Orlando : another night of senseless carnage – is it time to wake up?
The senseless and cowardly massacre of 50 people in Orlando has made everyone feel sick. Tony Scott has first hand experience of the lunacy of these kind of attacks having been in the Bataclan the night of the massacre at the Eagles Of The Death Metal concert and wrote a heartfelt and powerful piece for Louder Than War about that traumatic evening. The events in Orlando have affected him strongly and he proposed this piece, trying to find some kind of solution amongst another pointless night of carnage…
I am yet again horrified at the despicable acts that people will carry out against other human beings. The attack on the Pulse nightclub in Orlando is another senseless act seemingly aimed at the freedoms of people to be and enjoy who they are. We’re still reeling from the attacks on Tunisia, Paris and Brussels and while attacks in the US are more common place it still doesn’t detract from our sense of sadness and grief. The similarities to the attacks on Paris make it all too familiar and the fear is that this sort of attack becomes more common place. These were people on a night out enjoying themselves. Reports in the media say it was a leading gay club, but gay, straight, bi, white, black, muslim, christian or atheist we are all targets for these despicable acts.
Our thoughts, first and foremost, are with the survivors and the families of the bereaved as they struggle to come to terms with what has happened to them both physically and mentally. Help is out there but as we know from our own experience it is not always forthcoming and it is difficult to know where to reach for it. These are new emotions and the shock of such an ordeal will take its toll. I sincerely hope they get the help they need in the days, weeks and months ahead.
Sadly I don’t see this having much effect on the gun problem the US faces with its fiercely protected 2nd amendment. We have seen attacks on schools and cinemas and despite the 372 mass shootings last year* and tens of thousands of Americans killed each year** I doubt this will change. Barrack Obama has tried and failed to pass reforms to gun law describing it as the biggest frustration of his presidency and yet these attacks continue. America needs a wakeup call and the tightening of its gun laws. The 2nd amendment is exactly that, an amendment. Another amendment is possible.
* Source: BBC News: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/36510272 ** Source: The White House: https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2016/01/05/remarks-president-common-sense-gun-safety-reform