Lady Gaga, Jamie Lee Curtis and others show support for Orlando Pulse shooting victims in video

Emotional celebrities talk about the lives of those murdered at a gay nightclub in Florida and speak out in support of LGBTQ community and against gun violence

PUBLISHED : Friday, 01 July, 2016, 11:03am
UPDATED : Friday, 01 July, 2016, 11:03am

Forty-nine celebrities including singer Lady Gaga and actress Jamie Lee Curtis appear in a video tribute to the victims of the June 12 shooting at a gay nightclub in Orlando.

Cuba Gooding Jnr, Caitlyn Jenner, Jane Fonda and Gerard Butler are among the celebrities who take turns speaking about the life of each of the 49 victims killed in the deadliest mass shooting in US history.

The 18-minute video Stop the Hate for aid group Human Rights Campaign is aimed at both protecting gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people as well as preventing gun violence, its makers say.

The horrific act of violence at a popular sanctuary for the LGBTQ community became the deadliest shooting in the country’s history.

Over 18 minutes, the names and faces of the 49 victims are shown one by one: A pharmaceutical technician who loved to change his hair colour and experiment with make-up. A nightclub employee who overcame struggles with drugs and had recently started going to church and writing poetry. Two doting partners of 16 years who co-owned a salon. A charismatic lead singer of a popular cover band. A mother who loved salsa dancing, and died shielding her son from a hail of bullets.

Vignettes from their lives are read by 49 actors, directors and celebrities – Angela Bassett, Laverne Cox, Connie Britton, Caitlyn Jenner and Sofia Vergara, among many others – several of whom visibly struggle with their emotions as they speak.

Analysis: Orlando rampage reflects frightening convergence of terrorism and mass shootings

The attack galvanised LGBTQ activists and civil rights leaders, many of whom have said that discriminatory laws and rhetoric aimed at the LGBTQ community cultivates intolerance and violence. Following the tragedy in Orlando, the Human Rights Campaign said it has called on Congress to establish legal protections for LGBTQ people across the country and implement stronger gun-control laws. Stop the Hate urges viewers to contact Congress about these issues, and to support the Orlando victims’ families and survivors through healorlando.org.