Parkland shooting survivor Emma González delivered a poignant speech at the March for Our Lives, a nationwide protest for gun control that she and her classmates organized on Saturday. The speech ran the same amount of time as it took the gunman to open fire at her high school, Marjory Stoneman Douglas before he abandoned his weapon and slipped out with other students. For most of the time that she addressed the crowd, Emma went silent. Many called it one of the most powerful and moving moments of the march.
While many discussed the importance of her quietness, others distributed an image of her tearing up the constitution. However, the image is that has now widely been circulated online is a fake. Pro-National Rifle Association (NRA) trolls have spread the image to make the teen appear to be in stark opposition to the foundations of the country.
At left is @tyler_mitchell’s photo of @Emma4Change for the cover of @TeenVogue. At right is what so-called “Gun Rights Activists” have photoshopped it into. #MarchForOurLives pic.twitter.com/jW6tTOv2Db
— Phillip Picardi (@pfpicardi) March 25, 2018
In preparation for March for Our Lives, Emma and her classmates graced Teen Vogue’s digital cover, where she rips up a shooting target. In the edited image, she appears to be tearing the constitution. Additionally, in the edited image, Emma appears to have exaggerated dark circles under her eyes and an enlarged nose in what appears to be an attempt to make her look less attractive.
Phillip Picardi, Teen Vogue’s chief content officer, took to Twitter to speak out against those sharing the doctored image. “The fact that we even have to clarify this is proof of how democracy continues to be fractured by people who manipulate and fabricate the truth,” Picardi tweeted. “It’s also among the most unfortunate parts of our work at @TeenVogue when we give young people a platform, we want to elevate their voices. Sometimes, that means subjecting them to hatred and vitriol. The attacks being lobbied against Emma follow the all-too-familiar patterns: she’s an opinionated woman, she’s Latinx, she is queer. Some say those are strikes already against her when confronting the establishment.”
During the march, Emma, who is of Cuban descent, wore an olive green bomber with a Cuban flag patch and was also called a communist by far-right counter-protestors.