“We are grieving, we are furious, and we are using our words fiercely and desperately because that’s the only thing standing between us and this happening again” (Emma González). Emma González is an 18 year old high school student at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. Emma González survived the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting on February 14, 2018, when former Parkland Student, Nikolas Cruz, opened fire. He killed 17 students and staff members and injuring 17 others. Since then, Emma González has become an American activist and advocate for gun control. Emma González opened up about being an advocate for gun control. Emma González felt that nobody listened to her and every victim of a mass shooting, so she took it upon herself to protest against the NRA gun control and call them out. In her speech to the NRA and politicians regarding gun control, Emma González is trying to get the NRA to have not only restrictions, but to change gun control laws, in order to prevent another mass shooting from happening again.
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In the middle part of her speech, González is using her voice to express herself about the people who are against her fight against gun control. For instance, Emma González shares her personal feelings and thoughts about the atrocious situation:
Adults are saying that children are emotional. I should hope so, some of our closest friends were taken before their time because of a senseless act of violence that should never have occurred. If we weren’t emotional, they would criticize us for that, as well. Adults are saying that children are disrespectful. But how can we respect people who don’t respect us? We have always been told that if we see something wrong, we need to speak up; but now that we are, all we’re getting is disrespect from the people who made the rules in the first place. Adults like us when we have strong test scores, but they hate us when we have strong opinions.
Emma González reveals that she, along other victims, have every right to be emotional, for she witness her friends die in front of her. She is not fighting against gun control for attention, but for those, including her friends, who lives were taken away too early because all protests against gun laws were simply brushed off and not taken seriously. Like others, she was taught to always follow the rules and do the right thing, now that she is, all she receives is disrespect from the same people who taught her to have proper morals. Therefore, she will not let anyone intervene her opinions and will continue to stand and fight against gun control laws.
Moreover, later in her speech, González opens up about access to guns. To demonstrate, Emma talks about what she wants to change in gun laws:
Still, if I’m able to communicate one things to adults, it would be this: it should not be easier to purchase a gun than it is to obtain a driver’s license, and military-grade weapons should not be accessible in civilian settings…At the end of the day, we don’t want people to have their guns taken away. We just want the people to be more responsible. We want civilians to have to go through more rolls of red tape to get what they want, because if any of that tape can stop those who shouldn’t own a gun from owning a gun, then our government will have done something right. All we want to do is go back to school. But we want to know that when we walk onto campus, we won’t have to worry about the possibility of staring down the barrel of a gun. We want to fix this problem so it doesn’t occur again, but mostly we want people to forget about us once this is over. We want to go back to our lives and live them to the fullest in respect for the dead. (González)
Emma does not want people’s gun to be taken away, she just wants people to be more responsible. Obtaining a gun is easier than gaining a license; therefore, Emma wants harder restrictions on purchasing a gun. By comparing safety with rolls of red tapes, Emma feels it is necessary for the NRA to check those who have guns to prevent anyone who should not have a gun from obtaining one. Her main goal is for everyone to stop having to worry about a mass shooting happening on campus or anywhere else. Emma uses descriptive language and metaphors to illustrate that she, among others, just wants to have NRA be responsible and install safer restrictions on guns, so victims, like her, could move on with their lives and forget about the horrendous events they all witnessed.
Parkland student, Emma González, stands up against gun control to prevent another mass shooting from ever happening again. Emma González’s speech demands the NRA and politicians to having more restrictions on guns, and for them to stop giving excuses. She believes that it should be harder to access guns, like AR-15, instead of just handing them over to anyone who purchases them. Having these restrictions will provide a sense of safety for everyone and will stop people from having to look behind their shoulder in fear of a gun shooting happening.
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