Mass Casualty Attack on Orlando Gay Bar

Discussion in 'World Events' started by Yazata, Jun 12, 2016.

  1. madanthonywayne Morning in America Registered Senior Member

    Or not.
    Of course, we should ignore the influence of his own radical Muslim father and pin the blame on Christianity don't like Christians?
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  3. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Staff Member

    The Mystery of the Red Rose

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    To reiterate:

    Twenty-five years, now, I've been hearing Christians calling for our murders, and that's simply since I tuned into the issue of gay rights because a bunch of Christians went out of their way to demand that I did. Though we've won out over the years, violent rhetoric has become so normalized within Christian circles that this year Republican presidential candidates pitched to be seen demonstrating their piety for the sake of being seen beside others alongside a crazed Christian deathmonger. That's pretty normalized. The Christian response to suicide rates among gay youths was to restrict access to counseling and mental health resources through legislatures. Organized legislative response counts as pretty normalized.

    This has been going on longer than the shooter was alive.

    People have pointed to American Christians' involvement in the Uganda bill; Scott Lively has long had the ear of Christian radio and print media; consulting with foreign governments as American Christian advisors is pretty damn normalized.

    There was a time when using one's political campaign or office to advocate mass murder was disqualifying. There was a time when associating with bloodthirsty elements was considered inappropriate for responsible political service.

    In trying to make this about "Muslims", conservative Christians have been erasing the queer community from its own tragic experience↑. It really is a weird thing to watch. You present the other effect, erasing America from its own tragic experience.

    Omar Mateen―and that's his name, as loath as I am to ever speak or write it―was an American. He was also a human being, and generally speaking, his father's hatred would be more influential than Daa'ish.

    (#97↑; boldface accent added)

    Look, I get that you disagree, but, really, there's nothing I can do to help if you don't tell me what's wrong. That is to say, it's one thing if all you do is complain that other people are incorrect, but quite another to actually address the points you disagree with. As it is, your simplistic, political reformulation is pretty much as inappropriate as ever.

    No, seriously, why should anybody bother writing posts↑, since you're just going to write their posts for them?
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  5. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

    Maybe you should define just "disagreeing" with homosexuality.

    What does just disagreeing with homosexuality look like, exactly?

    Is that like just disagreeing with the colour red?

    Does "I just disagree with the colour red" mean something other than "I personally dislike the colour red"?
    Does "I just disagree with homosexuality" mean something other than "I personally dislike homosexuality"?

    And if all you're really saying is that you dislike homosexuality (which translates a disliking homosexual people, I presume), then what follows? Would you like to ban homosexuality? Exclude homosexual people from being allowed to be near you? Do you want a "don't ask - don't tell" policy so you don't have to acknowledge that homosexuality exists, perhaps?

    Suppose I 'just disagree' with people being more than 5 feet tall. What follows? Can I ban all 6 footers? Maybe they should all be locked in jail. Maybe there should be a programme of genetic testing to identify babies who might grow to over 5 feet tall, and they could be aborted in advance.

    Too radical? Ok. How about we just pass a law to confine people who are more than 5 feet tall to a separate area - like a ghetto or something. That way, I wouldn't have to deal with these freaks over-tall people with whom I 'disagree'. I could pretend they don't exist and that would make me oh so much happier.

    Because, you know, it's my right to 'disagree' with people not being the same as me. And more than that, since I am obviously the norm against which everybody else should be measured, then it's my right to speak out loudly against "lifestyle" choices such as being more than 5 feet tall. I mean, these people don't have to parade around with their heads in the clouds. They don't have to flaunt their height. What do they expect - that we'll all build taller doorways just to accommodate them? They should cut off their legs or use wheelchairs or something and fit in with the rest of us, rather than getting in our face with their complaints that the leg-room on airplanes is too short and they are being discriminated against.

    And why should I be forced to see the colour red all the time? I disagree with it. And that's my right as a normal, red-hating human being. Let's stop all this modern PC crap and go back to black-and-white television, like things should be!
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2016
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  7. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member


    Now now, you're being quite disingenous with that question, aren't you? Naughty.

