The reason the world showed limited empathy to the Orlando victims

Exclusively written for the Sting by one of our passionate writers Mr Luca Arfini. The opinions expressed within reflect only the write’s views and not The European Sting’s position on the issue.

On the 12th of June this year Omar Mateen committed a terrible massacre against the LGBT community. He entered in the Pulse, one of the most famous gay clubs in Orlando, in Florida, and he started shooting against the crowd, killing 49 people and injuring another 53. This attack has awaken the fear among the LGBT community, who was preparing to celebrate the pride month with parades and the anniversary of the same-sex marriage legalization in the US.

This was a hate attack against a minority, showing that, even if some progress has been made, there is still a lot of work that must be done to create the right feeling of acceptance among the society. All the LGBT community expresses solidarity to the victims of Orlando in social media, but some people claimed that this attack has not emotionally involved the web community as much as the terrorist attacks in Paris or the more recent ones in Belgium.  Was the society less shocked for the Orlando massacre only because it hasn’t shared its solidarity as much as for the recent terrorist attacks?

After the Paris and the Belgium terrorist attacks we have seen all people in social media changing their profile picture with the filters of the French or the Belgian flag, writing “Je suis Charlie”on their profiles and all the social networks showed a great sense of solidarity. Some people claimed that in Orlando, nobody wrote in their profiles something similar “Je suis gay”, because they were not too touched by the fact. Maybe this could be true, but recently after the terrorist attack on the Instabul airport, I have seen very few people remembering those victims.  Apparently, it seems like there is a scale of importance in how people classified those events, but it is all a matter of distance.

We all posted “pray for Paris”, because it happened inside the European Union in one of the most well known capital cities, so we all felt as personally involved in the attack, we all mostly have some friends or relatives or friends of a friend in France, and we felt that if it happened there, it could also happen in any other country of the European Union.

People did not feel the same for Orlando because they have seen it as an attack against a minority, something that is distant from their lives, not less horrible than the other terrorist attack, but less emotionally involving because it was far from their private sphere. Most of the people remained in silence, not for a question of dislike against the gay community, but because they do not feel part of that community, so they perceive the event with less shock and sadness than a gay person.

George Simmel described at the end of the 19th century the individual of the modern metropolis as cold, rational, detached and indifferent. An individual that is able to take distance from the high variety of events and inducements present in a modern metropolis. This is an important aspect of the modern individual, because the capacity of taking distance from things helps us to rationally defend from the others, to learn how to not be personally involved in everything.  Without this shield we will suffer in the same way every day for the death of a child in Africa, for the wars that there are in the other part of the world, for the murder of a person not close to us, and this would be too much to stand.

The same logic can be applied at what happened in Orlando, people are rational actors, so they react rationally to what happens in the world and with a different emotional intensity in relation to the closeness of what has just happened. We cannot expect them to spend the same amount of feelings for everything, because it will be impossible.

In conclusion, I believe it is wrong asking whether people have been shocked by what happened in Orlando, because nobody can be happy about a massacre, even the people that do not support the LGBT community.

The fact that they did not show as much involvement as to what happened in Paris or in Belgium is mainly related to the fact that this has touched a minority from which the great majority of the people feel distant. This it is not related to homophobia though.

All in all, I would mainly wonder, instead, about the easiness of how Omar Mateen was able to buy an arm despite the fact he had been interrogated by the FBI due to his contacts with ISIS.

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Advertising

Join the Hive!

Featured Stings

A voice from Syria: the positive prospect of clinical research despite the excruciating circumstances

The EU Commission does nothing about the food retailing oligopoly

EU readies for eventual annulment of the Turkish agreement on immigrants-refugees

Can We(esterners) ever understand (the) Chinese

The EU Parliament slams Commission on economic governance

Juncker Investment Plan for Europe welcomed by European Youth Forum

Spirit unlimited

Switzerland to introduce strict restrictions on executive pay

The 13th round of TTIP negotiations hits a wall of intense protests and growing concerns

Refugee crisis update: EU still lacks solidarity as Hungary and Slovakia refuse to accept EU Court’s decision

The battle for the 2016 EU Budget to shake the Union; Commission and Parliament vs. Germany

Trailing the US-EU economic confrontation

Is it true that the G20 wants to arrest tax evasion of multinationals?

Conflicting statistics and bad banks haunt the Eurozone

The EU risks trade relations with China over the Tata hype about steel

The European Parliament x-rays the troika’s doings

How ‘small’ is Europe in Big Data?

Has the EU economy truly revived from the financial crisis?

Jo Cox’s murderer believed the ‘leave’ campaign leaders that the ‘remain’ vote is treason

A Sting Exclusive: “The challenge of Society’s digital transformation”, Spanish Minister of Spain for Industry, Energy and Tourism José Manuel Soria live from European Business Summit 2015

Vĕra Jourová, European Commissioner in charge of Justice

The New EU-US “Shield” for data privacy is full of holes

MWC 2016 LIVE: Mobile Connect availability hits 2B

Long live Eurozone’s bank supervisor down with the EU budget supremo

Poverty and social exclusion skyrocket with austerity

The EU threatens to impose extra import duties on Chinese products

Court of Auditors: EU spending infested with errors well above the materiality threshold of 2%

Inegalitarian taxation on labour haunts Europe’s social model

New round of bargaining for the 2014 EU budget late in autumn

What are the real targets of EU’s efforts to fight tax evasion?

Does the Greek deal strengthen the Eurozone? Markets react cautiously

A new European banking space is born this year

The ECB still protects the banks at the expense of the EU taxpayers

Russia and the EU ‘trade’ natural gas supplies and commercial concessions in and out of Ukraine

The EU responds to US challenges by fining Apple with €13 billion

The EU Commission openly repudiates the austere economic policies

EU and African leaders to jointly tackle the migration crisis across the Mediterranean

Eurozone: A Sluggish economy offers no extra jobs

EU: 13 major banks may pay fines 10% of worldwide turnover

Eurozone: The crisis hit countries are again subsidizing the German and French banks

European Business Summit 2013: Where Business and Politics shape the future

The Chinese spirit

Trade protectionism and cartels threaten democracy

The G7 fails to agree on growth but protects the big banks

The European Internet is not neutral and neither is the Commissioner

“Is Europe innovative? Oh, Yes we are very innovative!”, Director General of the European Commission Mr Robert-Jan Smits on another Sting Exclusive

A Sting Exclusive: “Sustainable development goals: what role for business?” Commissioner Mimica asks live from European Business Summit 2015

Theresa May’s global Britain against Philip Hammond’s Brexit fog

Resolving banks with depositors’ money?

The time is up but the game is still not over for Greece: negotiations continue in anticipation of a new deal

Solitary Britain sides with US aggressing Russia and chooses hard Brexit

Auditors say EU spending delivers limited value for money but the timing of their report poses questions

On Brexit: the outcome of UK elections next May to be based on false promises?

COP21 Breaking News_03 December: UNFCCC Secretariat Launches Forest Information Hub

War of words in Davos over Eurozone’s inflation/deflation

Businesses succeed internationally

EU out to conquer African Union summit

Why and how Germany had it again its own way in Cyprus

The European Youth raises their voices this week in Brussels at Yo!Fest 2015

JADE Handover Ceremony at the European Parliement

EU Parliament: Follow the fraudulent money and confiscate it

More Stings?

Speak your Mind Here

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s