There is nothing more stupid and useless than another blog post somewhere in the noise of the million machine march towards justice after the needless and devastating attack in Orlando that left so many fine young men and women wounded or dead. There is little doubt, at this point, that the attack specifically targeted a popular gay nightclub. It is hard for straight person to understand the importance of the gay bar or gay club to the community. In a world where unwanted advances can lead to countless unspeakable consequences, the gay bar is a place where people who live in masks can break free, speak openly about what their hearts want, and who their hearts want. It is a rite of passage. Some of the parents of the dead young men did not know their sons were gay or bi until the news came that their son was killed for their gender identity and orientation.
So, there’s very little to say about this horrific tragedy. Legiaslators ought to do something, but after Newtown, it is hard to imagine the gridlock breaking for a sinners and sodomites when the innocents were gunned down mercilessly and nothing was done. How much blood is enough? Whose blood must be spilled before the change comes?
I don’t know. I don’t want to know. I only want to know what I can do to end the hate. I can vote in a red state, but there’s very little to vote on here except more guns, so good guys with guns can put bullets in the air in a crowded club, where light and dark and shadow flood the room, and no one knows who the bad guy is, except there’s guns and more guns. So vote, but expect nothing to come from it. The children who died in Connecticut screaming and afraid were a price we were willing to have paid.
As creators of media, literary and movie scripts and songs and comic strips, we have the power to build up hope against the hate that comes with guns and lynching ropes. We can speak about the joy that comes for our nation’s sons when they step out without fear into a room full of people who are like them, queer. There is so much joy in this world when we’re together, so don’t forget to write the queer and the transgender. Write them as kings and heroes and strong, young men. Place them in every future and call them out as friends. We as creators can stamp out hate through representation of people who are great, and don’t hate. No cannon fodder, or pathos-rich slaughter, make sure the characters are people, everyday sort of sons and daughters. The power of the pen is the voice in the mind, the language of dreams and aspirations. As creators, we must do better to teach the world not to hate who is different. We must write so the world can learn.
Goddamn, Orlando, it’s hard to think about anything when that’s what happened.
Stay safe, out there. Be kind. Don’t die.