To make sure the 49 victims of the Orlando Pulse nightclub massacre didn’t die in vain in one of the deadliest mass shootings in American history, more straight allies need to come forward and stand up for the LGBT community. Whether that be at our dinner tables, at work, on social media, when voting, or teaching our own children to be loving and accepting of others – we must always speak up when we hear or see bigotry.

More and more straight allies come out everyday to show support for our LGBT sisters, brothers, mothers, fathers, sons and daughters. This public demonstration and outpouring of love is what will help to one day end the destructive rhetoric of those hiding behind religion to incite violence and cause suffering on innocent people. Lesbians, gays, bi-sexuals, and transgender individuals are just like you and me. They cry, they laugh, we all bleed red. We are all human. We are all equal.

Parents hug your children tighter. Tell your LGBT children, family members and friends that you love them, that they are not alone in their fight for acceptance and equality. This is what I want to say to my LGBT friends and family: You are loved. Your true allies will be your voice when you are too heartbroken to speak. We will fly the Pride Flag in your honor and carry you when you are too sad to walk on. Together we are stronger than the minority of monsters who never truly win in this world or the next.

Let me be clear: anyone that hides behind religion to outcast or shame anyone is not a holy or religious person. Any religion that propagates violence and hatred toward anyone is not a true religion. Don’t fool yourself, you worship a false god.

The wedding vendors that make up our LGBT focused website always inspire me that there is hope for the next generation in that they will not have to tip-toe or whisper in corners about their sexual orientation or hide who they fall in love with. Kissing your girlfriend, boyfriend, husband or wife in public will not cause controversy or shameful looks. That is the future I want for my family and friends.

I personally always find joy in reading the uplifting words of acceptance and love in the personal statements on why our wedding vendors support marriage equality. We need more public statements of support for our LGBT friends, family members, neighbors and co-workers. We are one nation, we are one race and #WeAreOrlando.


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