domestic terrorism/tragedy: florida nightclub shooting

RoughneckGeek wrote:
bekkilyn wrote:
RoughneckGeek wrote:

What precautions should I be taking next weekend? I will be spending my days at street fairs and the Pride march. My evenings will be spent in clubs not unlike Pulse.

You're going back to specifics when I was speaking in very general terms, but I'd suggest things like being aware of your environment and the other people around you, and if you notice anything that seems suspicious, get out of that area and/or notify others who are authorized to check it out.

I'm pushing back to specifics because this thread is about a specific event. That specific event occurred at a gay club. That kind of place functions as a safe space for many of us, even in a place like Seattle where society is more accepting than most of the country. The expectation that I have to become a "wolf" negates the freedom that going to a gay bar provides.

It's been touched on earlier in the thread, but gay bars aren't just bars for us. They're our gathering space. Just picking one bar in Seattle, they host a HIV support group. It's a meeting place for an informal ASL class every week that's taught by a hearing impaired gay man. They do fund raisers routinely that go back into the gay community and services here. They aren't just businesses for us.

Wow. Sounds like you are describing the function of the tavern in early American history.

RoughneckGeek wrote:

I'm pushing back to specifics because this thread is about a specific event. That specific event occurred at a gay club. That kind of place functions as a safe space for many of us, even in a place like Seattle where society is more accepting than most of the country. The expectation that I have to become a "wolf" negates the freedom that going to a gay bar provides.

It's been touched on earlier in the thread, but gay bars aren't just bars for us. They're our gathering space. Just picking one bar in Seattle, they host a HIV support group. It's a meeting place for an informal ASL class every week that's taught by a hearing impaired gay man. They do fund raisers routinely that go back into the gay community and services here. They aren't just businesses for us.

And I appreciate your attempts at getting things back on track! I'm really going to make every possible attempt now not to get lured into yet another gun control arguments when I never wanted to get into those arguments in the first place. One reason why I don't subscribe to that thread.

I don't believe you have to become a "wolf" per se since I doubt that you have any interest in becoming a predator of sheep yourself. Overall awareness is a big part of personal safety. Don't live in fear, but also don't be oblivious.

It is truly heartbreaking that this safe space got invaded and the threat of other safe spaces being compromised. It's scary, and it's wrong, and I wish there was a whole heck of a lot more support from our political representatives rather than false tears and more "bathroom bills" and other such nonsense. I have a close family member who lives in the area and could have easily been at that club if bar crowds were more his thing. We desperately need more kindness and compassion in our society.

Rahmen wrote:

Whatever happened to the guy they arrested in LA? James Wesley Howell?

I only mention it because while his alleged intention to do harm is obviously different than what happened in Orlando it seems like it might be at least potentially relevant to how this is being framed? Is he only being ignored because he was arrested beforehand?

Ignored because it is more challenging to blame Muslims cause he was white I believe.

It's very similar, but it's also acted as our safe haven to be our true selves, and it's supposed to be somewhere where all of that fear and stuff that we feel can be let go for a few hours.\

It's a violation to us LGBTQIA folks when we're attacked there.

Quintin_Stone wrote:
Yonder wrote:

I believe he is trying to clarify that he doesn't mean that every gun owner is destined to do something horrible with their guns. They can (and most will) remain "gun owners that haven't done something horrible with their guns yet" until the day they die. It is the idea that people can be accurately categorized into a group of "these people are good guys with guns and will never, ever do anything horrible with their guns, nor allow others to do horrible things with their guns, they are 100% safe" which I think he is disputing.

That shifts it from stupid to vapid and borderline tautological. There are no decent people, just people who haven't murdered yet. There's no reason to restrict it to gun owners. There are no good men, just men who haven't raped yet. There are no good Muslims, just Muslims who haven't committed terrorism yet. There are no good women, just women who haven't filed false rape charges.

It's honestly a shame you can't seem to get past the fact that hundreds of gun owners do terrible things with their firearms each and every day and that their behavior colors people's impression of all gun owners.

You likely have a particular image of gun owners that reflects the other gun owners you hang out with. People who are mature, who take firearms seriously, who aren't looking to start a race war.

But for the 60 or 70 percent of Americans who don't own firearms and don't regularly interact with gun owners our impression involves the good and the bad.

