Praying for Justice Won’t Cut It

The word ‘terror’ can be used to describe fear as well as an unruly toddler; however in the wake of the June 12, 2016 mass shooting at Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Florida it is important to note that acts of terror also stem from hatred for the targeted group. Pulse nightclub, a club that is meant to be a safe haven for members of the LGBT community, was attacked by an American man named Omar Mateen. Although there is an ongoing investigation of his motives, some facts remain true regardless; those being that he attacked innocent men and women using an assault rifle and that the people he attacked were enjoying their time at a gay nightclub.

After the shooting, countless of people took to social media to express their outrage, support for victims, and “pray for justice.”  Some of the same people do all of this, but turn around and go to their respective places of worship where people who aren’t heterosexual are condemned by their leaders in worship. As much as the Orlando shooting could possibly be linked to terrorist organizations, like ISIS, the victims were the very same people denied the right to marry, barred from donating blood, correctively raped, and in extreme cases like hat of Pulse nightclub, exterminated.

If the world truly wants justice for the victims of the Orlando shooting, we must stop dehumanizing them. Justice for the victims for the Orlando shooting means more than just gun reform; it also means that members of the LGBT community should be able to adopt children, donate blood, serve in the military without fear of harassment, and participate in other parts of life from which they are banned. Justice for the victims of the 2016 shooting at Pulse nightclub in Orlando looks like LGBT people having total access to their human rights. Public prayers and sympathy is not enough to right the wrongs of normalized hate towards LGBT people.

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