I wasn’t sure about writing this as I’m not LGBT, I cannot imagine how difficult it is to live a life being judged on who you love. On having to think twice over whether it is safe to hold your partner’s hand in public let alone being able to kiss them.

When it comes down to it that is what yesterday’s terrible shooting was about. A man was so incensed at seeing another 2 men kissing in public that he went to a LGBT club killed 50 people and injured many more.  It is a hate crime and the LGBT community have every right to keep pointing that out.

The current straightwashing (another term that should never be needed but unfortunately is) – even over here on Sky News – astounds me. It’s not enough to explain it away as saying he had mental health issues.  The vast majority of people with mental health issues are never going to harm others.

Society in the US is such that a man investigated TWICE by the FBI can still legally buy guns including assault rifles and there are a vast number of people over there would defend his right to do so. Normality is defined by the society we live in and what we can “get away with” without punishment.

In a country where immigrants, people of colour and LGBT are othered and scapegoated is it any wonder that their lives are seen as less worthy. As for the shooter’s religion, well I think all should look at their own religious teachings before they cast the first stone.

Igor Volsky from the Centre for American Progress Action Fund spent yesterday highlighting the hypocrisy of all those Senators and Congressmen tweeting their “thoughts and prayers” whilst avoiding 1. the reason people were shot and 2. their lack of action on gun control. These are also the people who spend the rest of the year chipping away at the rights of those who don’t fit their ideal.

I would love to think that this is the atrocity that makes the US wake up to its unhealthy obsession with guns but (and I rarely agree with the man) Dan Hodges summed it up perfectly in 2015.

There has been so many mass shootings (over 5 killed) – San Bernardino, Colorado Springs, Charleston, Isla Vista, Fort Hood, Washington, Santa Monica to name a few – that we now see it as “normal” for the US. 173 have taken place this year to date, more than 1 a day.

Thoughts and prayers from Congressmen and Senators are not enough, they need to get out from under the NRA’s influence and stand up for the people they are failing to defend from their neighbours. The Second Amendment was to defend themselves from the British, trust me we aren’t coming to get you. When a country has to teach its children what to do in case of a school shooting there is something tragically wrong.

No one should live in fear because of who they love




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