Brooklyn’s lawmakers and officials called for the country to pull together and to toughen gun laws agains assault weapons in the wake of last nights terrorist attack/hate crime against gays which took at least 50 lives and injured dozens more at a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida.
The following in no particular order are soke of their comments:
Kings County Party Democratic Chair Frank Seddio: “Little did we know as we celebrated the Pride parade on Saturday night in Brooklyn that we were about to experience such a horrific attack at an Orlando night club. It was an attack not only on the LGBT community but on the values of tolerance and acceptance that unite us. It is long past time to address our insane laws that allow people to so easily buy weapons of war. Freedom comes with responsibility, including reasonable regulations that protect Americans against the easy accessibility to the kinds of arms that have no place in a civilized society. Our grief and anger should lead us to stand together as one. The horrendous actions by one man cannot lead us to turn against any community because of religion or for any other reason. We meet bigotry with love, not hate.”
State Sen. Jesse Hamilton (Central Brooklyn): “This morning in Orlando, a gunman turned a time of celebration, of LGBTQ Pride, into a moment of horror and now grief and mourning. We have witnessed the hatefulness of a few obscenely twist a major faith’s Holy Month away from a time of prayer and spiritual reflection into visiting unspeakable cruelty upon one’s neighbor.
“Our reply must be steadfast solidarity with the victims and their families, solidarity with the LGBTQ community, and solidarity with the principles that uphold our nation and every major faith. Principles of peace and mercy, principles of equality and human dignity. So instead of division, let this attack inspire unity and togetherness. Instead of hatred, let this attack inspire love.
“Lift up and support the families and friends of the victims, stand with our LGBTQ community and LGBTQ allies, and resolve that the fundamental principles of our nation will endure in our actions towards one another in the coming days and months. They will endure as people of good conscience from every faith, of every sexual orientation, of every background come together as we reaffirm the best in ourselves, our communities, and our people.”
Public Advocate Letitia James: “My thoughts and prayers are with the families and loved ones of the victims in this morning’s horrific massacre in Orlando. We must band together and turn our anger into action. We must stand up against hate, intolerance, and gun violence. While the investigation is ongoing, we cannot ignore that the alleged attacker targeted a gay nightclub. This month, as we march in the Pride Parade and celebrate Pride Month, we will do so in the memories of those lost their lives. We cannot ignore that he supposedly had an assault-style rifle, weapons that are legal in the United States. We not only stand in unity with Orlando, but we stand ready to take action.”
Congressman Dan Donovan (Southern Brooklyn, Staten Island): “Last night’s massacre looks to be the worst terror attack in the United States since 9/11. Investigators are still gathering information, but it’s clear that our way of life came under attack yet again. I’m praying today for those injured and for the families of the deceased. Our freedom and culture will never yield to the hateful violence of radical Islamic terror.”
Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams: “I join my fellow Brooklynites and all decent people around the world in mourning the victims of the Pulse nightclub massacre in Orlando, the deadliest mass shooting in American history. Hours after our borough gathered in pride and harmony to celebrate our LGBTQ family, we are reeling in horror from this deliberate attack of pure hate on our brothers and sisters. This act of terror may shake us, but it will not break us; we must unite around our common values and reject any and all efforts to divide our community of humanity.
“There is no earthly reason, other than a desire to perpetuate violence, that common-sense gun reform cannot and should not move forward at every level of government in the wake of this senseless tragedy. In the difficult days ahead, in the midst of our grief, I ask all Americans of good will to push for the legislative action we have long waited for that will secure a safer future for our children and families.”
Assemblymember Rodneyse Bichotte (Flatbush, Ditmas Park): This morning we woke up to the horrific news of yet another mass shooting, whereby we lost 50 people at a gay nightclub inOrlando, Florida making this the deadliest mass shooting in U.S. history. No matter how many times this happens, I can never get used to it. I will continue to fight and advocate for banning the sale of assault-type rifles and weapons of mass destruction and keeping them off our streets. I will also continue to advocate against hate crimes against any group of people. June is supposed to be Gay Pride Month and not a month to mourn. My heart and prayers goes out to the LGBTQ community, all the people of Orlando, and especially to those that have lost loved ones.”
Congressman Jerrold Nadler (Borough Park, Kensington, and parts of Bay Ridge, Bensonhurst, Dyker Heights, Red Hook, Sunset Park and Midwood): “We are all horrified by the terrorist attack at a LGBT club in Orlando, leaving 50 dead and more than fifty wounded. My prayers are with the victims and their families.
“The resources of the federal government, including FBI, Homeland Security, and the Department of Justice, must be brought in to fully investigate the attack and provide support to the local community. Reports that an assault weapon—purchased last week in the United States—was used in the attack, and that the shooter pledged allegiance to ISIS, are both deeply disturbing.
City Councilman Jumaane Williams (Flatbush, East Flatbush, Midwood): “We are here again. And honestly, we know we will be here once more, very soon. First, sincere prayers of peace and comfort to the family and friends of the victims, and the Orlando community.
“As we stand with the LGBT community across the country, and the family and fans of Christina Grimmie, we also stand with Jessica White, a mother killed this weekend, right here in New York City, protecting her children.
“Second, well wishes and prayers will not help the 90 people statistically expected to die by a gun tomorrow, nor will it help the victims of the next mass shooting — we’ve already had 133 this year alone. So to those victims, the same words without action is hollow.
“We can’t sit back and simply attribute gun violence to thugs, terrorists, or gangster music. “Even hate without a gun looks drastically different. But we better realize it’s the American-specific penchant for violence and almost unfettered access to guns that is the problem.
“We have to see that the leadership of the NRA continues to do the devil’s work, disguised as protecting Second Amendment rights. They do this even though so many of their members understand the difference between their rights and this insanity. They do it because many Congressmen and women value their seat above horrific American deaths — even as we now grapple with the largest mass shooting in American history. In the back of our minds, we know it’s only a matter time before this record is surpassed.