Rocket City Pride in Huntsville, which typically draws around 5,000 people, was expected to see more people attending its activities on Saturday. The increase was related to the outpouring of emotion to the Orlando massacre, according to James Robinson, executive director of the Free2Be resource center in Huntsville.
And there are as many straight people here as they are gay or bi-sexual or transgender." - James Robinson, Rocket City Pride organizer
Robinson said six months of planning made Rocket City "everything we dreamed it would be," and it will be back for a third year.
"My life fell apart," Robinson said. "The day I got arrested, I'd been up for five days in a row and had shot up two or three times that night.
James Robinson, a Five Points resident, is the founder and CEO of Free2Be, a statewide anti-violence project serving LGBTQ people in Huntsville, Athens, Birmingham, Dothan, Mobile and Montgomery.
He doesn't want local law enforcement to serve as agents of the U.S.'s Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). Instead, he hopes they will focus on providing support and safety to all residents and visitors in Huntsville.
"I am proud to be here as a native, homosexual of Alabama. I'm about as Alabama as Alabama can be, and my values are love compassion," said James Robinson
Robinson said Bravo's homosexuality was "absolutely" a factor based on slurs uttered by the assailants.
Robinson said that he has witnessed a 'tsunami' of support for equal rights for people who are gay.
Huntsville's 'Faces before stereotypes' fosters inclusive community conversation - AL.com (Organizer & Speaker)
Faces Before Stereotypes - What does it feel like to be treated like a stereotype, not an individual person?
How can we break through old ways of dismissively classifying people and then relating to them only as a type, not a person?
James Robinson, founder and director of the Huntsville-based Gay, Lesbian Bisexual and Transgender Advocacy and Youth Services, was recognized for his work in fighting bullying during the February 19, 2012, 14th Annual Vigil for Victims of Hate & Violence in Montgomery.