George Clooney Praises Parkland Students in Open Letter: 'You Make Me Proud Of My Country Again'
By Jackie Willis
Like many Americans, George Clooney has been inspired by the students in Parkland, Florida, who are speaking out after the Feb. 14 mass shooting at Stoneman Douglas High School left 17 dead.
High school students Emma Dowd, Lauren Newman and Rebecca Schneid are guest editing The Guardian ahead of the nationwide March For Our Lives on Saturday, and Clooney sent them an open letter, praising their efforts in bringing awareness to gun violence while also insisting on stricter gun laws in the U.S.
"Congratulations on the incredible work you and all of your fellow students are doing to make the country a safer place," the 56-year-old actor-director writes, adding that he and his wife, Amal Clooney, will be at the march held in Washington D.C. this weekend.
"We both feel very strongly that this is your march. Your moment. Young people are taking it to the adults and that has been your most effective tool," his letter continues. "The fact that no adults will speak on the stage in D.C. is a powerful message to the world that if we can’t do something about gun violence then you will."
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Further applauding the young people, Clooney concludes, "Amal and I stand behind you, in support of you, in gratitude to you. You make me proud of my country again."
Last month, Clooney's wife shared her admiration for the Parkland students when she spoke at the 2018 Watermark Conference for Women in San Jose, California, and revealed why the couple decided to donate $500,000 to March For Our Lives in the names of their 9-month-old twins, Ella and Alexander.
"George and I, actually not even through the foundation, just personally, wanted to make this contribution and to say, 'We will be there with our family,' because, you know, my children are very likely to go to school here," she said. "I know their lives literally depend on it."
"I'm blown away by these students. They are the best vehicle and best hope for change," she continued. "The march we're attending is their march. They give me hope."