I continue to read additional reasons why the murders of 19 children, and two adults at Robb Elementary in Uvalde, Texas, were not prevented or why they were allowed to continue for more than one hour. In any situation when stories about an event constantly change, I eventually discover that someone is attempting to blow smoke up my derriere to cover up crimes or mistakes.
Regardless of the many “explanations” for the failure of law enforcement to save lives claim, what was reported immediately after the tragedy continues to offer several undeniable facts. What happened since points to probable efforts to hide the truth. It’s nothing new for law enforcement to “have each other’s backs.”
Here are the initial facts. On May 24, 2022, a lone gunman, armed with at least one military assault rifle and a handgun, invaded Robb Elementary School at 11:32 a.m. in Uvalde. The first seven officers arrived a short time later. Inside the school, students began making 9/11 calls. Eventually, a total of 19 armed members of law enforcement gathered outside of the Uvalde school. Shots could be heard by everyone, including residents who lived across the street from the school. Several of these citizens urged the police to storm the school and halt the slaughter of innocents. No action was taken for about 90 minutes when they entered the school killing the 18-year-old assailant in Uvalde.
Angeli Gomez is the mother of two children, both students at Robb Elementary. She did rush into the school to save her children. This week, Ms. Gomez was threatened by one of the officers involved. She is on parole for another offense. The officer claimed that she was guilty of “obstruction of justice,” and therefore violated her parole by telling her story to the press. However, a judge called her “brave,” and she would not suffer any consequences for her action. Her account of failure by law enforcement was confirmed by several other parents who witnessed the inaction of armed men who swore to “protect and serve” the people of Uvalde.
One U.S. Marshal threatened to handcuff Gomez and told her that she would be arrested for being “uncooperative” at the scene. “He said, ‘Well, we’re going to have to arrest you because you’re being very uncooperative,'” she told the news outlet. “I said, well you’re going to have to arrest me because I’m going in there. Y’all are standing with snipers and y’all are far away. If y’all don’t go in there, I’m going in there.”
They did not arrest her, and she found a way to circumvent the officers and entered the building.
“You could hear the gunshots,” she told the news outlet. “There was not one officer inside the school while I ran to my second son’s class. There was not one officer,” she added. “They could have saved many more lives. They could have gone into that classroom…they could have done something.” These officers obviously don’t agree with the NRA gun lobby which constantly claims that “the only way to stop a person with a gun is with a law-abiding citizen who is carrying a gun.” This blows this theory out of the water.
“Why” is the only word that applies. This Uvalde elementary school is attended by 90 percent Hispanic children. Was this a factor, or were they simply cowards?
For me, “the truth lives here,” and this is just another example of why I no longer trust anyone in power who has authority over our nation’s people.
Across the country, law enforcement officers hurry to Black Lives Matter protests heavily armed and wearing protective gear, eager to take physical action against mostly peaceful protesters practicing their first amendment rights. Why did this not happen during the 90 minutes an active shooter was inside a school where most of the children were not pure white? I am not “playing the race card,” I am simply repeating the same basic question asked hundreds if not thousands of times before.
Op-ed by James Turnage
My nine novels are available on Amazon’s Kindle
Newsweek: Uvalde Mom Who Saved Kids From School Shooting Says Police Threatened Her; by Natalie Colarossi
Insider: Uvalde police chief faces scrutiny as ‘man in hiding’ following reports he had officers wait an hour before confronting shooter at Robb Elementary School; by Sarah Al-Arshani
AP News: Onlookers urged police to charge into Texas school; by Jake Bleiberg, Jim Vertuno, and Elliot Spagat