I’m queer, and I’m angry.

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Trigger warning for homophobia, Islamophobia, homicide


No doubt you’ve all heard about what happened in Orlando on Saturday. If you haven’t, do a quick internet search of “Orlando shooting.”

I’m angry.

I’m angry that people are dead. Innocent people. People who had families and friends and loved ones. People who cared about them, who they cared about. People who had hobbies and interests and jobs and went to school and had lives.

I’m angry that people have been so quick to politicize this issue. While I understand why it is a political issue, the fact that I heard about gun control and national security before I heard the victims’ names is nauseating. Remember that they’re people before you turn them into statistics.

I’m angry that people are politicizing the wrong aspect of this tragedy. That people are focused on the shooter being Muslim, rather than focusing on the fact that a civilian can by an assault rifle and carry it into a nightclub.

I’m angry that there are people who are celebrating this atrocity. That people think it is somehow deserved or the act of God. (If this is how your God works, your God is wrong.)

I’m angry that mainstream media doesn’t want to admit that this is a hate crime. As though it’s some sort of coincidence that a person went into a gay club after expressing disgust at homosexuality and killed people. Dozens of people. Dozens of LGBTQ people.

I’m angry. I’m queer, and I’m very, very angry.

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3 thoughts on “I’m queer, and I’m angry.

  1. Your anger is understandable. Most of the media, the FBI and the President have and do call it a hate crime, but that doesn’t invalidate your feelings.

    Motives for murder can be complicated. It’s never justified, but there are often multiple causes, a kind of noxious stew of distorted perceptions and pressures. I’m 62, and I adopt a “wait and see” attitude more than I used to, because it seems these days we learn the real stories of tragic events only in dribs and drabs, as things get more thoroughly investigated.

    This murderer now appears to have been wrestling with his own unresolved attraction to other men, along with other factors. He had frequented that club, and same-sex dating sites for up to three years previously. High school friends have gone to the FBI to assert he was closeted, and his ex-wife corroborates confusion in his orientation.

    But we also know he had a history of violent behavior, immoderate speech and instability consistent with bipolar disorder or other, undiagnosed mental illness. He grew up with a delusional father who says God should punish gays with death, but also says he ran for president of Afghanistan when no one there seems to have heard of him. His two-year marriage (possibly a “beard”) broke up over domestic violence. Islam can be very intolerant of homosexuality, but most religions are. It’s another poison in the stew. It probably mattered more that his family was intolerant, but I dislike guessing.

    Then there’s the access to weapons, and training/familiarity because he worked as a security officer. One of his colleagues at the security company requested a transfer to get away from his racist and homophobic ranting, and he is suffering, feeling he acted with cowardice, and should have instead told the company Mateen was dangerous and unstable. So we also have to consider the inadequacy of background checks that allow his kind of person to weaponize their rage.

    As if there wasn’t enough else wrong with the man, he may be a self-radicalized jihadist like the Tsarnaevs. The FBI closed their previous investigations because they didn’t find anything solid, no verifiable contact with terrorist orgs or individuals, for all his big talk. Couldn’t manage to contact ISIS except by calling his own police’s 911 to “pledge”. Another wanna-be person of influence, like dad.

    So there’s homophobia, self-hatred, weapons access and training, unstable behavior / mental illness, religious and cultural intolerance, family pressure, failure as a husband, outside influence by terrorist propaganda and idiots like Trump weighing in when they know nothing as a cherry on top. Take your pick. It could be any combination or all of them. A dearth of love can make monsters.

    Once your anger subsides, you’ll get back to loving. Compassion is courage. We can act to address the many problems when we’re centered and calm. I’m sorry you’re hurting.

    Liked by 2 people

    • This is a comment I’d like to sit and stew on for a while, before replying (if it ends up needing a reply at all; some things stand well on their own, after all). But I do want to say really quick that I appreciate the time you took to write that and it’s very compelling. Thank you.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Find a vigil and go. Externalize and transform your anger by doing something positive and visible for our people. I stayed up most of the night, hands shaking with fear and rage, as I stitched rainbow ribbons for me and 36 of our people to wear at tonight’s vigil. We are expecting over 1000 people; I wish I had time to make a ribbon for each of them.

    Liked by 1 person

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