Michigan Vigils Honor Orlando Victims

Rick Pluta/Michigan Public Radio Network (MPRN)

Ella Marx cries at a candlelight vigil in Ann Arbor for the victims of the Orlando nightclub shootings. She says her LGBT sister lives in Florida. “It’s really close to home for me,” she says.

Gov. Rick Snyder has ordered flags at state buildings to be flown at half-staff in memory of the 50 people killed in a mass shooting at a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida.

Vigils around Michigan Sunday night also marked the killings.

There was a candlelight vigil at the state Capitol, in Ferndale, and Grand Rapids.

And people gathered at a courtyard in Ann Arbor that hosted a celebration almost a year ago after the US Supreme Court legalized same-sex marriage.

Rosalee Wright says she’s the mother of a gay son. She wants to see stricter gun laws.

We have got to change laws that will make it much for difficult to get a gun that sounded like the beat of a song in a night spot because it was such a fast and furious fuselage.”

There are 48 bills before the Michigan Legislature dealing with guns.

Stephenie White is the executive director of Equality Michigan. She says adding LGBT protections to the state’s civil rights law would be a step in the right direction.

It says we’re not second-class citizens, and as long as we still are second-class citizens, unfortunately, there are a lot of people who are sad an unstable who will take that to violent ends,” she said. “This was a sad, stark reminder of how much our community is seen as disposable, as second-class, as other, and as a valid target.”

The effort to add LGBT protections to the civil rights law is stalled in the Michigan Legislature, along with a bill to enact a Michigan Religious Freedom Restoration Act. 

Image credit: Rick Pluta/Michigan Public Radio Network (MPRN)

About the Author

Rick Pluta


Rick Pluta has been covering Michigan’s Capitol, government, and politics since 1987.

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