A South Carolina Mass Murderer Is Caught But The Underlying Hate Remains

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dylann-roof-caught

His name is Dylann Roof and because of him, I’m having to rewrite the lead. My initial few lines described the getaway car, a 2000 black Hyundai Elantra sedan, license number, LGF 330. Roof has been caught in Shelby, North Carolina. He’s 5’9″ tall and weighs but 120 lbs. He hails from Lexington, South Carolina. He hates black people and just killed 3 black men and 6 black women in a church setting Wednesday night. He probably used a .45 gift gun purchased by his father for his 21st birthday. Repeating, he’s been caught some 200 miles from the scene of the crime.

The president is giving a heartfelt condolence address on CNN as I work on this piece. He knew several people from the church including the pastor and State Senator, Clementa Pinckney. President Obama issued a rather strong gun control statement and recognized the continuing racial divide.

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The gun control reference is moot in today’s society. In fact, in another boon to membership, the NRA should greatly benefit from the latest extraordinarily inhumane act to take place at the end of a gun barrel. Yes, there’s been yet another mass murder in America. This was a racial hate crime.

As you first read in Jason Easley’s account (does this man ever sleep?), the unspeakable murders took place at 9PM, Wednesday, in Charleston, South Carolina’s iconic Mother Emanuel AME (African Methodist Episcopal) church, founded in 1816 as a secret church for slaves. The church was subsequently burned down. The modern day Mother Emanuel is one of the most revered and historically significant churches in the region. All the victims were black. There is now virtually no question that Roof was the killer. His uncle recognized him from a church video. Reuters reported that after sitting with the group for about an hour, Roof reportedly began his deadly spree, telling each victim he was killing them because they were black. He let one attendee live to tell the story of his hateful act.

Church is the foundation and anchor of the black community. It’s a place where all who attend are welcome and respected. It matters not whether you’re religious, it’s a fact that great numbers of African-Americans are, and the church is their hugely meaningful home away from home, ostensibly away from white repression, legislative persecution, political Republican hate speech and racism. But not away from the continuing scourge of gun obsession and violence that is the United States. Not even in the supposedly safe sanctuary of a church.

The video of Roof is at the church entrance (see Easley story) and there’s an older picture of the suspect wearing a jacket with a South African Apartheid badge making the Internet rounds.

Roof is undoubtedly mentally disturbed. Who knows what gruesome, senseless tale will follow his capture? The beginning of an organized movement? Mental connectivity twisted beyond repair? A lone actor? What we do know is that there will be nine funerals years before their time, and hundreds, maybe thousands, of grieving family members, friends, fellow churchgoers and just plain folks who care.

For the record, it is not legal to carry a gun into a church in South Carolina. It’s not that legislators haven’t tried. Here’s a ThinkProgress story of one such effort a few years ago. The prime mover of the attempt to get guns into churches and day-care centers of all places, was Republican Thad Viers, who later left the legislature in disgrace after pleading guilty to a federal count of money laundering.

Ironically, Senator/Pastor Pinckney had a great interest in improving conditions for the state’s prison population and served on the Corrections and Penology Committee. None of us know at this point, but I’m guessing his killer did not have a record of serious crimes. To neighbors and acquaintances, he was likely considered a nice, albeit quiet, guy. But, as I indicated, we simply don’t know as yet.

Expect a huge push for membership and “guns in churches” legislation by the NRA. Why not turn that 9 figure into 19? That’s what always happens after these horrific events as the NRA immediately goes on the offense to avoid any reality that their organization and the legislatures that bow to their every demand, are contributing to disintegrating any semblance of respect worldwide.

While Republicans absurdly point to the president as being the central figure in other country’s dislike of the U.S. one need only look at the daily newspaper for the real reason. Today, my local paper included the story of a four-year-old accidentally shooting himself to death with his mother’s gun stowed in a purse accessible to the child.

If Adam Lanza’s demented Sandy Hook murders of 20 precious children (and 6 adults) couldn’t move the national conscience needle to the common sense strengthening of gun laws, I assure you, nothing will.

The South Carolina House passed a bill a few months ago that eliminated the requirement to acquire a concealed carry permit to own a firearm. Quite simply that meant that you need know nothing about a gun to own one. No required safety courses, no knowledge of what a safety does or even where it’s located. Law enforcement persuaded a Senate subcommittee to hide this ugly nonsense for the remainder of the session.

It’s a good thing Roof is in custody. I’ve previously written of my fears that the black community, however quiet it may appear, is at the tipping point. I’ve written of going to an issues conference and attending a panel on black, white and police relations. I heard a black man in attendance say, “If you keep shooting us, we’re going to shoot you.”

