DeSantis Chose the First Anniversary of the Uvalde Slaughter to Declare his Candidacy*

7 min readMay 28

His Choice of Forum Was Just as Perfect

Photo by STNGR Industries on Unsplash

His sister refused to buy him an assault rifle. So, on May 17, 2022, a day after his 18th birthday, Salvador Rolando Ramos, a former student at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas, legally purchased a Smith & Wesson semi-automatic rifle from a Texas gun shop. Three days later, he bought an AR-15 style assault rifle. He legally purchased 1,657 cartridges, including 375 rounds of 5.56 NATO ammunition — developed in the U.S. and originally chambered in the M16 — which he acquired on May 18, 2022, two days after he turned 18.

I’ll concede that most days are the first anniversary of at least one mass shooting in America, a horrific date of heightened grief and mourning for the survivors and family and friends of those who didn’t.

I suspect every day in the United States is an anniversary of at least one such murderous rampage. Some days, multiple.

Mass shootings are defined as “an incident in which four or more people are shot and wounded or killed, excluding the shooter.” Because mass shootings are now common, everyday occurrences in the United States, their anniversaries can be easily forgotten by those not personally impacted, and the details largely disappear from the national consciousness.

An exception to the rule, at least for now, is the slaughter of school-children with high-powered assault rifles. The mass murder of children at Robb Elementary School was the third-deadliest school shooting in the United States, behind Virginia Tech and Sandy Hook Elementary School. Florida’s Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, was the fourth deadliest school shooting, and ties for tenth overall. Uvalde occurred ten days after the race-based mass murder of ten people, all of whom were Black, at a Tops Friendly Markets supermarket in Buffalo, New York by an 18-year-old. After publishing his manifesto, the white supremacist used a Bushmaster XM-15 AR-style rifle. The shooter live-streamed the slaughter on Twitch until the service shut it down.

Given the acceptance, expectation, and growing ubiquity of mass shootings in the U.S., including of children at school, even the exceptions will eventually fold…


Exercising my right not to remain silent. Criminal defense and First Amendment attorney.