An Open Letter to the LGBTQIA Community:
Over the weekend, an act of hate took the lives of nearly 50 people, and injured just as many at Pulse, a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida. Today, our prayers and thoughts are with the families who lost their loved ones, those who were hurt, those still under hospitalization, and with the entire lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, intersex, asexual (LGBTQIA) family across the globe who mourn the many victims and fear for their own safety as a result of this unspeakable violence.
We mourn with you.
We are angry with you.
And we choose love and solidarity.
Many leaders and communities within the Alliance for Boys and Men of Color are unfortunately all too familiar with being victimized by violence inspired by hateful rhetoric.The fact that this tragedy took place during Latin night, and that so many of the victims were Latino men and people of color, cannot be lost upon us. And it is also at times like this that it feels as if no words are adequate to condemn this egregious act of hate, and in the same breath express the love that we want you to feel as we try to process and make sense of the senseless.
The Alliance for Boys and Men of Color stands with the LGBTQIA community. We believe that if we are to assert that we are our brother’s keeper, then we must forcefully love and support all of our brothers – and sisters. The only response in the face of hate is love, and we must work beside each other to ensure that we build communities that foster inclusion, opportunity, and freedom – freedom to be our best and most authentic selves, and to love one another fiercely and without judgment.
For those of us who are allies, let us use this time to call for a deeper solidarity and commitment in our work to eliminate the forms of toxic masculinity that breed homophobia and transphobia, that keep us from being in true solidarity with each other.
To our LGBTQIA brothers and sisters, today, we grieve with you. And we pledge that from now on, we see you, and we are with you. We will continue to do the work to build a society of hope, prosperity, justice, and dignity for all.