The teenager who vows to lead the charge against guns in the US 5 years ago

The teenager who vows to lead the charge against guns in the US

"We will be the last mass shooting."

Emma Gonzales' face is likely to have been all over your newsfeed today and over the weekend.


The teenager went viral for her impassioned speech on gun control in the wake of the latest mass shooting in the US.

But who is she?

Emma is student at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, and lost a number classmates last Wednesday, Valentine's day.


Seventeen people died and more than a dozen were injured after being shot by a gunman at the school.

Former student Nikolas Cruz was arrested after the incident and is in police custody.

Emma, who is in her final year of high school, was in the school's auditorium when panic broke out.

She assumed it was a drill until first responders told her to run.


"They say, 'You don't think about it until it happens' — I was always thinking about it," she said.

"And now that it's happened, there's nothing that could have possibly made me angrier and more ready to do something.



Emma's speech

Addressed a crowd of thousands at an anti-gun rally in nearby Fort Lauderdale on Saturday, Emma called 'BS' on gun laws.

She singed out President Trump, who she said received $30 million in donations during his campaign for office.

"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 how nothing is going to be done about it, I'm going to happily ask him how much money he received from the National Rifle Association.

"To every politician who is taking donations from the NRA, shame on you."


She also criticised Trump for blaming the shooting on mental health issues rather than guns.

"We need to pay attention to the fact that this was not just a mental health issue.

"He would not have harmed that many students with a knife.


Commitment to 'change the law'

"We are going to be the kids you read about in textbooks," Emma said.

"We are going to be the last mass shooting... We are going to change the law."

Emma said the students of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High would lead the charge to ensure gun laws become stricter.

"The students who are dead, the students still in the hospital, the student now suffering PTSD, the students who had panic attacks during the vigil because the helicopters would not leave us alone, hovering over the school for 24 hours a day."


The reaction

Played out on social media and by news channels around the world, Emma's speech soon went viral.

Her named trended on Twitter as high profile names lauded her words.