I don’t have to ask you this week the rhetorical question I ask at the beginning of every post about what I discovered recently, because we’ve all discovered the same thing—hatred is lethal.
As a humorist, I purposely waited to post anything about the Orlando slaughter of 49 people and the wounding of at least 53 others—five of them critically. I waited because I didn’t want to be glib in the midst of this carnage, and I was at a loss for words. I still am. I waited a bit because I was too sad to say anything of value. So I posted an obligatory note on my Facebook pages (“our thoughts and prayers are with you, Orlando”), which at this point in our history sounds as inept and powerless as Trump’s disgusting self-promotion of xenophobia and hatred (reinvigorated from his faux outrage over the deaths of our LGBT and Latino sisters and brothers) sound crazy and scary as hell. (I am sure the LGBT and Latino communities are just thrilled that Trump wants to engage in hateful acts on their behalf—not!)
Cartoon used by permission: Marian Kemensky, Slovakia/Cagle Cartoons
My thoughts are anguished and fragmented, and my prayers are feverish over what happened in Orlando:
This was not Islam murdering those precious souls in the Pulse nightclub, this was something much, much deeper. But what? (Our President was right not to be goaded into calling this murderous incident as one done by a “radical Islamist,” thus painting an entire religion with one broad paint brush and ginning up even more hatred against a people group. Besides, from all news accounts, the perpetrator might have been a closeted gay who hated being so, was definitely mentally ill, and was home grown in New Hyde Park, NY.)
I prayed and asked God, “What is this darkness I see in Orlando?” and before he could answer, I remembered:
I’d seen this evil spirit before on the American landscape via the San Bernardino Massacre, the Aurora Theater Massacre, the Charleston Massacre, the Boston Marathon Massacre, the Sandy Hook Massacre, the Va. Tech Massacre, the Columbine Massacre, the Oklahoma City bombing that killed 168 people and injured more than 680 others (including three pregnant women, ranging in age from 3 months to 73 years), and years and years of KKK bombings (including the infamous Alabama Church bombing which killed four little girls), lynchings (3,446 blacks lynched at the hands of whites for simply being in the “wrong place” at the “wrong time”), and random murders of Blacks in the south just for being Black.
MASSACRES IN RED = American citizens whose religion was Islam or of Islamic descent.
MASSACRES IN BLUE = White Americans (except for Va. Tech murderer) whose religion was Christianity (including the Va. Tech murderer—go figure!) or of Christian descent.
All of the killers were two-ton cisterns of unmitigated hate in our country no matter what the weapon used to kill their victims. Hatred against gays and lesbians, hatred against African-Americans, hatred against children, hatred against fellow college students and colleagues, hatred against freedom . . .
Cartoon used by permission: Dave Granlund, Politicalcartoons.com/Cagle Cartoons
So, I asked the Lord: “What should I do to keep myself and my family safe in America? Do you think The Donald is right and maybe I should use his litmus test to ban all future White Christians from entering the United States, gin up hatred throughout the country against all White Christians, and make sure all White Christians living in America are put under surveillance and register as potential terrorists along with their children? That would surely erase my fears, strengthen my resolve, and ‘make America great again.’ (Of course, it would mean I’d have to put my husband on that list and half of each of my bi-racial children on the list, as well.) What do you think, God?”
And then God did speak to me in my heart: “Remember me, Eleanor—my name is love, and I will win the day. Just have faith, have courage, and do the right thing. Trust me—love wins, love wins, love wins . . . in the end.”
And so, before I fight for the ban on all assault weapons (petition already signed), address the hate that is trying to win the day in America, or work to get Donald Trump sent back to the hole in Hell that he crawled out from,
I WILL REMEMBER . . .
Cartoon used by permission: John Cole, The Scranton-Times Tribune
IN LOVING MEMORY
Sisters, brothers, cousins, uncles, aunts, mothers, fathers, and friends who were Gay, Latino, Black, and White artists, lawyers, activists, musicians, cooks, students, construction workers, teachers, good citizens, and more who lost their lives dancing . . .
