Say A Prayer For Charleston. . .

UPDATING | 06.19.2015: It looks as though this massacre was not just a hate crime, but also domestic terrorism. It seems completely improbable to think that Dylann Storm Roof was unaware that he had chosen the evening of June 17 to commit this particular act of terrorism, at this particular church — a clear ringing, of the bells of historical memory — all the way back, to 1822. From today’s New York Times, then — a bit:

. . .So, meeting in [founding lay pastor and former slave Denmark] Vesey’s Bull Street home and within the walls of the Emanuel [AME, the place of this current massacre], Vesey and his lieutenants called for domestic slaves to kill their masters in their beds and fight their way to the docks, where they would seize ships and sail south. Originally, the plan was set for July 14, 1822 — Bastille Day — but the plot began to unravel, and Vesey moved the plans forward to the night of June 16. The uprising would begin when the city’s churches tolled midnight, meaning that the actual black exodus out of Charleston would take place on June 17. [The revolt failed, and Vesey paid for it with his life, as did 34 others — and 34 more were deported from the country.] Either the shooter in Charleston yesterday knew the importance of this date, or the selection of June 17 was a ghastly coincidence. . . .

The depravity of the 21 year old Mr. Roof is completely unfathomable, to my mind, at least.
Jon Stewart is. . . spot on:


END, UPDATED PORTION.

We will fall silent this day. We may return tomorrow — hoping that all people of good will seek both answers — and justice.

From our 44th President’s reflections, on the hate crime — just now:

. . .Mother Emanuel is, in fact, more than a church. This is a place of worship that was founded by African Americans seeking liberty. This is a church that was burned to the ground because its worshipers worked to end slavery. . . .


When there were laws banning all-black church gatherings, they conducted church services in secret. When there was a nonviolent movement to bring our country in closer line with our highest ideals, some of our brightest leaders spoke and led marches from this church’s steps.


This is a sacred place in the history of Charleston and in the history of America. . . .


At some point, we as a country will have to reckon with the fact that this kind of mass violence does not happen in other advanced countries. It doesn’t happen in other places with this kind of frequency. . . .


It is in our power to do something about it. . . .



Sadly, so true. . . Pax tecum one and all.

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