Last night, out journalist Owen Jones found himself surrounded by people who disagreed when he claimed, “At the end of the day, [the Pulse shooting] was a homophobic hate crime, as well as terrorism.” This happened on Sky News, which airs in the UK.
“It’s something that’s carried out against human beings, isn’t it, no matter what...,” claimed host Mark Longhurst, effectively taking up the all-lives-matter cause.
Jones and Longhurst bickered for a bit and then Jones said in frustration, “You don’t understand because you’re not gay.” Co-panelist Julia Hartley-Brewer suggested Jones incorrectly felt “ownership” over this crime because he is gay.
I walked off in disgust during a discussion about the massacre: it was an instinctive reaction to an unpleasant and untenable situation. The presenter continually and repeatedly refused to accept that this was an attack on LGBT people. This was an attack “against human beings”, he said, and “the freedom of all people to try to enjoy themselves”. He not only refused to accept it as an attack on LGBT people, but was increasingly agitated that I – as a gay man – would claim it as such.