…doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.
This NY Daily News cover is pretty epic. It represents our country’s leadership and their fear of people who don’t look like them. It represents the truth in the fact that these senators are only worried about leading false prayers and false hope… But it’s all good as long as we have our guns! Don’t mind the mass shootings we can’t seem to keep up with these days! Boys (and girls) and their toys. We can only have so many moments of silence before something needs to be done. Wowzers.
Read the full NY Daily News story here.
I remember when I came out to my dad in the fall of 2005. “Well, now you have two strikes against you. “You’re black, AND you’re gay.” At the time I didn’t quite know how to process those words. I knew exactly what my dad meant, but chose to live life not letting those two traits define my whole being. “Challenge accepted” was the tone of my internal promise to myself as I said goodbye to my dad for while, and welcomed my new life as an out gay man.
Race and sexuality were two areas of life I’ve always navigated well. After the Pulse Nightclub shooting in Orlando, I’m feeling extremely heavy – weighed down by sadness, truths, and the pressure to persevere. As if the gravity of Black Lives Matter’s tragedies and struggles weren’t enough, I’m now faced with the task of processing my feelings as a gay man of color in the wake of the Orlando tragedy.
My father’s words seem to haunt me as I move through life. First the slew of wrongful deaths in the Black community by the hands of police, and now the senseless mass murder of fifty poor souls – most of which were Latino – at an LGBT safe haven.
Living as a double minority brings a natural awareness in day-to-day life. I sense my responsibility to face these ghosts, and to figure out how to move forward in learning and growth. What do we do with tragedy of this magnitude? Just when we as a community thought we could breathe a little, a massive undertaking at Pulse Nightclub shakes us back to reality.
“You’re black, and you’re gay.” I can’t let these words fade away only to resurface and taunt me later down the road…
It’s just after midnight and I find myself unable to sleep. All the faces of the victims of the Pulse nightclub shooting haunt my thoughts and bring light to every dark corner in my mind this hour. So much life stolen. So much life wasted. So many lights dimmed only to become a flicker in my mind… When it’s already too late. Maybe these are just random thoughts and a suppressed guilt for not really being active in the LGBT community as I once was. Is living enough? Living by example of what my gay harmony in the United States of America is? I’m not positive, but I’m not positive about most things when a tragedy of this magnitude strikes. What’s one to think? What else is there to feel besides an extremely heavy sadness? How do we come back from this? These are just my raw and unfiltered thoughts and feelings. The faces of the victims are faces that I will remember. At least for a long, solemn while.
A brief note:
I wrote the reaction above using an app called Flowstate. Flowstate allows you to write for five, fifteen, or thirty minutes. In the case of this midnight reaction, I selected five minutes as my first Flowstate piece of writing. What makes this app so special? Well, if you stop typing for more than five seconds? Everything you’ve typed so far will disappear. No editing or saving until you’ve continuously typed for the selected amount of time. This forces the user to really dig deep and come across as honest and authentic as possible. I plan on using this app to stop over-editing and to write more on this topic.