Fifty people have died in a shooting in Orlando.
I’m crying right now because some of the identities of the victims have been released and when I look at their pictures, read their names, and their ages, and how loved they were, I just…I can’t take it. I can’t imagine that these people who were so incredibly alive are now so incredibly dead, and that they will be gone forever. Their families will mourn them, their friends will miss them. They were loved. They were loved.
Their families needed them.
But now they’re gone and fifty more people are injured and maybe dying and even the gunman is dead and this is exploding on the news and I don’t know what to think.
I just…why is this happening. Why is this even happening. Why do things like this happen. It seems like there are just more and more shootings and more and more deaths just in America and I hate it because it makes me so afraid of being there even though it’s my country. Why is this country still so filled with so much hate and so much prejudice. Why is it still so unsafe for people to just be who they are. Why are there still victims of these terrible crimes. Even worse, why are there people who think these victims “got what they deserved” just because they were LGBTQA+. Why is it okay for gay and transgender people to become the victims of these horrendous acts of hatred.
I cried when I read the letter from the Stanford student’s rape victim a few days ago. I cried because I could not imagine what she has been going through or what she will have to deal with or how terribly she has been victimized, over and over, by that disgusting man who refuses even to admit that he did something wrong, victimized by the judge who sentenced the rapist to a simple slap on the wrist because any other sentence would have a “severe impact” on his life. I cried because I hated that anything like it had to happen to anybody anywhere. I cried because I hated the fact that so many men and women will be sexually assaulted in so many countries and I still hate the fact that people cannot even walk down the street for fear of being raped. I cried because I hate the fact that there are still people who condone this type of behavior, who are lenient to rapists, who blame the victims who are already suffering so much. The victims suffer. They suffer.
I cannot imagine knowing any of these victims. I cannot imagine having to know them and love them and then having to live with the idea that they were killed in such a senseless, horrific act of violence. I cannot imagine how innocent people, once so vibrant and so happy and so alive, are killed every day, in different places.
I cannot imagine it.
I cannot understand why these people are gone like this. They didn’t deserve it. They didn’t deserve to die. They didn’t do anything to deserve anything like this–no one deserves to die like this. No one ever ever ever deserves to be raped or murdered, no one.
I don’t know why this happened.
These people are needed. They are loved. Someone needed them, someone loved them, someone loves and needs them still. They were not just the names and the faces we see on the internet now. They were people and they had stories and they had hopes and dreams and fears and habits and quirks and they fell in love and went to movies and strived to be good or disliked spinach or were comic book collectors or used to write poetry or had a YouTube channel with a hundred followers or were bad at dancing or dropped out of college or hated going camping or loved children or was scared of snakes or once had a dog that used to tear up the furniture. They were people and they loved. They were loved. They were alive.
But now they’re not.
I can’t keep writing because my head hurts. I feel cold all over up and down when I read about the shooting. I feel cold.
Mourn the victims. Mourn the victims who were killed and injured in this shooting.
Mourn the victims that are killed and injured and tortured every day, the victims that don’t make it onto the news because they’re just single incidents, and people don’t care.
Please, mourn them, remember them.
Because they were loved.
They were loved.
They were loved.
We loved them.
And we love them still.
I’m so sorry.