“I Never Want You To Ask That Question About Your Child.”

If you don’t watch any other convention speech, watch this one from the mother of a victim of the Orlando shooting.


“It takes about five minutes for a church bell to ring 49 times. I know this because last month, my son Christopher, his boyfriend Juan, and 47 others were murdered at a club in Orlando.”

That’s how Christine Leinonen, the mother of an Orlando Pulse shooting victim, began her speech at the Democratic National Convention today. In a heartbreaking speech against gun violence, Leinonen spoke of her only son’s long fight for gay rights and how his grandparents had met in a Japanese internment camp. “It was in his DNA that love always trumps hate,” she said, as two survivors of the Pulse shooting stood beside her.

Leinonen, a former Michigan state trooper, recalled how when she went into labor with Christopher, the hospital put her off-duty gun away in a locker. “I’m glad common-sense gun policy was in place the day Christopher was born, she said. “But where was that common sense the day he died?”

“I never want you to ask that question about your child.”

Watch the full speech below.

Thank you!

We didn't know what to expect when we told you we needed to raise $400,000 before our fiscal year closed on June 30, and we're thrilled to report that our incredible community of readers contributed some $415,000 to help us keep charging as hard as we can during this crazy year.

You just sent an incredible message: that quality journalism doesn't have to answer to advertisers, billionaires, or hedge funds; that newsrooms can eke out an existence thanks primarily to the generosity of its readers. That's so powerful. Especially during what's been called a "media extinction event" when those looking to make a profit from the news pull back, the Mother Jones community steps in.

The months and years ahead won't be easy. Far from it. But there's no one we'd rather face the big challenges with than you, our committed and passionate readers, and our team of fearless reporters who show up every day.

Thank you!

We didn't know what to expect when we told you we needed to raise $400,000 before our fiscal year closed on June 30, and we're thrilled to report that our incredible community of readers contributed some $415,000 to help us keep charging as hard as we can during this crazy year.

You just sent an incredible message: that quality journalism doesn't have to answer to advertisers, billionaires, or hedge funds; that newsrooms can eke out an existence thanks primarily to the generosity of its readers. That's so powerful. Especially during what's been called a "media extinction event" when those looking to make a profit from the news pull back, the Mother Jones community steps in.

The months and years ahead won't be easy. Far from it. But there's no one we'd rather face the big challenges with than you, our committed and passionate readers, and our team of fearless reporters who show up every day.

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our newsletters

Subscribe and we'll send Mother Jones straight to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate

We have a new comment system! We are now using Coral, from Vox Media, for comments on all new articles. We'd love your feedback.