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Vigil scheduled in Honolulu following Orlando shooting

  • ASSOCIATED PRESS

    A message is posted on the screen during a prayer vigil tonight at the Joy Metropolitan Community Church in Orlando, Fla. after a fatal shooting at the Pulse Orlando nightclub.

A vigil was scheduled Sunday afternoon in support of families affected by the mass shooting in Orlando and to push for a ban on assault rifles.

The vigil, sponsored by Rainbow Family 808, the LGBT caucus of the Hawaii Democratic Party and other LGBT organizations, is being held with the support of the city and Mayor Kirk Caldwell, a spokesman for the mayor said in a news release.

It’s scheduled to begin at 5 p.m. at Honolulu Hale.

Meanwhile, the president and governor ordered U.S. and state flags flown at half-staff through Thursday to honor the victims of the shooting at a gay nightclub in Orlando.

At least 50 people died and 53 others were wounded when a man, identified as Omar Mateen used an AR-15 rifle to take hostages and spray bullets inside the Pulse nightclub early this morning. Marteen died in a battle with SWAT team members.

“We see on the news today yet another horrific instance of man’s inhumanity to man, triggered by the fear of differences. Let us reject fear and hostility. Let us embrace diversity. Let us affirm life,” Gov. David Ige said in a news release. “Hawaii has some of the toughest laws regulating gun ownership in the nation. This presumed act of terror is a reminder that we cannot become complacent. We must do all that we can to ensure the public’s safety.”

“We stand united with our LGBT ohana members and their family and friends in Orlando that are the victims and survivors of this horrific hate crime. We will not let this hate crime stop us from living our lives as out and proud members of society. These acts of violence seek to silence us, but they will not deter us from fighting for justice and equality for the LGBTQ community, for immigrants, for women, for the poor or any other minority – for we are not equal until all are equal.” said Michael Golojuch, Jr. the organizer of the vigil, in a news release.

The Honolulu office of the FBI also issued a news release today, assuring residents that there are no known related threats within the Honolulu FBI’s area of responsibility.

“The Honolulu FBI is monitoring the situation closely to ensure the public’s safety and stands ready to provide appropriate investigative assistance to the mainland communities directly impacted by this tragic event,” Special Agent Matthew McDonald said in the news release.

Andrew Pereira, a spokesman for the mayor, said Caldwell and Police Chief Louis Kealoha discussed the shooting in Orlando in a phone call this morning.

“Mayor Caldwell was told there is no known threat to the City and County of Honolulu, which has the lowest rate of gun violence for a city its size,” Pereira said in an email.

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  • MEDIA RELEASE

    Contact:
    LGBT Hawaii
    808-591-6100
    http://www.lgbthawaii.com
    Scott Foster: sf@lgbthawaii.com Juergen Steinmetz: jts@lgbthawaii.com

    LGBT Hawaii Statement on Orlando Florida night club terror attack

    Honolulu Candlelight Vigil Planned for 6:30 PM At the Gandhi Statue in Kapiolani Park

    HONOLULU JUNE 12, 2016 — LGBT Hawaii sends our heartfelt condolences and Aloha to our many friends in Orlando and to all those who have been somehow touched by this latest violent attack on our community and on our nation. Terror has no borders. Such attacks of terrorism have happened in Paris, in Brussels, in Bali, Tunisia, Kenya, in Boston and New York and now in Orlando.

    LGBT Hawaii co-founder Scott Foster said, “With LGBT Pride events now taking place around the world, this is a heartbreaking day for us, the LGBT community in Hawaii and worldwide. We call on LGBTs everywhere to once again stand together to help fight this latest evil and to urge authorities worldwide to implement appropriate security measures.

    LGBT co-founder Juergen T Steinmetz said:

    Implementing appropriate security cannot wait. We must realize this here at home — in Hawaii and nationally — we must begin to implement security measures everywhere that should include protecting our hotels, our shopping malls and our entertainment facilities; anywhere crowds routinely gather. As one of the world centers of international tourism, Hawaii is particularly vulnerable. Orlando and Hawaii are both major travel and tourism destinations. We must tell those who want to harm us to not underestimate the power of freedom and solidarity and the power of the United States of America. The entire civilized world is fighting you.

    A Candlelight vigil is being planned for 6:30 PM at the Gandhi Statue in Kapiolani Park Adjacent Hula’s Bar & Grill.

    LGBT Hawaii serves the LGBT Community in Hawaii with a special focus on global outreach forthe travel and tourism industry. More information on LGBT Hawaii can be found at http://www.lgbthawaii.com

    -###-

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