Juan, Stanley, Amanda, Oscar, Rodolfo, Antonio, Darryl, Angel, Luis, Cory, Tevin, Juan, Deonka, Simon, Leroy, Mercedez, Peter, Paul, Frank, Miguel, Javier, Jason, Eddie, Anthony, Juan, Christopher, Alejandro, Brenda, Gilberto, Kimberly, Akyra, Luis, Geraldo, Eric, Joel, Jean Carlos, Enrique, Luis, Xavier, Christopher, Yilmary, Edward, Shane, Martin, Jonathan, Juan, Luis, Franky, Jerald.
Those 49 people were murdered by a single man, Omar Seddique Mateen.
How are we to avenge these victims? In what way can we make sure that this doesn’t happen again? Who or what do we blame?
When we step out from the fog of war, and more details uncovered, we will have a much sharper image. For the moment, we should stick to the evidence that’s been brought to light.
We know that Omar Seddique Mateen was an Islamic radical. Prior to the attacks, he called 911, and pledged his allegiance to ISIS, and spoke of the Boston bombers.
He was also flagged three times by the FBI–in 2013, and again in 2014.
The BBC reports that Mateen was interviewed in 2013 regarding “inflammatory comments to colleagues asserting ties to IS.” The FBI wasn’t able to substantiate the claims, and let him go.
In 2014, Mateen was interviewed yet again, this time about his possible ties to suicide bomber Moner Mohammad Abu-Salha. The FBI were unable to show evidence of a “substantial relationship” between Mateen and Abu-Salha, so they let him go.
We know that despite being flagged by the FBI, Mateen wasn’t placed on any watch-list, thus allowing him to purchase firearms.
We know that radical Islam demands the execution of homosexuals. Gay men and suspected gay men are shot to death, stoned, or thrown off buildings by the Islamic State, as well as other radical Islamic organizations.
We know that Omar Mateen targeted Pulse, the gay night club where he committed his massacre.
Omar Seddique Mateen was a radical who, based on the directives of his ideology, murdered 49 individuals in cold blood.
Should he have been allowed to purchase a firearm, given his previous interactions with the FBI? I don’t know. I do know that regardless of weapon, radicals find a way to commit their sins. The Boston bombers used pressure-cooker explosives; the 9/11 hijackers used airplanes; Mohammed Reza Taheri-azar used a car; Zale Thompson used a hatchet.
There’s a reason we keep hearing “Islam is peace” every five seconds, and not “Christianity is peace,” or “Judaism is peace.” It’s the reinforcement of a lie. Not every Muslim is a terrorist (as if that needs to be said), but radical Islam produces a disturbing number of mass murderers–and that’s not a coincidence. If we don’t confront and accept that truth, our tears will turn to blood as we are destroyed by an enemy we had every opportunity to stop.
49 Americans are no longer alive because our leaders won’t look evil in the eye, let alone lift a hand against it.