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United in Solidarity Following Orlando Nightclub Shooting

DU Students, faculty and staff come together for moment of silence and communal scream

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Roughly 150 people came together on the University of Denver campus Monday to show solidarity following the June 12 massacre at a gay nightclub in Orlando. It was an opportunity to reflect, remember and commit to moving forward and making our community a better place.

“Sadness is understandable today, but so is frustration, anger and most useful a desire to do something good about it,” Thomas Walker, director of DU’s LGBTIQA services, told the crowd. “Things won’t magically improve or get better, people must intentionally make them so.”

DU Solidarity Event

Everyone who gathered inside the Driscoll Student Center paused for a minute of silence, roughly one second for each of the 49 people killed inside Pulse nightclub. The minute of reflection was followed by a communal scream, an opportunity for everyone in the room to release anger or say something they want to see changed. This is often done to call attention to the existence of the LGBTIQA community and to rally members and supporters for the ongoing work for equality.

Knowing that it is not enough to simply look back and regret, we also gather today to look and move forward. Thomas Walker, Director of Educational Programs and LGBTIQA Services
Solidarity Event

Walker encouraged everyone to think about what they would do to “model the positive and interrupt the negative.” Participants were then asked to fill out an action pledge and make them public by posting them on social media.

“If your heart is low, raise up your voice,” Walker said. "If your heart is heavy, lift up your hands. If your heart is tired, open your eyes and know that you need not be silent, still or alone.”