Again, we just simply do not know what motivated Wednesday’s act of wanton slaughter and speculation as to what those twisted reasons were isn’t going to be helpful at this time, and…wait I’m getting something in my earpiece now…
Dylann Roof has confessed to authorities to shooting and killing nine people this week at a historically black church in Charleston, South Carolina, two law enforcement officials said Friday.
One of the officials said that Roof, who is white, told investigators that he wanted to start a race war.
He himself bought the .45-caliber handgun used in the shooting last April at a Charleston gun store, according to the two officials. Earlier, a senior law enforcement official had indicated that Roof’s father bought him a Glock firearm for his birthday.
In fact we may never know the real reason behind this heinous act as two years ago, Chief Justice John Roberts declared racism to be over in our wonderful country and that the era of the racial civil rights struggle had come to an end, and that legislation protecting those rights and securing the right to vote for all Americans was no longer necessary, resulting in the functional dismantling by the Supreme Court of the Civil Rights and Voting Rights Acts.
Needless to say, America remains completely baffled as to what might have been behind this deadly attack.
Back to you in the studio, Ted.
[UPDATE] Our colleagues at the Wall Street Journal remain baffled this morning as well.
The universal condemnation of the murders at the Emanuel AME Church and Dylann Roof’s quick capture by the combined efforts of local, state and federal police is a world away from what President Obama recalled as “a dark part of our history.” Today the system and philosophy of institutionalized racism identified by Dr. King no longer exists.
What causes young men such as Dylann Roof to erupt in homicidal rage, whatever their motivation, is a problem that defies explanation beyond the reality that evil still stalks humanity. It is no small solace that in committing such an act today, he stands alone.
Since racism no longer exists, we may never find the answer as to why a lone wolf like Roof allegedly killed nine people.
It’s a conundrum.
I went to high school with people like that. But they kept their guns at home.
Roof is a terrorist as much as the Tsarnaev brothers. I will bet you real money, though, that the FBI and US attorney’s office will not investigate every last friend, family member and passing acquaintance of Roof’s like they did with the Tsarnaev’s, though.
I say we take all the people who want to start a race war, or want to provoke the New American Revolution, or whatever other violent eschaton they dream of, put them in a controlled area in a very remote part of the country, and let them have at it.
It’s their dream, let them live it.
I can’t decide which pisses me off more – that Roof did this or that he’s being handled as a human being. And why are people pronouncing his last name as “Roff”?
Great post, Zandar.
@debbie: Because it’s not pronounced as the name of the thing on top of your house.
FWIW, NYT has been doing an excellent job covering this event. They are not shying away from calling it what it is. For example;
Suspect flew the flags of white power
@russell: Or we can drop them off in the deserts of Syria and Iraq and they can have it out with ISIS.
You could win the Democratic nomination with that platform.
So does the State of South Carolina. Let’s not forget to mention that.
deep south version of helter skelter
@schrodinger’s cat: It’s a test. If you think Roof was killing people because they were Christians, you fail.
I think one correct response to this crime should be an apology from John Roberts for having gotten it wrong and then to reverse that “opinion” which gutted the Voting Rights Act.
Another correct response would be to render a new “Opinion” with an addition to strengthen the Act so that no State can prevent people from voting for any reason. The one good thing that Hilary has said so far is that people should be automatically registered to vote.
Did she say when they turn 18? I don’t remember the rest of her statement, but every kid should be told that on their 18th birthday they become a citizen who is eligible to vote. Every parent, teacher and priest should say – here is your birthright – make it work.
Mr Stagger Lee
Reading some of the comments in the Charleston paper, and what you get from Whites, is that this was a SATAN problem not a RACE problem. Sorry White Southerner, but you are not going to hide behind Jesus on this one. After all this South Carolina, home of Wade Hampton and the Red Shirts and Pitchfork Ben Tillman. Dylan Storm Roof is you! End of Story!
@Balconesfault: Manson wasn’t a white supremacist. He was an aspiring con-guru who discovered that it was more and more difficult to keep his followers in that hyper-alert, yet undiscerning, state of cult mind.
And he didn’t kill black people. He killed white people, and tried to make it seem as though black people were to blame.
And it wasn’t mentall illness. He did everything he did on purpose and with malice aforethought.
Villago Delenda Est
@Belafon: Even though it’s spelled exactly like the thing on top of your house.
Let’s just go “Throat-wobbler Mangrove” on this.
@MattF: Where did I say that? That is the Fox News line not mine.
@Balconesfault: Without the acid and females.
Note Dylann’s age: There’s a reason our nation recruits its military personnel from the pool of young men in their late teens and early 20s. There’s a reason ISIS is able to convince people in this age group to sign up for violent jihad against the infidel. There’s a reason the FBI likes to troll through young men this age when they’re setting them up for a terrorist sting and especially when the FBI needs an easy conviction to look tough on terrorism.
Persons this age really and truly think their individual effort will change the world. Sometimes they think they can change it for the better, as when a teacher friend of mine had to help a former student, de-enlist from the military. The young man, who had never evinced any interest in the military, had signed up because he really and truly thought he could radically change the military from within. Luckily for all involved, the military released him from his commitment after much persuasion.
Other times, though, this youthful idealism manifests in a darker vision for changing the world, and Mr. Roof appears to have become intoxicated with that vision. Where did he get this vision? Or did he just think it up all on his own?
Villago Delenda Est
@MattF: Yup, and the wingnuts are all fail on this one.
@schrodinger’s cat: No, no. That’s not what I meant. I meant that the NYT passed the test– and that it’s an easy test to pass.
The media’s response to the tragedy is an all-too-classic example of the old Upton Sinclair bromide: “It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends on his not understanding it.”
Applies to Nikki Haley and all the poor-me Southern politicians, too, who are aghast at the “tragedy” but simply have no idea, the poor dears, on what could make people do such a thing.
Perhaps another impassioned speech by Obama will fix it. I’m sure that will work this time around.
Sadly, it won’t, since people like you still exist.
By “Race War”, he meant a war between the Christian Race and the Others Race.
I like the Globe’s editorial cartoon.
@Mr Stagger Lee: Oh, I’m OK with dragging Satan into all of this. It was an act of pure, unmitigated evil. The trouble is, those who are quick to do so, have convinced themselves that they’re among the good guys, when all along, they’ve been playing for the other team.
@Gypsy Howell: Right in Mr. Roof’s home town of Columbia, SC, flies the flag of treason and racism, and they won’t take it down. After all treason and racism are sacred traditions in South Carolina. Mr. Roof’s actions have a four century tradition behind them. http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2015/06/take-down-the-confederate-flag-now/396290/
Faux News, Right Wing Radio, and Right Wing web sites are constantly telling their audience that all the problems in their lives and in the country (the taxes they pay, the higher prices at the store, no raises at work, the debts they owe, and ever present threat of job loss) are the fault of “Blacks on welfare, Hispanic immigrants coming to get on welfare, lazy rich hippies who want to take away their jobs and SUV to “save environment,” etc. an imply how much better the country would be without them. Then they act surprised and shock and exclaim that “only a psycho loser” would act on the eliminationist logic of their statements. Time to accept that you sow what you reap O’Reilly, Hannity, Ailes, etc.
