Thoughts on the Orlando Shooting

orlando-shooting-1Il giorno dopo l’ennesimo attentato terroristico all’aereoporto di Istanbul, a meno di due settimane dalla strage di Orlando, pubblichiamo il contributo di  Megan Kauth, studentessa alla Penn State University, in Italia con la Fondazione IES Abroad e volontaria presso Anddos a Roma. 

Di Megan Kauth – On 12 June 2016 in Orlando, Florida, United States, a mass shooting unfolded at Pulse, a gay dance club. With 50 dead, including the shooter himself, and 53 injured, the reality of lives lost is devastating and it is not just U.S. citizens that are in mourning because of it.

Sadly, after the news of this incident hit the world over, there were many that fully backed the shooter without hesitation and this is why the fight for equality among all peoples will continue. There will always be support, just as President Obama states in his address on 12 June, but it must continue to grow if discriminatory attacks continue to happen.

Not all bad has come from this event however. On top of the proclaimed world wide support for LGBT groups, according to the New York Times newspaper, many persons have openly confessed to being gay to their families and friends, and in the wake of this tragedy, they have been accepted for who they are. Although some may take this event as a threat to hide their sexualities, people all around are asking for those that are fearful to open up and express who they truly are. Stories of survivors calling their parents and/or their partner’s parents, stories of persons on the other side of the country awestruck by this reality; many have taken this opportunity to spread the word of their sexuality, especially to parents and friends.

In Italy, the National Association Against the Discrimination of Sexual Orientation (ANDDOS) wrote a letter to U.S. President Barack Obama thanking him for his immediate response to U.S. citizens. Obama confirmed that there is support for the LGBTQ community and many people are behind them: from families, friends, fellow citizens, and on a greater scale, other nations.

It is important to note the responses heard from the world over; Italy in particular has communicated their remorse toward the incident. A tweet from Italian premier Matteo Renzi reads, “Our  heart is with our American brothers.” Paolo Gentiloni, Italy’s foreign minister, tweeted: “Aghast by the ever more dramatic news of the nightclub massacre.” It is overwhelmingly heartwarming to have the condolences of other countries and their leaders expressed to the United States after horrific acts like this one have been carried out.

This particular time of the year is one of jubilation for the gay community as well. All over the world parades and pride days are celebrated because LGBTQ groups are progressing in their campaign for equality and basic human rights.

There is no room for hate in this world; the hurt that it causes has gone too far, especially

in the recent years with the many attacks done to innocent people. Furthermore, a person’s differences, whether it be their race, disability, ethnicity, gender or sexuality are something to be respected and even celebrated, but not condoned.

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