Homophobia, Terrorism and Guns in Orlando

The murderous attack at the Pulse Club in Orlando over the weekend is sickening for many reasons. The simple scale of it is, even by the standards of mass shootings in the U.S., simply flabbergasting. Fifty people were killed and at least that many were injured, making it the worst mass shooting in U.S. history. More people were killed in the Pulse nightclub than at Columbine, Sandy Hook, San Bernardino last fall or Virginia Tech in 2007. Another perspective on this is that the number of deaths in the shooting at Pulse was fully one-third as many as the Oklahoma City bombing in 1993. The sheer number of people killed should shock anybody with a shred of humanity, but the reasons that the murderer committed this horror must not be forgotten either. Inside the twisted, evil mind of Omar Mateen swirled a toxic brew of Jihadist fury and homophobic hatred that too frequently transcends any particular faith, religion or ideology.