A good outcome of this mindless, pointless slaughter of innocent people would be if we could have a rational, civilized, fact-based discussion about gun control. But of course, we can’t. And a big reason that we can’t is because the NRA is no longer a sportsmans organization, but rather an extremist wing of the Republican Party.
Culture of Truth
Wait, wait, I’m also now being told if our leaders can’t use the term “Racist Terrorism,” they can’t defeat it.
We were assured that Republicans in Congress would prioritize a legislative fix to the Voting Rights Act after Justice Roberts gutted it.
Oddly enough, they haven’t made any progress:
They told media they would fix the law, they got three days of praise and publicity for their support of voting rights and then they did absolutely nothing.
So it was a success.
Maybe it’s time to remind people that St. Reagan’s campaign for the White House began in Philadelphia, Mississippi.
Now Reagan said what? But everybody else thought what? And so began the modern Republican Party.
needless to say this is the exact reason why the gooper politicians and pundits will continue to soft sell the racial basis of this crime. they have to keep pushing this ‘post-racial america’ bullshit to keep up the attempt to legally rationalize voter suppression cause it’s their only good chance at winning the WH in ’16. cause as the party currently stands, demographically speaking they’re fucked.
@Tokyokie: Too many of them do not seem to realize that they don’t have to listen to Satan, and are therefore accountable for following his suggestions.
White Terrorist Bingo
Expect to hear all the phrases over the next few days
Unpossible. Roof deep-sixed darkies, while the Boston clowns crucified crackers. Ergo, your premise is flawed. Also, too, Roof doesn’t have any “z”s or “J’s in his name, so by the existing MSM rules, he’s just a misunderstood, likely victimized, young man. Until he goes by Al-Roof, he cant possibly be a terrorist.
@Knowbody: There are times when that would have worked. But why would people listen to a black man trying to tell the country this needs to end? What would he know?
So if it was over, those laws-rules wouldn’t be limiting anybody’s actions ’cause they are never considering crossing those lines.
We are also being told by Obama to trust that this more extreme, illiberal and reactionary Congress will propose and pass a TAA bill after being given a fast track TPP bill. What could go wrong with that scenario. /snark
He has truly learned nothing over 6+ years.
Duke of Clay
@Sondra: By law every American male is required to register with Selective Service at 18. Why not have every America register and forward that information to the states which are then required to issue voter registration cards. Of course, THAT would never get through Republican Congress.
Enhanced Voting Techniques
hmm channeling wingnut
“The white people are the real victims here. If those black church gowers were armed none of this would have happened. Going to church unarmed is just asking to be shot”
Time to go back to everyone who said yesterday that we couldn’t call it terrorism because we didn’t know if there was a political motive and ask “Okay, now?”
Duke of Clay
@Villago Delenda Est: I’ve been thinking of changing my last name to “Smith” but continuing to pronounce it “Clay.”
Unless I’m really shitty at simple physics, this would imply that the SC flag is flying above the US flag. Which I thought was all sorts of wrong and disrespectful. Anyone as confused as me on this?
@Knowbody: Jesus wept. Get help.
Here’s the kind of tough guy language they used in the damage control campaign they launched prior to the opinion:
Like I said: successful campaign.
@Kay: “Tex” Sensenbrenner is such an asshole. Just saying.
Re: FP update. I’d say that WSJ editorial is baffling. And not in a good way.
@Duke of Clay: I had a friend who would tell you his name was Gadayo Takamini, spelled Derek Bacon, which was on all of his documentation.
Link? We’ve been “told” that by McConnell and Boehner. I haven’t seen anything indicating Obama is endorsing that plan.
Wait — has it been confirmed that the nine were people?
“By race war, he surely means PERSECUTE WHITE CHRISTIANS!” — Fox & Friends’ Steve Doocy
“BREAKING: I went through Dylann Roof’s trash and found his Democrat voter registration card!” — Michelle Malkin
“Project Veritas’ latest scoop is a secretly-obtained recording of Dylann Roof’s college professor railing against Evangelicals, the Republican Party and Ronald Reagan!!” — Drudge, *sirens*
Anyone know if law enforcement are following this angle?
I read what the shooter said so I know he was targeting black people, but is there an inquiry into why that night, that man, that church? I read about the historical signifigance of the church but I hope we’re not assuming this guy was well-versed in that and that’s why he went to that church on that night.
Because that seems important to find out.
How Obama Might Get His Trade Deal After All
They didn’t even get a guarantee, all they got was a mealy mouth if we can do it statement. They got suckered again. Someone please tell me about 69 chambers of doom chess. Please assholes tell me how this is going to work.
Now this just happened in Virginia with another Black church and another crazy White man.
Charleston, Dylann Roof and the racism of millennials
By Karen Attiah June 18 at 6:21 PM
America should be shaken to its very core by what happened in Charleston.
The gruesome massacre of nine people at Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church, a historically black church in Charleston, S.C., may amount to the worst racially motivated terror attack of our generation and a deeply violent reminder that racism and white supremacy continue to course through America’s veins. One cannot help but draw comparisons to the firebombing of a black church in Birmingham, Ala., almost 52 years ago.
The shooting suspect in Charleston has been identified as Dylann Roof, a white 21-year-old. He was arrested (peacefully, one should add) at a traffic stop. Many will argue about what words we will use to describe Roof, whether he should be described as a mentally disturbed kid (a description rarely applied when the alleged perpetrator isn’t a white male) or a rational adult responsible for his alleged actions. His age matters, but not for the reasons you may think.
Roof, who was born in 1994, violently shatters one particularly entrenched myth that society holds about racism — that today’s millennials are more tolerant than their parents, and that racism will magically die out as previous generations pass on. We think that millennials should be lauded for aspiring to be “colorblind.” There is the belief that tolerant young people will intermarry and create a post-racial, brown society and that it will be “beautiful.”
But the truth is that the kids are not all right when it comes to racial equality. Studies have shown that millennials are just about as racist as previous generations:
When it comes to explicit prejudice against blacks, non-Hispanic white millennials are not much different than whites belonging to Generation X (born 1965-1980) or Baby Boomers (born 1946-1964). White millennials (using a definition of being born after 1980) express the least prejudice on 4 out of 5 measures in the survey, but only by a matter of 1 to 3 percentage points, not a meaningful difference. On work ethic, 31 percent of millennials rate blacks as lazier than whites, compared to 32 percent of Generation X whites and 35 percent of Baby Boomers.
What would you suggest (if anything)?
Sensenbrenner’s the guy who also claims he had no idea what was in the Patriot Act he co-authored. An all-around ignoramus.
STILL looking for that OTHER Senator from South Carolina…where is Senator Slave Catching Scott? Why haven’t I seen any video with him
I think that for many who are baffled that they think racism is only about Jim Crow laws. Now that those laws are gone that these people think racism is gone. Poof. Obviously that is completely incorrect but do I think they have internalized that belief so much that that they really don’t understand that it hasn’t gone away. They think that people are whining/mired in the past when they talk about cops targeting blacks/black males more, that people do want to kill black people just because, and some people like that educator in Texas do want to segregate “those people.” People really can convince themselves of a lot of things that don’t seem rational to anyone with a brain and a does of common sense – look at the GOP and the War on Terror and trickle down economics.
