bts:orlando

  • what she says: i'm fine
  • what she means: Elder Price's obsession with Orlando is SO much deeper than people realize. It's like a metaphor for his happiness. The way he describes the road trip with his parents was clearly a time in his life where he had felt true happiness to an extent that it still resonates with him at an older age. His parents told him if he worked hard for the things he wanted, then he'd get them in the end. And look at the result of that? He's like the perfect Mormon who focuses so much on 'being' a good Mormon that he doesn't have much of a life outside of that. After Kevin's incident with the general and Cunningham approaches him, Kevin launches into this big emotional speech about working hard to get what he deserves. And he talks about how he 'worked and worked' and it's concerning because Kevin equates Orlando to happiness and everything had fallen apart and crumbled at that moment. He truly gives up and believes everything is over for him and he's "just a guy who will die' and never find his way back to Orlando(aka happiness). But after he sees the play he's smitten and when he sings the small reprise "But they were happy, and wearing costumes, it was almost like...Orlando." which is the turning point in his view because Kevin realizes right there that 'Orlando' AKA HAPPINESS, can be made and found anywhere, it's not just a singular static thing. And that's why he stays because he has a new lease on life after that and understands that he can create his own happiness so-
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Orlando honors the Pulse victims one year later

  • One year after the fatal shooting at Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Florida, the Central Florida community came together on Monday to honor the victims through Orlando United Day.
  • Orange County, Florida, declared June 12, 2017 as Orlando United Day in honor of those affected by the attack. 
  • The commemorative day, which should be celebrated with “acts of love and kindness,” is “dedicated to honoring the memory of the 49 innocent Pulse victims, supporting survivors and recognizing the compassion and love that was displayed by the Central Florida community following the tragedy.” Read more (6/12/17)
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QLatinx has united Orlando’s queer Latinos in year since Pulse nightclub shooting

  • Earlier in June, Gustavo Bustamante addressed a crowd in front of Orlando’s City Hall. The crowd gathered in support of the Trust Act, an ordinance to ensure the city of Orlando does not collude with federal immigration forces. 
  • Bustamante, who was an undocumented immigrant from Venezuela until gaining U.S. citizenship earlier in 2017, spoke about his own experience as an undocumented person living in the United States.
  • “The fight for LGBT equality is, in essence, the same as the fight for immigrant rights,” Bustamente said to those attending. “We are all human beings. Human beings deserve respect.”
  • As Bustamente spoke, he wore a shirt with the logo of the group QLatinx, an organization of queer Latinos in Orlando, Florida, that was formed in the wake of the Pulse nightclub shooting, which disproportionately affected the city’s Latino population. Read more (6/12/17)

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Today marks the one-year anniversary of the Orlando Pulse nightclub shooting. Today is a reminder that the LGBT+ community is not a quiet, passive community.
We are strong, we are powerful, and we are valid citizens of the Earth.
We protect each other as the patrons of the club tried to protect their people. Even though 49 of our brothers, sisters, and friends were killed, it doesn’t give anyone the right to say that we are weak.
We are strong
We are a powerful community
We are Orlando
But we are not forgotten

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One year ago at this time, 2:02am ET, Omar Mateen entered the Pulse nightclub in Orlando, FL, and proceeded to murder 49 people and injure 53.

All autopsy reports showed that the victims were shot either from the side or from the front, at a close distance, multiple times.  More than one-third were shot in the head.  There were over 200 gunshot wounds in the 49 fallen.  It wasn’t until Septemeber of last year that the last surviving victim was released from hospital.

The attack is the deadliest mass shooting by a single shooter in United States history; the deadliest incident of violence against lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) people in the history of the United States - surpassing the 1973 UpStairs Lounge arson attack - and the deadliest terrorist attack in the United States since the September 11 attacks in 2001.

It bothers me, and most of the LGBTQ community I would imagine, that such hatred still exists toward us in 2016/2017.  In a time of political drama everyday, media tet-e-tets, and social firestorms, it’s more crucial than ever to maneuver in love, and strength, and understanding.  Be strong, but don’t be stupid.  Be alert, but don’t be scared.  It breaks my heart that so many of us are still facing abusive interactions from random people and family.  Where in the hell does it end?  

Let’s never forget, and celebrate the lives of, the fallen.

