Life is precious…
That moment when all three of my children emerged into life at birth remain three of the most precious and most powerful moments I have or will ever experience. The overwhelming emotional power of these moments left me sobbing with a confusing mix of joy, wonder, happiness, apprehension, fear, responsibility and amazement. As the tears flowed down my cheeks and I gathered my baby girls into my arms for the first time I was overcome with the precious little human person I held.
Life is precious, we should protect it, we should defend it, we should do all we can to stop it being snuffed out by fear and hate. Just as we strive to stop it being snuffed out by illnesses such as cancer so we should stop it being extinguished by the disease of hate and fear and ignorance.
Scrolls of despair…
Over recent days I have scrolled my news feeds with despair as I have read of the death and destruction of 50 human persons. Destroyed by hate. So many lives destroyed. The lives snuffed out and the pain and suffering and grief of those left behind.
In the coming days, weeks and months there will be analysis, reviews, enquiries, editorials, articles and op-ed pieces written. None of that will change the hard cold fact that those human persons were slaughtered.
They were slaughtered for no other reason than who they were.
It can be debated and theorised for ever and a day as to whether or not one is born gay or not born gay. In the end who fucking cares, because gay is what a gay person is. These people were murdered for being themselves.
In despair I have scrolled as my heart has ached.
Let’s be clear, this was a hate crime. Nothing more nothing less.
The religion of the perpetrator is irrelevant.
Representatives of the God of Love preaching hate…
As a Christian the despair has been heightened by so-called Christian ministers declaring justifications and affirming the actions of this murderer as rightful and just in the eyes of God. The typical proof texts of Leviticus are trotted out as evidence that these people are apparent abominations.
But no, they are not, they are human beings. Their lives are precious and valuable and not expendable by hate in the name of God.
Quickly it was established that the killer was a muslim, and quickly the labelling of him as an Islāmic terrorist occurred.
Yes this was an act of terrorism, but it was not an act of Islamic terrorism. It was an act of terrorism against humanity.
But to be clear…
The murderer was an American citizen.
The murderer used a weapon legally obtained.
The murderer was not an illegal immigrant.
The murderer also happened to be a muslim.
This was not an act of Islamic Jihad, it was an act of mass murder in the name of hate.
It is of major concern…
A major concern to me is that as an autistic person, as a disabled person it is the actions of LGBTIQ movements that have shown the way of self-determination, acceptance and basic human rights as universal for all. There is much to be emulated by other groups in grasping similar rights and taking similar actions in gaining full acceptance in society. If when such a group is targeted by such a crime it is deemed appropriate for justifications of such hate on the basis of religion and Godly justice are made, what does this mean for other groups?
Would we hear such outcry if a slaughter of 50 businessmen in a stockholder meeting occurred, would there be any acceptance of such justifications like they were only businessmen?
What if 50 lives were slaughtered in fitness club, would we countenance justifications of but they were just fitness junkies?
Of course not, but somehow we allow justifications of oh they were only gay and it is the carrying out of god’s justice.
And what does this mean for other groups.
But they were only blind.
But they were only paraplegic.
But they were only ADD
But they were only Autistic
But they were only diabetic.
There is no justification for such hateful actions.
What has happened is a hate crime.
What has happened is the slaughter of LGBTIQ humans because of hate.
What happened is the slaughter of humans because of hate.
There is no justification for this. Not a faith-based one, not a justice based one. There simply isn’t.
This is simply hate. Hate allowed to fester. Hate fuelled by rhetoric.
When one group of human persons are able to be maligned, declared an abomination, declared sinful. When one group of humans is sidelined and segregated such that they have to fight for their human rights, then hate is able to fester.
It is the same ignorance and hate that gave rise to hate groups like KKK.
It is the same ignorance, fear and rhetoric of disease and defectiveness that allows abusive treatment of disabled humans.
The slaughter in Orlando must never allowed to be categorised as anything other than what it was a hate crime against LGBTIQ people by a home-grown American criminal.
We must cry out for the sanctity, value and preciousness of every human life.