Shorter WSJ: “hey, we didn’t applaud this time! WTF do you people want?”
Last night on my local news, the reader referred to the flags on Roof’s jacket as an “alleged” apartheid symbol. And it wasn’t even the Fox affiliate.
@Enhanced Voting Techniques:
Yep, heard that first thing yesterday, followed shortly thereafter by an accusation of Obama being divisive and hate-filled yet again for stating that something had to be done about guns.
They are afraid of it though, as an issue, despite their loud denials. That’s why President Bush had that big signing ceremony when they re-authorized the VRA even though conservatives knew they were getting ready to gut it in the courts.
Bush doesn’t get enough credit for his total political hackishness, IMO.
If this ends up passing the Senate without the TAA provisions attached and without Democratic voter buy-in, it will become Obama’s own “repeal of Glass-Steagal”. It’ll trash his legacy in the long run no matter what the rest of his time in office looks like.
I have no idea why he’s so gung-ho about this bit of protectionism for the pharmaceutical industry and the entertainment industry. It’s so weird that he’s decided that THIS is the windmill he wants to tilt at in the waning days of his Presidency.
South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley (R) called for Dylann Roof, the suspect in the shooting of nine people in a historic black church, to receive the death penalty.
“We will absolutely want him to have the death penalty,” Haley said during a Friday interview on NBC’s “Today,” calling Roof “a person filled with hate
Heinlein wrote this story, by name of “Coventry”.
@Loviatar: how it’s going to work?
This shitbag trade deal passes, Obama signs it, and Democrats lose massively in 2016. Then another Republican asshole gets us into another shooting war and crashes the economy again with Democratic help and we’ll all wonder how America became a Tea Party nation for another eight years.
@rikyrah: That percentage would be about same the percentage as Americans that identify as Republican.
@Kay: That’s what I want to know too. Also, the Rhodesia patch. Where did he learn about that? As someone said above, the FBI needs to comb through his background as carefully as they did the Boston bombers’.
I can’t count how many times I’ve seen and heard this myth. That older racists are dying out and the new generation is enlightened and peaceful.
Racism and racial resentment is alive and well in high schools and colleges across the country.
What gives me hope is seeing more and more good people speak out.
True, but Justice Roberts is supposedly the smartest lawyer ever in the history of the world and Sensenbrenner runs rings around him in that piece on “cause and effect” so I’m not sure what that says about Roberts.
@Enhanced Voting Techniques: And of course, if they’d actually managed to shoot him, all we’d hear would be “A whole church of thugs shooting an innocent white church-going boy!”
@Knowbody: takes a lot of . . . something . . . to blame the black guy for this. Yet you persist.
@Knowbody: Racist troll says what?
@Knowbody: Do us all a favor and go back under your bridge.
It’s one thing for the WSJ to defend Wall Street and corporate crime- that’s what they’re supposed to do- but for them to go out of their way to spew racist bullshit makes them no different from Stormfront.
I agree, mostly because that’s exactly what they would do in a terrorism investigation.
I saw Pinckney’s floor speech on the body cameras funding and it was about “seeing”- specificity. How that makes a difference. It’s one thing to say “cops are treating black people inequitably and brutally” it’s another to see the series of events he listed- chase, shooting, handcuffing without even checking if the victim was alive or could have been saved.
We need a full, rigorous investigation before we get to the roundtables and larger context because generalities blur things and obviously if he was somehow targeted for his work as a lawmaker (in addition to being black) that needs to be recognized and addressed.
No it won’t. Zander and his buddies will spend the rest of their days buffing his
knobreputation. By the time they’re done he’ll be the black Reagan.
Because he is a Rockefeller Republican. This is his final gift to his corporatist friends.
It actually is pronounced just like the thing on top of your house. People who are pronouncing it “Roff” are wrong.
Kay, I wonder the same thing. Your average 22 year old in Columbia isn’t going to know about that church in Charleston, nor, probably, will he be able to name any state legislators, let alone one from another district. I really hope the FBI is looking very closely at his contacts.
I would make a distinction, though, on that. Whether he knew about the history of the church goes to “targeting black people in a way to really do some damage to their sense of history, safety, community and right to ‘be” in the world” (terrorism) but targeting that lawmaker for that law is a different issue and a threat government also has to look at and address. That’s an assassination. They need to look at both, because it could have been both.
I don”t know why you haven’t seen it, but I’ve seen plenty on the local stations. Maybe the national media isn’t showing it, but he’s present.
@Cervantes: No, it wasn’t 9. The dead were all Black. By SC math, 3/5ths * 9 = 5.4. Rounding down to account for the moocher nature of their ilk and the uneaten T-bones in their freezer, let’s just say 4 were killed.
This whole Confederate flag ‘debate’ is ridiculous. The assholes today who want to fly it at their homes, draping their doorways, putting it on their license plates and bumper stickers are not doing it to ‘honor their Civil War dead.’ They know exactly why their displaying it.
I hope they’re looking at all those angles.
@kc: It’s interesting to compare this to the reaction to the Charlie Hebdo shootings. That incident, also carried out by disaffected young losers, was portrayed as an attack by the invincible Muslim Borg which threatened the very existence of Western civilization. This carefully planned, politically motivated attack, is not eliciting the same demand that we root out the extensive network of right-wing, white supremacist extremists.
It was interesting to read on Gawker yesterday that his roommate says he was planning something like this for six months. Meanwhile the NSA/FBI have all the supposedly amazing surveillance “tools” to prevent things like this and they didn’t. I find it really hard to believe someone could be planning an attack for six months and not say anything on the phone to anyone or let it slip on the internet somewhere (I’m looking at you /r/CoonTown and stormfront.com). So why wasn’t this prevented? Could it be that dragnet surveillance doesn’t work? Do they just go “Oh, haha, just another crazy cracker with his nut out of joint! Find me an islam with an innocuous website and stop wasting time with this hillbilly!” and move on?
Great job LEOs for catching him after the fact, but why couldn’t you stop it before it happened?
@kc: Thank you for mentioning that because I haven’t seen him interviewed either.
@Loviatar: not polishing Obama’s reputation makes you a raaaaaaaaaacist
@shell: I’m encouraged that there even IS a debate about the Confederate flag. I honestly never believed that line of thought would make it out of the lefty blogs and said as much yesterday. I was wrong. And happy to be so.
@Toschek: So, cancer screening must be a crock too, right?
Wow, is that ever depressing news.
@Toschek: What makes you think the NSA spends much, if any, time monitoring the activities of white supremacist “patriots”? They seemed to have no problem locating and arresting that guy who threatened to behead Pam Geller. Maybe tracking down white guys who threaten blahs just doesn’t generate the same sense of urgency.
