Thoughts on Orlando and Love to Everyone

This weekend was Boston pride. I went yesterday with my friends to celebrate ourselves and be in a supposed safe space. It was rainy and wet and, as every year, I felt annoyed by the over-commercialisation of what was going on around me. Most of these companies don’t care about a whole lot besides making money and gaining more customers. But still we went because it’s pride month and why not. I was complaining about how cold I was but apart from that I had few other deeper thoughts about what pride really means in a larger context. I constantly forget to be afraid for myself in regards to my gender, race, and sexual orientation, especially because Wellesley can be a safe haven. What happened in Orlando though is a stabbing reminder of how unsafe this country (and the world) can be for LBTQ+ individuals, especially those of colour.

Here are some things to remember as you go about your day today:

  • What the news isn’t going to focus on is that the theme of the night at Pulse was for Latinx people, and that most of the people murdered were QTPOC. News outlets are also already injecting Islamophobia into articles and coverage of this tragedy, which only serves to further alienate all of us who are already marginalised. Islam is not a religion of hate, even though this misconception is going to be touted again and again. Do not let this separate us from each other. An act of hate is an act of hate.
  • Also speaking of marginalisation: Look up Wounded Knee (150 were murdered) or Black Wall Street (300 were murdered). These hate crimes have been been erased and forgotten over the years simply because those affected were not white. As you mourn today, do not forget about these tragedies – fold them in to your memories alongside this hate crime and remember that we are all affected by what happens in this country.
  • The focus in the coming days will (again) be about gun control. While obviously this is a necessary conversation, do not forget about the LBTQ+ victims. Guns are not the only issue and extreme bigotry still exists that also needs to be addressed.

Basically, let’s not forget about each other. Let’s support each other and let’s love each other.

I am truly lucky to be surrounded by so much love today, and my heart is pained for the families and friends of the victims. My heart is also pained for those who were and are not out and are unable to express the hurt they are feeling right now. And to the LGBTQ+ Muslims out there, know you are seen and you are wonderful.

If anyone is grieving, please please do not hesitate to reach out. Take care of yourself and know you are never alone.

Also shout out to my aunt who texted me to say she hoped I was okay and that I was safe at any LGBTQ celebrations I would be going to. Love you lots!!

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