Two years ago we lost 49 brothers and sisters to a senseless act of violence. What should have been another night of fun and dancing in a place where people could be themselves turned into a night of tears and bloodshed. One coward with so much hate in his heart was all it took to keep 49 people from coming home that night and brought immense sadness to our community and the world at large. Some people refuse to acknowledge this night for what it was; a hate crime against the LGBT community. Not only did this happen in a place meant for LGBT people but it happened during Pride Month, a time of celebration and being proud of who we are.
Within the last two years alone hate crimes against the LGBT community and POC, in general, have increased. Trans people continue to be harassed and murdered at an alarming rate, POC are continuously harassed and punished simply for existing. We have to take care of each other; speak up when you see harassment, stand united in power for those that no longer can. Be an example of the respect others are too small to give us. Refuse to be silent and refuse to be invisible! We are beautiful, we matter, we are strong and we will not break.
Our best revenge is living our lives in the most authentic way possible and embracing who we are without apology. We cannot retreat into the closets of fear we came from, but burst through those doors with more power than ever before. We owe no explanation to anyone and do not require anyone’s approval, we only answer to ourselves and our higher power. Our hearts are with Orlando today and every day and they continue their healing and maintain their strength.
Never stop dancing. Never stop loving. Shine brightly.
Previously published on Facebook.
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