The trench was a horrible sight. The dead were stretched out on one side, one on top of each other six feet high.

“I thought at the time I should never get the peculiar disgusting smell of the vapour of warm human blood heated by the sun out of my nostrils. I would rather have smelt gas a hundred times. I can never describe that faint sickening, horrible smell which several times nearly knocked me up altogether.” — British Captain Leeham, talking about the first day of the Battle of the Somme, in ‘Tommy Goes to War’

By Blue Bronc, a Trail Mix Contributor

What does it mean to be Lesbian or Gay or Bisexual or Transgender, or any other person than white male in the missionary position today?

What is your feeling of safety? Of security in this world?

2007, I was discussing my first campaign with the chief of police.  There was great concern that my running would be accompanied by protests and violence.  We were over concerned, nothing did happen.  While discussing FBI statistics regarding issues the talk came to me.  “What are the odds I would be killed?”  A very real question.  At the time we in the LGBT community knew the number at 25% greater that a transwoman would be murdered over a male walking down the street.  The chief, a friend now, thought a little and admitted that odds of me being killed were off the chart.

LAorlandoHow often are any gay or transwomen assaulted and killed?  Many police fail to even report assaults and deaths may be suicide or OD.  The numbers are unknown, but are better than ever, at least a few more honest reports are filed. How many sex workers just disappear?

The other day a coworker asked me what my greatest fear is as a transwoman.  Easily it is walking down the street alone.  It struck her hard.  Very hard.  The reality is any woman walking alone anywhere is a target.  Being a transwoman I know the current odds of being attacked and killed walking down the street.  According to the FBI it is 100% greater than a male walking down the street.

I cry for those killed and wounded this morning.  The sadness will not go away.  The constant concern that some idiot, pumped up with the hate from Republicans, from far right wing idiots, from the “christians” (they are not Christian in any manner) and from other religions, will declare they are freeing the world of the  gays and will kill us does not go away.  Will this concern end?  I do not believe it ever will.

LA_PRIDE_PARADE_061216bl_006How do we administer revenge?  We are but a small percentage of the peoples of this community, this country, this world.  We are not in a position to stop the attacks alone.  Our lives depend on allies.  Many allies from so many different communities.  Allies from all religions too.

Do I feel scared?  No.  I and many others will not be scared.  We will not be frightened back into the closet.

Well not much happened during the campaigns.  I did get a few death threats, but not serious.  Those were sent to my post office box.  It was the one under the windshield wiper blade that got my attention.

More Posts by Blue Bronc


Author: Blue Bronc

Born in Detroit when Truman was president, survived the rest of them. Early on I learned that FDR was the greatest president, which has withstood all attempts to change that image. Democratic Party, flaming liberal, Progressive, equality for all and a believer in we are all human and deserve respect and understanding. College educated, a couple of degrees, a lot of world experience and tons of fun. US Air Force (pre-MRE days). Oil and gas fields, computer rooms and stuff beyond anything I can talk about. It has been quite a life so far. The future is making my retirement boat my home. Dogs, cats and other critters fill my life with happiness. Work pays the bills.

56 thoughts on “The trench was a horrible sight. The dead were stretched out on one side, one on top of each other six feet high.”

  1. pbs newshour weekend

    Pres. Barack Obama said Sunday that he stands in support with the LGBT community after a gunman killed 50 people at a popular gay nightclub in Orlando. Carlos Smith of Equality Rights, a group that advocates for LGBT rights, joins Hari Sreenivasan to discuss what the attack means to the community.

    starting at 1:27 in carlos smith talks of “standing in solidarity with muslim community… both our communities have been targets of hate”

  2. Employees of Disney, Universal, SeaWorld and other Central Florida theme parks took to social media with photos from various show casts, performers and characters as they formed heart signs with their hands and arms.

