As I sit here less than a day after a terrorist has taken the lives of 50 innocent young people in Orlando, I feel I want to write about tolerance in America.

America is a modern country that is still developing, still learning. It is a nation of immigrants, a melting pot of people. We have a diverse population and further diversity is celebrated and desired by the majority of Americans.

We have laws and rights designed to provide protection to people of all colors, races, religious belief and sexual orientation. Not so long ago, people of color did not enjoy the same freedom they do today. Women’s equality is improving. Gay marriage is legal everywhere in America. Whilst there is a lot of tension in the world and America concerning Muslims, freedom of religion is important here, and ignorant voices that speak out against a group based on ethnicity, religion, sexual preference are not tolerated.

Now, the countries you come from may have taught different values. There are some countries that believe that homosexuality is a sin, some countries even punish homosexuals with the death penalty. If you want to come to America, you must be prepared to leave such bigoted, ignorant views behind. As immigrants you will have rights given to you to worship as you wish and think practice your faith and beliefs however you want. BUT it is NOT acceptable if you want to express your belief to trample someone else’s right to love who they want, or worship how they want.

So – come and live how you want to live, but if you come you must also fit in to our society and respect our rules and our beliefs and the rights we have decided to protect. If you are not ready to find a way to make that work and live your values alongside our values, then, quite simply, don’t come. America is offering you a better life, but we expect you to come and enrich our experience and share your values while taking on ours.

One love.