Orlando observes the 2nd anniversary of the Pulse tragedy with The Laramie Project.
Pulse Nightclub Tragedy and the Laramie Project
By: George Noga – June 3, 2018
This is a post I’d rather not write, but it must be written. June 12th is the second anniversary of the Pulse shooting. The occasion is being observed (beginning June 2) with a month-long production of The Laramie Project, a play about the 1998 brutal murder in Laramie, Wyoming of Matthew Shepard, a gay 21 year old college student.
The Progressive Narrative
The common agenda of the OnePulse and Matthew Shepard Foundations is to fight hate crimes and gun violence against the LGBTQ community. Barbara Poma, Director of the OnePulse Foundation, said, “The increase in hate crimes targeting the LGBTQ community . . . puts the responsibility on foundations like ours to work together.” Her narrative is that both the Pulse and Laramie killings were hate crimes targeting gays and that constitutes the rationale for sponsoring The Laramie Project.
Late one night, Matthew Shepard made a pass at two strange men in a Laramie bar. He later left with the two men, was taken to a remote spot, brutally beaten, crucified to a fence post and left to die – solely because he was gay in what universally was (and still is) regarded as the hate crime of the century. Shepard’s murder became a liberal shibboleth about the homophobia and hatred permeating middle America.
The Laramie Project, one of the most performed high school plays ever, depicts Matt as an innocent martyr but portrays life in flyover land as ugly, violent, intolerant, bigoted and psychotic. Schools use Laramie study guides that direct classroom discussions to homophobia and injustice in middle America, which is depicted as a crucible of hate, violence and savagery inhabited by gun-toting, homicidal rubes.
The Plain Truth
Neither the Pulse shooting nor the Matthew Shepard murder was a hate crime directed at gays. The trial of Noor Salman, wife of Pulse killer Omar Mateen, brought out the facts of the Pulse shooting. According to FBI testimony at the Salman trial, the original intended target for Mateen was Disney Springs, a crowded shopping and entertainment venue. Only after Mateen observed the heavy security at Disney Springs, did he search “downtown Orlando nightclub” on his phone and find Pulse. There is no evidence or indication whatsoever that Mateen knew Pulse was a gay nightclub.
Shepard’s murder resulted from a methamphetamine deal gone bad. One of Matt’s murderers, Aaron McKinney, also was gay and had a prior sexual relationship with Matt. The crucifixion to a fence post never happened. Everything people were told about Matt was a lie; he was a drug dealer murdered by his homosexual lover over a soured meth deal. The facts about Shepard came to light in The Book of Matt written by Stephen Jimenez, who is liberal and gay, after 13 years of research, interviewing hundreds of witnesses and scouring thousands of pages of public records. His book was critically acclaimed by gay groups and favorably reviewed by the Advocate.
The Lesson from Pulse and Laramie
The takeaway, particularly from the Shepard case, is its exposure of the visceral hatred progressives and the media have for America. They blindly accepted anti-gay accounts from biased sources with unhidden agendas because it fit their narrative that America’s heartland is a cauldron of hate and homophobia. To them, it doesn’t matter if they got their facts wrong because, after all, their narrative was correct. The true hate crime of the century is the revulsion progressives and the media have for America.
Since neither Pulse nor Laramie were LGBTQ hate crimes, will Ms. Poma cancel the collaboration with the Shepard Foundation? If The Laramie Project is performed in Orlando, will Ms. Poma tell audiences the truth about Matthew Shepard? Surely, there is a better way to commemorate the Pulse tragedy than by performing a play based entirely on lies and that depicts everyday Americans as demented monsters.
Ms. Poma should travel across our great country to talk with ordinary Americans; she just might discover that we are not a nation of hating, homicidal homophobes.
Next – we revisit the issue of protecting students from school shootings.