Watch President Obama Condemn the Orlando Massacre as “an Act of Terror and an Act of Hate.”

“This could have been any one of our communities.”


Speaking from the White House on Sunday afternoon, President Obama called the Orlando massacre “an act of terror and an act of hate.”

“This could have been any one of our communities,” said the President during the brief remarks.

His comments come after a gunman opened fire at Pulse, a gay nightclub in Orlando, Fla., killing 50 and hospitalizing 53. The shooting is being called the deadliest in American history.

This is Obama’s 18th presidential address to the American people after a mass shooting.

“The massacre is a further reminder of how easy it is for someone to get their hands on a weapon to shoot someone in a school, in a place of worship, a movie theater, or a nightclub,” Obama said. “We have to decide if that’s the kind of country we want to be. To actively do nothing is a decision as well.”

“We need to demonstrate that we are defined more as a country by the way they lived their lives than the man who took them away from us,” he said. “In the face of hate and violence, we will love one another. We will not give into fear and turn against one another.”

The President also took the opportunity to speak directly to the LGBT community, which appears to have been specifically targeted in the attack. “This is an especially heartbreaking day for our friends, our fellow Americans, who are lesbian, gay, transgender and bisexual,” he said. “The place where they were attacked is more than a nightclub. It is a place of solidarity and empowerment where people come together to raise awareness, to speak their minds and to advocate for their civil rights.”

 Watch Obama’s full address below:

DOES IT FEEL LIKE POLITICS IS AT A BREAKING POINT?

Headshot of Editor in Chief of Mother Jones, Clara Jeffery

It sure feels that way to me, and here at Mother Jones, we’ve been thinking a lot about what journalism needs to do differently, and how we can have the biggest impact.

We kept coming back to one word: corruption. Democracy and the rule of law being undermined by those with wealth and power for their own gain. So we're launching an ambitious Mother Jones Corruption Project to do deep, time-intensive reporting on systemic corruption, and asking the MoJo community to help crowdfund it.

We aim to hire, build a team, and give them the time and space needed to understand how we got here and how we might get out. We want to dig into the forces and decisions that have allowed massive conflicts of interest, influence peddling, and win-at-all-costs politics to flourish.

It's unlike anything we've done, and we have seed funding to get started, but we're looking to raise $500,000 from readers by July when we'll be making key budgeting decisions—and the more resources we have by then, the deeper we can dig. If our plan sounds good to you, please help kickstart it with a tax-deductible donation today.

Thanks for reading—whether or not you can pitch in today, or ever, I'm glad you're with us.

Signed by Clara Jeffery

Clara Jeffery, Editor-in-Chief

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our newsletters

Subscribe and we'll send Mother Jones straight to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate

Share your feedback: We’re planning to launch a new version of the comments section. Help us test it.