Teen Choice Offers Emotional Tribute to Teen Victims of Gun Violence
Jessica Alba introduced the most emotional moment of any Teen Choice Awards on Sunday night, sharing the stage with victims of the Pulse gay nightclub mass shooting, the Newtown massacre, and survivors and their kin from shootings in Aurora, Dallas, Baton Rouge, Minneapolis, and San Bernardino.
"Here with me tonight," Alba announced, "are a group of brave teenagers who share a bond that's hard to comprehend. They are the brothers, sisters, daughters, and family members of recent victims of gun violence."
Each person onstage was identified, including the son of Alton Sterling, whose shooting death by police in Baton Rouge became a flashpoint across the nation just a few weeks ago.
Ne-Yo performed Marvin Gaye's 1971 classic "What's Going On," after which Alba implored, "These teens had the courage to come here and share their grief, and tonight all of us here need to do the same."
"We need to come together as one," People magazine reports Ne-Yo said. "If you feel as we do that we have to do better, I need you to stand up right now and take out your phones."
The audience leapt to its feet and lit up the venue.
Justin Timberlake also delivered a noteworthy speech that addressed backlash he recently received for his comments on Jesse Williams' acceptance speech at the BET Awards in June. He told the audience while accepting the Decade Award, "I'm here to tell you that you and your choices matter."
He also had an inspiring message for the younger generation watching, saying, "Be part of the solution, not part of the problem. Don't waste your twenties... be nice to your parents — I hope my son watches this one day. Go out, do the impossible, and go on and become the greatest generation yet."