    Here's what you wrote in another thread:
    So, according to you, by definition, a "real" Christian does not kill. And therefore, a "real" Christian cannot murder, by definition.

    Any Christians who do murder (and there are many), are obviously not real Christians, according to your own definition.

    So why ask the question?

    It would be hard to find a more blatant example of the No True Scotsman fallacy.

    No, you're an asshole if you expect everybody else to treat your personal preferences as some kind of commandment to the world.

    You can't expect people to adjust the world for you just because you don't like the colour red or people who are more than 5 feet tall.

    Maybe you should be specific about what these "issues that involve homosexuality" are that concern you.

    What, exactly, is it about homosexuality that you 'just disagree' with? And why should anybody else bend to accommodate your personal preferences?

    I don't know. Do you speak approvingly of people who shoot abortion providers? Do you act in such a way as to incite shooters of abortion providers? Because if you do, then it may well be your fault, at least in part. Don't you agree?
  8. Bells Staff Member

    Do you think that level of homophobia would have been less acceptable in American (or any Western society really) if it did not already exist in the predominantly Christian population?

    To put it another way, preaching about killing LGBT, harming LGBT and simply hating and discriminating against LGBT is hardly new in American Christian discourse. This sort of thing occurs openly. Christian parents abandon their own children or force them into conversion or 'pray away the gay' therapy and this also occurs openly. To wit, hatred of gays is not hidden. It happens openly. Laws are enacted to directly discriminate against members of the LGBT community, based on said hatred.

    How can you believe that it would not have been as equally influential?

    Had he not been a Muslim, would you have said the same thing? He could very well have been a Christian fundamentalist. So who or what would you pin the blame on then? Or would his religious ideology not factor into his crime had he not been a Muslim?

    At the heart of this crime is homophobia. And that is being over-ridden by many on the right, because they are choosing to focus on the fact that Mateen was a Muslim. And the reason for that is simple. They prefer to not focus on homophobia because that would force them to acknowledge what exists in their own political and religious groups and communities. So instead, they focus on this being Islamic terrorism. It then allows them to further discriminate against Muslims and continue with the open discrimination of the members of the LGBT community.
  9. Daecon Kiwi fruit Valued Senior Member

    The phrase "homophobic Muslim" contains an important word, and it's not the word "Muslim".
  10. madanthonywayne Morning in America Registered Senior Member

    The Orlando jihadist was an anti-American with Islamic extremist views at least as far back as high school. On September 11, 2001 he was celebrating the attacks and bragging that he was related to Osama Bin Laden at school. He threatened to kill everyone at a barbecue because some pork touched his food. He even threatened to shoot up his elementary school. He hated not just gays, but Jews, Blacks, and women.

    He was a seriously fucked up man whose hatred was justified and fed by his extreme religious views. That religion was not Christianity.

    Furthermore, he specifically stated that he made the attack in the name of ISIS and also scouted out other potential targets such as Disneyland where his hatred of homosexuals was clearly not a factor.
  11. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

    Bells and madanthonywayne:

    It doesn't actually have to be one thing or the other. It can be both.

    This particular event has led to the usual political polarisations. Those on the political Right insist that it is all about Islamic Extremist and terrorism, and that it has nothing to do with homophobia. Those on the Left insist on the polar opposite of that.

    But there is a middle ground that is often overlooked. It can be both. In this case, it seems to me that the perpetrator of this horror may well have been both a man confused about his own homosexual inclinations and somebody who has sympathies with an extremist version of Islam.

    There doesn't have to be just one reason why he shot all those people. People are more complicated than that.
  12. Daecon Kiwi fruit Valued Senior Member

    That's true, if the gunman had sympathies with an extremist version of Christianity instead, would there be such a divide between the two viewpoints?
  13. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Staff Member

    This and That

    Part of the context of this American tragedy is a ridiculous farce in the aftermath by which a bunch of people who never liked homosexuals suddenly want to be our friends in hope that we'll help them go start a war with a bunch of other people they don't like.

