LGBTQ+ advocates in the US have criticized the far-right Colorado Republican congresswoman Lauren Boebert as a hypocrite in light of her past anti-LGBTQ+ statements after she offered prayers to the victims of the recent Club Q mass shooting in Colorado Springs.
The shooting at the LGBTQ+ club that left five dead took place on the eve of the Transgender Day of Remembrance. ACLU-Colorado’s senior policy strategist and trans activist Anaya Robinson called Boebert’s condolences “disingenuous”, and blamed incendiary comments about the community for such tragedies.
Robinson said: “Certain language and statements are the things that are perpetuating this violence and this hate. Change course … dehumanizing individuals and communities because of who they are and who they love – it makes it accessible to harm them.”
According to a study by the Williams Institute at the UCLA School of Law, “Transgender people are over four times more likely than cisgender people to experience violent victimization, including rape, sexual assault, and aggravated or simple assault.”
Boebert has been outspoken about her stance against same-sex marriage, which the US supreme court ruled a constitutional right in the landmark 2015 case, Obergefell v Hodges.
On her official government website, Boebert says that she opposes “efforts to redefine marriage as anything other than the union of one man and one woman”.
Boebert has also taken aim at drag shows, which have become a focus of bigoted far-right conspiracy theories and a target for violence and protests. On Twitter, she once wrote: “ Take your children to CHURCH, not drag bars.”
Boebert, who has been in office since 2021 and was narrowly re-elected in the 2022 midterm elections, also has a history of pushing anti-LGTBQ+ policies in legislation.
In 2021, Boebert introduced a bill to block funding for research into gender-affirming treatments for transgender youth. Boebert called the research “evil” and spread conspiracy-based misinformation about the National Institute of Health (NIH), which she called the “National Institute of Horrors”.
On social media, Boebert aims to shock – equating gender-affirming treatment and surgeries to “child-grooming”.