Reprinted with permission from Shareblue.com
A Florida teenager who survived the massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High in Parkland, Florida, issued a rousing call to action at a rally against gun violence.
Emma Gonzalez declared that the shooting at her school should be “the last mass shooting.”
And she responded directly to Trump’s tweet, which blamed students at the school for not reporting on the shooter’s behavior before the event.
“We did,” Gonzalez said, “time and time again, since he was in middle school.”
“We need to pay attention to the fact that this isn’t just a mental health issue,” she continued. “He wouldn’t have harmed that many students with a knife.”
Here’s the speech from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School student Emma Gonzalez at an anti-gun rally happening today in Fort Lauderdale https://t.co/CyfMnPDAvW // https://t.co/hgewZy4Cxf https://t.co/gssAmGczuH
— Joshua Chavers (@JoshuaChavers) February 17, 2018
“How about we stop blaming the victims for something that was the shooter’s fault?” she demanded, and called out those who do deserve to shoulder that blame.
“[The people] who let him buy the guns in the first place. Those at the gun shows. The people who encouraged him to buy accessories for his guns to make them fully automatic. The people who didn’t take them away from him when they knew that he expressed homicidal tendencies. And I am not talking about the FBI. I am talking about the people that he lived with, I’m talking about the neighbors who saw him outside holding guns.”
And Gonzalez again did not let Trump’s responsibility go unremarked upon
“If the president wants to come up to me and tell me to my face that it was a terrible tragedy, and how it should never have happened, and maintain telling us that nothing is going to be done about it, I’m going to happily ask him I’m going to happily ask him how much money he received from the National Rifle Association.”
Gonzalez then called attention to the $30 million spent by the NRA in support of Trump in the 2016 presidential election, and how that translates onto each life lost to gun violence.
“That comes out to being $5800. Is that how much these people are worth to you, Trump?” She asked.
“To every politician who has taken donations from the NRA: Shame on you!”
The crowd erupted into a loud chant, echoing her cry: “Shame on you!”
Emma Gonzalez and her Florida community are not allowing Trump, the Republican Party, or the NRA to intimidate them into silence. They are speaking up to defend their families, and shaming those who enable this epidemic of violence.