And with a core of black men being essentially trained in prison to deal with the ongoing white hatred and repression, this is not an empty threat. White racist attitudes had the power of changing the political power dynamic of the South from Democratic dominance to racially hate-fueled Republican total control. All because a Democratic president finally pushed for the same civil rights for blacks that whites have taken for granted forever. Yes, there is a deep-seated black rage rising to the top.

I offer sincere, sympathy, as does my family, to the black community for this latest atrocity. The KKK as a visual entity has all but disappeared. As a symbolic entity of the continuing hatred of blacks by a majority of the Republican Party, the Klan mindset thrives. Roof, sadly, is not an exception in his extremism.

This is not a divisive submission. This is a real world warning of what is surely to evolve into something ongoing and terrifying. It was certainly mandatory to get Roof off the streets, but his evil deed should have never have happened in the first place. When Australia went through the Port Arthur massacre in 1996, legislators acted immediately under the leadership of conservative Prime Minister John Howard, to control guns. Fatalities plummeted. The firearms homicide rate fell 59 percent, while suicides by firearms plunged 65 percent in the decade after gun legislation was introduced.

Virtually everybody in Australia got the message. Will Americans?

37 Replies to “A South Carolina Mass Murderer Is Caught But The Underlying Hate Remains”

  1. I heard a black man in attendance say, “If you keep shooting us, we’re going to shoot you.”

    Yeah, that makes sense, until you realize that’s exactly what these white racists want, a race war.

  2. I’m starting to believe these news stories are happening with greater frequency and they all have an agenda or a theme tied to them. “Anti-gun”.

    Its looking more and more like there’s a higher power behind the scenes cooking up these news stories. There’s something missing from the story.

    We never see the family members, we never hear from the Doctors or Hospital staff who normally talk about the extent of the gunshot wounds.

    Politicus.com is a news organization that should be doing a deeper investigation into these so called shootings. Look at the picture of the kid. He doesn’t look like somebody who’s guilty of mass murder.

    The news only shows two picture of the kid. And the parking lot photos don’t match up in either photo. And its strange how most cable news shows contribute 10 minutes at the top of the hour on this story and then move on to other news.

    There’s too many anomalies about these kinds of events that could prove they’re staged news stories.

  3. Michael Jackson said, “it don’t matter whether your Black or White.” Clearly in this guy’s opinion and actions, it DOES!

  4. Dennis S I agree with everything said EXCEPT the part of mental state of this evil young animal. He is NOT insane, he is sick but he was sane enough to plot this act of carnage months in advance that is NOT the work of madman! I don’t want people keep saying he is insane so a clever defense lawyer can get him a insanity plea because that will be the only thing saving him from either: lethal injection or life without parole.

  5. And yet nobody should be surprised at the man’s statement.

    What we need to do is find ways to take some of the energy out of this particular situation (that seems to be in progress; things are moving towards care, faith, organization and something that might well be positive political action), and keep an eye on the judicial process.

    We can offer help (individually and collectively) with whatever might be needed, perhaps focusing on religious and care institutions as starting points? – but we don’t get to set the terms on that, and we’d better mean it, deliver on it, and not do the ‘hit and run’ thing. All of this while beating on government at all levels to get real action on gun controls, sentencing etc. And crushing anything (NRA for example) that gets in the way.

    But above all, we need to CHANGE OUR WAYS OF THINKING ABOUT THIS CRAP. It’s been sustained too long for us to say we’re not all – you and me – complicit.

  6. If you forgot your meds – take them … NOW!

    If you took your meds, ask your doctor about either increasing the dose or changing them – because they’re not working.

    If you’re not taking any psychotropic meds – SEEK HELP NOW!

    Best of luck in dealing with reality in the future.

  7. Let’s see. Australia outlawed guns, mass shootings as a result: ZERO.

    Yes I’d say there’s a pattern here. The pattern is- once you take guns out of the hands of crazies, shootings stop.

    Since the responsible gun owners won’t police their own.

    The cops seem to be handling roofie there with kid gloves.

  8. I guess you missed the part when 2 other black men grabbed the young man and hugged him as he cried out in anger and console him and said, “we must forgive and pray for ALL”.

  9. EXACTLY!!! He knew exactly what he was doing! You gotta love the media coverage on this don’t you? From the very start he was already called mentally ill….WTH?

  10. And I guess the nine folk who are now dead were “staged”, too??
    Here in the South, this kind of hatred is all too frequently present. The saddest thing here is this young man had to have been taught by the adults in his life to hate like this. The KKK may not be a “visible” presence any longer, but don’t kid yourself, it is still alive and well.

