Anti LGBTQ speech causes harm


We are weary of writing versions of the same editorial over and over again.

Thoughts and prayers do not end gun violence. Words matter. Hateful, intolerant speech has no place in public discourse.

But here we are again, grieving the loss of young lives and aching for the families that must bury their children. Here we are again, wondering what prompted a young man to arm himself intent on destruction. Again we ponder where he got his killing machines, whether he got them legally and what could have stopped him. Here we are again, awed by the bravery of the bystanders who subdued him so quickly.

And so we will once again write that the gunman is responsible for firing those bullets but we provided the tools and there are those among us who fed a narrative of hate and intolerance, failing to either understand or care where those words can lead.

Let’s take Rep. Lauren Boerbert, who tweeted this out on Sunday in the wake of the Club Q shooting: “The news out of Colorado Springs is absolutely awful. This morning the victims & their families are in my prayers. This lawless violence needs to end and end quickly.”

This is the same person who has previously offered up these gems: “Take your children to CHURCH, not drag bars” and “We went from Reading Rainbow to Randy Rainbow in a few decades, but don’t dare say the Left is grooming our kids!”

Boebert was rightly excoriated for her role in elevating hateful speech against the LGBTQ community. As an added bonus, her hard-line positions on gun control, ruling out even common sense measures, mean she would not have supported any efforts that might have kept guns out of this shooter’s possession.

Boebert’s profile made her an easy target for those pointing out the dangerous environment created when we fail to treat our lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer neighbors as equals. But she is not the only one in this state, let alone the nation, guilty of perpetuating the rhetoric that fuels fear and hate.

The Post’s Elizabeth Hernandez recently reported on the guidance from the Archdiocese of Denver, advising Catholic schools to treat gay parents differently from straight parents and to not enroll transgender students. The Colorado High School Activities Association has overlooked that discrimination and allows those religious schools to continue participating in its events.

And then there’s the befuddling response of some members of the state board of education, who balked at the notion of a more inclusive social studies curriculum. Steve Durham, for example, maintained his objections to the end, saying teaching children about LGBTQ “sexual issues” in school is inappropriate.

These leaders are leading us in the wrong direction, away from a world where we honor the differences among us and strive to allow every person to grow into their best, most authentic selves.


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