LGBTQ Allyship Responds to Orlando Shooting
Category : Uncategorized
Seattle, WA – LGBTQ Allyship wants to honor the 49 victims, mostly LGBTQ Latinos, who were taken away from us through a mass shooting on June 12th, 2016, in Orlando, Florida at a gay club called Pulse. We send our support to the survivors and their loved ones, and stand in solidarity with our LGBTQ family in Florida. This homophobic act of hate has effected all of us and our whole community is deeply mourning.
The act of one human being must not fuel anti-Muslim sentiment in this country or around the world. It must not add fire to anti-immigrant rhetoric. Not in our name. We as LGBTQ individuals represent intersectional identities that include LGBTQ Muslim and Latino communities. We recognize this act of homophobic violence has uniquely impacted our LGBTQ Muslim and Latino family and elicits unique sorrow and targeted hate.
“This tragedy highlights the fact that homophobia and transphobia transgress race, religion, socio-economic, and political background. As a Latino transman, I can’t help but think that this could have been me, and in a way it was, as the safety of our dance clubs and public gatherings have become increasingly targeted for demonstrations of misguided and misinformed hate,” replies Shane Maldonado, LGBTQ Allyship board Treasurer.
Allyship believes this is a time for the LGBTQ community to build community and connection with our Muslim and Latino allies in shared unity against Islamophobia, xenophobia/anti-immigrant, homophobia and transphobia. Each of our communities are under attack through harmful policies, political rhetoric, fear-mongering, scapegoating and violence.
“Many communities are mourning from this senseless act of hate. We as LGBTQ individuals, Muslims and Latinos deserve to be safe in our neighborhoods and places of worship, and experience fairness at work, at school, and in public. Our communities are interconnected and we must unite in fighting for justice for all,” states LGBTQ Allyship executive director Debbie Carlsen.
Nationally there have been 200 anti-LGBTQ bills introduced in state legislature, and 50 of these bills target transgender and gender non-conforming individuals. In Washington State conservatives are attempting to get I-1515 on the November ballot, an initiative that would prohibit transgender and gender non-conforming individuals from using the bathrooms at work, at school and in public that match the gender they live daily. Initiatives, like I-1515, breed hate and misunderstanding towards the transgender community that already suffers from high rates of unemployment and homelessness, discrimination and violence. These harmful and misguided policies sanction violence against LGBTQ people and disproportionately impact communities of color.
Orlando has taught us how detrimental national and local legislation focused on hate can be a catalyst for tragedies such as this. In solidarity with both the Latino and Muslim communities we hope that this tragedy will unite us in allowing all people to live their truth openly and safely regardless of race, religion, gender, or sexuality.