The brother of a Florida school shooting victim said he wasn’t included in last week’s March for Our Lives because his speech “didn’t fit into the agenda,” despite organizers blaming his lack of inclusion on miscommunication.
Hunter Pollack, the brother of Meadow Pollack — who was one of the 17 killed in Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School — pushed back on fellow student David Hogg’s claim Saturday that a miscommunication barred the Florida school shooting survivor from speaking at the rally in Washington, D.C.
“Thank you, I appreciate you pushing out my video but there was no miscommunication my speech didn’t fit In to the agenda,” Pollack tweeted in response to Hogg promoting the student’s speech that would have been read during the march.
Pollack told local10.com last week he was set to give a speech, but wasn’t allowed to put is voice out.
"I was going to give a speech about Meadow and how devastated I am and how we need to make change, but they won't allow me to put my voice out," he told the local news site.
Ryan Deitsch, a March for Our Lives organizer, said Pollack “never showed up” despite being invited.
"We openly invited a lot of people, and some people just turned it down," Deitsch said.
Pollack and his father, Andrew Pollack, have been vocal advocates for safer schools since 18-year-old Meadow died in the Valentine’s Day massacre. Pollack got a chance to give his speech on Saturday, speaking to a crowd of more than 1,000 gathered in his Coral Springs backyard for the “Ride for Meadow” event, held in honor of his sister, the Miami Herald reported. A fundraiser was also set up to build a new playground in honor of shooting victims.
“The one common denominator we all share is the desire to live,” Hunter Pollack said.
“It took a while but at least I can say it now,” he added. “We as the students of this country must take our anger and take our pain and our desire to live this life to the fullest and we must channel it into a mission that is obtainable, one that can be achieved without heavy debate.”
More than 600 motorcyclists drove about 40 miles from the Harley Davidson dealership in West Palm Beach to the Pollack residence, a week after the March for Our Lives rally. Pollack questioned if it was “their political agendas” that caused him to be left out of the D.C. rally, where many shooting survivors gave powerful speeches on gun control and violence.
Hogg, who attended Saturday’s gathering for Meadow Pollack, also asked his followers retweet a video of Pollack’s speech, adding: “We need an intersectional approach to this issue to save as many lives as we can. This isn’t left or right, it’s about saving lives. Through unity and love we will win and end gun violence.”
Andrew Pollack was appointed to Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School Public Safety Commission by Florida Gov. Rick Scott. He previously said his daughter's death gave him “extra strength” to push for change. He said he hopes his daughter is the last child to die in a deadly school shooting.