Unless you’ve been living under a rock recently you’ve probably heard all about the Orlando shootings, the alligator attack on that young boy, and the ever amassing backing behind the LBGT community.
It was late on Wednesday night where I found myself lying in bed trying to get to sleep. A sudden wave of sadness came over me as I remembered the events of the last few days.
As I usually do, I spent time, when I should be sleeping, worrying about the world I live in. More importantly, what the world is going to be like for our children and future generations.
We’re polluting our environment, killing each other and mocking those who are different to us.
How in the world did we get here? Why do I feel like things are getting worse? The feeling of impending doom stretches further ahead of me.
It actually horrifies me. I cannot fathom how and why these things happen. So I thought I’d write about this today considering how relevant it is and how important it is to ‘love thy neighbour’.
It reminds me of the stigma attached to mental health and rings so very close to home. I am bringing it up for a good reason; please don’t shout at me until you’ve read the whole thing!
Some of the facts
I thought it would be good to give you some facts about the Orlando shootings just to give you a bit of background:
The shooting occurred on the 11 June 2016 at Pulse Nightclub, Orlando, Florida.
It is the deadliest mass shooting by a single gunman, and the deadliest incident of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LBGT) community.
50 people have been confirmed as dead, and at least 53 were injured by gunman Omar Mateen, who was also shot on site by Orlando police. His wife has now been arrested as being an accessory to murder.
It is the deadliest terror attack in the US since the September 11 attacks in 2001
As you can see, these are some pretty horrific statistics.
This event is a major event. It will go down in history because there are still people who judge the LGBT community negatively, who condone violence and who accuse without fact.
But there has also been unity. There has been a great backing for those who are part of the LGBT community. I want to use my voice now to show my support and to encourage everyone to fight for the right to a normal life.
Why is this significant to the LGBT community?
Some might disagree with this. That is fine, but there are some things to consider. This attack was directed at the LGBT community. It was an attack on human beings, yes.
But why specifically Pulse nightclub? What hate did this man have towards the people that visit this club?
The club is a gay nightclub. It has been reported that Omar was also struggling with his own demons. Those demons are his sexuality. By struggling with his own issues, he took it out on the very symbol that they represent. Tell me if I’m wrong but this was an attack on that community.
I was made aware of a recent interview conducted by Sky News by a friend of mine. They were interviewing a gay journalist (Owen something?) who was trying to give his opinion on the shootings.
It eventually led to him walking off after being interrupted throughout the interview and not being listened to. They almost heckled him during the interview. His point was that this was a hate crime towards the LGBT community.
They were convinced it was a terrorist attack on human beings, and not on the LBGT community. If you’d
Why in this day and age should a journalist be talked down to in this way?! I find it absolutely incredulous that a ‘legitimate’ TV station behaves in such a way.
If you’d like to watch said video, you can view some of the bits here. This gets me riled up by the way. Julia Hartley-Brewer (the co-host for the show) suggests that everyone is upset by the atrocity and he was ‘being silly’.
You don’t choose to be gay
I am not gay, nor am I part of the LGBT community. But I know what I know. I have friends who are gay and friends who are lesbians. I’ve watched shows about people who consider themselves transgender.
Some of the best people I know are the above.
Time and time again they tell me/I hear that they don’t choose to be gay. No one wants to be stared at if they are holding hands with someone of the same sex. No one wants things left on their wall which suggests disgust. No one wants to be hated for the way they are.
No one wants things left on their wall which suggests disgust. No one wants to be hated for the way they are.
I feel bad because of this. I feel bad because I am not on the receiving end. Why don’t I get this discrimination? Probably because I am white and have a boyfriend. Why is this so different to someone?
Why can’t people accept the way others are? Are we so primitive that we have to act like animals and fight each other over irrelevant things?
No, we aren’t, but it happens. It angers me.
How this is linked to mental health
Now, I’m not trying to hijack this horrible incident to allow me to bring up mental health. This moment in our lives should be remembered. Not because of the statistics, but because of the community spirit being shown across the globe.
It has happened now and the support is flooding in.
But ignorance can no longer be something to hide behind because facts are readily available. All you have to do is want to know. Want to know about the world, and how it works.
The want to be able to form your own unbiased opinion based on these facts.
It should be a moment where we can now start challenging them and fight for what we believe in. Those with mental illnesses also suffer at the hands of these people and we should unite now, together.
Let’s get together and build a collective.
The modern age we live in allows us to communicate with people from the other side of the world with ease. We get to share information with not just our family, but friends across the borders and waters.
We can use technology to fight for our rights to be a human being, and not a victim, or a lesbian, or someone with depression. How dare we be judged by these superficial aspects?
How dare others decide how we should be looked at and treated like.
Finally, how dare we be accused of being dramatic when something so sensitive causes outrage for the people being affected?
We aren’t defined by out race, colour, heritage, mental state, etc.
Some people just don’t understand that. Yes, this event was against human beings, but it was a specific incident towards a specific group of people.
I thought now would be a good time to consider all of the good things that have come from this situation. Although a disgusting situation, the unity that’s been shown has been mindblowing.
I thought it necessary to share some of the nice pictures, some from my home town Nottingham!
(All photos have come from the BBC website – you can see them here)