Photographs of the victims of the Orlando Pulse nightclub shooting are laid out prior to the start of the 46th annual Gay Pride march June 26, 2016 in New York.
New York kicked off June 26 what organizers hope will be the city’s largest ever Gay Pride march, honoring the 49 people killed in the Orlando nightclub massacre and celebrate tolerance. / AFP / the 46th / Bryan R. Smith — (Photo credit should read BRYAN R. SMITH/AFP/Getty Images)
Sadness and symbolism rang heavy at LGBT pride parades across the United States on Sunday, as millions marked the annual event two weeks after the fatal mass shooting at a gay nightclub in Orlando.
Despite heightened security concerns following the attack, where a lone gunmanpledging allegiance to the Islamic State (ISIS) militant group murdered 49 revelers at the Floridian city’s popular LGBT venue Pulse, pride marches in major cities including New York, San Francisco and Chicago took place without incident, Reuters reported.
Tributes to the Orlando shooting victims were ubiquitous, with marchers at the front of the parade in Chicago carrying photos of each of the 49 people killed and several others carrying balloon letters spelling out P-U-L-S-E. The nightclub’s owner, Barbara Poma, and its entertainment manager, Neema Bahrami, were atop the first of 85-odd floats in New York.
The New York parade also saw a surprise appearance from presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, the presumptive democratic nominee, who walked part of the way alongside New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio and state Governor Andrew Cuomo.
Pope Francis talks to journalists on his flight back to Rome on Sunday, following a visit to Armenia. — Tiziana Fabi/AFP/Getty Images
Aboard a flight home from Armenia, Pope Francis fielded a pointed question from reporters: Did he agree with German Cardinal Reinhard Marx, who, in the wake of the Orlando shooting, said gays deserve an apology from the Church?
His answer was frank.
“I believe that the Church not only should apologize to the person who is gay whom it has offended,” the Pope told reporters, “but has to apologize to the poor, to exploited women, to children exploited for labor; it has to ask forgiveness for having blessed many weapons.”
Marx, a close adviser to Pope Francis, had told a conference in Dublin that the Church must apologize for having consistently marginalized gay people in the course of its history. At the mention of the Orlando shooting, the Catholic News Service reports the Pope closed his eyes as if in pain — then expanded on Marx’s comments.
Authorities say Omar Mateen killed dozens of people inside the Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Fla., on Sunday. —
Source: Orlando Shooter Omar Mateen Showed Few Warning Signs Of Radicalization, Investigators Say : The Two-Way : NPR
The fallout from Sunday’s mass shooting in Orlando is being felt across the country in intensely personal ways.
In New York City, people gathered for an impromptu vigil and rally outside the Stonewall Inn, the birthplace of the US gay rights movement. Security was high and the crowd was defiant in the face of America’s largest mass shooting to date.
VICE News spent the afternoon at Stonewall and spoke to people about how they’re making sense of the tragedy.
Vigils were held around the country grieving for the more than 50 people who were killed in a mass shooting at a gay nightclub in Orlando. Meanwhile, the wife of the shooter is calling him “mentally ill.” (June 12)