LGBT leaders to Trump: Don't target Muslims in our name - San Francisco Chronicle


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Non-Muslim members of the community watch a special prayer at the American Muslim Community Center in Longwood, Fla., after the mass-shooting at the Pulse Orlando nightclub. Photo: Phelan M. Ebenhack / Phelan M. Ebenhack / Associated Press / FR121174 AP
Photograph: Phelan M. Ebenhack / Phelan M. Ebenhack / Related Press

Non-Muslim members of the group watch a particular prayer on the American Muslim Group Middle in Longwood, Fla., after the mass-shooting on the Pulse Orlando nightclub.

Addressing a crowd of hundreds filling San Francisco’s Harvey Milk Plaza to honor the victims of a gun bloodbath at a homosexual nightclub in Orlando, Supervisor David Campos stated the violence highlighted the urgency of continuous the battle for LGBT rights.

However Campos had one other message.

“We're all on this collectively,” he stated, “and as a queer Latino man I do know that concentrating on the Muslim group in the best way some individuals are doing is just incorrect and we're going to converse out towards it!”

Individuals within the crowd on Sunday night time, many holding candles in plastic cups because the neighborhood’s big Delight flag flew at half-staff, roared in help. And within the ensuing days, LGBT group leaders have made some extent to say the capturing shouldn't be used to demonize the Muslim group, as they embraced an affinity between two teams which have confronted persecution.

The mass homicide, during which a person who pledged allegiance to the Islamic State gunned down 49 club-goers earlier than being killed by police, has once more raised questions on how the U.S. can cease terrorists inside its borders who radicalize themselves, and the way the nation can cease the bloodshed from gun rampages in recent times which have hit faculties, leisure venues and workplaces.

Zuleyha Ozonder, who is Muslim, holds a candle and a sign that references the hashtag "#NotInMyName" to show that many in the Islamic faith support the LGBTQ community during a vigil at Cal Anderson Park in Seattle. Photo: Lindsey Wasson, Associated Press
Photograph: Lindsey Wasson, Related Press

Zuleyha Ozonder, who's Muslim, holds a candle and an indication that references the hashtag "#NotInMyName" to point out that many within the Islamic religion help the LGBTQ group throughout a vigil at Cal Anderson Park in Seattle.

Trump assaults Clinton

Nevertheless it additionally prompted Donald Trump, the presumptive GOP presidential nominee, to hunt to divide LGBT People and Muslim People, as he attacked presumptive Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton.

Trump, who needs to bar all Muslims from immigrating to the U.S., tweeted Tuesday, “Thanks to the LGBT group! I'll struggle for you whereas Hillary brings in additional individuals that may threaten your freedoms and beliefs.”

San Francisco Supervisor Scott Wiener, who's homosexual, stated such responses have been distortions of a tragedy that carries actual implications for lesbian, homosexual, bisexual and transgender individuals.

“He focused an LGBT nightclub as a way to bloodbath homosexual individuals,” Wiener stated of gunman Omar Mateen, “and we have to not let the Donald Trumps of the world hijack this assault to additional their racist and Islamophobic agenda.”

Campos stated the LGBT group, having been scapegoated up to now, acknowledges the hazard Muslim People face within the aftermath of the capturing.

Members of the Congressional Muslim Staff Association, the LGBT Congressional Staff Association, and members of Congress begin to assemble for a prayer and moment of silence on the steps of the Capitol to stand in solidarity with the Orlando community. Photo: J. Scott Applewhite, Associated Press
Photograph: J. Scott Applewhite, Related Press

Members of the Congressional Muslim Employees Affiliation, the LGBT Congressional Employees Affiliation, and members of Congress start to assemble for a prayer and second of silence on the steps of the Capitol to face in solidarity with the Orlando group.

“I feel it comes from the truth that we now have been via this earlier than,” he stated. “We've seen this film earlier than, and we’re not going to let individuals like Donald Trump reap the benefits of it.”

Federal authorities Tuesday have been wanting into Mateen’s motives and scrutinizing his previous statements about terrorist teams and homosexual individuals. A hostage who survived the assault on the Pulse nightclub described at a information convention how Mateen, the New York-born son of Afghan immigrants, had referred to as 911 amid the carnage and stated he needed “People to cease bombing his nation.”

However the portrait of Mateen was difficult by stories that he had been a frequent customer of the membership and had used courting apps for homosexual males.

Messages of help

Because the investigation continued, these within the Muslim group stated the messages of help from LGBT leaders have been touching. Suzanne Barakat, a resident doctor at San Francisco Basic Hospital whose brother was one among three younger People Muslims shot to death last year in North Carolina, allegedly by a neighbor, additionally spoke to the gang within the Castro on Sunday night time.

“I felt related to everybody on the vigil once I heard leaders from the LGBT group say they wouldn’t let the capturing be used to assault Muslims,” she stated. “I needed to let my group, the individuals of San Francisco, know that we're one physique, that I stood with them, that individuals who determine as Muslim stand with individuals who determine as LGBTQ towards the darkish tide of hate.”

A 2014 Pew Analysis Middle ballot discovered that 45 % of U.S. Muslims believed homosexuality ought to be accepted by society — a seven-point improve from 2007. The mark was 62 % for all ballot respondents, and 55 % for these affiliated with religions. Thirty-six % of evangelical Christians and Mormons believed homosexuality must be accepted.

On Monday, Zahra Billoo, head of the Bay Space chapter of the Council on American Islamic Relations, joined a gaggle of politicians and advocates together with Rebecca Rolfe, director of the San Francisco LGBT Middle, at a information convention urging a special response to the bloodbath — passage of a slate of California gun management payments.

“It’s been actually humbling that a group that's focused and beneath siege and nonetheless processing the assault has been so considerate about being clear they might not let this assault be used to gasoline Islamophobia,” Billoo stated. “I feel that's so highly effective and the way I’d need to be if I have been beneath assault.”

Six months in the past, Rolfe reached out to Billoo after her group’s workplaces have been shut down resulting from an anthrax scare, and provided to permit the group to work from there.

“The issue is homophobia and never Muslims,” Rolfe stated. “Many LGBT are Muslims and we've got actually hundreds of thousands of allies who're Muslims, and to misdirect our anger and our worry leaves us weak to the place the hazard truly is.”

After Trump’s fiery speech Monday, nationwide LGBT leaders have been fast to push again.

“LGBTQ individuals, we're Muslims, we're ladies, we're Latinos,” Chad Griffin, president of the Human Rights Marketing campaign, stated on CNN. “We're as numerous as the material of this nation, and any assault on any considered one of us is an assault on all of us.”

‘Try and divide’

The Human Rights Marketing campaign’s communications director, Jay Brown, stated in an interview that Trump’s feedback have been a “shameless try and divide us. We won't permit an act rooted in hatred towards LGBTQ individuals for use to advertise hatred towards Muslim individuals.”

Talking on the vigil in San Francisco, Barakat provided an analogous message to the gang.

“Tragedies are coming to us far too regularly — the remedy for it's the drugs of affection, kindness and compassion,” she stated. “We stand right here to increase our shared humanity and eternal love and say to these consumed by hatred you'll not outline us, you'll not mould us in your picture, you'll not sow the seeds of discord amongst us, you'll not deter us in our willpower to deal with all with dignity.”

Hamed Aleaziz is a San Francisco Chronicle employees author. E-mail: Twitter: haleaziz