Orlando nightclub massacre and the depth of homophobia

    June 30, 2016

    We mourn the 49 lives cut short in the June 12 massacre of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Florida. We support the 53 people who were wounded and the many who were traumatized. We abhor the increased fear now permeating LGBTQ communities around the country and around the world. We reiterate how empty legal rights can prove to be in capitalist society (see our editorial last year).

    Whether or not the killer had any relations with ISIS, as he claimed; whether or not he was a closeted gay man, as has been reported; whether or not he picked “Latin Night” at the club out of racism against Latinos; whether or not gun control laws could have prevented it or diminished the number of deaths; whether or not his ex- or current wife could have gotten the authorities to prevent it by reporting the violence he inflicted on them–the fact remains that homophobia is still a huge force in the world. In the West, gays have become prominent in popular culture and won some civil rights, but these things alone cannot change the propensity to hate and perpetrate violence against “the other” by people who hate their own lives and the diversity in their society. Some experts contend that the increased general acceptance of gays may actually cause those who strongly oppose it to feel their culture is threatened and to strike back through violence. [Read more...]

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