    Additionally, many Americans are trying to write out another aspect of the atrocity, which is the ease of obtaining such weapons as to empower destruction of that scale.

    Everything in this must be about Muslims, say these factions in the American discourse, because that is the only thing it can be about.

    The question isn't really one thing or the other. The question, rather, is either a combination of factors or one exclusive factor. To wit, we have on the surface American homophobia, ease of access to instruments of mass homicide, and creeping radicalism in Islamic-derived expression. Or, to consider the counterpoint, we have Muslims.

    The question is about whether or not we intend to presuppose this exclusivity.

    • • •​

    As recent history reminds, we would be talking about mental illness in order to make questions of Christian extremism and violent rhetoric go away. It's a bit like the black shooter being a thug and the white shooter being "disturbed" or "unstable" or "complex and compromised", or maybe needs some Burger King. See, if the shooter is sick in the head, then we can't blame Christians or white people the way we blame Muslims and blacks.
  14. Bells Staff Member

    It wasn't just ISIS though. Mateen pledged allegiance to and praised/commented on various groups and terrorists, most of whom are at war with each other.

    Speaking to reporters Monday, FBI Director James B. Comey said that during his 911 calls, Mateen said he was a supporter of the Islamic State, the extremist Sunni group also known as ISIS that controls a significant expanse of territory in Syria and Iraq. Media outlets linked to the Islamic State later claimed Mateen as their own, describing him as "one of the soldiers of the caliphate in America."

    Mateen also mentioned the 2013 Boston bombing during his calls. That attack, which left three dead and more than 260 injured, was carried out by the Tsarnaev brothers. While the brothers were not found to be directly linked to a foreign group, they were partly motivated by a magazine published by al-Qaeda's affiliate in Yemen. (According to the Guardian, Mateen's admiration for the Tsarnaev brothers went back further. In 2013, Mateen is believed to have told the FBI that he knew the two bombers, though investigators later concluded that this relationship had been fabricated.)

    Comey said that during the calls, Mateen also mentioned Moner Mohammad Abusalha, a fellow Floridian who had traveled to Syria to fight with Jabhat al-Nusra, the al-Qaeda affiliate in Syria. Mateen had been investigated by the FBI for his contact with Abusalha in 2014, but the case was quickly closed. Abusalha returned to Syria, where he killed himself in a suicide attack.

    Further confusing matters, Comey also revealed that in "inflammatory and contradictory" comments to co-workers in 2013, Mateen had claimed to be a member of Hezbollah, the Shiite militia based in Lebanon.

    To be clear, these groups named by Mateen are not allies. The Islamic State and al-Qaeda both derive their theology from an extreme view of Sunni Islamism, but in practical terms the pair split in 2014, with the more established al-Qaeda publicly disavowing the actions of the more extreme Islamic State. Jabhat al-Nusra, al-Qaeda's affiliate in Syria, often fights the Islamic State in the Syrian conflict. Meanwhile, Hezbollah is a Shiite Islamist group. In Syria, it supports the government of Bashar al-Assad, effectively meaning it fights both the Islamic State and al-Qaeda.

    And to just explain the confusion, one of the tenets of ISIS is to wipe out Shiite Muslims.

    Being a Shiite, as most Iraqi Arabs are, meets the standard as well, because the Islamic State regards Shiism as innovation, and to innovate on the Koran is to deny its initial perfection. (The Islamic State claims that common Shiite practices, such as worship at the graves of imams and public self-flagellation, have no basis in the Koran or in the example of the Prophet.) That means roughly 200 million Shia are marked for death. So too are the heads of state of every Muslim country, who have elevated man-made law above Sharia by running for office or enforcing laws not made by God.

    So we have someone who claimed to be Hezbollah, which means he would be a Shiite Muslim, to then pledging allegiance to Al Qaeda, the Tsarnaev brothers - who were not affiliated with any group and ISIS. So which is he? Because he cannot be all of them. The groups he pledged allegiance to are actually at war with each other. Or was he simply confused and just lumped every famous Islamic group/person he could think from the top of his head?
  15. Bells Staff Member

    I never said it cannot be both. And I think it is the lack of even acknowledging the complexity is a huge problem.

