Massacre survivor’s fans outgun the NRA
SHE'S the fearless high school student who has become the face of gun violence prevention after the horrific Florida school massacre.
Now, the impact of Emma Gonzalez and her powerful message has gone global - the 18-year-old has gained more Twitter followers than the National Rifle Association.
Former student Nikolas Cruz, 19, has been charged with 17 counts of murder after the massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School on Valentine's Day,
The 19-year-old had at least seven legally acquired long guns - including an AK-47-style rifle he bought less than a month ago.
Gonzalez made a global impact for her powerful 11-minute speech at an anti-gun rally in Fort Lauderdale for standing up to NRA spokeswoman Dana Loesch at a town hall meeting hosted by CNN.
This weekend, Twitter users noticed that Gonzalez had more Twitter followers than both the NRA and NRA spokeswoman Dana Loesch's official accounts.
"In just one week, Stoneman Douglas student @Emma4Change now has more Twitter followers than NRA spokeswoman @DLoesch. A movement is happening," wrote Twitter user Matt McDermott.
"I didn't think it would go viral at all," she said. "It went so far and so fast. I've got celebrities tweeting about me. I wanted people to feel what I was feeling."
During her speech at the anti-gun rally, Gonzalez vowed that she, her classmates, their parents and teachers and her community wouldn't stop fighting - they want to be the last mass shooting in the US.
"We are going to be the kids you read about in textbooks," she said. "Not because we're going to be another statistic about mass shooting in America, but because … we are going to be the last mass shooting."
She said: "That's going to be Marjory Stoneman Douglas in that textbook and it's going to be due to the tireless effort of the school board, the faculty members, the family members and most of all the students. 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."