Sure there are responsible gun owners that hunt or shoot targets. But then there's also militia members who want to use their military-grade weapons to impose their unique brand of crazy on everyone else. And the all-too-regular mass shooter. And the guy who got into an argument and needed to prove how much of a man he was. And the man who need to rectify a perceived injustice he suffered by a coworker or his boss. And the dude who wants to get back at his bitch of an ex. And the guy who got too drunk or high. And the person who wanted to show off his cool new toy. And the dude who decided that leaving a loaded firearm in a place that was easily accessible to children made sense. And the common criminal (who very likely got their firearm because it was stolen from an irresponsible gun owner). And many, many more.

The only thing that's consistent between all those groups is firearms. And from the outside it's effectively impossible to tell which person with a gun is one of the responsible hunters or target shooters and which one isn't.

Even worse, just because someone is responsible gun owner now doesn't mean they are always going to be a responsible gun owner. They are still just human after all.

So, again, for us non-gun owners there are no "good guys with guns." There's just gun owners who haven't done something horrible yet.

Could some of gun owners never do something bad? Sure. But a couple hundred of them a day do do something bad. And the penalty for getting the two mixed up is pretty danged high.

Quintin_Stone wrote:

The flaw in the "only good guys with guns" argument is not that there are no good guys with guns, it's that it takes more than a guy with a gun. It takes professional training, experience, equipment, and support. In other words, the team of law enforcement that eventually took down Omar when a single LEO could not. There's no need to go to stupid extremes to demonstrate the original argument is wrong.

No...just no.

When pro-gun groups bemoan the fact that a "good guy with a gun" wasn't around they aren't remotely talking about professional training or experience. They're literally saying that they wished that any f*cking idiot with a gun was around (the more the better since guns make people safer!). That's because they have the fervent belief that the firearm itself is what really matters. That a gun will magically transform anyone from a victim into a crime-fighting hero. That's the myth they sell.

If those groups actually cared about things like professional training and experience then no one would be able to get a concealed carry permit after only spending part of their Saturday taking a class and capping off a couple of rounds. Instead, those people would have to go through training similar to what we expect from the other civilians we allow to carry guns: the police. And so-called Constitutional carry wouldn't remotely be a thing because that bypasses any government oversight.

So you can believe it's about training and professionalism or whatever, but the policies the NRA and other pro-gun groups put in place are to put the fewest possible barriers between someone and a firearm. It's a race to shove a firearm in any idiot's hand and ensure they least training possible.

Edit: RNG asked me not to continue this here.

The "unbearable" thing: The actual f*ck? D:

Calling the rainbow flag a “divisive, politically-charged symbol,” White asked Rowe if it could become an HR problem for the county. If it does, then White said he wanted a special meeting of the county commission to consider removing it.

Symbol of inclusion is divisive and politically charged.

There's a walking pile of privilege, assuming the complaint is even real.

Bloo Driver wrote:
Calling the rainbow flag a “divisive, politically-charged symbol,” White asked Rowe if it could become an HR problem for the county. If it does, then White said he wanted a special meeting of the county commission to consider removing it.

Symbol of inclusion is divisive and politically charged.

There's a walking pile of privilege, assuming the complaint is even real.

I think you've got it right. It's totally divisive, so long as you're only looking at what's within certain privilege bubbles.

RoughneckGeek wrote:

For some, the mere act of acknowledging our deaths is "unbearable".

Then there's this encouraging glimmer of humanity...

Ugh. If your religion makes a symbol that reminds you to treat other people with dignity unbearable, find a better religion because yours sucks and makes you a horrible human being.

bekkilyn wrote:
RoughneckGeek wrote:

This is uncomfortably close to comments that gay folks died on Sunday because they didn't fight back.

No, gay folks died on Sunday 100% because of a *person* who went in with the intent of doing them great harm. The blame falls completely on the person committing the crime.

With that said, and speaking in *general* terms, it can be wise to take some precautions when you know that the dangers are out there.

Edit: And Paleocon I agree with you that if you *can* run away from an assailant, that's the best possible self defense you can do. While I strongly support our right to own firearms, I have never suggested they should be the first option we resort to using when other options exist. I'm just grateful we have the option for when it *is* needed.

