Bill Murray Praises Parkland Student Activists, Says They Remind Him of Vietnam War Protesters

In his daily life, Bill Murray plays many roles. He is a legendary actor, a musician and singer, a reciter of literature, a stealer of french fries and the subject of many other urban legends.

Rarely does Murray don the role of earnest advocate for political or social causes. We are living through rare times, though, and the Oscar-nominated actor just lent his considerable celebrity to a significant cause: the Parkland students' ongoing fight to stop gun violence.

In a new op-ed written for NBC News (as told to editor Megan Carpentier), Murray praised the student activists of Stoneman Douglas High School, who have become outspoken activists since the February 14 shooting there. They remind him of the Vietnam War protesters of his youth.

With historical parallels in mind, Murray was optimistic about what the young activists can achieve in the present day.

"[I]t really was the students that began the end of the Vietnam War," the actor wrote. "It was the students who made all the news, and that noise started, and then the movement wouldn't stop. I think, maybe, this noise that those students in Florida are making—here, today—will do something of the same nature."

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Murray also captured the characteristic that makes the teens such a powerful vessel for the gun control movement: They're too young to be worn down by cynicism and world-weary resignation. 

"The thing that's so powerful about students is that, when you haven't had your idealism broken yet, you're able to speak from a place that has no confusion, where there is a clear set of values," Murray wrote.

It's a significant week for the Parkland activists: They've also just appeared on the cover of Time Magazine, and they're expecting tens of thousands of protesters to gather on Saturday for the March for Our Lives rally in Parkland.

The students, who are still in high school, became outspoken opponents of gun violence after 17 of their classmates and staff members were killed during the Stoneman Douglas High School massacre last month.

Since then, they have been tireless activists. "We’re going to show these politicians that we’re coming for them," senior David Hogg said in the Time cover story.

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