The Week on Twitter | Orlando, Jo Cox, & Oscar Pistorious

This week, Twitter mourned the victims of the Orlando shooting as vigils were held all over the world in memory of the 49 people who lost their lives in Pulse nightclub last weekend. Many were also shocked and devastated by the murder of British Labour MP Jo Cox, who was shot and stabbed by a terrorist on Thursday.

We also watched as Oscar Pistorious removed his prosthetic legs in a desperate plea for a shorter jail sentence, and freaked the fuck out (in a good way, sorta) as those Swift/Hiddleston pictures appeared on our timelines.

49 killed in attack on gay club Pulse #OrlandoShooting

On Sunday night, it was reported that 49 people had been killed and 53 injured in a mass shooting in a gay club in Orlando. The hate crime took place in Pulse nightclub and has been confirmed as the deadliest terrorist attack in America since 9/11. The attack is also the most lethal act of violence ever committed against the LGBT community in the US.

Despite initial speculation that the gunman was a member of ISIS, the CIA eventually confirmed that the attacker had no links to the terrorist organisation. Those blaming the death of 49 innocent people on ISIS, and even Islam as a whole, were very quickly put in their place by everyone who recognised the Orlando shooting for what it was – a homophobic attack on the LGBT community during the month of Pride.

The massacre incited much (continued) discussion and condemnation of America’s weak gun restrictions, the dangers that gay, bi, and trans individuals still face every day, and the pain and hurt that mindless hatred can cause. Following the admission of survivors to hospitals in Orlando, many gay and bisexual men arrived to donate blood only to find that the FDA had not lifted the blood ban despite what some reports had suggested. Only men who had not been sexually active for 12+ months were permitted to donate blood.

Here in Dublin, LGBT groups BeLonGTo, GLEN, and TENI held a vigil for the victims of the shooting. Hundreds attended the city centre event to show their support, mourn those who had lost their lives, and to prove that the strength and solidarity of the LGBT community had not been compromised by hate.

Labour MP #JoCox shot and stabbed following constituency meeting

On Thursday evening, Labour MP Jo Cox was killed by a 52 year old man in a terrorist attack after a constituency meeting in West Yorkshire. The man, who has since been arrested by police, is believed to have shouted the words ‘Britain First’ while attacking Cox, in reference to the far-right, fascist political party of the same name.

Cox, who had been a member of parliament for just one year, was a notable advocate for refugee rights. She chaired humanitarian group Friends of Syria, and spoke passionately numerous times about the lives of those who were being forced to flee their country due to war. Following her death, Cox’s husband released an emotive statement detailing his wife’s inspiring energy and “zest for life that would exhaust most people.” He said that his life would be less joyful without Jo, but that he would work tirelessly to fight the hatred that killed her.

Yesterday, hundreds turned up to vigils across the UK in memory of Jo to express their devastation. There will be a vigil for Jo in Dublin tonight (Friday) at 6pm at the Human Rights and Poverty stone on Custom House Quay.

#HiddleSwift implodes internet just a bit #TaylorSwift #TomHiddleston

This week, some pics of Tom Hiddleston and Taylor Swift having a bit of a shift on a beach appeared on the web. The pics were either semi-cute, cringey, or rage inducing if you’re an intense Tom Hiddleston fan – it depends. Either way, lots of people talked about them on Twitter.

Swift recently broke up with Calvin Harris last month or last week depending on who you ask about it. According to some social media posts which have since been deleted, the two finished things on good terms, which was nice. But according to another social media post which has since been deleted, Harris wasn’t too happy about the HiddleSwift pics, which was not so nice, for him, I guess.

The DJ tweeted something along the lines of – ‘oh boy it’s about to go down with a few skulls emojis’ or something, only to calmly tell TMZ afterwards that he was cool with whatever Taylor was doing while they hounded him after the gym one day.

#OscarPistorious removes prosthetic legs and walks around courtroom in bid for shorter sentence

In 2013, Olympic runner Oscar Pistorious murdered Reeva Steenkamp in the South African home they shared. According to Pistorious, he thought somebody had broken into his home and didn’t realise that he was actually shooting his girlfriend through a locked bathroom door on Valentine’s Day. Steenkamp suffered fatal wounds and was killed. While Pistorious was initially convicted of manslaughter, his charge was eventually upgraded to murder post appeal.

This week, Pistorious took off his leg prosthetics and walked around the court room to (supposedly) showcase how vulnerable he is. Pistorious’ defence lawyers prompted the act in a plea to incite sympathy from the judge and to secure their client a shorter jail sentence.

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