Double edit: Just to add, I think our *attitudes* towards each other as human beings are a large part of the problem.

See, I disagree that it is possible to ascribe responsiblity for Orlando solely on the assailant.

Health services and his local community failed to engage assess and act before he went completely off the rails.

Law enforcement could have tipped off health services and his local community to stop his alienation and bring him back from the brink.

Nationally, systemic failure to recognise gay rights passively and possibly overtly encouraged hatred against the gay community.

Guns were the final hurdle to what occurred. That someone can get semi automatics easily and be so horridly good at shooting in a week is a testament to why the nation as a whole failed Orlando.

Talk about situational awareness and being a wolf using fire to fight fire is not a solution. It is a symptom of how broken the social accord is.

Yes, I agree with most of what you're saying in general, but we're not going arrest and imprison all of the surrounding community for failing in overall societal responsibilities to intervene on behalf of this man and all the danger signs he emitted throughout his life. We fail a whole lot of people this way and yet most of those people still do not choose to do intentional harm to others. The decision for the act itself was still 100% his choice, so yes, legal blame does indeed fall solely on him unless someone else is charged and proven guilty of being an accomplice.

Regardless, there's absolutely no blame at all on the direct victims. They did not ask for it to happen and certainly did not deserve it.

I even agree with you that situational awareness and self defense options are not solutions to the problem. However, they can give us a better chance of remaining alive and from physical harm while the problem persists, and that's the situation we're all in right now, unfortunately.

Can we use *positive reinforcement* (taking things away from people is negative reinforcement and I'm not going back to that argument) to cure the deep rot we have in our culture? What can we do to change the minds of people who hate LGBT to the point that they want to harm and kill?

I'll preface this post by firstly saying I have no real horse in this race since I'm not a US citizen and secondly my comments are not targeted at any Goodjer at all.

I'd say the cultural acceptance of hatred against gay members of society is as morally repugnant as the shooter who represents the most extreme manifestation of anti-gay sentiment. Victim blaming and these protestors at funerals are another physical expression of that ugly hatred but those actors can only act because they are emboldened by the passive support that comes from not actively opposing anti-gay sentiment.

There's a lot of parallels that can be drawn to the passive racism thread and feminism thread; if one tolerates racism and mysogynostic behaviour then it is the same as giving legitimacy to those actors.

How does one positively reinforce support for the gay community more than what is already done? At this point you need laws to create/enforce equality and laws to deter hatred.

It's not enough to advocate self defence options (carrying) or situational awareness because they are reactionary measures and are proven ineffective in public spaces. Carrying didn't achieve anything in any mass shooting ever. How more situational awareness can be exercised when the Orlando clubbers were exercising what they perceived as safety measures by congregating in a club that was a safe haven until violated?

We all know that saying of giving a person a fishing rod and teaching them to fish rather than giving them the fish. I'd say in the case of guns and oppression of minorities, you need to take the fishing rod away to stop the overfishing.

Here is a very touching episode of The Memory Palace podcast which is related to this incident.

A White Horse.

It kind of sounds to me like the "rainbow flag is unbearable" thing is some sort of new horrible trend.

Open Letter To Alec Satin
In response to Alec Satin’s open letter to Ravelry denouncing their choice to display a rainbow flag in the wake of the Orlando massacre
(Abby Franquemont, Medium, 2016-06-17)

That was awesome.

Hypatian wrote:

It kind of sounds to me like the "rainbow flag is unbearable" thing is some sort of new horrible trend.

Seems like typical right wing co-opting of leftist thinking without applying any thought, nuance or context. if a Confederate flag is unbearable thanks to decades or centuries of repression and social signalling then the rainbow flag is unbearable because of umm,.... Reasons I guess.....

*edit*

Oh and forgot to mention, that piece is great.

Yeah that's it. It's the same people who were trying to defend the Confederate flag a year ago saying it was "southern pride" and not about racism. And now the rainbow flag that stands for inclusion and acceptance is somehow divisive? WTF?

Stele wrote:

Yeah that's it. It's the same people who were trying to defend the Confederate flag a year ago saying it was "southern pride" and not about racism. And now the rainbow flag that stands for inclusion and acceptance is somehow divisive? WTF?

First off, I'm not saying they are right or siding with them.

