The JACL released the following statement in response to the tragedy that struck the Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Fla., in the early morning hours of June 12 in which 49 people were killed and dozens wounded following a terror attack by a lone gunman. The tragedy is now the deadliest mass shooting in U.S. history.
The Japanese American Citizens League mourns the loss of innocent lives in the horrific attack on a nightclub serving the LGBTQ community in Orlando, Fla. In a larger sense, this was not an attack solely on the LGBTQ community, but rather it was an attack on all Americans because the strength of our country rests in our embrace of the differences that makes our society unique.
As we mourn the victims and we express condolences to their families, we also express our thoughts for a full recovery for the wounded.
During this time of profound sadness, we extend our support to the LGBTQ community who may understandably feel a sense of isolation and vulnerability. Moreover, we extend our support to the Muslim American community by urging Americans not to react in hatred.
President Obama aptly stated that the Orlando nightclub “is a place of solidarity and empowerment.” This message reinforces the unique values that describe America as inclusive, as tolerant and accepting, and as a sanctuary where we can be safe in being who we are.