As a whole, we are a society that needs to find reason and place blame. Our history bears this out. In the U.S. alone, there is centuries worth of finger pointing. We have blamed and punished Native Americans and African Americans. During the late 19th century, and early 20th century it was Anarchist and Socialist. During WWI it was the Germans. During WWII it was the Japanese and Germans. During the 50’s through the late 80’s it was the Communist. Since 9/11 it’s been the Muslims. The point is that every time we face a period of crisis, someone must bear the brunt of the blame, just or unjust. We are a wary and suspicious society. Mistrusting and mistreating the square pegs who do not fit into our round holes.
In the case of Omar Mateen, I see no proof that his actions were representative of his religious beliefs. There are no manifestos created by Mateen, there are no social media rants that we know of. He supposedly declared allegiance to ISIS, but the FBI claims there is no proof of that. There is no indication what so ever that he killed in the name of his god. Yes, Islam does condemn homosexuality, but so do many Christian religions. If Catholic John Smith committed this atrocity, he would simply be another homophobic asshole with no regard for life. We would be attacking the man, not the religion or any other group he happened to fit into. Furthermore, if Mateen was a radical Islam terrorist, why target one specific group of Americans?
This man, Grady Mateen was a monster pure and simple. He was violent, as his ex wife will attest t. He mistreated and beat her regularly. He hated those who were LGBTQ. His disdain for two men kissing in public months before would bear witness to that. He was a misogynist and a homophobe. He was mentally ill. He was a product of a society that routinely denigrates women and hates those of same sex orientation. If you don’t believe me, go on Twitter, where you’ll find many tweets from so called Christians who are cheering Mateen for his actions. It’s sickeningly ironic that the same people who would rage against people of Islam, are now holding a Muslim up as a hero for slaying so many gay and transgendered in one fell swoop. These internet bullies are as grotesque as the man who seemingly did their dirty work for them.
In conclusion, blame the man who committed the act, not the religion. Place shame on a person who would be so filled with malevolence, that he drove 5 hours to massacre those who were born different than he. Furthermore, blame a society that marginalizes and castigates the LGBTQ populace. Blame a public mindset that places more value on guns than people. Blame a government that protects assault weapons instead of human beings.
It’s ok to point fingers. In fact, go ahead and point fingers as if you were in a doughnut shop.
Just be mindful to point the finger at the right doughnut when you do.
My Sunday morning started out in a typical manner. I woke up, went to the bathroom, and then got my cup of coffee. As I sat down to peruse the internet as I usually do, my wife, who had already been up for some time, tells me that a friend of hers was attacked last night in Columbus for the simple crime of walking while being gay. Then, as I’m checking my news feed, several articles catch my attention about last night’s horrific shooting in Orlando. 50 dead, and over 50 injured at the night club Pulse, a dance club that caters to the LGBTQ community. I’m sickened as I read: Sickened and outraged.
Our society is quite ill ladies and gentlemen. The outlook is terminal. Sure, public outrage is temporarily appropriate, but it will soon die down until the next mass killings take place. Based on current history, the next mass shooting is right around the corner, and we’ll all be outraged again. Lather, rinse, repeat. In the meantime, until the next event, we will all do nothing. In the mean time, people will be attacked for their sexual orientation. People will be killed for the color of their skin. People will be killed for their religion. One group of people will be killed because they simply do not fit in the same box as another group of people. It’s been going on for thousands of years, and it’s only getting worse. The more things change, the more they stay the same. It’s a tired cliche, but it still holds true.
However, in the good ole U.S of A, things seem to be significantly worse. There has always been an us vs. them mentality. The hate that is fomented between one group or another is of epidemic proportions, and the daily tragic headlines bear this out. Last night’s shootings may be the worst in American history, but it certainly won’t be the last. We are after all, a nation of hate. We are united by bigotry. We eat malevolence, and crap bullets over those who dare to be different or disagree with us.
What we need is a reset button. Tear the whole thing down and start over. We need to stop living for God and Country, and start living for ourselves and each other. Religion, Nationalism, and Capitalism is what fucked our society up, and sooner rather than later, it is what will destroy us all.
I think I need something stronger than coffee this morning, to get this bad taste out of my mouth.