BREAKING: 50 dead at gay club in Florida after worst mass shooting in US history

At least 50 people are dead, and 53 injured, after a mass shooting at a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida last night.

CNN says this is the deadliest mass shooting in US history. President Obama will deliver a statement on the shooting at 130pm Eastern time.

Florida US Senator Bill Nelson says that officials have indicated there is “some connection to ISIS” with this shooting.

The Daily Beast reports that the shooter was known to the FBI, and had been investigated by them previously. As a reminder, Republican Senators killed a measure six months ago to prohibit suspected terrorists from buying guns.

UPDATE: Donald Trump is using this opportunity to blame the attack on a failure to say the words “radical Islam.” Because apparently Trump thinks 50 more people would be alive right now if we all simply clicked our heels three times and said the magic words. Pathetic.

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UPDATE: Man with arsenal reportedly arrested heading to Los Angels Pride festivities. Authorities are claiming this is “completely unrelated” to what happened in Florida. That is extremely difficult to believe.

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gay rainbow flag shutterstockThe shooting happened at 2am with a handgun and an AR-15 type automatic rifle. The gunman then took hostages and held them for three hours, until a SWAT team stormed the bar and shot him dead.

CNN identified the gunman as Omar Mateen, born in Florida, though his parents are from Afghanistan.

There is obvious speculation as to what motivated the shooting. There is already speculation by the FBI that Mateen may have had leanings towards radical Islam. Mateen’s father thinks religion wasn’t the motivation:

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The Republican lieutenant governor of Texas, Dan Patrick, seemed to suggest this morning that gays brought this shooting on themselves. He has finally deleted the tweet, but has issued no clarification, nor any statement on the shooting.

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And just last night, the NRA’s social media director was lecturing people on Twitter about giving people “time to grieve” before lamenting how many people are killed by guns in our country. And then, more shootings only a few hours later:

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Queer Nation NY and others are planning a vigil at 6pm tonight (Sunday, June 12) in front of the Stonewall Inn, at Sheridan Square in Greenwich Village, NYC. Alan Klein, a cofounder of Queer Nation NY, told me that the vigil is “to mourn the victims, support the families, and to speak out against the hate, whether homespun or from around the world, has always led to violence against our community.”

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Nate Silver reports that terrorists are turning to guns in the US because they’re so readily available:

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Authorities are urging local to give blood, and if anyone attended the club before the shooting and left, they too are being asked to contact the police.

June is Pride month for the LGBT community.

Follow me on Twitter: @aravosis

CyberDisobedience on Substack | @aravosis | Facebook | Instagram | LinkedIn. John Aravosis is the Executive Editor of AMERICAblog, which he founded in 2004. He has a joint law degree (JD) and masters in Foreign Service from Georgetown; and has worked in the US Senate, World Bank, Children's Defense Fund, the United Nations Development Programme, and as a stringer for the Economist. He is a frequent TV pundit, having appeared on the O'Reilly Factor, Hardball, World News Tonight, Nightline, AM Joy & Reliable Sources, among others. John lives in Washington, DC. .

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21 Responses to “BREAKING: 50 dead at gay club in Florida after worst mass shooting in US history”

  1. perljammer says:

    Happy Land Social Club, Bronx, 1990. Arson fire caused 87 deaths. This remains the worst US mass-murder incident in history.

  2. Phil in FLL says:

    After watching the video that Doug105 posted below, I did a bit of checking on Farrokh Sekaleshfar, the Muslim cleric openly advocating for murdering gay people. He was born in Manchester, England and presently lives in Iran, and he could certainly have been denied entry into the U.S., assuming that the American and British governments are efficiently sharing intelligence.

