Sushiyama Snapshot: With Love from Philly

Love Statue Philadelphia

This photo was taken on June 12, 2016, the day Philly hosted their Pride Parade to celebrate the LGBTQ+ community. It was also the same day of the mass shooting at the popular gay nightclub, Pulse, in Orlando, 40 minutes away from where I was living earlier this year. My soul is crushed reading article after article online of the accounts that night. We cannot let these kinds of attacks continue to slip below consciousness. If we don’t stop to listen to each other, communicate what we need or find more supportive outlets for our grief and anger, history will repeat itself at the expense of innocent lives until we learn our lesson.

This post is short and unedited simply because I cannot wrap my head around the escalated number of cases of gun violence in America alone this year. What’s worse is I feel helpless, and as a nation, I don’t understand how we got here. I would say that all of my loved ones are safe and largely unaffected, but it’s not true. I lost 50 brothers and sisters yesterday. We all did.

To Orlando and to families and friends all over the world who are hurting or have lost loved ones to violence,

With [great] love from Philly.

How YOU Can Help: Prayers and positive thoughts are good. Blood donation is even better. Please, if you are in the greater Orlando area, consider donating blood at a local Red Cross or go to to find out where you can donate. Reaching out to someone who lost a loved one in the shooting to let them know they are not alone is BEST. Lend a shoulder to cry on, a hand to hold, an ear or heart to listen. Look them in the eye, tell them, “I know exactly what you’re going through” or “I know exactly how you feel,” and watch the walls come down.

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