in several photos, including one that he added to his Twitter profile.
Twitter users were understandably outraged by Trump’s latest tweet: