How one gay politician responded to the Orlando shooting

‘I want to introduce you to someone’

After the mass murder at Orlando’s Pulse nightclub, an openly gay Toronto city councillor made a simple gesture in defiance of both homophobes and Islamophobes.

“I want to introduce you to someone,” Kristyn Wong-Tam told the hundreds of people who had gathered at Barbara Hall Park for a vigil.

“This is Farrah Khan. Farrah is my queer Muslim fiancée,” she said, bringing her on stage.

This was the first time that Wong-Tam had publicly spoken about her engagement.

Khan is the sexual violence education and support coordinator at Ryerson University.

“When people hate queers, they hate us. When people hate Muslims, they hate us,” she said.

Wong-Tam, the councillor for Toronto’s Ward 27, which includes the Church-Wellesley Village, is the only openly gay member of Toronto’s city council. She’s often the leading voice for LGBT issues in city politics.

“My heart is so heavy,” said Wong-Tam, with tears welling up in her eyes. “We have lost so many people through the years, to hatred, to homophobia, to transphobia.”

But she urged the crowd to never give in to apathy.

“We can never be by-standers. When we see something, we will speak up, we will take action,” she said. “We will never ever be silent or silenced.”

Read More About:
Power, News, Toronto

Keep Reading

J.D. Vance’s appointment is a big threat to bodily autonomy

OPINION: The Trump VP pick’s statements about LGBTQ2S+ issues and abortion raise serious red flags

Job discrimination against trans and non-binary people is alive and well

OPINION: A study reveals that we have a long way to go to reach workplace equality for trans and non-binary people

The new generation of gay Conservative sellouts

OPINION: Melissa Lantsman’s and Eric Duncan’s refusals to call out their party’s transphobia is a betrayal of the LGBTQ2S+ community

Over 300 anti-LGBTQ2S+ bills have been introduced this year. This doesn’t mean we should panic

OPINION: While it’s important to watch out for threats, not all threats are created equally. Some of these bills will die a natural death