It depends on who's viewpoint you are looking at it from. There are people who genuinely believe that the confederate flag is southern pride/unity and you view it as racist.

You view the rainbow flag as inclusion and acceptance while they view it as representing LBGT and that's it. It's divisive to them because the are morally opposed to it.

Again, not defending them.

obirano wrote:
Stele wrote:

Yeah that's it. It's the same people who were trying to defend the Confederate flag a year ago saying it was "southern pride" and not about racism. And now the rainbow flag that stands for inclusion and acceptance is somehow divisive? WTF?

First off, I'm not saying they are right or siding with them.

It depends on who's viewpoint you are looking at it from. There are people who genuinely believe that the confederate flag is southern pride/unity and you view it as racist.

You view the rainbow flag as inclusion and acceptance while they view it as representing LBGT and that's it. It's divisive to them because the are morally opposed to it.

Again, not defending them.

Sure, you're not defending them. You're repeating part of their crap argument which is already addressed (and very well, might I add) by the open letter linked above.

Read it. Absorb it. Of course there are sides, and winners vs losers. If one side wins people die. If the other side wins people might get offended. I wouldn't say those sides have equal results when they get their say. Would you?

I hadn't read the article. Those people offended by the rainbow flag are idiots and didn't need any more convincing to that effect so I wasn't aware that was covered. I was just saying there are different viewpoints, that is all, nothing about the results. Rarely are the results equal when one side or the other wins.

“I decline utterly to be impartial between the fire brigade and the fire.”

I think Obirano's comments were fair; it squarely identifies that certain types of people will choose to give a specific meaning to a symbol without acknowledging (or refusing to acknowledge) the full historical and cultural significance of that symbol, whereas other Goodjers here are saying that whitewashing a symbol is plainly wrong.

What Obirano didn't say but everyone else is quick to point out is that the disconnect between "etymology" of the symbol renders the symbol meaningless, i.e. you must attribute its derivation in order to arrive at its meaning (which in the case of the Confederate flag, is clearly abhorrent given its use in terrorising non-White Americans and its representation as the banner to unite against emancipation (in the case of that flag I do acknowledge there might have been proponents who saw it purely as a symbol to Southern political determination but I don't know how many purists would exist in modern society).

Again, the whole "this makes me uncomfortable" stance is a sure sign that the objector is the one in a position of privilege; this is a prime example of discrimination whether you are minded to call it passive or aggressive discrimination.

Hypatian wrote:

It kind of sounds to me like the "rainbow flag is unbearable" thing is some sort of new horrible trend.

Open Letter To Alec Satin
In response to Alec Satin’s open letter to Ravelry denouncing their choice to display a rainbow flag in the wake of the Orlando massacre
(Abby Franquemont, Medium, 2016-06-17)

I hate open letters. I find them, generally, to be nothing but narcissistic. If you feel strongly enough about a thing, write a letter to someone in position to change said thing. The trend of writing open letters only serves (in my eyes) as "Look at me! Look how sophisticated my worldview is! Since I am so sophisticated and what I believe is so important, I will share my vast knowledge with the world in an open letter! Now, post a comment below to show me how smart I am. Don't forget to Like and Subscribe!"

I f*cking love Abby's letter.

I don't mind open letters. Letters to the Editor used to serve that role, but newspapers are no longer read by the same numbers.

And really, Satin was doing nothing more than trying to be cute, showing off his misunderstanding about what makes the Confederate Flag offensive and divisive and creating a false equivalence to the Rainbow Flag. But it also utterly failed.

My wife is a dedicated Ravelry user, and had no idea there was a controversy. She was aware of the Rainbow Flag in the header, but never saw any controversy about it, nor was aware of Satin's letter. She did say that you need to work pretty hard to find controversy in the forums, because that just not why people are there. I don't think Ravelry felt the need to even acknowledge the idiot.

Abu5217 wrote:
Hypatian wrote:

It kind of sounds to me like the "rainbow flag is unbearable" thing is some sort of new horrible trend.

