I come back to this blog, which I always forget about or get too busy or whatever. And it sucks that I come back for something that hurts and aches my soul so much. It sucks that I am sitting here about to cry my eyes out over something that is horrible and that should never have happened…
I remember Virginia Tech. I remember when it was called the most deadly mass shooting in the United States. I remember the fear I felt on my college campus when it happened. People died because they wanted to go to school. That is not a reason for people to have to die. And I remember how much people came together.
Those same feelings came to mind yesterday when I heard about the shooting at Orlando Pulse, an LGBT bar/club. Those people were there to celebrate. They were there to love. They were there to feel safe…
And then a shooter, who was filled with hatred and the deepest form of homophobia possible, went and shot. Over 100 people were either injured or killed. Killed for being who they are.
Killed for loving who they love.
That was it. The media wants you to think this was ISIS’s fault. It’s not. If you watch the patterns that ISIS does with social media, they would have declared it shortly after it happened, like, within an hour or so. It was hours later and after reports that the shooter had claimed ISIS help that he said it.
The man was upset over 2 men kissing. That is what made him angry. It was about who someone freaking loved, PERIOD. And do you know how upset that makes me?
If you aren’t sure where you stand on this, I want you to listen to me. These were my brothers and sisters. I am a lesbian. I have been with my partner for over a month. It could have just as easily been us in that bar. It could just as easily be us in any situation that may come up. And that is the most terrifying thing ever.
Straight people may be afraid of bathrooms and what may happen in there if trans people are allowed to be who they are. But dammit all to the pits of hell and back, I have to be afraid that someone is going to hurt or even kill the people who I love and who I stand with every single freaking day.
It’s not fair. I used to be someone that believed that homosexuality was wrong, that it was a lifestyle choice. I used to be on the other side of the fence. But you know what, that sort of thinking leads to this when it is taken to the extreme. It was, and it is homophobia. Plain and simple.
If your religion tells you to hate me, my partner, my pastor, my church, my friends, my family because of who we love and want to spend our lives with, then do you realize that that is the opposite of what Jesus wanted. Jesus called us to love. He didn’t call us to THIS. We don’t deserve THIS. We don’t deserve to be treated like this.
My faith calls me to love. And if yours doesn’t, you need to reevaluate. Please.
I’ve avoided conservative news sites completely to look for news about this incident. Usually, I try to find a balance, but it’s the same old bullshit and I’m tired of it.
First off, a lot of people are blaming Islam in general. Because ya know, that’s what we do in the United States and ignorant fools like Donald Trump are perpetuating that belief. Second, people are saying one of the most disgusting things ever – that the LGBT community deserves this.
No one deserves to freaking DIE because of who they love. Because of who they devote their lives to. Do you realize how messed up that sounds? Do you realize that it is exactly the antithesis of what Jesus called us to? NO. No one ever deserves to die for who the hell they are.
My heart is hurting today. I am in a lot of pain, and I don’t think I’ve cried so many tears over a tragedy. These were my brothers and sisters. I didn’t know them, but I love them and they are my LGBT family.
A homophobic, cruel man who had easy access to weapons that no average human being should ever have access to performed a hate crime. It was not an act of international terrorism or whatever. It was a hate crime through and through and he worked hard to try and make it so that it looked like a terrorist attack. That’s not the truth, and don’t believe that propaganda. It was about hate.
Hate will never win.
“Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that.” – Martin Luther King, Jr.
So, what can you do?
- Give blood. There is a need for it, especially some of the more rare types (A’s, etc). They’re struggling down there, so if you can give blood, do it.
- Pray. Some people will tell you not to pray – I’m just saying that I want you to do more than pray. Prayer is how we talk to the Divine, and that’s a big deal. But don’t just pray, please?
- Attend a Vigil or prayer service to show your solidarity with those in your community.
- Change your Facebook profile picture. This will let the people that you know that are part of the LGBT community that you support them. You can go to the GLAAD page on Facebook and get the filter that says “We are Orlando.”
- Talk to your families about love, acceptance, and diversity. If you haven’t talked to your children about this yet, do it. They need to understand what happened here.
- Donate. You can go to this GoFundMe page, started by Equality Florida, and all of the proceeds will go to help families and survivors. They can use every penny that you can give.
- Show love. Make this world a better place. Look at all the good that people are doing in response to this. Be part of the change. That hatred is the minority, and we, especially those of us who claim to be people of any faith, need to fight off that hatred.
I may have more thoughts as time goes on, but the truth is, I feel better now that I got it all out on the page. Yes, I’m angry. I’m sad. I’m hurting. It’s a tragedy.
We mourn. But though the sorrow may last for the night, joy comes with the morning.
We will stand. We will not be afraid.