In mid-December, Harvard’s early-entry candidates began logging on to the application status portal to learn whether they’d been accepted to one of the world’s most prestigious universities. But for one particularly famous member of the class of 2023, entry into Harvard brought a bit more than congratulations.
For David Hogg, it was the last laugh.
“Thank you all for the well wishes,” Hogg tweeted Saturday morning. “I’ll be attending Harvard in the fall with a planned major in Political Science.”
Hogg is one of the survivors of the Feb. 14 shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., that left 17 dead. After the shooting, he became a founding member of Never Again MSD, a group that advocates for stiffer gun-control laws. He helped organize the March for Our Lives for stronger gun violence prevention measures, which drew nearly 800,000 people to the nation’s capital.
But the 18-year-old’s very public stance on gun control turned him into a target himself. His home was swatted. He’s been accused of being a crisis actor. And even typical teenager ups and downs have made national news.
Hogg and Harvard didn’t immediately return messages Saturday.
In March, he told TMZ about the rejection letters he had received from four California colleges - California State University at Long Beach, UCLA, the University of California at Santa Barbara and the University of California at San Diego - even as he organized a movement that was “changing the world.”
Mocking Hogg’s comments, Fox News host Laura Ingraham tweeted a story from a conservative news website that described the teen as a “Gun Rights Provocateur” — and said Hogg was whining.
“David Hogg Rejected By Four Colleges To Which He Applied and whines about it,” Ingraham tweeted. “(Dinged by UCLA with a 4.1 GPA…totally predictable given acceptance rates.)”
Hogg, who the New York Times reported had a 4.2 GPA and 1270 SAT score, took to Twitter, where his number of followers has surpassed 900,000. He compiled a list of 12 companies that advertise on Fox News’s “The Ingraham Angle” and sent a message to his followers: “Pick a number 1-12 contact the company next to that #.”
In a matter of days, Ingraham lost more than a dozen advertisers, including Johnson & Johnson, Nestlé, Hulu, Jenny Craig, Ruby Tuesday and Miracle-Ear.
The move showed the influence that Hogg and other survivors of the Stoneman Douglas mass shooting have gained — and companies' fears about becoming collateral damage in polarizing controversies.
Ingraham later apologized, but Hogg blasted the move as an insincere “effort just to save your advertisers.”
“The apology … was kind of expected, especially after so many of her advertisers dropped out,” Hogg said on CNN. “I’m glad to see corporate America standing with me and the other students of Parkland and everybody else. Because when we work together, we can accomplish anything.”
In rejecting Ingraham’s apology, Hogg accused her of being a perpetual “bully,” who should apologize to other people she wronged.
Ingraham did not respond on Twitter to news of Hogg’s acceptance to Harvard, though conservative news site College Fix took a jab at Hogg’s SAT score.
Hogg made no mention of it Saturday.
Instead, after getting into a university that accepted fewer than 5 percent of applicants last year, he tweeted his response to an overwhelming sea of congratulations: