Dylann Roof, a 21-year-old white male, walked into a prayer gathering at Charleston’s Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal church, Wednesday night at South Carolina. Clementa Pinckney, the senator of South Carolina and pastor of the Methodist church, did his usual ceremony as a pastor does unaware of the events that would unfold that night. Roof listened to Pinckney for an hour before opening fire with a .45-caliber pistol, a gun he received on his 21st birthday by his father, killing nine African Americans, including Pinckney. A victim claimed he reloaded his gun five times and said, “I had to do it. You Rape our women and you’re taking over our country. And you have to go” while preforming the action. Amongst the decease were six women and three men:
This news reached me in the dawn of the morning as I woke up and turned on the news. It was all over every news channel from CNN to Fox. It was the headline for the day ‘white boy kills blacks’ I watched as reporters analyzed the evidence that was presented to them. I listened to the President make his speech regarding the situation. I read every article from the New York Times to The Atlantic. And as I did this, listening to the cry of the innocence and the snobbism of right-wing conservatives spew garbage to the public, a part of me broke as I learned the cold hard truth about our nation:
Our Gun Problem Will Never Go Away
Tuesday night, a day before the shooting, I watched the documentary Bowling for Columbine by Michael Moore, a documentary that politically explores the gun problem our nation faces. As I watch this fat man interview people about guns, I can get the sense that the people who love guns knew we have a gun problem but refuse to give up their arms. An addict that is self-aware. Placing stronger gun regulations is a joke. Roof got his gun without having to walk into a gun store. Getting a gun in this country is as easy as being born; you’re given a license to kill at birth.
No President in their right mind would even try to ban guns from the American people. God that would be idiocy, don’t piss off the guy with the gun in his hand. So that option is out the question unless you want Americans to revolt.
And it’s not an issue of banning guns. Canada is a country where their radiant citizens carry guns, and are proud to leave their doors unlock; yet they suffer from a lack of hefty amount of homicide committed with a gun. In 2012, Canada had 173 homicides committed with a gun, and the U.S. had 9,146 that same year. To obtain a gun in Canada you have to take a course, learn the ins and outs of the weapon, and then take a mental check before getting your hands on a gun. In the U.S. you get your temperature checked and you are out of the door.
But this article won’t stop gun violence in the U.S. So how do we solve this problem? Well, I guess we can take lesson from E. W. Jackson and arm our churches with guns; you know the old saying fight fire with guns. Our problem is in the last sentence you just read.
Racism Is Alive And Well.
It’s not the fact of finding out that racism exist that’s shocking, to think that issue was solved after the 1970’s would be ignorant, it’s the fact that there are people who refuge to acknowledge that it exist is what bothers me. When we have people like Donald Trump calling foreign workers rapist it’s hard not to see it. When word got out that Roof entered a black church and killed nine African Americans the right-wing media quickly jumped on it and claimed it wasn’t a race issue. John Mullins, a former classmate of Roof, said he never saw Roof as a racist but, “as a conservative with a lot of ‘Southern Pride.’” Of course the conservatives want to split themselves away from something like that. Why should one bastard ruin the bunch?
Still, just because you ignore it doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist. Instead, the conservatives found a way to flip this story, making their morals and beliefs the victim. I’m still shocked that somebody like E. W. Jackson would claim that it wasn’t a hate crime but a crime against the Christian faith. Was that racist? Shit.
The word ‘hate crime’ almost felt like a swear word, as if the media was forbidden to say it on air. To call this a hate crime is not irrational, to ignore it as one is. All the evidence points at it; the patches on his jacket that both represent symbols of white supremacist movements, the words he said while committing the murder, and the church the crime took place. This is right-wing terrorism at its best.
By the time this makes it to the public, Roof would be charged with nine counts of murder and possession of a firearm. There are only six states that give harsher sentences for hate crime and South Carolina isn’t one of them. It’s perhaps the best thing to do bring Roof to justice. It’s harsh to say that Charleston shooting is a perceptive well needed. It even looks harsh on paper. It further opens the nation’s eyes that the black community stills struggles, and that terrorism doesn’t just come in the propaganda form of Muslims.
By the time you read this the Confederate flag will continue the fly in South Carolina.