Some Parkland students who survived last week's murder of 17 classmates set out for Tallahassee on Tuesday to consider gun control legislation. Now, he is responding to unsubstantiated allegations that he is an "actor".
"EXPOSED: School Shooting Survivor Turned Activist David Hoggs Father in FBI, Appears To Have Been Coached On Anti-Trump Lines", read a headline on Gateway Pundit.
According to CNN, Hogg was confirmed by Broward County School Superintendent Robert Runcie as a student at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.
"Claiming some of the students on TV after #Parkland are actors is the work of a disgusting group of idiots with no sense of decency", Rubio said. "I'm somebody that had to witness this and live through this, and I continue to have to do that".
Benjamin Kelly, a now-former aide to Florida Republican state representative Shawn Harrison, recently argued to a reporter that two students from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High who have become prominent gun violence activists in the wake of the recent mass shooting at their school are actually crisis actors, a popular conspiracy theory term. One of those pictured was Hogg.
In his email to the Tampa Bay Times, Kelly said, "Both kids [in the interview] are not students here but actors that travel to various crisis when they happen", according to the newspaper.
When asked for proof of his claim, Mr Kelly reportedly emailed a reply including link to a conspiracy video of Mr Hogg.
"There is a clip on you tube [sic] that shows Mr. Hogg out in California".
True to his words, Harrison announced he had fired Kelly.
"I was shocked and angry to read the appalling email about the courageous students who traveled to Tallahassee today", he said in a statement Tuesday evening. "I am appalled at and strongly denounce his comments about the Parkland students", Harrison said in a statement posted on Twitter Tuesday night.
Hogg previously told CBS News he was in an environmental science class "when the first gunshot echoed through the hallways". We are KIDS working to prevent this from happening again.
"So as American citizens, unite, and stand up in the face of division - not any political agenda, but for the lives of millions of schoolchildren", Hogg said.
"I want every American to be able to own a gun that has a mentally stable mind - a person that has a credible background, that doesn't have any previous, like major convictions, and somebody that's not going to go out and commit these atrocities, because those are the people that are at fault here", he said.