Last week, wow.

Mass shooting, 49 dead.

It occurred in a gay disco, most were very young.

A nation mourns. I mourn.

There is an occasional news spot of hate. Not much though…not much hate.

There are mass outpouring a of love. Love, acceptance, mourning, support, care, donations, recognition, help, empathy, condolences, compassion, money, kindness….I’m verklempt.

(note to self, iPad spell check does not like verklempt. )

Community comes to mind. Orlando is a community. Gays are a community. Our nation, and world, is rallying around those two communities. Those two communities are one, one with the nation and one with the world.

Fifty years ago, in almost all communities, gay men & women were jailed for being in a bar where other gays congregated. Raids were common. Gays were abused by and victims of violence at the hands of law enforcement. Most gay bars were mafia associated in order to pay people off to keep them open and patrons were taken advantage of by the powers that controlled the bars. If caught in a gay bar one could lose one’s family, job, home, children….everything. One could end up on a list of sexual predators, or similar, for the crime of sodomy in the private bedroom of ones home.

Almost all people who were attracted to the same sex were closeted. Not closeted by choice but out of necessity. Survival.

As we celebrate pride in the midst of this horrible tragedy, let’s not forget to be thankful for where we are. It does not lessen the circumstance to recognize just how far we have come since a few drag queens said “No More” at the Stonewall Inn back in 1969. 1969…..I was a kid but this is in my lifetime and no matter what you say, I ain’t old yet.

A nation is flying pride flags. A nation is standing not only with Orlando but with its gay community. The hospitalized victims are being released into an accepting and supportive world, not jailed and humiliated for being in a gay bar. The dead are eulogized with dignity, love, support and compassion, not ignored and disposed of as criminals for being who they were where they were.

Not only is our nation but our world is standing with us. I’m verklempt with gratitude.

I’m disturbed by the loss, the violence and the death but I will not let that stop me from realizing where we are and how much things have changed.

May this be a rallying cry to all of us to keep marching forward as humanity. Humanity that loves, cares and supports each other. Love will conquer evil.

Believe, keep believing.

7 thoughts on “Gratitude?

  1. Hopefully this can be “the time” that finally breaks the camel’s back and we stand up for serious gun control serious discussions about so-called Christians and their hate of the LGBT community, and just live with one another as we’d like to have others live with us.

  2. “Gays were abused by and victims of violence at the hands of law enforcement…If caught in a gay bar one could lose one’s family, job, home, children….everything. One could end up on a list of sexual predators.”

    and some of this shit is still happening. WHERE and WHEN does it stop? the gun control measures were blocked AGAIN along party lines; our guvmint is NOT serious as long as they are being paid off by the NRA. why can’t we have the NRA branded as a hate group?

    • The longer I am DC, the more pessimistic I am about Congress. There are many issues they are not serious on. People more concerned about staying in office, than making a difference in the world (and with a generous pension system, if they lose reelection they are not left penniless, but powerless.

  3. Absolutely! It is staggering, truly staggering, how far acceptance of the LGBTQ community has come in 50 years. Sometimes I still find it hard to believe. We must remember, however, that this acceptance was hard fought for and hard won. We can’t be complacent, as the Orlando massacre has shown.

  4. I think some areas of America have some way to come yet, I heard that there are still some laws over there that need looking at. Having said that it’s not just a nation standing together, it’s a planet. We are all one community and we stand together.

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