Melania Trump gave a rare public speech in which she spoke out about gun violence

Mark Wilson/Getty ImagesFirst Lady Melania Trump
  • First Lady Melania Trump gave a rare public speech on Monday in which she praised the student survivors of the Parkland, Florida mass shooting during a luncheon for governors’ spouses at the White House.
  • “I have been heartened to see children across this country using their voices to speak out and try to create change,” she said. “They’re our future and they deserve a voice.”
  • The first lady has been criticised by some Parkland students after Donald Trump Jr. “liked” conspiracy theories about them on Twitter last week.

First lady Melania Trump gave a rare public speech on Monday, addressing cyber-bullying, drug abuse, and the recent mass shooting that left 17 dead at a Parkland, Florida school during a luncheon for governors’ spouses at the White House.

Trump, who has made children the focus of her White House agenda, praised the young survivors of the Parkland massacre for advocating for policy change in the aftermath of the tragedy.

“I have been heartened to see children across this country using their voices to speak out and try to create change. They’re our future and they deserve a voice,” she said. “I believe that if we all come together, we can start to affect positive change for our children and help prepare them for their futures.”

Trump also encouraged parents to promote “kindness, compassion, and respect” among children and teach them “positive” social media habits.

“It is important that, as adults, we take the lead and the responsibility in helping our children manage the many issues they are facing today,” she said. “This means encouraging positive habits with social media and technology, even limiting time online and understanding the content they are exposed to on a daily basis.”

She added, “This also means taking the time to teach them about the real dangers in drug abuse and addiction.”

The first lady has been accused of hypocrisy by some Parkland survivors, who say that her efforts to fight cyber-bullying and promote the responsible use of social media should apply to her own family members, including Donald Trump Jr., who “liked” conspiracy theories on Twitter about the shooting, including one that attempted to discredit student survivors.

“Hey @FLOTUS you say that your mission as First Lady is to stop cyber bullying, well then, don’t you think it would have been smart to have a convo with your step-son @DonaldJTrumpJr before he liked a post about a false conspiracy theory which in turn put a target on my back & created a safe space for people all over the world to call me and my family horrific things that constantly re-victimizes us and our community,”Lauren Hogg tweeted last week. “I’m 14 I should never have had to deal with any of this and even though I thought it couldn’t get worse it has because of your family.”

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