Jun 192016
 

imagesParents Who Know Grief- React to Orlando 

As a Canadian, I don’t want to use my blog to delve into American politics, but being a lesbian, I am involved when my brothers and sisters and straight gay positive people are killed in Orlando. In Canada, we do not have a Second Amendment where people can buy army assault rifles and store them at home. In Australia, a mass killing, led to these types of rifles were banned. The results speak for themselves – not ONE mass killing.  Actions speak louder than words – President Obama and Vice President Biden went to Orlando and hugged the grieving families.  Donald Trump used words – words that affect Muslims who serve in the military.  They are surgeons, doctors, lawyers, dentists and 99.9% do not condone violence.   Did you know that a Muslim gay person, an ex-marine was inside the gay club and helped many to escape.

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Donald Trump, in my opinion, will divide not only the nation, but on a street there is a big possiblity that neighbour will turn against neighbour.  The same will happen on the playyard as President Obama stated, “When will it all stop?”

Sandy Hook – These Parents Know Violence and Grief.

Jimmy Greene and Nelba Green sent their 6 year old to Sandy Hook Elementary school in 2012.  By the end of the day, their daughter Ana was dead – shot by a powerful army automatic weapon.  What is powerful and incredible is that these parents took the time to write and offer comfort to the families of the Orlando nightclub victims.

Jimmy Greene and Nelba Márquez-Greene lost their 6-year-old daughter, Ana Márquez-Greene, in 2012 when the school was attacked by a mass shooter. Again, the attack was done by assault army gun.

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‘I am sorry that our tragedy here in Sandy Hook wasn’t enough to save your loved ones,’ the couple wrote on their Facebook page, Remembering Ana Márquez-Greene.

‘How do I tell my son that fifty people all died the way his sister did? And in one of our favorite places: Orlando, Florida.’

Márquez-Greene founded The Ana Grace Project in memory of her daughter.

The project hopes to promote recovery and to raise awareness about gun violence.

Don’t you dare even listen to even ONE person who may insinuate that somehow this is your loved ones fault because they were gay or any other reason,’ the couple urged. ‘Nor is it God’s wrath… They did that to us on Sandy Hook – too. And it broke my heart.’

The couple also touched on the hypocrisy of the religious right by saying, ‘I am waiting for the church to be as outraged about gun violence as much as we seem to be about who pees where in a Target bathroom.’

The family then shared that they would try to learn about each of the Orlando victims’ name and story.

‘We will commit as a family to learning about their lives and the legacies you build in their memory… My son will learn about your loved ones. And we will not forget. We will say their names out loud. We will remember your children. As you remembered and learned about ours.’

The couple provided links to The Trevor Project and It Gets Better, and encouraged people to get help if they face bullying.

Greene and Márquez-Greene also urged people to bring up the issue of gun violence in a house of worship or community group, and to work with the police to prevent any form of violence from happening.

Let’s be more than bystanders. Let’s save lives,’ they wrote

Honouring the Life of Sandy Hook Children

Here is Nelba’s shock at hearing another slaughter had taken place.

I was sleeping in because we just got back from working in Canada. My friends came over for our scheduled morning walk. I didn’t have my phone. I came home and my phone was buzzing like crazy. “Are you okay? “Where are you?” “I’m praying for you!” “I love you!”

I still didn’t understand. I no longer have a personal Facebook and the TV wasn’t on. I don’t sign in to the news. I saw it on Twitter and watched the numbers rise in real time. First some dead, then multiple, then 20 and now 50.

My first reaction was visceral. I know the horror of waiting to hear. A helicopter flew overhead. It made everything too real. Too familiar. I panicked. I called my friend. I cried. Fifty people. I am reliving being one of the family members in wait.

And then she told me. An attack against people who are gay. A specific group. Just like last year around this time. The 17th of June. A Black church. My head is spinning.

“I can’t go to Wisconsin.”

I am tired. I just got back from Canada. And tomorrow is Wisconsin but now I am scared. I want to crawl up in a fetal position on the sofa and watch Harry Potter movies with my son. Perhaps I will build a bullet proof barrier around my house and just order groceries from Peapod all summer. Or for the rest of our lives.

But my message was and is and always will be “love wins”. And this is why I must go to Wisconsin. How do I tell my son that fifty people all died the way his sister did? And in one of our favorite places: Orlando, Florida.

I am waiting for the church to be as outraged about gun violence as much as we seem to be about who pees where in a Target bathroom.

I have one message for those families in Florida:

I am sorry. I am so, so sorry. I am sorry that our tragedy here in Sandy hook wasn’t enough to save your loved ones. I tried and I won’t stop trying. Don’t you dare even listen to even ONE person who may insinuate that somehow this is your loved ones fault because they were gay or any other reason. Nor is it God’s wrath.

They did that to us on Sandy Hook- too. And it broke my heart. You will receive love from a million places. Embrace it. Take good care of yourself. This will be a forever journey. Some ugly will come your way too. Delete. Ignore. Let it go.

Your loss today will bring out the worst AND the best in all of us. May we commit to being our best selves in honor of what you now bear.

I am going to Wisconsin to spread the message that love wins. In honor of your loved ones. Because hate, ugly, evil and prejudice cannot silence love, courage, good.

Paula:  Love always wins over hate!  These courageous Sandy Hook parents know that even if one of the gay victims is Orlando was say, 30, 40 or 50 years of age – to a parent, they are still their little boy or girl.  Rest in Peace, all victims of violence – known and unknown.

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