Hi. Mike (or Shiny) here. It’s Monday evening, June 13 and I wanted to write a quick note.
Yesterday morning our nation endured yet another mass shooting tragedy — the worst of its kind in modern history. Over 100 patrons at a gay nightclub were shot by an individual, and 49 (at this writing) are dead. The shooter had a semiautomatic rifle and a handgun. During the assault he allegedly made a call to 911 and pledged his allegiance to ISIS. This has been on everyone’s mind over the past 48 hours.
On Saturday evening, prior to this awful occurrence, Faiqa and I recorded a show where we paid tribute to the late and great Muhammad Ali. While he was provocative early on in his career, he was ultimately seen as a unifier. As someone who embraced people of all walks of life – not being afraid to stand up for what he believed in, and not afraid to seek justice for his community and that of others. At a time like this one when we’re seeing a massive amount of finger pointing, blame shifting and polarizing viewpoints, it’s important to think of Ali’s example.
Yesterday’s events hit many of us hard. Faiqa has ties to Orlando and the Muslim community there, and is also a strong ally of the LGBT community (as we both are). It didn’t feel right to post an episode right away in the shadow of everything which has occurred. I’ll be releasing the episode later this week for everyone to enjoy.
In the meantime, I’d like to share something powerful which Faiqa shared on her Facebook page. (Many others have shared her words as well.)
Our thoughts are with all who are affected by this tragedy – especially the families and loved ones of those who lost their lives for celebrating being themselves.
I’d like to end with the words used by each of our communities when we comfort those grieving a loss:
“Verily, unto God do we belong and, verily, unto Him we shall return” (Qur’an 2:156)
“May the One whose Presence is felt here grant you consolation.” (Midrash)