Letters to the Editor: Colorado shooting doesn’t change this: LGBTQ+ people exist. Always have, always will.
It would be easy (and easy to do) to write an opinion column about the Colorado shooting. It would be easy to write a column comparing the shooter’s mental disorder (he is mentally ill) to those of other mass shooters (he is mentally ill, he was born with all kinds of brain defects, but it is still mentally ill, the world has never accepted that mentally ill people are anything less than evil), and it would be easy to write a column about how the mass shootings have become a “media circus” that distracts from how we need to deal with the real problem of the mass shootings in our country. And it would be easy for me?
As LGBTQ people, we are always telling those who are willing to listen: this is who we are, this is what we do, this is what we will continue to do, and we are asking you to listen.
We feel deeply for those who have been hurt by this shooting. We believe, however, that all LGBTQ people are not living in the same world, and all LGBT people will always be living in the same world, regardless of the fact that some people have been in a same-sex relationship, some people are transgender, some people are bisexual, some people have had children with one or both parents of either sex or same sex, some people are attracted to the opposite sex or same sex, some people struggle against their gender identity, some people struggle against their sexual orientation, some people identify as bisexual, some people identify as transgender, some people identify as gay, some people identify as lesbian, some people identify as straight, some people identify as queer, and some people identify as anything other than what they have chosen.
That fact is not up for debate.
What matters is how we deal with the feelings, needs, and desires that we all have. As we have seen many times in our history, we know that we will always be treated differently based on gender identity, sexual orientation, race, socioeconomic status, and many other factors. It is important that we continue to stand up and be counted. And it is important that we continue to be aware that we do not live in a perfect world.
The fact that society has always been a lot more accepting of the LGBTQ community is simply a testament to how much prejudice and discrimination still exists. There are people on every end of the spectrum