Tatchell: Orlando attack is ‘extreme example of what happens every day’

"I don't believe faith is a legitimate reason to justify prejudice," says Tatchell

People gather in Orlando to mourn the lives lost in the Pulse nightclub shooting

Monday, June 13, 2016

Gay rights campaigner Peter Tatchell has said the Orlando shooting is an "extreme example of what happens every day" to the LGBT community.

In the early hours of Sunday morning, Omar Mateen killed 50 people and injuring at least 53 in what is now being described in the USA as "the country's worst terror attack since 9/11".

Mateen proclaimed his allegiance to the terrorist group ISIS in a 911 call moments before the massacre.

Tatchell said the incident was "a shocking, outrageous, and appalling terrorist attack", but pointed out that homophobia is still very common despite a growing cultural shift.

"This was a homophobic-inspired terrorist attack, but what's happened in Orlando is a microcosm,” he told Julia Hartley-Brewer

“In London - a major multicultural city – there are three or four homophobic incidents every day.  

"There are still extremists out there who want to hurt us."

Tatchell insisted faith cannot be justification for homophobia, or other forms of discrimination.

"I don't believe faith is a legitimate reason to justify prejudice or discrimination of any kind," he said. "In a democratic liberal society, we are all equal before the law.

"Just as I would strongly oppose any demonisation or persecution of religious people, I think they have a duty to reciprocate this by not endorsing hatred and discrimination against gay people or others."