    What I did say is that homophobia was a driving factor and I think completely ignoring that and focusing solely on his radicalisation is hypocritical. The very people on the right condemning the attack as an Islamic terrorist attack, which it was, are also the very same people enacting laws that discriminate against LGBT and who have supported preachers and pastors who openly call for the general massacre of LGBT.

    The homophobia behind this attack is being buried by the very people who continue to push for laws that discriminate against LGBT while they complain that it was Islamic terrorism. In other words, this attack is being used to further discriminate against Muslims in general, while the discrimination and abuse against LGBT continues like before.. So for these people, the attack is bad because 'Muslims' and 'Islam'. The homophobia behind the attack remains a non-issue. After all, if they focused on the actual homophobia, it would force them to have to admit the homophobia that exists on and within the right. It would force them to have to answer to how and why Republican candidates vying for the Republican nomination for President, could appear on a Stage with the same man who was advocating for mass murdering gays at the same conference and on the same day as they appeared on the stage with him.

    One of the things that many seem to ignore about this crime is that it is not a foreign crime in America. Mateen could very well have been a Christian. After all, the same level of homophobia runs just as deep in the fundamentalist right as it obviously did in the Mateen family. But this mass shooting is not foreign. It isn't from ISIS. It isn't from Al Qaeda or Hezbolla or any other Islamic fundamentalist group Mateen pledged allegiance to..

    Mateen’s deplorable actions are his own, and no justification could come close to absolving him of his crime. But these emerging accounts present a more complex story, one at odds with the oversimplified narrative of the single-minded Muslim extremist. Mateen worked in security and took selfies in NYPD garb. He had a father who in the aftermath of the shooting posted a video in which he declared, "God will punish those involved in homosexuality." He was allegedly violent toward his first wife, and had two gun licenses, neither of which he needed in Florida to buy the rifle he used in the massacre. The story of the Orlando mass shooting cannot be told without touching on lax gun laws, a culture rife with toxic masculinity and homophobia, weapons of war as easily available as loaves of bread, and a right wing that has relentlessly pushed religious liberty legislation and “bathroom bills” to ensure anti-LGBT discrimination is protected under the law. The preferred prefab narrative may center on Mateen’s inherent foreignness, but the full story, in its many complicating factors, is profoundly and uniquely American.

    And I think that is key. This kind of mass shooting is typically American outside of warzones. And as much as the right might be focusing on the fact that he was a Muslim, it does not detract from the simple fact that this sort of crime (mass shootings) is common in the US and not from Muslims, but from predominantly white Christian males. And the homophobia? It is virtually enshrined in the far right Christian groups in the US.

    “The good news is that there’s 50 less pedophiles in this world, because, you know, these homosexuals are a bunch of disgusting perverts and pedophiles. That’s who was a victim here, are a bunch of, just, disgusting homosexuals at a gay bar, okay? And then I’m sure it’s also gonna be used to push an agenda against so-called “hate speech.” So Bible-believing Christian preachers who preach what the Bible actually says about homosexuality — that it’s vile, that it’s disgusting, that they’re reprobates — you know, we’re gonna be blamed. Like, “It’s all extremism! It’s not just the Muslims, it’s the Christians!” I’m sure that that’s coming. I’m sure that people are gonna start attacking, you know, Bible-believing Christians now, because of what this guy did.I’m not sad about it, I’m not gonna cry about it. Because these 50 people in a gay bar that got shot up, they were gonna die of AIDS, and syphilis, and whatever else. They were all gonna die early, anyway, because homosexuals have a 20-year shorter life-span than normal people, anyway.”
    — Steven Anderson, preacher at Faithful Word Baptist Church, Tempe, AZ in response to the slaughter in Orlando

    Radical right-wing Christians must recognize the part their anti-gay rhetoric, legislation, hate speech and repeated attacks on the LGBT community played in the slaughter at Pulse Nightclub in Orlando. Yes, the terrorist homophobe who reportedly pledged allegiance to ISIL before he repeatedly pulled the trigger deserves all our anger and outrage. We will hear plenty about his radicalized religious beliefs in the coming days, but that is likely all the religious analysis we will hear in the media. But, we cannot let religious ideologues in the far-right Christian camp off the hook. Steven Anderson is not an anomaly. America has been painstakingly codifying beliefs he expressed into law. Polished politicians blunt the edges of Anderson’s words though the language of legislation but the hate and fear remains.

