(Askini is a trans rights activist and director of the Gender Justice League.)
Mayor Ed Murray, Seattle's first openly gay mayor, will speak at the vigil.
In a statement from his office this morning, Murray said the Seattle Police Department has "increased security" for this month's Seattle Pride events "and other large gatherings."
In another Pride-related incident, police in California have arrested a man found with assault rifles and possible explosives who said he was on his way to the Los Angeles Pride festival. The L.A. Times reports that there is not a known connection between that arrest and the shooting in Orlando. UPDATE: After initially saying the man intended to "harm" the Pride festivities in L.A., police now say his intentions were unclear.
“Words cannot adequately encompass the feelings of grief I am feeling for the loss of so many of our LGBTQ and allied brothers and sisters in Orlando during the largest single act of violence against LGBTQ people in United States history," Murray said in a statement. "For too long, our community has been the target of violence throughout the world. It will never make sense to me that love is met with such hate. On behalf of the people of the City of Seattle, my heart and my thoughts go out to those whose lives were forever changed by the events last night. Today our community draws closer to one another for comfort, support and healing, and to honor those who were tragically lost.”
Governor Jay Inslee also released a statement calling today a day of "unimaginable sorrow for the LGBTQ community, the people of Florida, for our nation and for people everywhere who are sickened and shocked by such an act of hatred."
Seattle PrideFest is encouraging "the community and our allies to focus on the victims, their friends, and their families. If you are in Orlando or have friends or family there, please encourage them to give blood, which is needed right now to save the victims of last night’s mass shooting."
"An attack on one of us is an attack on all of us," the organization said in a statement, "and we at PrideFest will use the rest of this season of Pride to renew our fight against forces of hate that seek to divide us and marginalize our community."
Washington Won't Discriminate, the group leading the campaign against the anti-trans Initiative 1515, linked the shooting and the nationwide trend of anti-LGBT legislation.
"The shooting comes at a time when, over the last six months, we've seen more than 200 anti-LGBT bills introduced in states nationwide—more than 50 of them explicitly target[ing] transgender people," the group said in a statement. "Among those efforts is I-1515 in our state which aims to criminalize transgender people just for being who they are. To be clear, the violence in Orlando is fostered by the same belief that is driving I-1515—that LGBT people don't deserve to be treated with respect or dignity. And we won't stand for it."
The Washington State chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-WA) issued a statement from Executive Director Arsalan Bukhari, delivered this morning during a church service on Capitol Hill.
"American Muslims, like all Americans, are shocked by this tragedy and American Muslims, like all Americans, are praying for the victims and their families and for the swift recovery of those injured," Bukhari said. "Muslims believe that God favors the peaceful. American Muslims condemn all violent, criminal acts, and they uphold the Constitution and the laws of the United States. American Muslims share the same American values and freedoms that we all cherish, knowing that we are all in this together.”