Profound Cover Of Time Magazine On Orlando Slaughter
This was a national test, more raw and dangerous than the typical bouts of outrage and recrimination. In Congress, Democrats walked out in protest when Republican House Speaker Paul Ryan called for a moment of silence. “Now do something!” an angry voice called from the room. The ensuing uproar about gun control ended only when the Speaker banged his gavel, ruling the Democrats, his governing partners, out of order. Even in Orlando, unity was elusive. When Equality Florida, a gay-rights group, organized the largest public vigil in Orlando, with nearly 10,000 people, not a single Republican statewide official attended.
The ingredients are all here for the country to behave as it has in the past. “All I want for people to take away from this situation is this is literally a war we are fighting, between love and hate,” says Aryam Guerrero, whose brother Juan Ramon Guerrero was killed with his boyfriend Christopher “Drew” Leinonen. “I just need everybody to love. Just give so much love.” The two men will have a joint funeral service. “If it’s not a funeral, they were going to have a wedding,” Guerrero explains.
That is how modern democracies have held together in times of trial. In exchange, they agree to embrace some risk, to endure some measure of future pain. They tinker with TSA screening procedures but don’t pull people out of line for the color of their skin or the writing in their holy book. They debate surveillance laws, not the right to speak freely. They hope that in the next assault, the damage isn’t so bad that they have to turn on one another or give up what they value. It’s an imperfect system, a vulnerable one. It depends on some measure of trust in strangers. And it can always be replaced with something else.