Obama’s new trade plan: ask Senate Democrats to trust Republicans
Ella in New Mexico
I’m gonna call BULLSHIT on this. What studies? What were the numbers? What were they asked? What was the breakdown by socio-economic and geographical traits? Seriously, anyone who is around millenials for even a fraction of their lives knows that they are NOT as racist or bigoted as people were in the Boomer or previous generations.
No, this behavior does not represent young people’s attitudes in general. It does represent a microcosm of our society that breeds despair, anger, and feeds it with hate from an early age.
Roof clearly comes from a background that is the festering abscess of angry,white racists. Lives in rural South Carolina. History of school failure, broken family, depression and anger, apparent drug addiction, no job, no girlfriend, just gunsgunsguns. He heard the anti-black rhetoric that goes around those communities he lived in growing up, over and over again, and probably from at least one of his parents. Having a scapegoat meant he could focus his misery and his helplessness on a group that was responsible for it. Gave him a purpose, a reason, a mission.
With all these young, white, male mass shooters, hindsight is frigging 20/20 but God help us there were always signs for people who wanted to see them. As a parent of several young men, I think we need to look more closely at his family, and hold them more accountable here. I would question why no one saw his deeply troubled behavior long ago, and if they did, what action did they take? Why would his father go out and buy him a gun for his birthday two months after he was arrested for bizarre behavior at a local mall, for instance? His roommate has apparently said he was “planning something big like this for 6 months”–excuse me, but YOU KNEW THIS AND DID NOTHING?
@Enhanced Voting Techniques:
Oh, it’s already happened, and it’s even worse than you think:
I just can’t fathom how Roof could sit with those lovely people for an hour and then open fire on them. The cruelty . . .
@Loviatar: We understand. You hate it that the black guy is brighter than you and has achieved so much more than you. We get it.
I gotta hand it to you folks: you waited a whole 28 hours this time before you went right back to flinging the usual crackpot bullshit at each other.
If the NSA is monitoring who visits certain websites, contacts known extremists or checks out – buys certain books, he should have been on a watch list.
As for the Supremacists patches, often teenagers obsess over religion, political ideas, etc. and go into great detail on them.
@WaterGirl: It’s a myth that continues, in order to keep wages low. In the book Warmth of Other Sunsit mentioned that blacks were encouraged to move north because the whites lacked a strong work ethic. If you make a certain class feel better, they tend to accept the lower wages.
This country was founded on a toxic sludge of racism and violence. It courses through almost all aspects of our culture.
I’ll say it again, given our history I’m amazed that we don’t look more like Northern Ireland circa 1980. It’s a testament to the restraint of American minorities.
@Zinsky: I’d characterize today’s NRA as a national organization dedicated to mainstreaming sexual deviancy. Not a lot different from NAMBLA in that regard, but a lot more dangerous.
I wish I could say I’m surprised by this, but I’ve taught classes full of people born after 1980 for some time now. In terms of racial prejudice, these students never really seemed to be any different than the students from my own generation who were my classmates back in college.
So I’m saddened by the statistics, but not surprised.
It’s amazing in this day and age that the bubble of white privilege is so impregnable that certain whites can declare that racism is over. My mind is blown by the impenetrable ignorance of white people. And I’m one of them. My grandfather was in the Klan, and he used the N-word at dinner almost every night when I was growing up. Even then, as a 5 year old kid in rural Texas, I knew it was wrong. Words fucking fail me.
@Toschek: Because, as so many of us have tried to explain, that’s not the way it works. Really. They’re not listening to our every word.
Remember the whiny reaction from the right when a federal report warned about the danger of domestic right-wing terrorism?
@Toschek: At what point prior to his actually murdering people did he commit a crime? Note that I do not defend any of his actions, comments, or thoughts. We don’t live in the world of “Minority Report,”
@Ella in New Mexico:
It doesn’t match up with my experience with millennials either. I’ve never believed they’re the magickal ponycorn generation that will eliminate racism, homophobia, etc., forever. No generation is a monolith. All contain assholes. But yeah, in my experience with millennials (also as a mother and a sister), they are significantly less bigoted the prior generations. I’d need to see more research to convince me that isn’t true.
with regards to the DOMESTIC TERRORIST:
WHY haven’t we seen his FAMILY on tv?
WHY aren’t we getting stories about THEM?
WHY aren’t we seeing everything on HIS social media?
It’s not so much restraint as wisdom. American minorities know perfectly well that if push came to shove, a majority of the white majority would exterminate them without pity or remorse.
@Omnes Omnibus: guaran-funkin-tee if the Feds had ever paid him a visit about 80% of the same people now saying “why didn’t they stop this?” would instead be saying “GOVERNMENT SPYING!!!”
ETA: If they had paid him a visit AND prevented it, just to be clear.
So pointing out that Obama is screwing over workers with his TPP policy opens me to racist attacks.
Thanks Emma now I know where the line is, I’ll refrain from making policy based criticisms. /snark
It’s the state lege, rather than the city of Columbia, that put up that flag. Columbia is deeply Democratic.
Or maybe that there’s this document, I think called the constitution, that prevents the NSA from just randomly picking people out to spy on.
I keep going back to the envelopes sent out a few years ago to the president and I think the governor of NY containing a white powder. The post office was able to catch the woman who sent it because they have pictures of the front of every letter, and were able to determine where it was sent out by looking at the other letters sent at the same time. The letter information, that amount, was useless until they had a specific reason to look at it.
I went to see the author speak and she was really something else. She’s also really generous. The “meet the author!” program is sponsored by a newspaper and the editor introduced her. His introduction was about how she was this incredibly thorough journalist prior to writing the book, detail-oriented, a credit to the profession and he got the name of her book wrong.
The book was displayed in the hall outside the room. He had to walk by it to get to the podium. The people behind us were like “he doesn’t know the name of the book?” She rolled right past it, got up and did her talk. She was great.
@Belafon: Nonsense, the NSA and Obama don’t give a shit about the constitution.
I know this because I read it on the internet over and over and over again.
Good morning, all. Happy Juneteenth.
Not going to subject you to any Fox News watching today. Got a snootful of that yesterday.
Woke up sad, especially that Pastor Clementa Pinckney and all the good that he still had to do is gone from this world.
Watched a tiny bit of CNN. Still got their “Charleston Church Massacre” graphics up — cuz this is a television.event — but they’re doing to the “move along, nothing we can do” programming too.
Had two gun/not advocates on to explain it is so hard. And there is just nothing we can do. May hunt the transcript for you later.
I am sick of this bullshit.
The gun humpers never gave up. They changed our laws, incrementally over time, and flooded our society with guns.
That took time and persistence, in service of a socially bad goal. We’re seeing the poisoned fruit now.
But CNN guests are telling us.
There. is. nothing. we. can. do. about guns and mass murders like this.
There’s a house three miles from where I’m sitting that has a huge confederate flag on the barn. South Carolina has a specific history but this isn’t just a southern problem.
The internet adds an ease of access and immediacy in finding the desired echo chamber.
Don’t know if it’s since been proven false, but yesterday they said Roof had previously been charged twice as an adult. As he’s all of 21, you’d think he’d have been on someone’s radar (someone other than the roommates or others who thought he was joking).
