Club Q shooting in Colorado Springs

   Families’ hearts were torn again by gun violence and hate crimes. In the recent shooting at Club Q in Colorado Springs, Anderson Lee Aldrich took the lives of five people and injured over 15 others on November 19-20, 2022.

   As our nation continues to move forward by adding implementations of equality, it still does not defeat the prejudice and hate that thrives in the country. During a week meant to give thanks, the families of the victims who died that night were greeted with the burdening news. They were also reminded that the LGBTQ+ community will still be looked down on; so much so that people will take their lives. Regardless of political or religious beliefs, stripping away people’s lives will never be justified. 

   Surprisingly enough, the killer’s attorney has released that Aldrich identifies as non-binary and uses they/them pronouns. There is no confirming whether or not Aldrich has identified as non-binary in the past, but I do find it interesting considering the circumstance. In a recent interview with the neighbor of Aldrich, Xavier Krauss states that Aldrich did not like gay people. This creates a confusing narrative because of their current statement and past actions. 

Graphic by Kailani Smile

   While being a member of the LGBTQ+ community, it is alarming that people like my friends and me could lose our lives because of who we are. My sense of safety decreases every year because it is another tragic headline that stays in the news stories, but no action is taken. Whether it be a school shooting, racial hate crimes, or LGBTQ+ discrimination; it still has the same effect. Although we are all Americans, we treat each other like a foreign, invasive species. 

   The overall outlook on horrible events shouldn’t just be a response, but followed by action as well. Too many tragedies take place in our home and words aren’t enough to solve the problem. With the number of people we have in power, the conversation needs to be had, and again, followed by action that will benefit not only one population but Americans as a whole. 

   This year alone, the Gun Violence Archive has counted 609 mass shootings. There were more shootings than there were days within the year. More headlines and stories about these terrible acts happen every month. Victims and their stories getting pulled back into the tide to be washed away by another headline breaking the news. Looking towards the people who are supposed to lead the American citizens and in return, there is only silence. 

   Gun violence and hate crimes aren’t things people can solve within a day, but steps need to be taken in order for our country to evolve. I urge my readers to invest more in the community they reside in and uplift the voices that aren’t getting heard.