This week the world has stood in solidarity with Orlando and the LGBT+ community. Thousands of people have stood in unity at rallies and vigils along with those affected by the shooting at Pulse nightclub in Orlando. The shooting left 49 people dead and a further 53 injured. It is claimed to be the worst shooting in US history.
Vigils and marks of respect have been held all over the UK. In Soho, London which is famous for its gay scene saw thousands line the streets to support the victims, where a minute’s silence was held, balloons were released, applauses and then chanting followed “We’re here, we’re queer, we will not live in fear.” which broke out all over the district. In Glasgow the rainbow flag flew at half-mast over Glasgow city chambers as a mark of respect.
Events have also taken place all over America in New York, Vermont, Florida, California, Alaska, Rhode Island, Colorado, Louisiana, Nevada, Ohio, Oregon, New Mexico, Pennsylvania, Washington, D.C. and many more.
Around the world in Australia the Sydney Harbour bridge was lit up in the rainbow colours. In France, Paris’s Eiffel Tower was also lit up in rainbow colours, as well as the colours of the US flag and people in Berlin gathered outside the US embassy to light candles.
The band PVRIS have released a limited edition T-shirt to benefit the Pulse victims, where funds will directly transfer to a fund set up by Equality Florida. The shirt has already sold out but you can still make donations here: Pulse Victim Fund. Additionally, Panic! At The Disco released this tweet:
This act was motivated by both homophobia and Islamic radicalism and IS CERTAINLY A HATE CRIME. These bars are set up to make LGBT+ people feel safe and secure in an environment where they feel comfortable. This event has occurred during pride month which is supposed to be the biggest celebration for LGBT+ community. If there’s anything to take away from the horrendous disturbance it should be to stand up to homophobic, biphobic and transphobic hate crime because it must never be tolerated.
The focus of this affair should not be on the homophobic terrorist, instead we should focus on the victims and pay respect to them and the LGBT+ community.
On the recent event I took to twitter to gather the public’s opinions and asked close friends what their overall thoughts were about the horrifying incident in Orlando. Here are their views below.
“Gay bars should be places LGBT people feel safe and for someone to invade their safe space is just shocking. But my main view on the whole thing is that guns need to be banned in America. There have been 7 shootings in Scotland in over 20 years and there were 7 large shootings in America in the space of a week. I just hope that the US government do something about it soon before more innocent people are murdered”
“I do think that the American government needs to change their laws on gun control, so these twisted people don’t have the opportunity to obtain weapons”
“I’m quite saddened by it to be honest. These people didn’t deserve that and I don’t think their deaths are getting the respect they deserve”
“I think it is all absolutely despicable. It’s horrible that these people were attacked in their safe and the media attention is awful as well. Erasing people’s identities, Islamophobia, mangling quotes – it’s horrifying. Also, it’s disrespectful to the memories of the deceased. To dismiss it as “just another shooting” (and the fact there are so many shootings maybe says something about the state of American gun laws). Call it what it was: a terrorist attack by an individual on the LGBT+ community, on Latino night and in the middle of Pride Month. No less.”
“Well for one the shooting would never have happened if America had sorted out their gun laws. In the UK there have only been 7 mass shootings since 1857 (I think) but in America there were 62 from 1982 up to 2012. That is 62 shooting where more than 4 people have been killed during each shooting within 30 years. What is worse is that the killer had a history of domestic abuse, he had been reported to his employer multiple times of being homophobic and had been questioned twice by the FBI under suspicion of having links with terrorism, yet he was still able to buy a gun.
It was obviously a hate crime and it is utterly disgusting that over 50 people have died because one guy was allowed to get a gun. If there were more people involved who knows what damage could have been inflicted. The shooters ex-wife said that he was mentally unstable and abusive.
During the attack there was a man texting his mother telling her that he loves her, knowing he was going to die and there was also a 20 second phone call where all that could be heard was screaming and you have to think about how someone as sick minded and sadistic as the shooter was able to get a gun.
It is utterly disgusting seeing this and I bet that all the American government is going to do is sent their condolences to the families of the ones that were murdered instead of finding and carrying out a way to make sure this will never happen again.”
If you want to leave your thoughts on the event please comment down below.