Parkland survivor David Hogg says he’s faced 7 assassination attempts this past year

After the 2017 shooting massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, then-17-year-old survivor David Hogg and several of his young classmates forced the nation to sit up and have a tough — and different — conversation about gun violence. The teens marched for their lives, and challenged seasoned gun lobbyists and lawmakers on live television. They led protests and boycotts, and inspired young people across the country to register and vote for candidates who support more stringent gun control.

On Tuesday, Hogg, now 19, shared with The Washington Post the high cost that’s come with the teens’ activism. His and his family’s safety have been put at risk, he said. In the past year alone, “there have been seven assassination attempts” on his life, Hogg said.

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Parkland shooting survivor David Hogg
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Parkland shooting survivor David Hogg
David Hogg, a student and shooting survivor from the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, addresses the conclusion of the "March for Our Lives" event demanding gun control after recent school shootings at a rally in Washington, U.S., March 24, 2018. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
David Hogg, a student at the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, site of a February mass shooting which left 17 people dead in Parkland, Florida, thrusts his fist in the air as he speaks during the "March for Our Lives" event demanding gun control after recent school shootings at a rally in Washington, U.S., March 24, 2018. REUTERS/Aaron P. Bernstein
David Hogg, a student at the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, site of a February mass shooting which left 17 people dead in Parkland, Florida, speaks as students and gun control advocates hold the "March for Our Lives" event demanding gun control after recent school shootings at a rally in Washington, U.S., March 24, 2018. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
David Hogg, a student at the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, site of a February mass shooting which left 17 people dead in Parkland, Florida, speaks as students and gun control advocates hold the "March for Our Lives" event demanding gun control after recent school shootings at a rally in Washington, U.S., March 24, 2018. REUTERS/Aaron P. Bernstein
David Hogg, a student at the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, site of a February mass shooting which left 17 people dead in Parkland, Florida, thrusts his fist in the air as he speaks during the "March for Our Lives" event demanding gun control after recent school shootings at a rally in Washington, U.S., March 24, 2018. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
David Hogg, a senior from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, speaks during a rally with Thurgood Marshall Academy students in advance of Saturday's March for Our Lives event in Washington, U.S. March 22, 2018. REUTERS/Eric Thayer
Emma Gonzalez (L), David Hogg (C) and Cameron Kasky, survivors of the February mass shooting at the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, pause for a moment of silence for the victims of the shooting at Great Mills High School in Maryland, before discussing their "#NeverAgain" push to end school shootings at Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government in Cambridge, Massachusetts, U.S., March 20, 2018. REUTERS/Brian Snyder
Emma Gonzalez (L) and David Hogg, survivors of the February mass shooting at the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, discuss their "#NeverAgain" push to end school shootings at Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government in Cambridge, Massachusetts, U.S., March 20, 2018. REUTERS/Brian Snyder
David Hogg, a senior at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, speaks at a rally calling for more gun control three days after the shooting at his school, in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, U.S. February 17, 2018. REUTERS/Jonathan Drake
Marjory Stoneman Douglas student David Hogg speaks during March for Our Lives to demand stricter gun control laws on Saturday, March 24, 2018, in Washington, D.C. (Mike Stocker/Sun Sentinel/TNS via Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC - MARCH 24: Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School student David Hogg speaks onstage at March For Our Lives on March 24, 2018 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Paul Morigi/Getty Images for March For Our Lives)
WASHINGTON, DC - MARCH 23: Dan Rather hosts a SiriusXM Roundtable Special Event with Parkland, Florida, Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School Students and activists Emma Gonzalez, David Hogg (pictured), Cameron Kasky, Alex Wind, and Jaclyn Corin at SiriusXM Studio on March 23, 2018 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Larry French/Getty Images for SiriusXM)
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“I realize that it’s horrible that I have to live through this, and it is traumatizing. But you eventually become desensitized to it. Like, oh, your house got ‘swatted.’ You got a call from the police saying someone said that everyone in your family had been killed and that you are being held hostage for $100,000 ... That becomes part of daily life,” Hogg said, referring to a troubling incident last year when police armed with assault rifles barged into his family home after receiving a prank call alleging the family had been taken hostage by a gunman.

Hogg and his family were fortunately not home at the time, but as the Los Angeles Times noted following the incident, the swatting attempt could’ve proven deadly. 

It was not so much a childish prank as attempted manslaughter, the Times said, noting that a swatting victim ― 28-year-old father-of-two Andrew Finch ― had died at the hands of California police a few months prior. 

Despite the threats to his life, Hogg ― who has also endured harassment by far-right figures and conspiracy theorists ― said he’s “not going to stop” his activism.

“I want to go to school and, for lack of a better word, weaponize my knowledge and learn as much as possible to end violence,” Hogg, who is expected to attend Harvard in the fall, told the Post.

“I also realize, if they kill me, that’s probably the stupidest thing they could do to try to end the movement,” Hogg said of those wanting to do him harm. “Because that would make it even more successful in the end. Because it would invigorate us and create fucking change.”

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