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Santorum: Student Marchers Aren't Confronting Gun Violence Responsibly

Rick Santorum suggested "instead of looking to someone else to solve their problem" that kids should learn CPR.

According to former Senator Rick Santorum (R-PA), the students protesting against gun violence are going about it all wrong and should take more responsibility for their problem rather than petition adults to make changes for them.

On CNN's State of the Union Sunday, Santorum recommended students learn CPR "instead of looking to someone else to solve their problem" or otherwise determine how to "deal with situations that when there is a violent shooter that you can actually respond to that".

The 2012 and 2016 presidential candidate said students could work to stop bullying in their communities or respond themselves to a shooter instead of asking lawmakers to approve legislation to protect them.

The backlash was swift, particularly as Santorum's comments came amid national protests against gun violence led by the very demographic the former senator disparaged.

Everytown for Gun Safety program manager Erica Lafferty, whose mother died during the Sandy Hook massacre in 2012, called Santorum's remarks insulting:

"Rick Santorum's words are an insult to the kids of Parkland, my family and to the countless others who have had loved ones taken by gun violence," Lafferty said in a statement. "My mother was killed while protecting her students at Sandy Hook School. For anyone to suggest that the solution to gun violence is for kids to learn CPR is outrageous, and indicative of the NRA's desire to do or say anything except strengthen America's weak gun laws."

But Santorum said strengthening firearms legislation amounts to "phony gun laws" that don't work and suggested the students take concrete action on their own:

"They took action to ask someone to pass a law," he said of the demonstrators. "They didn't take action to say, 'How do I, as an individual, deal with this problem?

Santorum's remarks on what students could or should do begin at 4:56 in the video above.

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