@Kay: The Confederate flag is the societal equivalent of syphilis patient’s chancres, the symptom of a nasty disease no one likes to discuss in polite company.
Who is this “we”?
@Bill: The homicide rate in the US vastly exceeds that of Norn Iron even during the Troubles. The various paramilitaries killed about a thousand people there over a period of thirty years or so, Chicago alone has recorded about a thousand homicides in just the past two years, and that’s a decreasing trend.
@Ella in New Mexico:
See this WP article.
To me, we can learn the tiering of acceptable issues from this. While mental illness is difficult to talk about, they’d rather talk about that than guns. While guns are not something they want to talk about, they’d rather talk about guns than race, which is really saying something, since they’ll do just about anything not to talk about guns.
Still, it’s better than the view from outer space, the “unknowable and impossible to address at all” approach we see here:
@beltane: We need to start calling the Confederate flag “the American Swastika.” It’s memorable, on point, and could make a difference.
This heritage of not looking at what heritage they’re celebrating has to stop.
@Robert Sneddon: Except of course those US homicides weren’t executed by the oppressor on the oppressed. Drawing an analogy between Chicago’s crime rate and car bombs detonated with a political purpose makes little sense.
@Kay: Great point about the “tiering.” Thinking on it.
England actually did this and called it Australia. sadly there are no islands left big enough for all the assholes we would have to send there.
Roof purchased the gun in Charleston. I’m not familiar with South Carolina laws but since he had been arrested for a felony drug charge, shouldn’t there be a procedure in place to put a hold on the purchase?
@russell: What’s wrong with the Texas we already have?
@Elizabelle: When they bleat about “heritage”, the response should be “Really, is that best you people can do in the heritage department?”
@Elizabelle: Are you recovering from your ordeal yesterday?
@beltane: I’d award you Today’s Internets, but they’re not worth all that much nowadays…
@Knowbody: I think your klan meeting is a go – great day for you guys, huh? – and you need to scurry along to it.
@debbie: Fine, let’s say he came up on charges before. How does that change anything and put law enforcement in a position to arrest him prior to his actually committing the crimes?
Yes. There should have been a background check. However, his father gave him a gun for his 21st birthday in April, too. So I don’t know if he’s lying to cover for his dad or what.
The oldest man-made object with a swastika design is some 15,000 years old, if I’m not mistaken. The swastika is common to many cultures and shouldn’t by tainted forever by the Third Reich’s use of it. The Confederate battle flag should certainly be condemned as a symbol of racism and treason; but there’s no swastika anywhere on it, so it really shouldn’t be called the American/Southern Swastika.
@Bill: Most of the paramilitary attacks and killings in Northern Ireland were carried out on locals, Irish people, to terrorise them if they were on the other side or keep them in line if they were part of the local community. It was still safer to live on the Shankhill Road during the worst of the Troubles than it is to live in some areas of the United States today, and it’s been like that for decades.
The access to guns isn’t a cause of US violence and murder, it’s a symptom that nobody in the US seems to want to examine closely. The real problem with the US is the frame of mind that it’s OK to sort out your problems, real or imaginary with fists and firearms. The glorification of the US military is a self-reinforcing part of this but again it’s not something anyone in the US is willing to consider as a problem in the first place because it’s the military.
@JPL: The slain Reverend Pinckney wanted real gun laws in SC. Here’s a few he proposed while in the state govt:
Remember video games? “let’s talk about VIDEO GAMES”
That one dropped off, so there’s a little room there :)
Rap music was once on the list we had to plow thru before we got to guns, so this may take awhile.
In this context, it’s overtly political. It’s a state installed sign of occupation. The out-country stump fuckers keeping a boot heel on their political opposition.
Because it’s happened in the past.
@Southern Beale: The Guardian is reporting that police said he purchased the gun in Charleston.
@Loviatar: what the hell are you talking about? This horrible thing just happened, but let’s get back to playing “I scrapped my Obama sticker off my Prius and here’s why” fucktardy.
That, plus the name “swastika” is from the Sanskrit for “good thing” or “lucky thing.”
@Kay: There’s a guy I used to see driving around my town in Massachusetts with a big US flag flapping on one side of his pickup truck and a big Confederate battle flag on the other. Massachusetts plates. To some extent it’s become a nationwide symbol of being a loud-and-proud right-wing jerk, like rolling coal.
For reference….see Native Americans.
Maybe he was just calling for national unity.
@rikyrah: I wondered that too. But apparently “we” are still trying to come to grips with how this could happen in post racial Obama fuck yeah America. ??
Gun humpers are all over Twitter playing semantics with the Constitution. Here’s some semantics: the 2nd Amendment is the only one that specifically uses the word REGULATED. Not just regulated but WELL-regulated.
Why can’t we regulate this shit?
They tried it with Manhattan in “Escape from New York”.
deleted, double comment
I’ve said something like this for a while, now. Access to guns is a factor, IMHO, but there’s a deeper problem: Americans like and respect violence.
@ThresherK: Wow! Nice to know that in S.C. you can purchase a gun even though you are facing felony charges. It might be a good time to avoid that state.
Home health care aides are afraid of guns here. They say their elderly clients sometimes forget why a “stranger” is standing in the kitchen and half of their clients have guns.
The sheriff held a roundtable- assess the threat, remain alert, stay safe out there, ladies!
You see that a lot here in Tennessee. But one particular incident stands out: I was at a retreat center in rural Tennessee, a very redneck part of the state. And on my way there I saw a black pickup truck with a GINORMOUS I mean flagpole sized Confederate flag attached to the back of the truck. The next week is when the national brouhaha started over Howard Dean’s statement about pickups with Confederate flags on them. Umm …
@Elizabelle: Amir is right. The swastika is a Hindu auspicious symbol. The Nazis flipped it at an angle and adopted it as their insignia. Swastika means lucky or auspicious in Sanskrit. It has been widely used in Hindu religious ceremonies and poojas, long before you know who was even a twinkle in his parents’ eyes. The Hindu symbol is usually painted red, and sometimes white, never black.
@beltane: That’s generally been my response, more or less. Out of more than a quarter-millennium of history and culture, the blues, great novels, military heroes, beautiful cities, lovely people, you choose to celebrate and honor an ugly, violent, four-year period of death and destruction born of a desire to enslave half the population as your representation of your “Southern Heritage.” I wonder why that is?
The answer you’ll get is something along the lines of, “in the 18th century, ‘well regulated’ meant well trained and disciplined. It didn’t mean regulation in the form of laws limiting access to firearms.”
@Cervantes: That was, in fact, a large part of the way white Southerners were allowed to rehabilitate the name of the Confederacy, rewrite history and capture national politics in the early 20th century. It was all about national reconciliation: let bygones be bygones! Put this brother-against-brother tragedy behind us! As long as we’re all white.
@Matt McIrvin: Maybe I’m not up on the current political iconography– but isn’t that just a flat ‘Hey, I’m a racist– so, what are you going to do about it’?
Longer than that — it isn’t only the war years.
I do think you run into a practical problem with this, though, because if he had addressed his problem with his fists no one would be dead. He’s a little guy. Some tools are different than others. A ruler is actually less dangerous than a chain saw.
