‘Love is Not a Crime’
Prince George, B.C. – Close to 200 people, young and old, attended a vigil to show support for victims of the mass shooting in Orlando and the LGBTQ community at Lheidli T’enneh Memorial Park tonight.
“Solidarity and love in the LGBTQ community is required to help heal the deep wounds which have been inflicted upon us in the worst mass shooting in U.S. history,” said David Schroeter, a LGBTQ student at UNBC.
“It is important that after such a heartbreaking and horrible attack against the LGBTQ community, that we take time out of our lives to remember those who lost theirs. Many of the victims were young people like myself and the many of you who came out tonight.”
Krystal Vandenberg, also a member of the LGBTQ community and the organizer of the event, said she “froze” when she learned of the news yesterday.
In fact, she was in Quesnel for pride festivities over the weekend and said it was important more than ever to come together.
“To show our LGBTQ community within Prince George that we’re here for our brothers and sisters too. That we must stand against homophobia and transphobia and this type of blatant hate across our country, continent, anywhere.”
Fizza Rashid, a UNBC student of Muslim faith, was also on hand to decry what happened.
“Nobody deserves to die because of their sexuality. We don’t understand the logic of the shooter and we are here reaching out, to say that no, please do not allow the actions of one man represent the rest of us.”
Further, she said she was there to support the LGBTQ community to support their fight for equality.
“Love is not a crime. All of us standing here tonight just goes to show that love is more powerful than hatred and fear and always will be.”