Co-Creator of the #NeverAgain movement
"Emma Gonzalez is an American activist and advocate for gun control. As a high school senior she survived the February 2018 Stoneman Douglas High School shooting in Parkland, Florida, and in response co-founded the gun-control advocacy group Never Again MSD. She first drew national attention after a speech she gave at a rally against gun violence went viral…
González is expected to graduate from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in the spring of 2018 where she also serves as the president of its gay–straight alliance…
On February 17, 2018, González gave an 11-minute speech speech in front of the Broward County Courthouse at a gun control rally in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. The speech was in reaction to the Stoneman Douglas High School shooting, three days previously, during which a gunman had killed seventeen and severely injured many more.
In the speech she pledged to work with her peers to pressure lawmakers to change the law. The speech featured a call and response: "We call B.S.," in response to gun laws, calling for advocacy and empowering young people to speak out against school shootings. The speech then went viral. According to The Washington Post, González's speech became emblematic of the "new strain of furious advocacy" that sprung up immediately after the shooting.
In an interview with Ellen DeGeneres, González said she felt her message would resonate through repetition. "I knew I would get my job done properly at that rally if I got people chanting something. And I thought 'We call B.S.' has four syllables, that's good, I'll use that. I didn't want to say the actual curse words...this message doesn't need to be thought of in a negative way at all."...
She and other survivors spoke with Florida state legislators in Tallahassee on February 20, 2018. The students watched the legislature vote down debate on an existing gun control bill.
The students also spoke at an internationally televised town hall hosted by CNN on February 21, 2018. González and others criticized the National Rifle Association (NRA) as well as politicians who accept money from it, as being complicit in the shootings, and stated that "you're either funding the killers, or you're standing with the children."
At the town hall, González pressed an NRA representative to clarify her position on guns. "Dana Loesch, I want you to know that we will support your two children in the way that you will not," González said at the town hall. "The shooter at our school obtained weapons that he used on us legally. Do you believe that it should be harder to obtain the semi-automatic and...the modifications for these weapons to make them fully automatic like bump stocks?" Loesch answered González by arguing that mentally ill people shouldn't have access to weapons. González interjected and noted that she hadn't answered her question. "I think I'm gonna interrupt you real quick and remind you that the question is actually, do you believe it should be harder to obtain these semi-automatic weapons and modifications to make them fully automatic, such as bump stocks?"
Shortly after her viral speech and high-profile media appearances, González joined Twitter and acquired more than 1 million followers within a span of less than ten days, surpassing both the NRA and Loesch.
González and other students including David Hogg and Cameron Kasky are organizing and participating in a March 24, 2018 nationwide protest called March for Our Lives with the primary focus on Washington, DC.
González has continued to speak out as part of a nationwide movement by students against gun violence, which includes a school walkout on April 20, 2018, the 19th anniversary of the Columbine High School massacre.
Glamour Magazine called González "the face of the #NeverAgain movement" and "a recognizable icon"...
González identifies as bisexual. According to Vogue, her buzz cut is not a reaction to the school shooting. "People asked me, 'Are you taking a feminist stand'? No, I wasn't. It's Florida. Hair is just an extra sweater I’m forced to wear," González recalled. "I even made a Powerpoint [sic] presentation to convince my parents to let me shave my head, and it worked."” (2)