  3. Orlando mass shooting: Bigotry is bigotry, no matter what religion you use to justify it
    Conservatives exploit the night club shooting to attack liberals, but we need liberalism to end homophobic violence
    Amanda Marcotte

    After all, whenever Democrats do things like stand up for the rights of LGBT people to get married, live free of discrimination, or even use the bathroom in peace, they get lambasted by right wingers for this supposed “political correctness”. Are we meant to believe that Mateen shot up a gay bar as a show of politically correct solidarity with the rights of LGBT Americans? Can these right wing bloviaters even hear themselves anymore?
    Liberals do not deny that the Islamic fundamentalism preached by groups like ISIS and Al Qaeda regards homosexuality as an abomination and opposes the rights of gay people to live freely and to marry. But guess what! So do the Christian fundamentalists in our own country, the very same ones who are always telling us how oppressed they are by “political correctness” and how they are being denied their “religious freedom” when they are expected to treat LGBT Americans equally.
    The common thread here, again and again, is religious fundamentalism, whether your call it “Christian” or “Muslim.” LGBT people have been the favorite punching bag of the Christian right in this country for years. Whenever the Christian right needs to rally the troops, they start running around, hair on fire, screaming about how the queers are out to get your children.

  4. BlueB… what a wonderful post.  I agree with Flatus…  you do personify courage…  and I’ll add dignity too.

  5. POLITICO on “the Orlando that people don’t know, an increasingly diverse, sustainable and cosmopolitan boomtown that led the nation in job growth last year.”

  6. pogo, pardon the levity at this serious time, but come the revolution you just may. don’t forget Shakespeare’s

    The first thing we do, let’s kill all the lawyers”  🙂


    “But for right now, on a day when some dipshit terrorist wants us to focus on one man’s act of brutality and hatred, it might be worth seeing this video, which was posted to Twitter today,” he said. “It shows hundreds and hundreds of people this morning lining up around the block in Florida waiting to donate blood, and it kinda reminds you that this terrorist dipshit is vastly outnumbered.”

  8. Hillary Clinton’s Moment, and My Own


    Maybe the sense of inevitability comes from knowing Hillary too well. She’s become a stand-in for the archetypal women who frighten and repel us: The woman betrayed. The castrating woman. The cookie woman. The dowdy woman. Right now, some very loud people are not ready for what Hillary really is: the indomitable woman. Barring anything unprecedented, the nominee. Real, and brave. Defying all caricature.
    And so we forget to be surprised by Hillary’s achievement. We begrudge her, and ourselves, a few moments to bask. We expect Hillary to do great things. That’s always been the Wellesley girl problem — no one can be surprised by her accomplishments. We expect nothing less. She’s always among the smartest in any room. And so she raises the bar. How exhausting it must be. How demanding we are. Nothing women do is ever really good enough.

  9. tony, you’ll really like this one from huffpo:

    For those baffled by the turbulent political climate the nation is experiencing, Louis C.K. explained the candidates and their qualifications with one simple analogy.

    “It’s like if you were on a plane and you wanted to choose a pilot,” the “Louie” star said. “You have one person, Hillary, who says, ‘Here’s my license. Here’s all the thousands of flights that I’ve flown. Here’s planes I’ve flown in really difficult situations. I’ve had some good flights and some bad flights, but I’ve been flying for a very long time, and I know exactly how this plane works.’”

    The comedian continued, saying, “Then you’ve got Bernie, who says, ‘Everyone should get a ride right to their house with this plane.’ ‘Well, how are you going to do that?’ ‘I just think we should. It’s only fair that everyone gets to use the plane equally.’ And then Trump says, ‘I’m going to fly so well. You’re not going to believe how good I’m going to fly this plane, and by the way, Hillary never flew a plane in her life.’ ‘She did, and we have pictures.’ ‘No, she never did it.’ It’s insane.” 

  10. “Do I feel scared?  No.  I and many others will not be scared.  We will not be frightened back into the closet.”


    bluebronc, thank you for the thread. very worthy of many reposts.  but let me add because we love you and fearless leader and tony and all our LGBTQI tm’rs: please take care and stay safe

  11. Blue Bronc,

    What a wonderful post. Were it within my power, it would be required reading for everyone today. Well done!

