Apple CEO Uses Commencement Speech to Praise Student Gun Control Activists

ANAHEIM, CA - MARCH 24: CEO of Apple Tim Cook is seen at halftime at the 2016 NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament West Regional at the Honda Center on March 24, 2016 in Anaheim, California. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
Harry How/Getty Images

Apple CEO Tim Cook used part of his commencement speech at Duke University to praise student gun control activists from Parkland while deriding what he called an “epidemic of gun violence.”

Bloomberg reported that Cook called on the Duke graduates to be “fearless.” He emphasized it by saying, “Fearless like the students of Parkland, Florida, who refuse to be silent about the epidemic of gun violence and have rallied millions to their cause.”

Cook overlooked the fact that student gun control activists organized a March 24 gun control march in Washington, DC, and despite all the publicity and celebrity support, CBS News reported the turnout was less than half the expected crowd. They put the turnout at just over 200,000, which was 300,000 less than expected.

Moreover, the Washington Post reported that only “10 percent” of those who attended the march were actually people under the age of 18. In other words, it shifted from being a student march to being another event co-opted by protesters of all ages, many of whom were ready and willing to call for the abolition of the Second Amendment.

Cook’s claim about an “epidemic of gun violence” is also questionable. After all, the gun crime in our country occurs in cities like Chicago, Baltimore, St. Louis, New Orleans, etc., all of which have one thing in common — Democratic leaders who continually push gun control as the solution for the failure of gun control.

To be fair, Americans have been rallying to a cause since Parkland. But that cause has often proven to be a defense of gun rights rather than an insistence on new gun controls.

For example, gifts to the NRA’s PAC tripled in February, compared to January, while celebrities, student gun control activists, and the establishment media were calling for more gun laws. Then, in March, the NRA’s Political Victory Fund broke a 15-year record by taking in nearly $2.5 million in donations.

Also in March, background checks for gun sales set a record for most background checks for any March in history. Background checks for gun sales in April set a record for most background checks for any April in history.

AWR Hawkins is an award-winning Second Amendment columnist for Breitbart News, the host of the Breitbart podcast Bullets with AWR Hawkins, and the writer/curator of Down Range with AWR Hawkins, a weekly newsletter focused on all things Second Amendment, also for Breitbart News. He is the political analyst for Armed American Radio. Follow him on Twitter: @AWRHawkins. Reach him directly at Sign up to get Down Range at


Please let us know if you're having issues with commenting.