In the early hours of Sunday morning, Omar Mateen walked into Pulse—a gay nightclub in Orlando, FL—and opened fire, killing 50 people and injuring 53 in the worst mass shooting in American history.
This is, first and foremost, an tragedy of heartbreaking proportions, and the primary reaction of citizens was to come together and help.
Thousands of Orlando residents answered the call to donate blood. So many, in fact, that officials urged anyone else wanting to donate today to return in the coming days to maintain a fresh supply.
The blood situation also cast light on the fact that (despite rumors the ban would be lifted today) gay men are still barred from donating blood, a rule that seemed especially cruel in the wake of the Pulse shooting.
Despite the rallying of Orlando, the details of the night's events still have yet to fully sink in.
Then there were the official reactions. Speaking in Washington, President Obama spoke for the 18th time in the wake of a mass shooting. He described the attack as "an act of terror and an act of hate."
"Terror" and "hate" are references, of course, to the rampant speculation around Omar Mateen's motives. Mateen's father, Mir Seddique, spoke to the press shortly after the massacre, issuing a heartbreaking apology for his son's actions.
"We are saying we are apologizing for the whole incident. We weren't aware of any action he is taking. We are in shock like the whole country. This had nothing to do with religion."
Mr. Seddique's statement may be accurate when it comes to the true, heartfelt practice of the Muslim religion, but his son was clearly practicing something else. His ex-wife and family members describe him as less religious than just abusive and awful.
Mr. Seddique says he first noticed a change in Omar about a month ago, when he got "very angry" about seeing two men kiss in Miami. This inspired many LGBTQ couples to respond with pictures showing they would not be intimidated.
Furthermore, a 9-1-1 call from inside Pulse indicates Mateen may have used that unorthodox route to "pledge allegiance" to ISIS before dying. Eventually, ISIS did take "credit," although this seemed to be an act of opportunism rather than planning.
Whether or not ISIS actually helped Mateen or whether he self-radicalized, as seems to be the case, the fight shifted as Sunday went on to politics.
At issue: whether the homophobic aspect of this attack would be ignored in favor of its Islamic terrorism, whether the GOP should've closed the loophole allowing terror suspects to buy guns, or whether this is all due to political correctness.
ISIS was not alone in accepting accolades.
He may not want "the congrats," but he appreciates them. Before Trump's tweet, the fight between the "this is all the NRA/Republicans' fault" and the "this is all Muslims/Democrats' fault" was already brimming. Afterwards, it exploded—with Trump supporters and everyone else sounding like they came from two different planets:
Some, like Igor Volsky, focused on the gap between congresspeople who send their "thoughts and prayers" one way while voting at the NRA's behest to make sure people on the terror watch list could still buy guns.
Clinton's statement was less incendiary, but also less visible. Given the chaos of the day, that may be an acceptable strategy for the short term.
The worst tweet of the day, though, goes to TX Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick, who claims he scheduled this one in advance, only to end up seeming like he was celebrating the murders of 50 people in a gay club:
But remember: the real fight is outside in the real world, not online with all the terrible people.
Anyone worried they may have friends or relatives who may have been in the attack is urged to call a special hotline set up by Orlando officials, (407) 246-4357.