  12. How Trump Could Help Clinton Win Black Voters At Obama Levels
    by Lauren Fox

    Clinton won’t be fighting for black voters all by herself. With President Barack Obama behind her and her husband, former President Bill Clinton, still very popular in the African American community, Republican pollster Dan Judy said he’s warned down ballot candidates to expect equal African-American voter turnout for Clinton in 2016.
    “Any Republican candidate who looks at their potential electorate and assumes that black turnout will be down from 2012, is making a mistake,” Judy told TPM.
    Clinton’s primary performance in the South was another promising sign that Obama’s faithful African-American supporters don’t plan to stay home on election day.
    Clinton won back many of the black voters in South Carolina who had voted against her eight years earlier, plus some. She won 86 percent of the African American vote, a greater share than President Obama. According to the Washington Post, she even mobilized an increase in African American turnout with 61 percent of blacks coming to the polls this year compared with 55 percent in 2008.

  13. Pat

    You bet i liked that one! Great way to explain Hillary’s qualifications… The Bernie and Trump descriptions are spot on as well.

  14. BB

    Wonderful article.  I cannot imagine what it must be like to have fear as a constant companion.  As a divorced, straight woman, I’ve been attacked three times in my life in the space of 50 years, fortunately with no more damage than a black eye.  Rare enough that it certainly isn’t a way of life other than simple precautions.  For you and all others that society has chosen as favored victims, I can only hope these horrific events makes it clear that conditions must change and that awareness of the threat will bring more understanding and safety for you.


  15. patd, point well taken.  My kid’s roommate and friend for about 14 years now has a sister who just graduated college.  Her mom’s a dentist and her dad manages contracts for a huge organization.  When her dad told me she was going to go to law school I suggested that he may want to do her a favor and smother her in her sleep before she goes down that wrong road or alternatively to suggest she go into an honorable profession, like dentistry or prostitution.

    And by the way, some of the best laughs I’ve had with friends and family have been at funerals and wakes.

  16. One state which I derived great pleasure from (allegedly) breaking the law was one taking active steps to focus hate on LGBT, in particular the “T”, North Carolina.  I (allegedly) peed in their airport, their state training facilities (allegedly) and walked my transwoman and lesbian feet all over their land.

    State sponsored discrimination and dehumanization of humans is despicable in all manners.  It leads others to think they can apply their hate without recrimination. Check out the news reports to tally the number of Republicans who use any word or acronym that is Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual or Transgender (it is transgender not transgendered) LGBTQI.  They are sure they will catch AIDS just by saying “gay”.

  17. Jack,  Manafort is the perfect campaign chairman, manager, whatever for Trump – I could have sworn the Repugn ticket in 2012 was Romney & Ryan. I guess what Romney did doesn’t fall under Manafort’s definition of run.  Moron.

  18. Something that I apparently failed to update in the post is a comment about blood donations.

    Following outdated, and very homophobic thinking, gay men are not allowed to donate blood.  One report is one donation center did not follow the restriction yesterday, but none of the others.  Rather than allow the possibility of AIDS entering a dying persons veins the decision to not allow gay men to donate continued.  The last I heard is the HIV/AIDS blood test detects the virus by 30 days after infection.  Not one year.  Think of a gay couple, together twenty years, neither has HIV/AIDS, but because they are gay they cannot donate.  Yeah.  I whole lot of sense.

  19. Courage is one thing, bravado is another. In the case of GLBT folks, I don’t know where one would draw the line. The common wisdom has always been, don’t go alone. Here and now, as in Israel in the early 2000s, the wisdom must be to avoid crowds. It has to be horrible to be constantly damping down one’s joi de vivre, to look over one’s shoulder for a perv with rifle or an unattended backpack.

  20. May I propose a $1,000/yr tax on each clip larger that 5 shots, on each semi-automatic rifle, and on each smokeless gunpowder capable handgun, the revenue to be dedicated to defray the costs of shooting deaths and to fund a $500 reward for each operating semi-automatic rifle and handgun turned in.