Stanley Almodovar III, 23 years old, Amanda Alvear, 25 years old,
Oscar A Aracena-Montero, 26 years old, Rodolfo Ayala-Ayala, 33 years old,
Antonio Davon Brown, 29 years old, Darryl Roman Burt II, 29 years old,
Angel L. Candelario-Padro, 28 years old, Juan Chevez-Martinez, 25 years old . . .
Cartoon used by permission: Taylor Jones, Politicalcartoons com
Luis Daniel Conde, 39 years old, Cory James Connell, 21 years old, Tevin Eugene Crosby, 25 years old
Deonka Deidra Drayton, 32 years old, Simon Adrian Carrillo Fernandez, 31 years old
Leroy Valentin Fernandez, 25 years old, Mercedez Marisol Flores, 26 years old
Peter O. Gonzalez-Cruz, 22 years old, Juan Ramon Guerrero, 22 years old
Paul Terrell Henry, 41 years old, Frank Hernandez, 27 years old . . .
Cartoon used by permission: David Fitzsimmons, The Arizona Star/Cagle Cartoons
Miguel Angel Honorato, 30 years old, Javier Jorge-Reyes, 40 years old
Jason Benjamin Josaphat, 19 years old, Eddie Jamoldroy Justice, 30 years old
Anthony Luis Laureanodisla, 25 years old, Christopher Andrew Leinonen, 32 years old
Alejandro Barrios Martinez, 21 years old, Brenda Lee Marquez McCool, 49 years old
Gilberto Ramon Silva Menendez, 25 years old, Kimberly Morris, 37 years old
Akyra Monet Murray, 18 years old, Luis Omar Ocasio-Capo, 20 years old
Geraldo A. Ortiz-Jimenez, 25 years old, Eric Ivan Ortiz-Rivera, 36 years old
Joel Rayon Paniagua, 32 years old, Jean Carlos Mendez Perez, 35 years old
Enrique L. Rios, Jr., 25 years old . . .
Cartoon used by permission: Bill Day, Cagle Cartoons
Jean C. Nives Rodriguez, 27 years old, Xavier Emmanuel Serrano Rosado, 35 years old
Christopher Joseph Sanfeliz, 24 years old, Yilmary Rodriguez Solivan, 24 years old
Edward Sotomayor Jr., 34 years old, Shane Evan Tomlinson, 33 years old
Martin Benitez Torres, 33 years old, Jonathan Antonio Camuy Vega, 24 years old
Juan P. Rivera Velazquez, 37 years old
Luis S. Vielma, 22 years old
Franky Jimmy Dejesus Velazquez, 50 years old
Luis Daniel Wilson-Leon, 37 years old
Jerald Arthur Wright, 31 years old.
“Hate of other people is really displaced hate of oneself.”—Social psychologist Arie Kruglanski, a professor at the University of Maryland
“People are afraid, and when people are afraid, when their pie is shrinking, they look for somebody to hate. They look for somebody to blame. And a real leader speaks to anxiety and to fear and allays those fears, assuages anxiety.”—Henry Louis Gates
“This world of ours… must avoid becoming a community of dreadful fear and hate, and be, instead, a proud confederation of mutual trust and respect.”—Dwight D. Eisenhower
“If the House of Representatives had a solitary moral fiber, even a wisp of human empathy, we would spend moments not in silence, but screaming at painful volume the names of the 49 whose bodies were ripped apart in Orlando, and the previous victims and the ones before them. We’d invite parents and partners and siblings up from Orlando, and ask them to speak, openly, rawly, honestly about their pain. We’d listen. And maybe, just maybe, we’d hear.”—Jim Himes, a Democrat, represents Connecticut’s 4th Congressional District in the U.S. House 
Cartoon used by permission: Rayma Suprani, CagleCartoons.com
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