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Photo by: Isaac Babcock - Thousands of residents gathered outside the Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts in mourning on Monday following a brutal shooting at the Pulse Orlando nightclub on Sunday morning that killed 49 people and put 53 more ...
Winter Park / Maitland Observer Tuesday, Jun. 14, 2016 4 years ago

Josh Garrick: Reflecting on the Orlando shooting

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The reason behind the shooting means nothing
by: Josh Garrick Columnist

Those of us who care about the arts, education, freedom and the rights of all mankind will never comprehend the levels of hatred and cowardice exemplified in the deaths and injuries to so many citizens of Orlando. The final determination of whether it was an act of terrorism by a jihadist group or a cowardly act of hatred means nothing to those who were killed or injured.

We do know that such an inexplicable act serves as an attack on our values, our freedom, and all we hold dear in our lives.

As I write this 49 people are dead and 53 people are wounded in the worst mass shooting in American history. Law enforcement officials are calling it an act of terrorism. A state of emergency has been called for both the City of Orlando and all of Orange County. The gunman was Omar Mir Seddique Mateen, 29, an American citizen living in Port St. Lucie, and he is dead.

This unspeakable act of barbarity leaves countless friends and families suffering from grief and distress.

“Today, as Americans, we grieve the brutal murder – a horrific massacre – of dozens of innocent people,” President Barack Obama said in a statement following the shooting. “We pray for their families, who are grasping for answers with broken hearts. We stand with the people of Orlando, who have endured a terrible attack on their city. Although it’s still early in the investigation, we know enough to say that this was an act of terror and an act of hate. And as Americans, we are united in grief, in outrage, and in resolve to defend our people.”

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