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One second, they were normal teenagers. The next, they were social media superstars.
Emma Gonzalez and David Hogg — both student survivors of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting in Parkland — have taken the airwaves by storm ever since 14 of their classmates and three faculty members were murdered by confessed gunman Nikolas Cruz.
Gonzalez, who since the shooting has given several fiery speeches demanding firearm legislation, now has more Twitter followers than the National Rifle Association.
The teen opened up her account two days after the shooting and in less than two weeks amassed a following of more than 999,000 as of Monday 5 p.m. The NRA has 588,000 followers.
Hogg,who asked tourists on Saturday to boycott the state of Florida as a spring break destination until the Legislature acts on gun control laws, was at 334,000 followers Monday afternoon — almost doubling the following of Visit Florida, the state’s official tourism marketing arm.
“Let’s make a deal DO NOT come to Florida for spring break unless gun legislation is passed,” Hogg wrote in a post on Twitter, adding that maybe politicians will “listen to the billion dollar tourism industry in FL.”
On Monday, Hogg called on his fans to boycott FedEx unless the company cuts ties with the NRA.
FedEx responded, refusing to cut ties. Meanwhile, Delta Air Lines and United Airlines said Saturday they would no longer offer discounts to NRA members. They join several other major American firms in this action.
Gonzalez and Hogg have been two of the primary voices of the #neveragain movement, which was started and is run by Stoneman Douglas students. Both have appeared on nearly every major network and cable news program since the shooting.
The “NeverAgain” movement, which has received $2 million in funding from George Clooney, Oprah Winfrey and other Hollywood celebrities, is planning a march against gun violence in Washington on March 24.