After LGBTQ+ nightclub shooting, business advocate vows ‘we’ll never be scared again’

PotassiumAfter this weekend’s deadly mass shooting in Colorado, Ansas City’s LGBTQ+ business community remains vigilant in the face of bigotry and a commitment to protecting its members, according to Suzanne Wheeler.

“Our ever-resilient community will continue to root out hate and bigotry with acts of love and visibility,” said Wheeler, Executive Director, LGBT Chamber of Commerce in Central America“We will continue to proudly do business, live our lives, and show the world that we will never be afraid again.”

Suzanne Wheeler, Mid-America LGBT Chamber of Commerce

Shortly before midnight Saturday, a man killed five people and wounded 25 others at Club Q, an LGBT nightclub in Colorado Springs. Anderson Lee Aldrich faces five counts of first-degree murder and five counts of prejudice causing bodily harm, CNN reported Monday afternoon, Noted new hate crime charges detailed in court records.

The gunman was stopped by Club Q patrons, limiting the number of casualties, according to media reports.

“This devastating shooting comes at a time of escalating violence against the LGBTQ+ community and should call on politicians and public officials to curb anti-LGBTQ+ rhetoric that fuels violence,” Wheeler said in a statement Monday. leaders, let them know it’s time to end the hate.”

The Central American LGBT Chamber of Commerce membership includes more than 1,200 active individuals from more than 300 organizations, including individuals, nonprofits, small businesses, public entities and offices, and corporate members.

“Our hearts go [Club Q] For the hate crimes against their queer community…” read the social media post from Sunday at Fountain Haus KC, an LGBTQ+ nightclub in Westport. “We must come together to fight and protect our safe LGBTQ+ spaces and end this senseless violence.”

Members of the Westport Business and LGBT Chamber of Commerce organized a Sunday night vigil, scheduled for December 12. 4 Fundraising for shooting victims and their families.

Suzanne Wheeler of the Mid America LGBT Chamber of Commerce speaks at a chamber event in Fountain Haus KC, May 2022; photo courtesy of Mid America LGBT Chamber of Commerce

Wheeler specifically drew attention to the timing of the shooting — the night before Transgender Remembrance Day, a day to honor those who have been killed over the past year “for simply daring to be who they are.”

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President Biden also condemned the “spread of violence and murder against transgender women, especially transgender women of color.”

Businesses like Club Q have not been proven immune to gun violence, Biden said, leaving “more families with an empty chair at the dinner table and holes in their lives that cannot be filled.” “.

“What should be a safe place of acceptance and celebration should never be turned into a place of terror and violence. Yet it happens all too often,” the president said. “We must end the inequalities that fuel violence against LGBTQI+ people. We cannot and must not tolerate hate.”

The Colorado Springs shooting comes six years after 49 people were killed at an LGBTQ+ nightclub in Orlando.

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