  21. breaking news 🙂 in key west

    In this bar fight at one of Key West’s most famous watering holes, it wasn’t a spilled drink or sleazy advance on someone’s wife that led to blows.

    According to the police report, a fight broke out between two couples this week when someone, who Friday remained unidentified, allegedly broke wind inside Sloppy Joe’s, 201 Duval St.

    “The argument was due to someone farting,” police were told by a man who went to the hospital for a dislocated shoulder after the scrap.

  22. from cnn:
    Hillary Clinton said Monday she’s not afraid to say “radical” Islam as she countered attacks from Donald Trump that she’s too politically correct to use the phrase.
    “From my perspective, it matters what we do more than what we say,” Clinton said on CNN’s “New Day.” “And it mattered we got bin Laden, not what name we called him. I have clearly said we — whether you call it radical jihadism or radical Islamism, I’m happy to say either. I think they mean the same thing.”

    “This was a terrorist attack. ISIS appears to be claiming credit for it, whether it had anything to do with it or not — at a minimum, they seem to have inspired it,” Clinton told host Chris Cuomo.
    And Clinton took a veiled swipe at Trump, who has proposed temporary banning Muslims from entering the United States, for targeting Muslims in his campaign rhetoric.
    “What I won’t do, because I think it is dangerous for our efforts to defeat this threat, is to demonize and demagogue and declare war on an entire religion,” she said. “That plays right into ISIS’ hands.”

    Clinton, in her interview calling the aftermath of the attacks a “time for statesmanship, not partisanship,” projected confidence in the United States’ ability to defend against future terror attacks.
    “We have the resources, relationships and experience to get it done,” she said. “And this is a moment — for Republicans, Democrats, independents — for all Americans to work together as one team. It’s time for statesmanship, not partisanship. Our fellow citizens should expect that.”
    And the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee made the case for stricter gun safety laws in the wake of the massacre, arguing that “common sense gun safety reform across our country would make a difference” while calling for the reinstatement of an assault weapons ban.
    “We can’t fall into the trap that is set up by the gun lobby that says if you can’t stop every shooting in every incident you should not try to stop any.

  23. Clinton should say she can say radical Islam all day long but can Rump say Right to Privacy

  24. wonkette:
    Here’s some fun polling: In the very, very red state of Utah, Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump are tied in a presidential poll by the Salt Lake Tribune and the Hinckley Institute of Politics at the University of Utah. With five months to go until the election, both candidates have 35 percent support, with Libertarian Gary Johnson coming in with an uncharacteristically large number, 13 percent, because he’s both Not Hillary and Not Trump. It’s entirely possible that Utah could go to a Democrat for the first time in 52years.
    Which is not to say that people in Utah think Hillary Clinton is the kindest warmest bravest most wonderful human being they’ve ever seen on TV. Just that about equal percentages of Utahns despise both candidates:

    But the biggest Election Day winner may be whoever opens the nose-plug concession as Utahns will largely be holding their noses as they vote. Sixty-seven percent of those polled have an unfavorable opinion of Clinton and 65 percent dislike Trump.

    Trump struggles most with voters in the 18-34 age group and women. Clinton is likewise viewed unfavorably by younger voters and by 79 percent of members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

  25. Trump certainly is a strong supporter of political correctness.  Like most conservatives , he insists we say things exactly as they demand.  Happy Holidays!

  26. By the end of the campaign no one will be allowed to talk to him except Amarosa

  27. If republicans don’t walk away from Trump after today they never will. Apparently the only hope left is a general election that he loses in landslide fashion. Pond scum.

  28. I think the Rumpster is going to tank in the polls over the next few weeks.  By the convention the idea of a 50 state sweep and loss of the Senate will have taken hold.   At that point a lot of Republicans will be getting the flu and Trump will be hiring seat fillers.

    Gary Johnson will be in the debates.  Dr. Stein and the Greens need to get in gear and get some publicity so they can get in the debates too.

