Do something

What is there left to say about the tragedy in Orlando? The hope is that the senseless mass shooting will finally wake up America about gun control. I can tell you the answer, no. The American electorate who believes in sensible gun control are not those who are angry this year. It’s the people with guns.

The gun lobby and the NRA know that the vast majority of their support comes from those in small cities or rural areas. Those who are least likely to experience gun violence. These gun rights supporters contribute to the National Rifle Association to the tune of $350 million on an annual basis. But gun violence only matters when it happens to you.

I always looked with interest about Category 5 hurricanes but it really did not touch me until I was in Hurricane Odile in Cabo San Lucas in 2014. My perspective completely changed as I worried for my life for six hours, something that television or the commentary from victims can never really convey. Gun violence is no different. The Orlando tragedy seems to have awakened the LGBT community. Why were we not awakened with the shooting deaths of members of the trans community? Why was San Diego not awakened during the Andrew Cunanan killing spree that ended with the death of Gianni Versace? Television desensitizes.

I watched the recent OJ series on ESPN that actually showed the bodies of Nicole Brown-Simpson and Ron Goldman. The gruesome images seemed unreal. Almost like actors in a Law and Order episode. And that is exactly the problem.

Sure you can try to imagine the Orlando tragedy happening in a city where you live but it is impossible to understand the loss of the families and friends. So as opposed to putting up a hashtag or a pic on your Facebook page showing solidarity with Orlando, do something – actually do something. That means write your congressmember and support gun control. In California, that’s all you need to do. Our two U.S. senators, Barbara Boxer and Diane Feinstein, are already on board. But many of us live in Republican Congressional Districts, your representative needs to hear your voice.

All four gun control measures failed in Congress earlier this week. Would you rather take the time to write your congressional representative or wait until your life is touched by gun violence?

It might be a horrible thing to say but I have experienced the feeling of helplessness during the AIDS crisis. I don’t want to have to experience the same feeling with respect to gun violence in our community. Please do something.



San Diego LGBT Weekly

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Posted by on Jun 23, 2016. Filed under Around the Nation, Editorial, Top Highlights. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

10 Comments for “Do something”

  1. While I agree something must be done, unfortunately letters to your congressman are like prayers and moments of silence. They don’t change a thing. What the LGBTQ community must do is what we’ve always done….stage die-ins at NRA headquarters; die-ins on K Street; die-ins at Glock in Smyrna, GA. You get the picture. Civil disobedience flows in our veins. When 10,000 people died of AIDS, we took to the streets and demanded action. 30,000 people die every year from gun violence. It is time to reclaim the streets.

  2. What many of you feel to understand, taking guns away, or making them harder to get does not stop shooting in gun free zones such as bars, schools and the like. All you are doing is making it harder for someone who obeys the law to get a gun to protect themselves. Look at London where the MP was shot recently. The whole country is a gun free zone, that didn’t stop that nut case from getting a gun and killing her.

    When are you going to learn the answer is more freedom not less.


    • Hi, Liz,

      In 2010, 11,078 people were shot dead in the USofA, while in Great Britain, only 60 souls perished as a result of gun violence. See the difference?

      Hope this helps.

      • Your point?

        Ten times that many people are killed by mistakes doctors make, perhaps we should outlaw modern medicine?

        Outlawing guns is not the answer, that is a stupid reaction to a people problem. That is the kind of thing your mother would do to punish you when you were 5 years old.

        All it would have taken was one person with a CCW carrying and Orlando would not still be in the news today.


        • Liz,

          The topic is about guns…stay on point and stop diverting.

          The “good guy with a gun” fantasy is just that. A fantasy. This is not the wild west and your are not a gunslinger.

          You’re partly correct – it is a people problem. The problem is too many people have access to too many guns. There is absolutely no reason for a citizen to own a military style weapon. Period. The only animals hunted with a semi-automatic weapon are humans.

          We WILL have gun control. You can bet on it.


  3. Liz,

    You might be on to something, though. Maybe gun owners should be more like doctors. Gun owners should have extensive training to prove they have the knowledge and skills to be a responsible owner/operator. Gun owners should be licensed in the State of residency and have to renew their license every two or three years. Gun owners should carry liability and malpractice insurance, too.

    Yes, you’re definitely on to something.


  4. The underlying problem with guns and those who want to take them away from citizens is this; there is a segment of society who doesn’t want to take responsibility for their personal safety. I grew up in the gun culture, both before and post transition, I never felt threatened by people with guns, even people who didn’t hold my level or morality or ideals. The reason for that was I took charge of my own safety and protection. It seems that many on the left besides wanting to rob the rest of us of our freedom are also lazy, this is truly sad, this country was founded by people who not only wanted to be free but were willing to take responsibility for their safety.
    By the way Maxx, You can have my guns when you can pry them from my cold, dead hands. No law that abridges the Second Amendment shall I obey.


  5. Liz,

    Bloviate much? Nobody wants to “take your guns away”. Rather, the vast majority of Americans – including gun owners, want and demand sensible gun control laws. Reinstate the ban on semi-automatic weapons. Close the online and gun show loopholes. A universal background check. No fly, no buy (I think we both agree terrorists should not have access to military-grade weapons).

    No right is absolute. Freedom of Speech? You can’t slander. Freedom of Press? You can’t libel. Freedom of Association? You can’t riot. Are you beginning to see the pattern?

    The second amendment was written at a time of muskets. Bill Cosby could have drugged and raped half a dozen women in the time it took to reload. Times change, technology changes, and so must our laws.


    • Actually what you say about gun owners is not true, not the gun owners I know. One of the things you neglect to mention is the Second Amendment to the constitution of the United States is all about protecting the people from a despotic government. One could even say that our current government going back to 1964 is more than a little despotic. Now I understand this may be before your time and the Feds have been taking away our freedoms a thin slice at a time, and there is no reason to do this. If you want to prove this assertion to yourself please consult both the Federalist and Anti-Federalist papers. You will see both were concerned regarding the possibility of an out of control government turning the US into some kind of Dictatorship, not all different from the one they sought to separate themselves from.

      Now you can make the argument that “that is what the militia is for”; but what is the militia made up of?
      When you dig deeper into what the founding fathers had in mind you will find out that the militia is made up of the People, every able bodied body man and woman who is a US citizen. There is your insurance that the government won’t wipe their butt with the Constitution and just take over.
      Without the first two amendments to the Bill of Rights the rest has no force behind it. The First and Second Amendments are the bedrock your rights are based on (even your rights to be a Queer member of society or my rights to be a Post Transition Female of the same society.)

      Guns are here to stay like it or not, you can complain and cry about it till the Cows come home, or you can enable yourself and get down to the local shooting range, get instruction and but a gun for yourself and learn what being American is all about.

      • Hi, Liz,

        Sorry I waited so long to respond – so much has been happening.

        It’s obvious you’ve swallowed the ammosexual creed hook line and sinker, so there’s no rationalizing with you. But about that Second Amendment and citizens taking up arms against a tyrannical government….how did that work out in Dallas? And there were lots of “good guys” with guns who were completely ineffective against an active shooter. In fact, the standoff ended when a robot was sent in with a bomb. A robot. With a bomb. Chew on that for a moment….

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