Following Sunday's deadly shooting at an Orlando, FL, nightclub, stars, politicians, and LGBT activists expressed their shock and sorrow, and called for gun control in the wake of the deadliest shooting in U.S. history, which left at least 50 people dead.
President Obama, visibly shaken, made a brief statement following Sunday's deadly shooting as the White House lowered flags to half-staff. The president sent prayers to the victims' families and the people of Orlando after an "act of terror and an act of hate."
The presumptive Democratic presidential nominee, Hillary Clinton, said that her "thoughts are with those affected by this horrific act" in a tweet.
Clinton also shared a message specifically to the LGBT community, saying, "Please know that you have millions of allies across our country. I am one of them. We will keep fighting for your right to live freely, openly, and without fear. Hate has absolutely no place in America."
During an interview on Meet The Press on Sunday morning, Bernie Sanders called for automatic weapons not to be sold in the United States.
Sanders said, "It's unthinkable, and hopes go out to those who were shot that they can recover, and I've got to tell you for 25 years now, I've believed that we should not be selling automatic weapons which are designed to kill people, and we've got to do everything we can on top of that to make sure that guns do not fall into the hands of people who should not have them."
Florida Sen. Marco Rubio tweeted about the need for blood donations for survivors.
A Vatican spokesperson told The Associated Press that Pope Francis expressed "deepest feelings of horror and condemnation" over what he called "homicidal folly and senseless hatred." The pope also asked for "prayer and compassion" for the victims and their families.
LGBT activist Stuart Milk, nephew of Harvey Milk, shared a statement on social media, sending "a world of love and prayers to all those who are grieving today."
Ellen Degeneres was one of many celebrities who shared their sorrow on social media.
Other celebrities called for change, specifically tougher gun restrictions.
There were also strong reactions on Instagram.
In one week: our hearts break for Christina Grimmie and her family, her fans. Our hearts break for the queer community in Orlando, unsafe even in a space they created for themselves. Our hearts break for a country where this is what the news looks like day after day. The concerned citizens of the United States of America demand change.
Words fail me. Such senseless and merciless violence... I can't. You either live from a place of love, or a place of fear. Hatred is an ugly byproduct of fear. Those are our choices. Love has to win. It must. • To all my brothers and sisters in the LGTB community, I love you. You're in my prayers. • If anyone is wondering what they can do in the immediate future to help, please visit orlandohealthfoundation.com. Orlando area hospitals are in crisis mode, and in need of O-, O+, and AB plasma donors. So if you are in the area, please consider donating ASAP. #OrlandoHasMyHeart 💗💛💚💙💜💔
Last night - in celebration of pride- a group of people - people like you or me or your neighbors or family were dancing & listening to music & celebrating life, just like you or me or your neighbors would. And then, one man and one gun took that life away from them. That's cruel. And it's exactly against what America stands for. I try to make music that hopefully brings joy to people and makes people dance and makes people feel and makes people LOVE... Because there's nothing more pure and beautiful than that act- and the fact that that resulted in the largest mass shooting in American history leaves me heartbroken. I used to LIVE there. I hope we can wake up and realize we are ALL THE SAME. Just humans. One species. Just wanting to be LOVED. #PrayForOrlando #MoreLoveLessHate
My heart goes out to the LGBT community and all involved in another senseless act of evil. Somethings GOT TO change. I'm angry and sad and frustrated that anyone has had to suffer like this and that many live in fear. We are all sick of this shit and should feel safe in our country. Peace and prayers for everyone. ❤️💛💚💙💜
💔💛💚💙💜 On behalf of my sister Barry, her wife Julie and I - a donation has been placed to support the victims & their families in the Orlando massacre. Link in Bio. Please support the victims of this community that have been senselessly slaughtered. We are broken in their passing. We are shamed by the acts that are taking place in this country. I'm so tired of loving so much that my heart breaks over and over and over yet that is the only solution. Love and accountability. Donate and help the families now. Speak the fuck up and GET GUN CONTROL HANDLED IN THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA. End the bigotry. End the hatred. End the terrorism. End the denial that we are living in a radically dangerous world that needs a firm hand, firm laws and countless hugs, kisses and endless healing. There are no words. We love each and every one of you,. I love you my sissy, I love you Julie, I love each and every person in our LGBT community. I would be nowhere without being raised by this community since I was a child. You taught me how to be love, how to love myself, how to accept myself, and there is no amount of money to account for that. But I will continue to do what my mother taught and my sister exemplifies on a daily basis- bravery, action, and creating a safe space for everyone no matter their preferences. Today I honor the gift of loving. Today I am fueled and burning bright with anger, remorse and sorrow for all of the beautiful Souls are gone. That have lost a brother, father, son, friend, husband, partner, sister, daughter, mother, companion. Today is the beginning of inevitable change.
Woke up in tears to hear the news about Orlando. Devastated, heartbroken, sick. I played there last Friday and last night I performed after Pride in LA. From the Dj booth you see laughter, love, dancing freedom and beautiful people living their lives not harming anyone. It's one of the beautiful things to see from stage. This horrific tragedy has me on my knees at the mercy of a greater power to ask the simple question of "When will this end"... I'm praying for Orlando, I'm crying for Orlando and I am there with you in spirit sending my love and strength.
We the people have the power to make a change. We the people MUST make that change. With every slur we throw about so carelessly and every turned cheek we possess... These types of crimes will continue. When will we all realize that we are sisters and brothers in this struggle? Together. -JS #PrayForOrlando #PrayForHumanity #Pulse
I am not heartbroken. Heartbroken is too small a sentiment for what I'm feeling this morning. I'm furious. I'm enraged. The gay community has been through enough, and now this? This is what we let happen, America? No matter what the shooter's intentions were, one thing remains a FACT: We need gun control in this country and we need it now. It's not enough to just talk about doing something anymore. This is a last straw. Everyone get up and get together and force our government to END THIS.