Celebrities have been digging deep into their pockets and wallets in support of the March for Our Lives event staged by the survivors of the school shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. Big-name stars such as George Clooney and Oprah have each pledged $500,000 to help defray the costs of the event. But Julie Turkewitz, a reporter with the New York Times, is riding the bus with students en route to Tallahassee and said not all the students are thrilled with the money being offered.
Junior class president Jaclyn Corin started the Never Again movement that begins with taking approximately 100 students to Tallahassee to confront lawmakers and bring about change. Corin said that the students weren’t getting help from adults because they didn’t need them, nor did they need help from the politicians. That goes along with what Turkewitz tweeted when she said that some students are concerned that the involvement of celebrities might cause an issue with anti-gun-control activists.
Students on the bus are apprehensive about support from George Clooney. "The minute some people on the right see these millionaire names pop up with our movement, it’s going to kind of alienate them," said Chris Grady, 18.
— julieturkewitz (@julieturkewitz) February 21, 2018
Chris Grady, an 18-year-old Parkland student, is one of the the apprehensive students. He told Turkewitz that “The minute some people on the right see these millionaire names pop up with our movement, it’s going to kind of alienate them. The minute they don’t see our faces anymore and they just see the Hollywood elite, they’re going to stop taking it seriously. ” With Hollywood having a reputation for being left-leaning, conservatives may feel as though celebrities are trying to take control of the movement which could very well cause a blockade with lawmakers.
Though some students are concerned about the monetary support, others have encouraged the Parkland students to take the money because it will be needed to finance the movement. But on the heels of the encouragement, the students were warned to not lose their own voice and to maintain their own power over the changes they wanted to be made.
Shooting survivor Emma Gonzalez’s encouragement, no doubt, is the strongest reminder as to why the movement needs to forge ahead, with or without the support of Hollywood celebrities. The 18-year-old declared in a press conference that the Stoneman Douglas High School shooting was going to be the last mass shooting.