I just had the worst dream I’ve ever had.
I was in my home city but it was as if everything had become run down and shady. All of the apartments buildings were crackhouses and drug dens. The businesses were pawn shops and thinly disguised brothels. I was at one of the apartments retrieving my cat Dylan (Thomas not Bob). I was walking to my car when I was interfered with. A group of mobsters were around me and were trying to extort me regarding some other piece of business. They escalated to a physical confrontation. I pulled my blade and cut them to ribbons. I was going for the last and most dangerous and somehow a person I love got between me and my quarry as I was delivering a killing blow. I saw the look of surprise on her face and then her throat parted. Everything in the dream came to a full stop. I screamed for minutes, for hours, for eternity. Holding her in my arms. The cops showed up, too late, and with her dead in my arms, I went after the cops hoping they would kill me. They didn’t. I was kept alive for some reason. I was trying to taunt them into taking the shot when I woke. I felt the pain in my heart as if it had been ripped out. My throat felt like I had been screaming but people in the house say no. Even now, I’m haunted by the image. I would do anything to make it not happen. Even though it was ‘only’ a dream.
I have been silent. I typically don’t engage on shootings, because typically its an unhinged person or a glory seeker and I have no desire to feed into the machine that gives them the fame they desire and sets the stage for the next unhinged asshole to think that this is the way to go.
But in this case the target was a community that is under siege. Our rights, our lives are legislated. We are discriminated against, we are beaten, we are killed. Zealots, bigots and opportunists use our love as political capital. Every stride we make forward is met with scorn, derision and hatred inspired vitriol. I’d like to point fingers and say “It’s them, they cause this. They’re to blame.” But I won’t. We know who these people are. They know who they are. And they are dying out. The generations that are coming, accept us more and more. Things are changing. Just not fast enough for all of us.
I mourn with my people. I mourn as we all do. We want it to be set right but I’m sorry. We don’t get that. We have more freedom than our predecessors. But we are not free.
We get to live better lives today but we must continue to fight for tomorrow. I know the thought that the day after such mind numbing violence could be part of those better lives is controversial. But this time it wasn’t the police beating and hurting us, as at the Stonewall riot. That is, unfortunately, progress.
Each day we stand together. Each day we press forward to that vital future. That future that we as individuals may never see but that boy or girl or transgender or gender fluid individual in that future will have the opportunity to not feel as we do now. They will be able to live their lives in the turmoil of their times without contending with instutionionalized hate. They get to be free. Because we stand up, we stand tall. We fight back without resorting to base violence wherever possible. We are the voice of reason when all others are losing their minds.
That’s all I have the strength to say.