I had every intention of writing a summer reading list this week. Something simple and fun. Then Orlando happened. Nearly fifty people dead and over fifty injured. I'm sure I don't have to tell you, the news is inescapable. A lot of turbulent emotions have been ripping through me over this latest national tragedy. I have only just begun to feel safe identifying myself as an openly queer individual, only to see scores of beautiful people, who I'll never have the good fortune to know, in my newfound community, senselessly slaughtered in cold blood. I honestly don't know how to react to this. All I know is that I can't stay silent.
Especially when the people making the loudest noises over the mass media have there heads so firmly planted up there own pinch little assholes. And of coarse, there all fucking breeders. Who else always knows best? Even before anyone knows anything at all. It must be nice to know everything. Maybe that kind of blase self-confidence only comes with the good fortune of being born with all the right parts in all the right places, fitting so easily into all the right people. Anyway, I feel some obligation to rise above my own complex emotions and clear up some of the bullshit. It's a smelly, thankless job but somebody has to do it, so it might as well be my iconoclastic and recently decloseted gender fluid ass.
There's a reason bullshit usually reigns supreme in the aftermath of massacres like the one in Orlando. The Western World doesn't suffer these kinds of tragedies as often as the rest of the planet. The uncomfortable truth is that this country is often on the other side of the trigger. It's the nature of living behind the gilded fences of a global empire. That doesn't make these horrific events anymore exceptable than any of our own massacres. In fact the illusion of invulnerability created by this nations unchecked power on the global stage can make these events all the more traumatic. It's only natural for people living beneath an imperial bubble to overreact on the relatively rare occasions when that bubble is breached, even from within. But being reactionary has never solved anything. It's in trying times like these that we need to struggle to keep our heads straight and think logically. There are know simple solutions to a mess like this. So lets dispel with some of the politico-media-spheres favorite bullshit quick fixes right off the fucking bat.
#1. Labels are pointless- Terms like Terrorism and Hate Crime are nothing more than pointless labels for the same damn thing. Mass murder is mass murder. Killing a club full of innocent people isn't made any more or less tragic by giving it a fancy and often politicized title. All violent crimes are hate crimes and all terrorists are killers. There no different then any other garden variety psychopath. I don't give two fucks if your Osama Bin Laden, Richard Speck, Eric Rudolf, Ted Bundy or Omar Mateen, your all the same flavor of shit in my book and you don't fucking impress me with your cowardice.
#2. Islam is not the enemy- Omar Mateen is not an Islamic killer. He's just a killer who happens to call himself a Muslim. Whether it's revenge for American foreign policy or just another self-loathing closet case killing himself by killing his own kind, this crime had nothing to do with religion and it had nothing to do with immigration. Omar was the American born son of two quirky but moderate Afghan refugee's. His relationship to radical jihadism was minimal and totally inconsistent. He had variously claimed affiliation with ISIS, Hezbollah and Al-Nusrah, groups that are all currently at war with each other. The idea of banning all Muslim immigration into this country is not only unconstitutional and immoral, it's totally ineffective. Why would ISIS or anyone else for that matter waste there trained fighters by sending them away from the battlefield, overseas, when they already have there pick of the litter of mentally disturbed assholes within our borders, just a mouse click away. Scapegoating an entire population of mostly peaceful people plays directly into groups like ISIS' hands. They want Muslims to be isolated, vilified and humiliated by secular governments. It makes for easy marks in there holy war scheme. Don't take the bait.
#3. Guns are not the problem- I know this is probably dangerous for a hardcore leftist to say out loud but the only way to stop a gay-basher with a gun is a small army of fierce queens with high-powered pieces that match there outfits. How many people would that homophobic cunt been able to kill if there was more than just one armed, off-duty cop on the scene? We'll probably never know but I'm willing to bet it would have been far less then 49. Too many people on the left seem to suffer under the delusion that stripping law abiding citizens of there Second Amendment rights will stop loose cannons like Mateen from arming themselves illegally. This is just plain bullshit. Just ask Anders Breivik, the Norwegian mass murderer who managed to slaughter 77 people in a country with fewer guns than Candyland. I'm not saying this country couldn't use a few new regulations but assault weapons bans, like all forms of prohibition, simply don't work, they only create black markets where regulation is impossible.
#4. The FBI fucked up- I find nothing more repulsive than the endless procession of current and ex-feds getting air time to demand that we the people hurl more of our tax dollars into there already bulging coffers so they can burn it haunting mosques, trolling antiwar chat-rooms and entrapping harmless mental-midgets in there pointless sting operations, all while known extremists like Mateen continue to fall through the cracks of our massive police state. This bastard had been on there radar for years. YEARS! And wear was Florida's finest feds on the night that Pulse got sacked. Well they were arresting a mentally ill homeless man in Miami who fell victim to there latest bait-and-switch build-a-terrorist trap, of coarse. And these assholes wan't more fucking money. FUCK THAT! And fuck the FBI. Get your fucking shit together and do your fucking job. Then will talk.
#5. War is not the Answer- Even if it does turn out that Mateen had some kind of legitimate terror connection, no amount of drone strikes will bring the beautiful people he killed back to us. It will only serve to sully there names with blood and give ISIS or whoever a new crop of traumatized survivors of American terrorism to turn into human weapons. Violence only begets more violence. Terror only begets more terror. Like I said earlier it doesn't matter if your strangling a dormitory full of nursing students, shooting up a dance club of unarmed party-goers or shooting a Hellfire Missile at a wedding party full of the same, it is all murder and it is all inexcusable. People have a right to defend themselves, yes. It is there god given, constitutional right to do so. But maybe, just maybe, they wouldn't have to if this country didn't insist on pissing on every hornet's nest from Aleppo to Kandahar.
This country desperately needs to stop being brainlessly reactive to every tragedy we suffer and start being proactive by putting an end to our own violent behavior abroad that makes the horror of tragedies like the one in Orlando so much more likely. Until we learn this lesson, the bodies will only continue to pile up in both hemispheres. I for one mourn them all and I refuse to sit by and stay silent until ALL the killing stops.
Until then, take care of each other, Beautiful people. If we don't, no one will. And if your religious, say a prayer for the dead and say a prayer for peace. We all deserve it.
PEACE, LOVE & EMPATHY- C.H.