    Farrokh Sekaleshfar openly incited murder just days before the Orlando massacre during a lecture at an Islamic center in Sanford, Florida, a suburb of Orlando. Obviously, the shooter in the Orlando massacre could have been present during Sekaleshfar’s lecture. Links below:

  3. Phil in FLL says:

    The shooter in the Orlando attack and the shooters in November 2015 Paris attacks were all homegrown. The one in Orlando was born and raised in the U.S. and the ones in Paris were born and raised in Belgium. I’m not convinced that a stricter immigration policy would solve the problem. ISIL has to be defeated, and just about the entire political spectrum in the United States agrees on that (as well as all three presidential candidates who are still campaigning). I still think that my suggestion below about prohibiting suspected terrorists from buying guns would do the most good. When the perpetrators are native-born American citizens who are ISIL supporters, only the FBI, local law enforcement and some sane gun control can be of assistance.

  4. YetAgain25 says:

    Hillary should kiss everyone’s ass goodbye, with her intent to open the borders to two million more Islamic homophobes.

  5. YetAgain25 says:

    And self-hating suicidal gays like Aravosis, Signorile, Rettenmund, and Fat Joe Jervis will still espouse allowing millions more followers of Islam into the U.S.

  6. Phil in FLL says:

    Sleazebag Trump is trying to make political hay out of the mass shooting at Pulse Nightclub. How ironic then that Saturday night at Pulse Nightclub is “Latin Night,” when the place is packed with people who are there to listen to Latin Music.

  7. Phil in FLL says:

    From your post:

    As a reminder, Republican Senators killed a measure six months ago to prohibit suspected terrorists from buying guns.

    That measure needs to fly through Congress ASAP as a first baby step toward sanity.

  8. Phil in FLL says:

    Good catch, Doug.

  9. Doug105 says:

    There are kits for sale all over gun sites to make them full auto.

  10. Doug105 says:

    Published on Apr 6, 2016

    The United West investigative team uncovered a story so disturbing Field Sutton of Channel 9 news in Orlando, FL broke the story on their newscast.

  11. BeccaM says:

    If obtained legally, that AR-15-type rifle would’ve been a semi-automatic. Meaning it shoots one bullet every time you pull the trigger, but will fire as you pull that trigger. Such a weapon may be completely legal to own, but it really serves no legitimate civilian purpose. Its purpose is to kill as fast as possible.

    Many are correctly characterizing this as an act of terrorism. It also seems very, very clearly to have been a hate crime, too. That club was not chosen at random.

  12. UncleBucky says:

    Oh, yeah, it’s George Stephanopolos at the mic…

  13. UncleBucky says:

    Why the hell are they talking about ISIS on ABC News?

  14. UncleBucky says:

    Interesting meme (totally in irony)…

    How many guns were killed in this act of terrorism?

  15. Demosthenes says:

    Easy access to assault rifles and bullets, even if one is on the terrorist watch list, nonstop hatred of Americans who happen to be gay, and we have yet one more in an endless string of mass killings. Another day in America.


  16. Shorter Ammosexuals: Now, that is one well-regulated militia!

  17. 2patricius2 says:

    When I saw this on the news this morning, I immediately thought of the UpStairs Lounge.

  18. A message from Republicans:

    We mustn’t politicize it! It’s just too early to talk about this [ insert latest massacre here ] “incident.”

  19. Bill_Perdue says:

    I posted this everywhere I could.

    Right now the press is reporting 50 dead and as many wounded. This is the worst I’ve seen since the UpStairs Lounge firebombing in the early 1970s. In LA we raised money for the survivors and for funerals.

    Pulse is a gay nightclub and the shootings there, whatever their immediate origins, are part of the long history of homohating and bigotry that go back to pre-colonial times, brought the colonies by European christer cults, principally the anglocatholics.

    Like the products of racism and misogyny, a steady drumbeat of anti-gay bigotry led to a constant history of violence, discrimination and harassment that continues to this day.

    We need ENDA and a federal hate crimes law with teeth so there can be no excuses like those that let Zimmermann, the racist pig who murdered Trayvon Martin and the thugs who brutally beat Matt Shepard and left him to die. As always, our hearts go out to the loved ones and families of the victims, living and dead.

  20. Shorter NRA: But, no one is asking, “how are the guns?”

  21. 2karmanot says:

    OhMyGawd……..just incredible……sad and stunned.

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