I like your idea about how we should handle the Tea Party.
@Linnaeus: Which isn’t much of an answer, since that sounds more like the Swiss army reserves than anything we see in the United States.
(I still see gun people characterizing Switzerland as a paradise of universal armament. Yeah, one where every bullet is carefully accounted for, and the people with the service weapons have to go on weekend training exercises. Hey, look, it’s an actual well-regulated militia!)
@MattF: Same thing, more or less.
“That took time and persistence . . .”
The success of the conservative movement in this country is in no small part due to the patience, persistence, and total commitment of its leaders and followers. And as ignorant as these people are when it comes to policy, they have PhD’s in the methodology of amassing political power at every level of government. They know that control of congress and state legislatures matter. Democrats simply don’t get this. It’s been sad to read this blog over the past few weeks when discussions about Hillary and Bernie come up. It’s the same old thing. Hillary gets it and will save us, or Bernie gets my vote because he will bring about real change. Bullshit! Congress isn’t going to change in 2017. Hillary or Bernie won’t be able to do much of anything. And if Labor wants to go after Obama and a bunch of dems in the next election, that’s ok by me, but don’t ask me to take them seriously. They couldn’t muster enough votes to get rid of Scott Walker in a purple state. All those protests in Madison were great theater, but the reality is Scott Walker could be the next President. Until democrats and their various interest groups learn to turn out voters in midterm elections, talking about long term change is a pipe dream.
@Matt McIrvin: Anyone who thinks that Switzerland is a libertarian paradise…
Re: Switzerland, if I’m not mistaken, the Swiss are no longer allowed to keep ammunition for their service rifles in their homes after a Swiss man used the rifle and ammo to kill his family.
Yes, that’s true – and I do think there needs to be more done on the access part of the equation. But there is a cultural problem as well. That’s something that is less tangible and therefore harder to address, but it’s there.
Iowa Old Lady
@Kay: This stuff is overdetermined. Guns, violent culture, racism, hate stoking media, internet hate groups, lack of effective mental health care–all those things contribute. Which is why it’s frustrating when people pick one thing and say it wouldn’t fix everything. No, it wouldn’t. That’s because we have a lot of problems. Addressing even one is apparently too much for us.
@Cervantes: The flag is specifically a battle flag. Only represents the armed forces of the Confederacy by definition.
We are forced to talk about guns, here and in Switzerland, much too frequently:
Sure, but do you really think they’re using it to celebrate a military defeat?
Or is it more subtle than that?
mai naem mobile
@Kay: I had a friend who was an aide for an older guy with a little dementia – the paranoid kind of dementia who they understood had a gun. The house was a big older house with lots of closets, cupboards, nooks and crannies. Also the guy had been a tinkerer in his younger days so the garage was full of stuff too. Anyhow, the daughter had unsuccessfully looked for the gun. They couldn’t ask him because of. his paranoia and if he had forgotten about it.they sure as heck didn’t want to remind him of.it. Anyhow, every afternoon when he would lay down for his short siesta my friend would go searching for this gun. They never did find it and he ended up passing away from pneumonia.
Iowa Old Lady
@Cervantes: The fact that SC re-raised that flag in 1962 tells you what it means. It didn’t fly there continually. It was an answer to civil rights.
and if those terms don’t accurately describe all the gunowning schmucks in this country accidentally blowing their own dicks off as we speak i’ll eat my hat.
Incidentally, why the Confederate battle flag and not the national flag, the Stars and Bars?
The original meaning of swastika is not to the point. Most people don’t know this usage. Saying “Dixie Swastika” immediately conveys a meaning. Thick, sickening, fraught with meaning.
Language is co-opted and changed over time. I know a historian who says that the word “matrimony” has it’s roots in the word maternity. So? What has that to say to anything in the present day?
Sorry to tell you that in the rural areas of the Deep South, being unemployed, uneducated, prone to rages, and taking substances to excess is considered normal.
@chopper: Okay, I smiled. Thanks.
@Iowa Old Lady:
But that is exactly why they do it: they point out that changing some particular thing would not have prevented a specific incident, and then smugly conclude that this demonstrates changing the status quo is pointless. Here’s Chris Christie playing that game yesterday:
There has been a mountain of worthless, offensive drivel spewed by politicians in the past couple of days, but that effort by Christie has to be a serious contender for the worst of the lot.
The Thin Black Duke
@WereBear: And just think, those are role models that the pretty hate machine of the GOP wants us to look up to.
@Mandalay: I thought Rand Paul’s statement was pretty good. He said government can’t fix this. I can see the bumper sticker now. Vote for me because I won’t even try to anything.
Also.. I call bullshit on that one. Roof was able to purchase a gun even though he was facing felony drug charges.
Right, so they’re selectively in favor of interpreting the Constitution when it serves them.
” “Well-regulated” doesn’t mean “well-regulated” when I don’t want it to mean “well-regulated” but we’re going to regulate the shit out of voting rights because the Constitution doesn’t specifically grant citizens the right to vote. Voting is a privilege not a right! ”
Never mind that the Constitution doesn’t specifically grant the right to free speech or religion either. In fact it doesn’t specifically grant a whole bunch of shit wingers want it to grant, just upholds them. This is the kind of linguistic gymnastics you have to do to be a wingnut.
@Cervantes: No, of course not. I know what they’re using it for – but when they try to be coy about it, and claim Oh no, it represents my “heritage,” then that’s what raises the question: out of all of Southern history and culture, that’s what you pick?
Interesting that Tamarind Hall is still saying the dad purchased the gun, even though the Charleston Police told CNN that the terrorist purchased it.
@Ella in New Mexico:
The Post article had the link: http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/wonkblog/wp/2015/04/07/white-millennials-are-just-about-as-racist-as-their-parents/
White millennials are less racist than their parents… but not by much. It does look to me as if the not-explicitly-racist ones might have significantly less subconscious bias, but the big step down in overt bigotry happened between the Silents and the Boomers.
What’s different, a lot different, is this: they’re less white. And the white ones are probably more conscious that they can’t get away with expressing open bigotry in public. By the same token, though, the really racist ones might well have more simmering resentment over that.
Though bigotry obviously wasn’t the only factor there, what it reminds me of is youth support for Obama. Young people voted for Obama in a big way in 2008, but the white non-Hispanic youth vote reverted to its historic breakdown in 2012, mostly voting for Romney. Obama still carried young people, but only because they were less white than older demographics.
@muddy: “Dixie Swastika.” I like that.
Honestly, in my case it just reminds me that cops are, after all, capable of not being assholes (when the suspect’s white) and wish that they were always like this.
I was the same way with those militia-ranchers last summer. There were people I knew who were pissed as hell that the military wasn’t going in guns blazing and showing them who was boss, and I was like… not me. I’m actually pretty thankful that for once in their lives, the authorities didn’t go with the “they pull a knife, you pull a gun! They send one of yours to the hospital, you send one of theirs to the morgue!” approach to life. Our cities would be a better place if they reacted to black criminals and suspects with that kind of restraint. Just as our justice system would be a better place if black suspects were treated the way this white guy’s being treated.
