(Be forewarned: there is some NSFW language in the video and print of this piece.)
Once again America is faced with a national tragedy. The slaughter of men and women enjoying a night out at a local gay club in Orlando will forever be added to histories list of mass murder in this country. Many facts have emerged about the timeline, and the individual that caused this horrific event. As a gay man, myself, it’s especially painful knowing this happened to my community, but the why, when and how doesn’t match the grief knowing that everyday people in this country and around the world are vilified for who we love.
At 2 AM Sunday, June 12, 2016 a frequent patron of the Orlando gay night club Pulse opened fire on his fellow guests with an AR-15 and a handgun. By the time it was over 49 people had lost their lives and 53 had been critically injured. And while the right-wing media blames Muslims and the left-wing blames guns, this killer’s motive seems to be a dizzying cocktail of hate, extremism, mental illness and self loathing homophobia.
As the killer’s identity was revealed, many in Orlando have come forward to paint a contradictory picture of a man who both hated and sought gay intimacy. A local drag queen said the killer was constantly at the club, frequently in the audience for shows and a Facebook fan.
Former high school classmates have told reporters the killer hung around with a largely gay crowd and appeared comfortable around gay men. And yet co-workers at a Gold’s Gym in Port Saint Lucie, Florida, where the killer previously worked, talked about his homophobic remarks and his relentless targeting of an openly gay receptionist at that facility. Even at his last job as a security guard, many at that company noted his intolerance for homosexuals.
Despite being twice-married the killer frequently used gay hook-up apps. Some people have even claimed he sent them d*** pics. That certainly doesn’t sound like a disciple of a terrorist organization.
And this is where things get confusing. When the killer called 911 to report he was the shooter he mentions three different terror organizations including ISIS, Al-Qaeda and Hezbollah and even throws in the Tsarnaev brothers to round out the list. ISIS and Al-Qaeda hate each other. ISIS and Hezbollah hate each other and Al-Qaeda is a Sunni group whereas Hezbollah is a Shiite group. So they don’t really along well either. It’s like he didn’t have a f***ing clue what he was talking about.
And this is where mental illness comes in, because it’s clear that the FBI had investigated the killer three different times over the last several years for having sympathies toward Islamic extremism. But the probes most likely concluded he was just a weird guy, socially inept and angry. I do fault the FBI for not placing him on their terror watch list, but as we know already, that wouldn’t have prevented him from getting these guns.
I firmly support the second amendment. I’m a card carrying member of the NRA. But I believe a background check that includes the FBI’s no fly and terror watch list is just basic common sense. This won’t take away guns from the 30 Million Americans who lawfully own one. What it will do is stop a bad guy from buying a gun in the first place. Let me quote Wayne LaPierre, the head of the NRA who said “The only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun”. My response to that is a background check that confirms the guy looking to purchase the gun is in fact a good guy will prevent the bad guy from getting the gun in the first place.
So where are we to point our grief and blame? Again, the FBI knew the killer had traveled to Saudi Arabia twice in the past six years. Hillary Clinton and many legislators would love to convince Americans that the Saudi’s are our best friends. But numbers don’t lie. Nearly all the 9/11 terrorists were either from Saudi Arabia or had passed through there. The San Bernardino terrorists had travelled to Saudi Arabia. Travel to Saudi Arabia should be an immediate FBI red flag.
But the blame can’t be on the FBI alone because a lot of this has to do with the killer’s family. The killer’s father has previously hosted an anti-American TV show denouncing the Pakistani government and expressing support for the Taliban calling them “our warrior brothers.” The killer’s father had been known to mock his son with derogatory terms for homosexual. I believe the story the father told about the killer becoming enraged by seeing a same-sex couple kissing is a lie. The story that makes more sense is that the father mocked the two men kissing putting pressure on the son and forcing him to become enraged.
Did you know the father posted a video on Facebook at the same exact moment his son was attacking the Pulse nightclub saying ‘homosexuals will be punished by God.’ That’s some amazing coincidence. The son is killing homosexuals while the father is uploading a video saying we should kill homosexuals at the very same moment. What is this man doing in this country if he has so much hate towards America?
And then there is the killer’s wife who proved Donald Trump right when he said someone knew. And that’s the biggest problem of all because it reinforces the idea that the Muslim community doesn’t speak up when they know of an impending attack. I hope she spends the rest of her life in the smallest solitary confinement cell they can find for her. Lock her away never to be seen again. Because the only thing worse than a bad guy with a gun is someone knowing that bad guy is about to do something horrible.
The views expressed in this opinion article are solely those of their author and are not necessarily either shared or endorsed by EagleRising.com