In Missouri, a Latina student was offended because white students mourned the Orlando terror attack.
A large crowd, estimated to be up to 1,000, gathered at the Boone County Courthouse in Missouri for a vigil honoring the victims of the Orlando attack, but some there had to make it about themselves.
Tiffany Melecio, who The College Fix reported is a Mizzou graduate and activist, was among those tasked with reading the names of victims.
Melecio noted many of the victims were Latino. “I was really nervous to get up here because there’s a lot of white people in the crowd. And that wasn’t a joke,” she said.
Melecio took issue with how she felt the movement was co-opted by whites, The Columbian Tribune reported. Her comments of “as much as it is awesome that there’s so many people here today, but it’s, like, who are you really here for?” drew reactions from the crowd, including a shout of “we’re here for everybody.”
She referenced her own racial demonstrations and the Black Lives Matter movement, which she “wish[ed] this many people came out to.”
Melecio spoke of a “dichotomy we hear when we talk about race,” but didn’t bring healing to the situation as she made supporting others a racial and personal issue and upset others in the process.
Daniel Brizendine, who was in attendance with his husband, Carl, frequented the Pulse nightclub when he lived in Orlando. He’s also been involved in marches since 1982.
“Now all of a sudden I am going to be white-shamed, and I am not going to be white-shamed just because I was born with white skin,” he said. He thought Melecio was wrong to bring up race as she did.
“We are here to be uniting, not dividing, which is what you are doing now,” Carl Brizendine said. “Right here on this stage, they are segregating us as a community,” Carl told The College Fix.
Assistant Director of the University of Missouri Counseling Center, Christy Hutton, told The Columbia Daily Tribune that Melecio’s feelings were understandable in how she identified her own life and story with the victims. “That is how we cope and feel,” Hutton said.