An Open Letter to Sky News

Dear Sky News,
For yourself, and anyone else reading, I would like to address the guest appearance of Owen Jones on your Orlando coverage. I would like to refute a few of the things that you said (most, if not all) and tell you why you are completely and utterly shameful.
The presenter, first of all, seems to have a complete disregard that, despite Constitution to tell the US otherwise, all men are not created equal. There is no level playing ground between race, class, sexual orientation and religion and to believe so is a gross distortion of reality. It may seem an obvious thing, but just because one's mentality is to treat one another equally does NOT mean that they enjoy the same equality in all aspects of life.

Which is why I am confused that a grown man who is apparently seasoned in the field of politics can sit and tell a gay man that the horrible shooting in Orlando was "against human beings". Human beings are not fundamentally equal and therefore we cannot equate an attack against a disadvantaged group as an attack on human beings as a whole. You are shamelessly whitewashing a crime that is specifically and clearly against the LGBT community to something it is not. Even more horrifying, you attempted to imply that because we recognise that it is an attempt on the LGBT community we are demeaning widespread, non-targeted terrorist attacks such as that in France. I am disgusted that you are comparing two tragedies in the first place, because that is exactly what they are: tragedies. Not comparable, certainly not measurable.

We do not tell the Black Lives Matter movement that 'all lives matter' - they know that - because white lives are not treated as flippantly by police and media and are not systematically oppressed. We have not endured a history of slavery, rape, murder and segregation; our lives have mattered more to society throughout the modern history of the world. LGBT rights can be explained in the same way. You cannot say it is an attack on human beings when the LGBT community have been treated less than humans for years - forced to hide, murdered in various scenarios, denied marriage rights in the US until last year and still banned where I live to this day. To gloss over the important differences between heterosexuals and the LGBT community is insulting and a completely uneducated response to a sensitive issue that should be treated with respect.

Regardless of the origins of the shooter, his aim was clear: he specifically targeted an LGBT club and we cannot forget that. You cannot make us forget that through your limited reporting. It's a brave new world, Sky News, and we have more ways of communicating information and making judgements than your uninsightful and unwelcome commentary. More than anything, do not try to make an idiot out of a well-informed journalist and do not accuse him of trying to "own" a tragedy - a gay man has more right than anyone to discuss an attack on an LGBT community. Not that I was ever a fan, but you've lost more than one viewer, that's for sure.
Yours sincerely,
a straight, white, working class, angry woman.


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