Open Letter To Alec Satin
In response to Alec Satin’s open letter to Ravelry denouncing their choice to display a rainbow flag in the wake of the Orlando massacre
(Abby Franquemont, Medium, 2016-06-17)

I hate open letters. I find them, generally, to be nothing but narcissistic. If you feel strongly enough about a thing, write a letter to someone in position to change said thing. The trend of writing open letters only serves (in my eyes) as "Look at me! Look how sophisticated my worldview is! Since I am so sophisticated and what I believe is so important, I will share my vast knowledge with the world in an open letter! Now, post a comment below to show me how smart I am. Don't forget to Like and Subscribe!"

I f*cking love Abby's letter.

Another problem with open letters is one idiot's viewpoint will often go viral and either become a rallying point for the like minded or evidence of how crazy the opposing side is. Or the media will run with an inflammatory statement just to create buzz and controversy. My wife works in media and newspapers will pretty much print any letter to the editor that's semi-coherent and not totally inflammatory. But some people still see those letters as "official stances."

LouZiffer wrote:

Of course there are sides, and winners vs losers. If one side wins people die. If the other side wins people might get offended. I wouldn't say those sides have equal results when they get their say. Would you?

This is pretty much my argument as to why I think government should censor religious teachings that result in the gay community being seen as 'abominations'. You don't want your Bible censored? Maybe it shouldn't teach hateful things.

Mormech wrote:
LouZiffer wrote:

Of course there are sides, and winners vs losers. If one side wins people die. If the other side wins people might get offended. I wouldn't say those sides have equal results when they get their say. Would you?

This is pretty much my argument as to why I think government should censor religious teachings that result in the gay community being seen as 'abominations'. You don't want your Bible censored? Maybe it shouldn't teach hateful things.

Absolutely not. First, not everyone is in agreement that the Christian bible actually says these hateful things, as not only are there translation issues, but there is also historical context to take into account. Not to mention that there's that pesky U.S. Constitution again (for those of us living in the U.S.) that allows freedom of religion.

Now if you mean that a religion's hateful teachings should be separate from government policy and decisions, then I'm in full agreement there.

But to censor people's personal religious beliefs? No.

jdzappa wrote:
Abu5217 wrote:
Hypatian wrote:

It kind of sounds to me like the "rainbow flag is unbearable" thing is some sort of new horrible trend.

Open Letter To Alec Satin
In response to Alec Satin’s open letter to Ravelry denouncing their choice to display a rainbow flag in the wake of the Orlando massacre
(Abby Franquemont, Medium, 2016-06-17)

I hate open letters. I find them, generally, to be nothing but narcissistic. If you feel strongly enough about a thing, write a letter to someone in position to change said thing. The trend of writing open letters only serves (in my eyes) as "Look at me! Look how sophisticated my worldview is! Since I am so sophisticated and what I believe is so important, I will share my vast knowledge with the world in an open letter! Now, post a comment below to show me how smart I am. Don't forget to Like and Subscribe!"

I f*cking love Abby's letter.

Another problem with open letters is one idiot's viewpoint will often go viral and either become a rallying point for the like minded or evidence of how crazy the opposing side is. Or the media will run with an inflammatory statement just to create buzz and controversy. My wife works in media and newspapers will pretty much print any letter to the editor that's semi-coherent and not totally inflammatory. But some people still see those letters as "official stances."

CLICK HERE TO SEE ABU AND JDZAPPA *COMPLETELY DESTROY* ALL THE PEOPLE WHO LIKE OPEN LETTERS

THIS IS THE FINAL WORD

bekkilyn wrote:
Mormech wrote:
LouZiffer wrote:

Of course there are sides, and winners vs losers. If one side wins people die. If the other side wins people might get offended. I wouldn't say those sides have equal results when they get their say. Would you?

This is pretty much my argument as to why I think government should censor religious teachings that result in the gay community being seen as 'abominations'. You don't want your Bible censored? Maybe it shouldn't teach hateful things.

Absolutely not. First, not everyone is in agreement that the Christian bible actually says these hateful things, as not only are there translation issues, but there is also historical context to take into account. Not to mention that there's that pesky U.S. Constitution again (for those of us living in the U.S.) that allows freedom of religion.

Now if you mean that a religion's hateful teachings should be separate from government policy and decisions, then I'm in full agreement there.

But to censor people's personal religious beliefs? No.

I'm in agreement with not censoring religious beliefs but now that "closely held religious beliefs" is a legal test in the courts, I do believe that people using that legal shield should have their actions compared to what those religious beliefs says.