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Letcher: New Mexico Cannot Be a Queer and Trans Sanctuary Whereas We ‘Defend the Rights of Weapons’ – The Reality About Weapons | The Global Today

Dan Z. for TTAG

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Three hours later, I used to be enjoying video video games when my neighbor broke the glass by my entrance door with the butt of an assault rifle. I screamed and ran by way of my lounge and out my again door. Pictures rang out round me as I fled, and I may see the mud flying from their influence.

“He has a gun. He’s making an attempt to kill me,” I yelled, clambering up and over my again fence. Barefoot and bleeding, I ran to the road to attempt to discover a telephone. I approached a automobile with some older white people. At the same time as I used to be extra terrified than I’d ever been in my life, I used to be extraordinarily conscious of the necessity to make them really feel comfy. After asking them to name 911, I insisted they maintain the telephone and put me on speaker. After I obtained by way of to the operator and instructed them I had been attacked, I repeated that my canines had been in my home. Please don’t harm my canines, I stated time and again, all of the whereas wanting over my shoulder. I assumed he was nonetheless after me. …

Today, I’m making an attempt to alchemize my ache and trauma into actions. I’m becoming a member of help teams for survivors of gun violence and daring to dream that my state of New Mexico will implement adjustments that may save lives — particularly banning assault weapons. I’ve had folks inform me that this could’ve by no means occurred had I been armed, however I don’t consider including extra weapons to this incident would have helped anybody. Given how usually I bounce at my very own shadow, I don’t suppose having a lethal weapon is in anybody’s greatest curiosity. I consider accountable gun possession exists, and I see no justification for people proudly owning assault weapons, bump shares, or armor-piercing bullets. …

Gun violence is so rampant in my group that my story didn’t even make the native information; there was a triple murder the identical night time. Realizing that being attacked by an assault weapon in my own residence wasn’t even newsworthy opened my eyes to how rampant gun violence is in New Mexico. Since my assault, I’ve heard of different queer and trans folks surviving comparable issues and never making the information. Following New Mexico’s gun-violence-riddled summer season, our governor declared a public well being emergency. I used to be initially elated on the information that there can be a 30-day ban on weapons in public for my county, however the subsequent authorized snares, armed protests, and requires violence towards the governor rapidly burst that bubble. We will’t name ourselves a sanctuary for queer and trans folks whereas concurrently defending the rights of weapons over human lives. The variety of hate crimes towards queer and trans folks within the U.S. climbs steadily, as does using assault weapons in these assaults. These weapons aren’t used to scare or hurt; they’re used to annihilate. Preventing to ban assault weapons in my group, on this nation, is my queer activism.

— Lazarus Letcher in I Survived an Armed Attack. This Is Why Gun Control Is My Queer Activism


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