49 people were killed and more than 50 injured in a shooting in an Orlando club on Sunday
Christopher Barron: Hillary Clinton is desperately wrong about the threat facing our country
Editor’s Note: Christopher R Barron is a conservative strategist based in Washington, D.C., and the former co-founder of the LGBT advocacy group GOProud. The views expressed are his own.
On Sunday, everything changed for LGBT people in America. The terrorist attack on a gay nightclub in Orlando, which left 49 dead, was not simply a hate crime. This was not two gay guys getting roughed up by young hooligans incensed at seeing two men holding hands. This was an act of war.
This act of war was perpetrated by an adherent to radical Islam – an ideology that seeks the extermination of LGBT people worldwide. For LGBT people in this country, the stakes could not be any higher – or any more personal.
For LGBT Americans, this election won’t be about bathrooms or who will bake our wedding cakes. No, this election will be about which of the candidates for President is willing to stand up and fight to defend our very right to life itself.
In the wake of Sunday’s attack, we heard from both Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump. Only one of those two candidates spoke forcefully and passionately about defending LGBT Americans. Only one of those candidates seemed 100% committed to protecting us from terrorists who seek to murder us simply because of who we are – and that candidate was Donald Trump.
Before Trump, Republican nominees shied from using the phrase LGBT on the campaign trail. In contrast, Donald Trump more than said the word, he promised action:
“Our nation stands together in solidarity with the members of Orlando’s LGBT community. They have been through something that nobody could ever experience. This is a very dark moment in America’s history. A radical Islamic terrorist targeted the nightclub, not only because he wanted to kill Americans, but in order to execute gay and lesbian citizens, because of their sexual orientation.
“It’s a strike at the heart and soul of who we are as a nation. It’s an assault on the ability of free people to live their lives, love who they want, and express their identity. It’s an attack on the right of every single American to live in peace and safety in their own country.”
Clinton seems to fancy herself as the Cher of politics for LGBT Americans – an ally, an advocate and an icon. The truth is that she only became an ally of LGBT Americans once it became politically advantageous for her to be one. It’s hard not to conclude that her evolution from Defense of Marriage Act supporter to marriage equality advocate had more to do with her ambitions than any deep-seated beliefs.
Unlike Clinton, Trump has a record in the business world of inclusion and support for LGBT Americans. Donald Trump was supporting average LGBT Americans who worked for his companies and patronized his hotels and clubs long before it became trendy to do so.
Even now, what kind of ally is Hillary Clinton to the LGBT community? She is quick to sell rainbow-flag-emblazoned campaign paraphernalia, and happy to soak up campaign contributions from our community, but when it comes to protecting LGBT Americans from an ideology that seeks to massacre us – she equivocates.
“She can’t have it both ways. She can’t claim to be supportive of these communities while trying to increase the number of people coming in who want to oppress these same communities. How does this kind of immigration make our lives better? How does this kind of immigration make our country better? Why does Hillary Clinton want to bring people in in vast numbers who reject our values? Why? Explain.
“Ask yourself who is really the friend of women and the LGBT community, Donald Trump with actions or Hillary Clinton with her words?”
Most countries in the Middle East prescribe criminal penalties for being gay. In Iran and Saudi Arabia, the penalty is death. ISIS is throwing gay men off of buildings simply for being born gay. Yet, in the face of this, Hillary Clinton told the world last November that we had nothing to fear:
“Let’s be clear: Islam is not our adversary. Muslims are peaceful and tolerant people and have nothing whatsoever to do with terrorism.”
LGBT Americans learned the hard way just how desperately wrong Clinton was about the threat facing our country and our community in particular. Her reluctance to say what needs to be said about the very real threat posed by radical Islam – and to stand up against the rampant brutalization of LGBT people across the Muslim world – is nothing short of pure treachery. She has been sacrificing LGBT safety on the altar of political correctness.
It is an act that many in the LGBT community will not soon forget.