Chris Christie’s kumbaya moment. “Laws can’t change this only love …” Pardon me while I barf.
I’ll be sure to mention the love thing next time Texas executes an inmate, BTW.
The Moar You Know
Wow, those of you idolizing the millenials as some kind of post-racist generation have obviously not been within a thousand yards of a high school in the last ten years.
They’re not only just as racist as preceding generations, but a lot more casual about it. The main difference I see is that they’re smart enough not to do it in front of people they don’t know.
The Pakistanis, Saudis, and Gulf sheikdoms already tried something like that (“send ’em off overseas to fight our enemies and hopefully get killed!”)
The result was, well, ISIS. And al-Qaeda. And all these other crazies.
It’s that “fraught with meaning” part that bears looking at.
Especially if there are numerous meanings.
I don’t know that it’s been verified that he purchased it. I know he told the police that, but the uncle also told police that the dad gave him a gun for his birthday. And both things might be true. But they need to find the gun used first and track its source.
My understanding is that it’s a violation of federal law to sell (or gift) a gun to someone with pending felonies. If he did buy it, the gun shop is liable. If the Dad gave it to the son, they need to show that he was aware of the felony charges. If he knew about them he can go to prison.
Assumes facts not in evidence. The Senate map, at least, is favorable for Dems, is it not? If they don’t take those, well, then we’ll have the “inept” conversations. On the state level, on the other hand, I have to sadly agree with you.
And that’s just the start of it. I no longer go down those roads when talking with someone whom I think may be a wingnut.
Have seen the same thing in Marin County, CA, one of the most liberal areas of the liberal state of CA. Except that there was no US flag along side the confederate.
@Cervantes: No one gets a gut punch thinking about ancient people speaking Sanskrit.
No wonder Democrats can’t put messages on bumper stickers, our catchphrases all need extensive footnotes.
Who’s stopping you?
Oh noes, now I am hearing Christie singing “All We Need is Love” in my head.
@Knowbody: no, being a racist makes YOU a racist.
The thing is that if you assume that a lot of our generation is “colorblind,” that doesn’t necessarily make us better on race. Yes, I think it’s fair to say that there are a lot more white people in my generation who don’t hold black people’s skin color against them. But we’re also very well positioned to fall for all the right wing mythmaking about the civil rights era we didn’t live through – “yes, black people were treated horribly, no doubt about it, but civil rights passed, and that’s over now. Why are they still bitching about it? There are no separate drinking fountains now. There are no anti-miscegenation laws now. There’s no legalized segregation now. Why can’t they just get over it and get ahead in life instead of living in the past?” Etc.
(Of course, there’ll always be at least a few people like this who just didn’t even get that message and are still operating on Strom Thurmond 1948 standards).
ETA: having now read Ella in New Mexico’s comment and just to clarify, I’m not saying my generation of whites ISN’T – or is – less racist overall. I don’t know. I’m saying that when racism DOES show up in our generation, it’s often under the cover of exactly this kind of “color-blind” stuff that millennials are lauded for.
The Thin Black Duke
@Ella in New Mexico: this is a big country and has a lot of white Milennials in it, including ones you never talk to. I believe these numbers.
And we have the middle name.
Dylann Storm Roof.
@Southern Beale: That fucking flag was all over in the Nam but there were more peace signs and Lennon glasses!
I seem to remember an American soap opera (was it Santa Barbara?) where the sons of the rich family had names like Storm, Ridge, and so on.
@JPL: For years the right has sneered at the left for showing compassion towards their fellow man, using “Kumbaya” as an insult; life was all about self reliance, pulling yourself up by your bootstraps, and the survival of the fittest.
But after the Charleston massacre they are all suddenly proposing love and compassion as the solution:
– Christie: “…we need to do more to show that we love each other”.
– Paul: “…it’s people not understanding where salvation comes from”.
– Santorum: “..It’s a time for deeper reflection beyond this horrible situation”.
These repulsive fuckers are suddenly all in favor of fellowship, caring and understanding when the alternative is discussing racism and gun legislation.
Where are you getting that he had any pending felony charges?
The Senate map is favorable, but not a sure thing. However, the House ain’t gonna change, and it takes both to accomplish anything.
@Betty Cracker: anecdata. My grandparents were born at the turn of the century and certainly were not outwardly racist. Of COURSE the people in your family are going to seem to buck that trend. With increasing ideological segregation, though, attitudes are not changing within sub populations.
It’s probably a typo – his middle name should be Strom.
@Elizabelle: There is nothing that can be done with the political configuration of the current Congress but that could change in 2016 if Dems retake the House (which is a long shot) and the Senate (should be easier to recapture). I assume that a President Clinton will prioritize gun reform if the Dems have control of the House.
@Mandalay: Yup and that fellowship and caring will show up again when the Supreme Court allows gay marriage.
@Loviatar: you’re the one who made a point of doing it in a thread about a racially motivated massacre. The shoe fits perfectly. In conclusion , eat shit and live.
Tree With Water
“..a problem that defies explanation beyond the reality that evil still stalks humanity”.
America waged the War in Iraq because honorable people were misled by faulty intelligence.
That statement is no less blatant a lie than the massacre at Charleston “defies explanation”. Which explains my complete lack of interest in what any politician or any of their publications have to say about the Charleston massacre.
I’m also pretty sure that the Wall Street Journal will be singing a different tune if-and-when their own people are ever shot down en masse at their place of business..
This is something that occurred after Mandela’s death, with all the hagiographies coming in from right wingers. As with MLK, they’re all about what an extraordinary man he was for being a big enough person not to take vengeance on his enemies, to turn the other cheek, to tell his followers not to answer violence with violence, etc.
… So… Just following this logic, this means we, similarly, should be the bigger person and not turn the other cheek and answer violence with love as well when something like, say, 9/11 happens, right? Hello? Yes? Right?
All the conservative praise for the Gandhis, MLKs and Mandelas of the world – or their current calls for Palestinians or Iraqis or whoever to follow their example rather than shooting back – becomes suddenly much creepier once you realize it’s basically them asking for unilateral disarmament.
“Today the system and philosophy of institutionalized racism identified by Dr. King no longer exists.”
I would probably agree that the system of institutionalized racism no longer exists, but no way is it true that the philosophy no longer exists. That part of the sentence smacks of privilege.
You answered your own question.
@Southern Beale: I’ve been reading this twitter feed, about the gun purchase.
Maybe the police will release more information, so we know for sure.
Never mind; I just found it. Had been thinking he’d only had misdemeanor charges, but I was wrong.
@Elizabelle: confederate swastika. It’s unamerican.
There is a gentleman named “cliff” on another blog who is politely insisting that this was NOT an act of terrorism; that it was just a confused kid. He defends the confederate flag; says “How is it treason? The flag as it now appears had no official status in the Confederacy (though versions of it appeared as parts of larger flags).”
Not sure if I want to argue with him or not. I’m tired; he’d probably run circles around me.
Anyone strong enough?
