On being ‘pro-life’ in a violent world

Reflecting on the Club Q shooting and the toll of anti-LGBTQ rhetoric

Sarah Stankorb

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PHOTO: Elvert Barnes, vigil held in Washington, D.C. for Colorado Springs Club Q victims.

Today, I’m sharing an excerpt from In Polite Company, my weekly newsletter for people who want to interrogate or otherwise defrag American faith.

I’ve been thinking a lot about how people of faith frame reproductive choice. Next week, I’ll have an interview to share with someone who lives her faith trying to provide needed abortion access to women living in Ohio.

But today, even as families begin gathering to give thanks, I have to pause in light of another mass shooting. The attack at Club Q in Colorado Springs wasn’t even the only mass shooting in America this past weekend. While case records are sealed and charges are still forthcoming, the local district attorney said murder and “bias-motivated” charges were likely. The nature of the attack and the evident targeting of what some have called the only safe place for LGBTQ people in Colorado Springs is something I can’t remove from my mind.

I return again to thoughts of family gathering and empty chairs.

The details emerging are as vivid as they are tragic. There was the bartender, Derek Rump, who loved Brittany Spears, and as reporter Casey Parks detailed “He bought lashes and outfits for drag queens who…

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Sarah Stankorb

Sarah Stankorb has published with The Washington Post, Marie Claire, Glamour, O, and The Atlantic (among others). @sarahstankorb www.sarahstankorb.com