George Clooney Praises Parkland Students in Open Letter: ‘You Make Me Proud of My Country’

George Clooney Praises Parkland Students in Open Letter
George Clooney attends The IMDb Studio Hosted By The Visa Infinite Lounge at The 2017 Toronto International Film Festival at Bisha Hotel & Residences on September 10, 2017 in Toronto, Canada. Rich Polk/Getty Images

They have his support. George Clooney is sending his love and support to Marjory Stoneman Douglas high school’s students Emma Dowd, Lauren Newman and Rebecca Schneid, who recently survived a deadly school shooting in February in Parkland, Florida.

The three students are the co-editors-in-chief at the Eagle Eye — the student newspaper at the school — and they took over the Guardian’s website on Friday, March 23, to cover the March for Our Lives demonstration taking place on Saturday, March 24.

The students requested interviews with politicians and celebrities, including Marco Rubio, Bernie Sanders and George and Amal Clooney as part of their coverage. The couple, who recently donated $500,000 to the cause, turned down the request, but the Ocean’s Eleven actor sent them a heartfelt letter in lieu of an interview.

“Thank you for your note and congratulations on the incredible work you and all of your fellow students are doing to make the country a safer place,” Clooney, 56, wrote. “Amal and I are 100 percent behind you and will be marching in DC on the 24th, but 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.”

He continued: “The fact that no adults will speak on the stage in DC is a powerful message to the world that if we can’t do something about gun violence then you will. The issue is going to be this, anyone you ask would feel proud to be interviewed by you but it’s so much more effective if it’s young people.”

Clooney believes that the students should embrace this moment and let their voices be heard without adults interfering. “It’s a once in a lifetime opportunity to point to this moment and say it belongs to you,” he wrote. “You certainly should do what you want but that would be my hope for you.”

“Amal and I stand behind you, in support of you, in gratitude to you. You make me proud of my country again,” he concluded.

As previously reported, former student Nikolas Cruz was arrested and charged with 17 counts of premeditated murder after he opened fire at the school on February 14 — leaving 17 students and teachers dead and 14 injured. Since then, the survivors have come together to advocate for gun control. In the past month, the students have delivered powerful speeches at protests, appeared on a CNN town hall, and some met with President Donald Trump at the White House.

The March For Our Lives demonstration is happening in Washington, D.C., on Saturday, March 24. The nonprofit organization Everytown For Gun Safety and five of the shooting’s survivors — including Emma González and Cameron Kasky — organized the event.

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