We Are Orlando by David Everitt Howe

Part of the We Are Orlando series.

Orlando Vigil outside the StoneWall Inn, Manhattan, June 13th, 2016.

On June 12, 2016, at just after 2 AM, Omar Mateen entered Orlando’s Pulse nightclub—the city’s biggest LGBT club—and opened fire, killing 49 people and wounding 53 others. I, like many, awoke the next morning to loved ones marking themselves “safe” on social media. This is a really unsettling thing. While the massacre—now the nation’s worst—was in Orlando, it could’ve been Boiler Room or Eastern Bloc here in New York, or anywhere really. You can be shot anywhere, at any time. And as a gay man, the attack feels personal. It’s difficult to put words to it.

Nevertheless, BOMB has asked several LGBTQI artists to respond to the shooting in some way, directly or not, with words or otherwise, because it seems like so much is at stake: LGBTQI rights, the rights of the Muslim community (the killer swore allegiance to ISIS), and gun control. And at a time of great political uncertainty and fear around the upcoming presidential elections, this event seems somehow much greater than its parts.

So, instead of taking the long view, eventually looking back, we’ve opted to respond now—in more or less the heat of the moment, starting tomorrow—for the weeklong series We Are Orlando. Because BOMB is about heat, is it not?

David Everitt Howe is BOMB Daily’s art editor.

We Are Orlando by Malik Gaines
Gaines Bomb 1
Carlos Motta by Cat Tyc
Motta Bomb 01

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A Litany for Survival: The Life and Work of Audre Lorde by Ada Gay Griffin & Michelle Parkerson
Lorde 01 Body

Excerpts from Ada Gay Griffin and Michelle Parkerson’s film A Litany for Survival, on the great American poet, Audre Lorde. Tributes and insights from the poet herself, friends and family on what it means to live in the heart.

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Sarah Schulman 01

Sarah Schulman, author of Empathy, speaks of the separation of activism from writing and the consequences of being assigned a marginal identity.