Three years ago today a gunman walked into a nightclub and began shooting.
Not just any nightclub, but Pulse Nightclub.
I don’t know if he was queer. I don’t know if he was anti-queer. I just know that he was filled with hate.
Were this any nightclub, I would no doubt be more concerned with the profile of the shooter, where he was from, what were his motives, what were his ties to terrorists groups.
As with Pulse Night, I would have wanted to know who the victims were, what they did for a living, were there heroes among the fallen.
But this was not just any nightclub. Like many LGBTQ nightclubs, Pulse Nightclub was a sanctuary, a refuge, a home for many a lives long ago characterized by terror, beatings, bullets, and bloodshed.
While I could have been at any of the shootings as schools, the shootings at movie theaters, the shootings as church, or the shootings at places of employment, the shooting at Pulse felt different.
I could have been at Pulse Nightclub. I have been at a Pulse Nightclub.
Those gathered at Pulse Nightclub that night were there on a special night, Latinx night. They were a community of queers, with more in common than just being queer. They were Latinx.
They shared a common language, a common subculture, a common oppression. They were gathered to celebrate their compounded oppressions of queerness and brownness in a foreign land that would kill them for both.
Today we remember those killed at Pulse Nightclub.
Today we remember those killed for their queerness.
Today we remember those killed for their brownness.
Heroes among the fallen.