Cruel, small-minded fuel hatred in US

To the editor:

I watched the Rachel Maddow show on MSNBC Tuesday night and was appalled at three videos that were played. Rachel is gay and I like to think that her presentations, attitude and personality demonstrate how alike we all are. I watch MSNBC and her show often because of the excellent coverage of current events.

Two of the videos showed men preaching to their congregations, one of them expressing the wish that the Orlando gunman had been able to shoot all gays and rid the world of them. The other man called the victims pedophiles and showed his homophobia in his remarks about protecting our children. He obviously doesn't know or want to know the difference between pedophiles and homosexuals.

My main concern in watching these videos was the impact these sermons were having on the congregations of both men. Was someone present who might now decide to buy a gun and finish the job? This is yet another frightening aspect of the Orlando situation. There was also a film clip of Pat Robertson with his usual soft-spoken approach and negative views of all things that he considers to be "sinful."

The cousin who took me to Tanglewood many years ago and introduced me to classical music was gay. I loved him then and always will. Family and music are the two most important things to me.

Another cousin, my age, was my childhood friend. We used to go to the Tyler Theatre and watch the serials and then reenact them when we went home. We were probably no more than 7- or 8-years-old.


She moved to California where she met her life partner. They moved to Colorado and lived together for 25 years. They were able to visit Pittsfield a couple of times and I cherished those visits. She died of pancreatic cancer and I mourn her death to this day. She was very special to me.

I am so tired of small-minded people who judge others by their lifestyle and try to avoid them. Kindness doesn't cost anything and it makes life so much more pleasant.

Connie Dillon Yannone, Pittsfield