    Let’s make this the end of the behavior of the Republican party.  It is not ok to do nothing. And all that phony religious freedom crap when your goal is to force the religious principles of a tiny minority on the vast majority for the sake of a few votes to protect your do-nothing strategy. The goops deserve Rump but the rest of us do not

    From EJ Dionne posted next by Jace
    I freely admit that I identified entirely with Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) when he declared: “This phenomenon of near constant mass shootings happens only in America — nowhere else. Congress has become complicit in these murders by its total, unconscionable deafening silence.”

  29. “I freely admit that I identified entirely with Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) when he declared: “This phenomenon of near constant mass shootings happens only in America — nowhere else. Congress has become complicit in these murders by its total, unconscionable deafening silence.”


    Thanks for including this section from the Dionne article. He’s right. Enough is enough! All ads should read, ‘This congressman bought and paid for by the NRA’

  30. If they don’t turn away from him…they are going down with him.

    You already see guys like Corker who gave it a shot backing far away as in don’t mention my name as a running mate


  31. Can We Please Stop Pretending This Massacre Wasn’t About Homophobia?
    We are done being erased.
    James Michael Nichols

    Few things, to me, feel quite as painful as the erasure of the sexual and gender identities of the victims when it comes to reporting on this attack.
    We as LGBT people spent decades being told that we don’t exist or that our lives do not matter. We’ve been murdered in the streets and incarcerated for trying to live authentically as who we are. When we were dying by the thousands from AIDS in the 1980s and 1990s, those in positions of power turned a blind eye to it.
    And now, when are are slaughtered in a nightclub — historically the pinnacle of safe space and community for queer people — the world is trying to erase us once again.
    Let me say this loud and clear: this was an invasion and massacre of the queer community.
    If you have trouble understanding the idea of a nightclub as a safe, sacred space, then you’ve clearly never been made to feel like your love is illegitimate, incorrect and something that should be hidden away from the world. You’ve clearly never needed a safe space. We always have.

  32. Car Service Refuses To Carry Gay Activists At Puerto Rican Day Parade
    A painful reminder of intolerance just hours after mass shooting in Orlando targets LGBT club.
    Roque Planas

    Yes, even the Orlando massacre still doesn’t stop it.. If you’re out in a big way, watch out, the homophobia is coming, you can’t escape it. Even my friends from Georgia scouting New Smyrna Beach as a site for their gay wedding and reception asked me, do you think we have to hire security?? This was two weeks ago.. I assured them that i thought all would be ok . They also cleared with the caterer that it was for newly married gay men. Another concern for them was the beach ceremony. I told them if they were concerned that they could consider using Bethune beach south of here more private, no cars and few people for the ceremony.. Planning a year ahead and i’m sure all will be ok it’s just you never know…

  33. Democrats Call On FDA To End Ban On Blood Donations From Gay Men
    Rejecting gay men who want to donate blood to those wounded in Orlando shows the “moral bankruptcy” of the ban.
    Laura Barron-Lopez

    Thanks you Democrats. I won’t hold my breath waiting for one of those Republicans to call for an end to the band.. Shameful Trump and many of them using the Orlando massacre as a way to fuel their endless terrorism and wars.. They purposely avoid mentioning it was a Hate crime and the media fully aides them..

  34. Craig and Blue Bronc- both beautiful posts.  My thoughts and prayers are with the victims’ and their loved ones and of course to Orlando and the LGBT communities.  Big hugs to my friends.   Am just now sitting down to the TV and am so, so disgusted with the conversations am hearing on CNN with the Trump surrogates.  Ems arrived home yesterday and had been busy getting ready then visiting- am so sorry that I wasn’t here to respond to the ugly insensitive comments made yesterday. Really incomprehensible.

  35. To Blue Bronc’s point in this fine post, the more we learn the more I am convinced this was simply a hate crime against gays by a deranged possibly self-hating gay himself, always a dangerous thing. Gay bashers twisting this to bash Muslims is ironic.

  36. Question for He who would be CinC: Are/did your ‘boys’ register for the Draft? Show me the proof!

  37. it could be both — a terrorist attack…Muslim fundamentalists are anti gay

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