  • Stanley Almodovar III, age 23
  • Amanda Alvear, 25
  • Oscar A. Aracena-Montero, 26
  • Rodolfo Ayala-Ayala, 33
  • Alejandro Barrios Martinez, 21
  • Martin Benitez Torres, 33
  • Antonio D. Brown, 30
  • Darryl R. Burt II, 29
  • Jonathan A. Camuy Vega, 24
  • Angel L. Candelario-Padro, 28
  • Simon A. Carrillo Fernandez, 31
  • Juan Chevez-Martinez, 25
  • Luis D. Conde, 39
  • Cory J. Connell, 21
  • Tevin E. Crosby, 25
  • Franky J. Dejesus Velazquez, 50
  • Deonka D. Drayton, 32
  • Mercedez M. Flores, 26
  • Juan R. Guerrero, 22
  • Peter O. Gonzalez-Cruz, 22
  • Paul T. Henry, 41
  • Frank Hernandez, 27
  • Miguel A. Honorato, 30
  • Javier Jorge-Reyes, 40
  • Jason B. Josaphat, 19
  • Eddie J. Justice, 30
  • Anthony L. Laureano Disla, 25
  • Christopher A. Leinonen, 32
  • Brenda L. Marquez McCool, 49
  • Jean C. Mendez Perez, 35
  • Akyra Monet Murray, 18
  • Kimberly Morris, 37
  • Jean C. Nieves Rodriguez, 27
  • Luis O. Ocasio-Capo, 20
  • Geraldo A. Ortiz-Jimenez, 25
  • Eric I. Ortiz-Rivera, 36
  • Joel Rayon Paniagua, 32
  • Enrique L. Rios Jr., 25
  • Juan P. Rivera Velazquez, 37
  • Yilmary Rodriguez Solivan, 24
  • Christopher J. Sanfeliz, 24
  • Xavier E. Serrano Rosado, 35
  • Gilberto R. Silva Menendez, 25
  • Edward Sotomayor Jr., 34
  • Shane E. Tomlinson, 33
  • Leroy Valentin Fernandez, 25
  • Luis S. Vielma, 22
  • Luis D. Wilson-Leon, 37
  • Jerald A. Wright, 31
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Mourners and activists call for action 1 year after the Pulse nightclub shooting

  • The deadliest U.S. terror attack since 9/11 happened 365 days ago at a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida.
  • On Sunday and Monday, LGBTQ marches and rallies taking place around the country are paying homage to the 49 people who were killed in the Pulse nightclub massacre.
  • Some of the survivors are scheduled to speak Sunday afternoon at the Equality March for Unity and Pride in Washington, D.C., one of dozens of simultaneous rallies taking place around the nation that will hold commemorative ceremonies honoring the Pulse victims.
  • Organizers say the rallies are also a national call to political action that D.C. march co-chair Sean Coleman tells Mic aims to prevent future Orlando-like violence against the LGBTQ community. Read more (6/12/17)

A year ago we had an adventurer write in to ask for badge for existing, because they were finding it hard after  The Pulse shooting. This was our response:

Hey, I know this is shitty. I know it’s scary and it fucking hurts.

I know because I am also angry and sad and scared. But I’ve always believed in being vindictively happy. Celebrate who you are because you are brilliant and strong and amazing. Love yourself and those around you harder than you ever have in your life because that’s exactly the kind of thing the world needs right now. And if you’re too sad and tired for all that, it’s okay. I understand. There’s a whole community here to support you until you can.  

Celebrate. Love. Be happy. It’s the best fuck you to those who hate you.

may the victims of the orlando shooting rest in peace. the lgbt community did not deserve this and i hope everyone in it stays safe today, especially the latinx side of the lgbt community. no matter how hard people try, we will not be broken. 🏳️‍🌈

A year ago a gunman opened fire in Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Fla. Deonka Drayton was one of the 49 people murdered that night, in what was the deadliest mass shooting in modern U.S. history.

Drayton was 32 at the time, and had a son with Emily Addison.

“She had a beautiful voice, the most amazing smile, and she smelled so good all the time,” Addison said during a recent visit to StoryCorps.

The two moved to Florida together in 2012, and Drayton hated the heat.

“But it did not matter how hot it was outside, she would go outside and play ball with our son,” 37-year-old Addison said. “And she used to always tell me that, as long as she was alive, our son and I would never want for anything. And she kept her word.”

What One Family Lost In Pulse Nightclub A Year Ago

Photo: Courtesy of Emily Addison

Orlando removes Confederate soldier statue from Lake Eola Park

  • Crews in Orlando, Florida, began removing a 106-year-old Confederate statue from Lake Eola Park on Tuesday in response to residents labelling it a symbol of racism, WFTV reported.
  • The statue, nicknamed “Johnny Reb,” will instead be moved to the Confederate soldier section of the historic Greenwood Cemetery.
  • The removal has been a hot topic among Orlando residents. 
  • In 2015, residents made a petition calling for the removal stating that they did not “need any depictions of such vile intolerance overtly exhibited." 
  • The pressure for Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer to comply grew as local blogger David Porter called the statue an "icon of white supremacy.” Read more (6/20/17)

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This morning, as you get ready for school, work, or just another Monday, take 20 minutes to pay tribute to the 49 beautiful people who were killed in the terror attack at Pulse Orlando one year ago. Listen to their names, see their faces, hear who they were. Reach out to those you love today, especially your LGBTQ friends and family, and let them know that you care. Our community is still deeply wounded, as we celebrate Pride Month, we carry a heavy weight on us from this day. To my fellow LGBTQ people, take a moment to reflect, honour our fallen, and then carry on with these 49 names in your heart. “Be proud, be strong, be brave, and never forget; It gets better.”