September 22, 2020 The Newspaper Serving LGBT Los Angeles

Pulse Nightclub Memorial Honors 49 Heroes

A “sanctuary of hope” is what the minds behind the onePULSE Foundation hoped to achieve through the creation of a memorial in Orlando’s Colonialtown Square Park. But hope is a complicated thing–not quite an emotion, not quite a stance. It’s also a hard thing to quantify, like faith. And it’s a hard thing to hold on to in the wake of a tragedy as stunningly terrible as the Pulse massacre in Orlando, Florida on June 12, 2016, when Omar Mateen shot down 49 people at the neighborhood gay club.

Perhaps that’s why the architects behind the new Pulse memorial, just completed in Orlando after being OK’ed by City Council, decided to create the shape of a labyrinth instead of something more straightforward. What happened the night of June 12, 2016 wasn’t straightforward. It was hateful, confusing, and painful, and it robbed 49 people of the chance to tell their own confusing, complicated stories at the end of a long, happy life.

After the Colonialtown Neighborhood Association voted unanimously to approve the project in mid-December, plans to erect the monument went instantly into effect. The monument is designed as a park with benches and pavers for each individual life lost in the attack, and is created in the shape of a maze with the Orlando United heart at the center.

But the onePULSE Foundation isn’t stopping there. The intended sanctuary of hope isn’t supposed to just be a single monument or gathering place. The foundation is hoping to create a space that can live outside of a single designated area by creating 49 separate scholarships for innovators and creators as well as a museum honoring and memorializing the victims of the attack. But the monument, with its daring design concept, is a beautiful start. By giving visitors a way to walk through the dedicated space without separating their confusion, hurt, and pain from the experience, the monument is turning the experience of mourning outward, almost creating a conceptual art piece out of the collective emotion felt by the queer community in response to Mateen’s violent act. It’s a bold way to think about remembering the dead, but a necessary one, especially for a community that’s focused on moving forward toward a safer, saner future.

Related Posts

Supreme Court Justice & LGBTQ Ally Ruth Bader Ginsburg Dead At 87

September 18, 2020

September 18, 2020

Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has passed away on Sept. 18th at the age of 87, the court has...

Love In Action Telethon

September 10, 2020

September 10, 2020

Love In Action, a telethon to support the LGBTQ+ community during the COVID pandemic will be airing live on Sept.12th...

Gay Felon Ed Buck Requests Release Ahead Of Criminal Trial

September 3, 2020

September 3, 2020

A federal grand jury added four felony charges to the Justice Department’s case against Ed Buck, the one-time political activist...

Two Men Charged After Three Trans Women Are Attacked In Hollywood

September 2, 2020

September 2, 2020

Two men have been charged with robbery against three transgender women on the evening of Aug. 17 in Hollywood. Carlton...

Ricky Martin Feared He Couldn’t Become A Father Because Of His Sexuality

August 27, 2020

August 27, 2020

Ricky Martin, the Los Angeles based singer and his husband, Jwan Yosef, are happily married and have four kids but...

Three Trans Women Attacked in Hollywood

August 20, 2020

August 20, 2020

On Sunday August 16th, 2020, Instagram influencer Eden the Doll and her friends Joslyn Flawless and Jaslene White Rose were...

Starbucks Adjusting To Changes Caused By COVID-19

August 16, 2020

August 16, 2020

Due to the Coronavirus and people working remotely, Starbucks, the popular Seattle-based coffee giant, is starting to see a change...

Queerantine Kicks Off Season Two

August 9, 2020

August 9, 2020

Queerantine, a one-of-a-kind, weekly music video showcase highlighting artists across the LGBTQIA+ spectrum, created and hosted by musical artist Kisos,...

West Hollywood, Long Beach Earn Top Marks in 2019 Equality Index

December 20, 2019

December 20, 2019

2019 was a great year for the LGBTQ+ communities in West Hollywood and Long Beach.  Both cities earned a score...

National Center for Lesbian Rights Announces New Executive Director

December 18, 2019

December 18, 2019

The National Center for Lesbian Rights recently announced the appointment of Imani Rupert-Gordon as the new Executive Director.  “Imani is...

“They” Announced as Merriam-Webster’s 2019 Word of the Year

December 10, 2019

December 10, 2019

What are your pronouns? Merriam-Webster cares.  This morning Merriam-Webster announced that the 2019 Word of the Year is “they.”  “English...

California One of Top States in Equality CA’s Legislative Scorecard

December 5, 2019

December 5, 2019

California earned top marks in Equality California’s recently released annual state legislative scorecard for 2019 Equality California, the nation’s largest statewide...

22 Trans Lives Lost to Violence This Year

November 20, 2019

November 20, 2019

One this day 21 years ago, Gwendolyn Ann Smith founded Transgender Day of Remembrance to memorialize the vicious murder of...

Trump Administration Attacks LGBTQ People Yet Again with HHS Proposed Rule

November 4, 2019

November 4, 2019

To kick off Trans Awareness Month, the Trump Administration has outdone itself in trampling over LGBTQ+ folks’ rights. Today, the...

Q&A w/ a Therapist: “How do I Come Out?”

October 10, 2019

October 10, 2019

Tomorrow marks the 30th annual National Coming Out Day. This is the day when folks can come out as LGBTQ+ to friends, family and coworkers. Coming out is a powerful...