    They will claim the assertion they have any role in the massacre as an attack on their religion – much like the consistent and well-orchestrated “war on Christmas” we heathens rage every year. They will tell you that their prayers are enough to overcome this act of terror. They will tell you Jesus wants you to arm yourself. “Get your guns before Obama takes them.” They will tell you this is about radicalized Islamist terrorists. They will whistle away the notion that guns or gays had anything to do with this tragedy.

    It's easy to just make it about Muslims or Islam as we are seeing. It is much harder to address the core issue at play because to do so would be to acknowledge their own hypocrisy.

    Around the country LGBT couples are fighting for the right to adopt children. HIV is criminalized around the country putting a big red X on gay men and others. Gay men – by law – cannot donate blood. Most people didn’t even know that until Orlando. Federally funded abstinence-only programs populate our public schools masquerading as sexual education. What the actually do is preach sexual purity until heterosexual marriage, and they stigmatize girls and LGBT kids. How about the Great Bathroom Panic of 2016? It isn’t secular humanists behind these laws and programs; it is right-wing Christians serving in state and national office.

    What message is all of this sending to our LGBT citizens? That you are less than, you are poison, your blood is tainted even if it’s not, you are after our children, you cannot love who you love. The message coming from the far right is “We Hate You”. Donald Trump gloat-tweets, Paul Ryan doesn’t mention guns or gays in his statement – just Islamic terrorists. The GOP’s (political party of choice for the far right Christian camp) presumptive presidential nominee and the US Speaker of the House deny any connection between the slaughter at Pulse and anti-gay hate crime.

    Still not buying it?

    Well, I will let the Lt. Governor Dan Patrick of Texas explain. In tribute to those murdered at Pulse he tweeted this: “Do not be deceived. God Cannot Be Mocked. A man reaps what he sows” (Galatians 6:7).

    Hence my comment to madanthonywayne..
  16. PhysBang Valued Senior Member

    Nobody said to ignore what happened in his family. However, his family lives in a society where many Christians feel very comfortable attacking homosexuals (and women). This constant hatred and acceptance of hatred can have an effect.
  17. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

    Yes. We can expect all the usual back and forth shouting of political slogans, but one thing that can be guaranteed is that nobody in America will do anything about the gun problem. In fact, I hear there were four separate votes in Congress today on suggestions to do something, and none of them passed. Surprise!
  18. PhysBang Valued Senior Member

    It was the Senate. But yeah. At least some vulnerable Republicans are now voting in favor of some gun control rather than blanket against it.
  19. Kittamaru Ashes to ashes, dust to dust. Adieu, Sciforums. Valued Senior Member

    guys control alone won't fix this, though I agree 500% that our laws need a revamp. Rather, we need to do practical things - eg, if you are on a terrorist watch list, or have a documented history of violent behavior, then maaaaaybe a lethal weapon shouldn't be given to you.

    Additionally, we need to bring compassion and logic back, instead of having a society that resolves disputes with immediate violence.
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  20. Michael 歌舞伎 Valued Senior Member

    That's because we don't have a gun problem. Not to mention the murder rate is at 50 year lows.

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    Essentially, as the Baby Generation dies out, so does the abnormally high rate of violence in society. It appears, there was something severely wrong with that generation of individuals.
  21. Michael 歌舞伎 Valued Senior Member

  22. Michael 歌舞伎 Valued Senior Member

  23. Daecon Kiwi fruit Valued Senior Member

    They've always been a problem. Just because they're less of a problem now, that doesn't mean they're no longer any problem at all.

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