Former Missouri football star Sam responds to Orlando shooting
COLUMBIA - Former Missouri football star Michael Sam said Sunday's shooting at a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida should "be a wake up call for America" in a passionate Instagram post Sunday.
Sam, who came out as gay in 2014, called for increased awareness of violence toward LGBTQ individuals in his post, asking "How many more must die from a hate crime?"
The former SEC Defensive Player of the Year also offered encouragement to his fellow community members, imploring them to "not let this coward put fear into your hearts."
The shooting, which happened early Sunday morning, left 50 dead and hospitalized 53 others, making it the deadliest mass shooting in modern U.S. history. Sam's full post is below.
To my brothers and sisters of the LGBTQ community please take the time to read this. If you have not already heard there was a terrible shooting at a gay night club in Orlando. It is not only a sad day for the #LGBTQ community, but for the American people. 50 people lost their lives because of a hateful coward with a gun. Let this hateful act of terror of the #LGBTQ community be a wake up call for America. Men and women of all races, ages, and sexual orientation are being slaughtered because of hate crimes. How many more must die from a hate crime? We need to create awareness for ALL to show that hate is not the foundation of our nation. Friends DO NOT let this coward put fear into your hearts!!! Let us all come together stronger than ever and let the world know that we will not be terrorized or bullied by the actions of hateful bigots. We are here to stay and fight not only for equality, but for our very existence. To the victims love ones of this terrible crime I and the entire #LGBTQ community in the world stands with you and mourns with you. #standwithorlando #prayfororlando #love #peace #lbgtq #pride