Kelly Clarkson has delivered an emotional plea for gun control, calling for a “moment of change” as America continues to reel from last week’s mass shooting in Texas.
On Friday, 10 people were killed and countless others injured when gunman Dimitrios Pagourtzis opened fire at Santa Fe High School.
As she opened last night’s ceremony in Las Vegas, Texas-born Clarkson spoke of the mass shootings that continue to blight America and stressed the importance of immediate change.
““Before we start tonight’s show, there’s something I’d like to say — this is gonna be so hard,” Clarkson began her address, visibly tearing up.
Kelly Clarkson says she’s done with moments of silence. In honor of the victims of the Santa Fe shooting, Clarkson says she wants a moment of action.
Here’s how she opened the Billboard Music Awards tonight. It’s worth a watch. pic.twitter.com/z7b105Lc1b
— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) May 21, 2018
“The tragedy Friday at Sante Fe High School. I’m a Texas girl and my home state has had so much heartbreak over this past year. And once again, y’all, we’re grieving for more kids that have died for just no reason at all. And tonight they wanted me to say — that obviously we want to pray for all the victims and their families.
“But they also wanted me to do a moment of silence and I’m so sick of moments of silence! It’s not working! Like, obviously. So why don’t we not do a moment of silence, why don’t we do a moment of action, a moment of change. Why don’t we change what’s happening? Because it’s horrible”, she said.
“And mamas and daddies should be able to send their kids to school, to church, to movie theaters, to clubs — you should be able to life your life without that kind of fear. We need to do better! These people are failing our children, we’re failing our communities we’re failing their families — I have four children, and I can’t imagine getting that phone call or that knock on the door. So instead of a moment of silence, I want to respect them and honor them. So let’s have a moment of action — a moment of change.”
After Clarkson opened the ceremony, the night went on to be defined by massive wins for Ed Sheeran, Taylor Swift and Janet Jackson.
Jackson received the Icon Award and gave her first TV performance in nine years, while Sheeran and Swift scooped the prizes for top artist and top female artist respectively.