Parkland survivor Emma Gonzalez has opened up to Ellen DeGeneres about the shooting which left 17 dead at her high school.
Gonzalez, the bisexual head of Stoneman Douglas High School’s Gay-Straight Alliance, has been one of the most outspoken student activists following last week’s shooting in Florida.
She bravely took on the NRA’s Dana Loesch at the CNN town hall on gun control last week, telling Loesch, who has two kids, that “we will support your two children in the way that you will not.”
And in an emotional appearance on The Ellen DeGeneres Show, Gonzalez told Ellen about the moment when an extremist shooter walked into her school with a legally purchased assault rifle.
“I was in the auditorium, and we’d already had a fire alarm earlier in the day, so a second one seemed really random,” she told the host.
“I didn’t even know it was a real thing until somebody outside of the school texted me 40 minutes later, saying: ‘Are you okay?’ and I was like: ‘Oh gosh, this is the news – this is real.'”
Gonzalez, 18, became one of the most prominent faces of the students’ movement after her impassioned speech at a rally last week in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.
The high school senior memorably repeated the phrase “We call BS” about NRA-funded politicians, gun advocates and those who don’t believe the Parkland teenagers know enough to speak up.
On Ellen’s show, she explained her thinking behind the speech.
“I knew that I would get my job done properly at that rally if I got people chanting something,” she said.
“And I thought: ‘We call BS’ has four syllables – that’s good, I’ll use that.
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“I didn’t want to say the actual curse words, because first of all, I knew children were going to be there, and I was like: ‘Those mums are going to boo me offstage if I even think about cursing around those children.’
“But also, I didn’t want to curse around those children. This message doesn’t need to be thought of in a negative way at all.
“This is the most important thing right now,” she said firmly.
Last week, fellow survivor Cameron Kasky, 17, tore into Republican politicians for responding to shootings with “thoughts and prayers” but marching over anti-LGBT positions.
He told CNN host Anderson Cooper that the time for meaningless words was over.
“There’s a section of this society that will just shrug this off and send their thoughts and prayers, but will march for hours when they have to bake a rainbow wedding cake,” the student said.
Kasky was referring to the case currently in the US Supreme Court of Jack Phillips, the owner of Masterpiece Cakeshop in Colorado, who refused to bake a cake for a gay couple.
Oprah Winfrey has donated $500,000 to March For Our Lives, a group set up by the Parkland survivors, which will rally in Washington and other states on March 24 to protest for better gun regulations.
Watch Emma and the other survivors here: