Jump to content

Article: For my LGBT community, terror isn't new

Recommended Posts

I had to go into a small rural convenience store, here in Florida.  I should say that this part of Florida is so close to the Alabama border you can almost shout at the nearest town across the line and be heard.  I went into this store for business.  I had to collect unsold papers and the money for the papers sold.  I also usually trade $40 in quarters with this store so they don't have to run into town for change.  The new manager has her 12 year old son behind the counter with her and, no word of a lie, she is always reading the Bible.

So, with this image in mind, I was asked what was in the new edition of the paper.  They hadn't heard about the attack.  While  I was a little bit surprised, it wasn't a complete shock that they hadn't heard.  So I told them the facts as I knew them at the time.  The mother seemed shocked.  Another gentleman in the place who probably had 15 to 20 years on me, was aghast.  "Lordy, to think someone has that much hate to just attack folks like that, herded like cattle."  I was glad that his reaction was disgust and sorrow that tragedies like this happen.  I'm sure the shear numbers involved added to it for him, but he was genuinely upset by the news.

And then that little shit, laying in a sleeping bag, face down with his arm angled under (I think the gentlemen in the room understand where I'm going with that description), without looking up, just up and says "Who cares.  They were all gay anyways, they're all going to Hell."

I pointed out that they were Americans, slaughtered by a man who pledged his actions and life to ISIS, that he would have killed any Americans he could, gay or straight.  Now before my fellows here point out facts we know now, remember, that at the time none of us knew that this man (I shall not give him the honor of a name) claimed he was acting against gays and Hispanics (by one report he'd said he no problem with "the blacks").  We didn't know at that time that this man not only had been inside the Pulse bar for weeks prior to this, drinking and brooding and whatever else he did in there.  We didn't know at the time that this man had profiles on several gay dating sites, including Grindr.  All we knew at the time was that this man was looking to kill Americans.

The kid simply said back "So?  They shouldn't have been fags.  They belong in Hell."

Both the older gentleman in the store and the manager, mildly rebuked the boy, giggling a bit at it.  His mother was more concerned with his language.  I wanted to say more.  I wanted to shake the kid by the shirt and tell him that I hoped he never had to worry about being gay, or never had a friend that was gay and terrified to tell him.  Hell, I wanted to tell him that he might never know a gay person if he were talking to him.

But I held my tongue.  Not out of a sense that I might lose the account at the store.  Certainly not out of any sense of hiding who I am.  I kept a civil tongue in my head, nodded grimly at the idiocy and willful ignorance of some people and the way they teach their children.  I knew that with Bible mom right there, there wasn't any way to get through to this kid's head, or broaden the view of the parent either.

It just frustrates the hell out of me that people can see a thing, ignore it for what it is, and then allow stupid to take deeper root rather than encourage thought and emotion beyond just the store counter top.  I'm not even gonna talk about Congress here.  I'm not going to talk about the empty "thoughts and prayers" and moments of silence.  I'm not going to bring up the gun issues, i know where my head is on this and i know i wont change the minds of others who also see this as tragedy but hold onto their own beliefs.  I'm not going to challenge anyone on any of that.  I just wish once in a while people can see each other as people.  That we can see evil for what it is.  And god damnit, we must do something, because doing nothing has resulted in just more of the same.


Okay, I've said my piece.  Not gonna make any comments on this, even if others put in their two cents.  Not gonna start an argument.  Not gonna take part in one if it starts.  One voice raised is often ignored.  Or shouted down.  And I'm tired of that too.


But how many more will we bury?  ISIS must be ended.  But we really shouldn't make it easy for them to end us, not in our own back yard.

There.  I'm done.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

As you point out some cannot see this for what it is. But I hope there are those who have been shocked enough to break out of their limited view or beliefs and become more accepting.  The sad thing is it taking something shocking to wake some people up. How many more lives is it going to take for us to come together and stand up against hate? Too many I fear. Too many already.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


  • Create New...