  11. “Politicus.com is a news organization that should be doing a deeper investigation into these so called shootings.”

    “There’s too many anomalies about these kinds of events that could prove they’re staged news stories.”

    “so-called shootings”? “staged news stories”? You seem to think this tragedy really didn’t happen, but was cooked up by the media to put out an anti-gun message. Are you out of your frigging mind? Nine people are dead you imbecile and you consider this a “staged news story”? How about you stand in front of the relatives of the people that were killed by Roof and tell THEM that.

    Dog help us!

  12. Since 9/11, an average of nine American Muslims per year have been involved in an average of six terrorism-related plots against targets in the United States. Most were disrupted, but the 20 plots that were carried out accounted for 50 fatalities over the past 13 and a half years.

    In contrast, right-wing extremists averaged 337 attacks per year in the decade after 9/11, causing a total of 254 fatalities, according to a study by Arie Perliger, a professor at the United States Military Academy’s Combating Terrorism Center. The toll has increased since the study was released in 2012
    https://www.ctc.usma.edu/

  13. So tell me Richrd46.

    How are we supposed to be able to differentiate between a staged event and the real thing?

    Or perhaps there are so many crazed white folks with guns that there is no need for a staging?

  14. “Virtually everybody in Australia got the message. Will Americans?”

    No. Becuse Americans are g0dd@mned DUMB.

  15. Very simple. Look for the evidence that a shooting even occurred. I and everyone else should want to believe that these shootings don’t take place. And are done so for an agenda.

    I [snipped for indecency]
    [Been away too long]
    [Sincerely,
    Atropos]

  16. Jon Stewart’s observation of learning curves in
    America still applies here. Meanwhile we await
    the next NRA defended massacre.

  17. So 9 bodies of African-Americans, isn’t enough to convince you?

    I’ve been convinced of the need for some gun law enforcement a long time ago.

  18. So apparently if you don’t see autopsy photos- you’re not convinced there was an actual shooting?

    Dude, you’re one sick fuck.

    Folks like you are the reason we need gun laws.

  19. First, speaking as a physician, you seriously should consider seeking medical help.

    Second, Rep. Clyburn with others did NOT attend a vigil at the Emanuel AME church – they couldn’t because it was a CRIME SCENE.

    The vigil was held at the Morris Brown AME Church.

    http://abcnews.go.com/US/charleston-shooting-mourners-gather-prayer-service-morris-brown/story?id=31855986

    http://www.nytimes.com/2015/06/19/us/charleston-killings-evoke-history-of-violence-against-black-churches.html

  20. I was just wondering what boulder of ignorance a moron like u crawled out from under . how much did the right wing terrorists at FAUX NOISE pay u to make up your incredibly stupid fantasy tale ?

  21. And as I predicted @richard46 AKA @robert is back again!! LMFAO what a sorry waste of skin you are! See POLITICUS! theres a reason why I use the term ”LILY WHITE republican” because it takes a LILY WHITE republican to have the nerve to jump their SORRY A$SES on the internet and trying to justify their WHITE PRIVILEGE with FUX NEWS talking points! I call them LILY WHITE because, these are typically caucasian males who enjoy the perks of being WHITE! and being MALE! and they’re typically republicans because TODAYS conservatism screams to WHITES ‘we got your back!” “we’ll keep america in 1950’s mode” The GOP caters to the caucasian who’s scared too death that america is getting BROWNER!! that america moving away from organized religion! Now why caucasian women buy the GOP’s ”WHITE GUY” clarion call blows me away!! just like BLACK republican! just like GAY republican! just like HISPANIC republican!! the GOP is a CON GAME!

  22. “Roof is undoubtedly mentally disturbed.”

    How DARE you make excuses for him!! Racism and terrorism are despicable, but they are by no means signs of mental illness. Charles Manson claimed he wanted to start a race war, the same as Roof. No one’s ever claimed Manson is insane.

    Roof was taught to hate. He chose to act on that hatred.

  23. you are correct that there is a part of the story that is not being told. but it is not what you think it is.

    if my experiences are any indication, this man was able to get into the church in the first place because the black community as a whole, and churches in particular, welcome any and all comers. as the male half of an interracial couple, I have been welcomed almost everywhere I’ve gone as one of the family. everywhere from biker clubs to churches to family gatherings I have been accepted for who I am with no reservations.

    it is ironic that such openness and acceptance of others led to the mass slaughter of good folks at the hands of a hate filled lost soul. now let’s tell the real story here, how a young man who should have had a bright future became so hatefully obsessed with race that he would massacre peaceful, unarmed citizens in a church service. we rightly condemn the tactics of muslim extremists, but didn’t this man just do the same thing?

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