by WorldTribune Staff, June 13, 2016
Responsibility for the Orlando attack on a gay nightclub by a Muslim terrorist lies with Christians and Republicans, according to a pair of ACLU lawyers.
Chase Strangio, a staff attorney with the ACLU’s LGBT and AIDS Project, blamed Christian conservatives for the attack at Pulse which killed 49 and wounded more than 50 more, claiming Christians created a toxic social and political environment.
Strangio tweeted: “The Christian Right has introduced 200 anti-LGBT bills in the last six months and people blaming Islam for this. No. #PulseNightclub”
Strangio added that American Muslims and LGBT communities should be allies as both are “maligned and oppressed by the religious right.”
The father of Pulse gunman Omar Mateen told NBC news his son harbored anti-gay sentiments and said his son gave voice to those feelings recently during a trip to Miami, where he saw two men kissing.
A co-worker of Mateen told Fox News that Mateen often spewed hateful racist and homophobic rhetoric at work and the only reason he wasn’t fired was because he was Muslim.
ACLU attorney Eunice Hyon Min Rho, who specializes in election and religious liberty law, castigated Republicans who expressed sympathy for the Orlando victims by saying many were sponsors of the First Amendment Defense Act, legislation the ACLU considers anti-LGBT.
Rho said expressions of solidarity from the right were “useless,” as many of the victims could be people of color, who she contends are regularly stigmatized by Republican legislators.
She went on to retweet a user who claimed many public officials would use the tragedy to pursue an “anti-Muslim agenda.”
Rho later appeared to have deleted her Twitter account.