And the ‘smart Bush’s contribution to the discussion from Huffington today
You really really have to work hard to be this uninformed. Or just assume that the people you are appealing to are even less informed (or totally indifferent) than you are. With this level of curiosity he will make a wonderful door stop in the oval office but as president not so much
@Gimlet: Doesn’t mean a damned thing as South Carolina sentences to killers to the death penalty on a regular basis. According to a quick Google search, there are close to 100 inmates on SC’s death row. In April 2015, a state legislator sponsored a bill to add firing squad to the methods used for execution. A death penalty is no biggie in Sough Carolina.
Now, if it were Robert Johnson, the Bronx DA who has said he is categorically against the death penalty, coming and saying that XYZ criminal was so bad that he would ask for a death sentence… that would be something to note. (Hell, DA Johnson’s opposition to the death penalty was even mentioned in a L&O episode.)
CNN is reporting what he confessed to police, but that doesn’t mean it’s been verified. I haven’t read anything that says they’ve found the gun. It wasn’t on him when he was arrested. It wasn’t in his car.
@Matt McIrvin: Perhaps it’s that Millenials are not as overtly racist — those that are don’t talk about it openly the way previous generations did?
@Elizabelle: Obviously, I should read a thread a little better before commenting. I thought muddy was the author of “Confederate Swastika,” but if it’s you, an admiring h/t to you.
@Southern Beale: I didn’t know that they haven’t located the gun.
@Tree With Water: Only if the shooter was non-white and hopefully not a Christian, otherwise they would over look it as an ecercise in irrational exxuberance
I used to worry that something was wrong with me. That the fears of being judged as less by possible & current employers, the sense of being followed when I go shopping, that I was failing at life as my almost all white peers went out and had lives and did things while I was always scraping up leaving to make something out of it. It took a really long time of berating myself for not being as good as I needed to be to not fail and not being properly pretty, acceptable, the whole gamut of Things Wrong With Me to take a break and look. This is institutionalised racism in action. I’m wary of cops, employers even friends, because I know they can try but they don’t get it. The past few years have been painful lessons that the past ain’t past. When I was much younger, I always was thankful that things were so far above what’s in the history books. And they are, but now my eyes are open to the fact that they aren’t far enough. And I don’t know if we can really get away from this part of our nature.
Too early to know what? As Charlie Pierce is saying, why can’t we just take Dylan at his word? He said he wanted to kill black people and start a race war. Period.
Also, Glenn Beck’s house of bullshit reminds us that it’s too soon to call for gun control. Also, if everyone had been armed in that room, lives would have been saved.
Same as it ever was.
If you honestly think he believes that and isn’t just doing what he thinks is clever argumentation…
This is why I don’t argue with conservatives in the first place. 90% of it is going to be shit like this. They don’t even believe it; they’re just saying whatever they think they have to to prove that the silly librulz are silly and wrong.
@Chris: Me, I just wish people would stop talking about cops like they all have one monolithic personality. Undoubtedly the LEO community has a cultural problem, but that doesn’t mean every force and every cop is fucked up.
@shell: We certainly would take him at his word if his name was Muhammad and he kept repeating Allah Akkbar
@Chris: Really? I always assume they’re true believers, that they start with their conclusion (their belief) and then work backwards wriggling around trying to prove what they believe. And so he says the confederate flag had no status in the confederacy.
He’s polite as hell, but his views are toxic.
I mentioned awhile back, that one of the workers who cleaned my septic, was a white supremacist. When he started talking about the others, I shut my mouth. That’s hard to believe for those who know me, but he really frightened me.
Is this the same Derek Bacon who contributed to the early Eyrie Productions mega-crossovers and whose name lives on in the series to this good day?
@JPL: Yeah, that’s one thing that makes me uncomfortable dealing with plumbers and contractors. In my neck of the woods they’re most likely to be listening to Lush Rimbaugh in their trucks and spout racist bullshit in my house.
I wish I lived in a region where all the contractors were peaceful deadheads, progressive Bernie supporters. Maybe no such place exists.
…I also think that some of the generational comparisons today miss that a lot of the classic Fox News Geezers are not Boomers; they’re still “Silents”, people born during World War II or the late Depression. Some fought in Korea or Vietnam, some were the teenagers of the Fifties. Most of Generation X were their kids, not the Boomers’ kids.
That Post article suggests that they’re way more racist than the Boomers, on average (though of course it’s not universal, and a lot of the instigators of the supposed Boomer cultural upheavals actually came from that cohort too, and earlier ones).
They were a combined 5 and 2/5 people.
@Germy Shoemangler: My mother somehow seems to manage that an an upper left bubble — they’re still generally late and can’t estimate projects but they’re more than likable on-site.
@Kay: I hate how they use mental illness as an othering technique and as a way to absolve themselves of any responsibility. “Dude was crazy, so what can you do? Nothing. Crazy gonna crazy.” Total bullshit. There’s a good chance that the dude is mentally ill (statements about wanting to start a race war indicate possible delusional thinking, telling his roommate indicates that he didn’t care about getting away with it, which could be suicidal ideation), but that only means that society failed even more. I think a conversation about mental illness is worthwhile, but only if we recognize that all of society is responsible for caring for those people, that we have decimated mental health treatment and stigmatized people to the extreme, that we continue to arm those people because of Second Amendment BONERZ, and most of all that we allow this disgusting public expression of racism and hate to go on, refusing to acknowledge that it is literally deadly, that we are winding up people who we absolutely do not want to wind up. And most people are susceptible to this, in a way.
After the Tucson shooting, Sheriff Dupnik said, “When you look at unbalanced people, how they respond to the vitriol that comes out of certain mouths about tearing down the government. The anger, the hatred, the bigotry that goes on in this country is getting to be outrageous.” He was absolutely right. The bigotry that is socially acceptable is absolutely horrifying. FFS, the flag of slavery flies over their Capitol. And then we just hand fuckers like this deadly weapons.
This is not to say that Roof should be excused in any way for his crimes. I don’t believe I the death penalty, but I am happy to let him rot in a small room for decades, to think about what he has cost us. But I also think that South Carolina, and this entire country, should spend more time thinking about our responsibilities, and how we failed. There were multiple opportunities to stop this from happening, and they were all missed.
My congratulations – you just won the thread.
Somehow I doubt the second part is ever going to occur the way you’re imagining it here.
@Bobby Thomson: Yeah, that’s why I said it didn’t match my experience, i.e., anecdata. But I’m not just talking about people in my family. I’m around teenagers a lot, and they tend to have diverse groups of friends (very rare when I was in high school in the early 80s) and seem less bigoted than I remember my own peer group being. But I think Chris is onto something above when he talks about the “colorblind” issue.
From Dick Polman, a Phil;ly reporter
The problem is systemic enough that I’m comfortable generalizing that white criminals are not, as a rule, treated like black ones.
My experience is that when arguing with a liberal, anything goes, with a special emphasis on proving “hypocrisy” and “inconsistency” and whatnot (though not necessarily a firm grasp of what these words mean).
Interesting question on this point: if it’s true that they start from a True Belief and do whatever they have to to rationalize it, then what’s the True Belief here? I’d say the True Belief is that the Confederate flag is a good and honorable and legitimate thing which should totally be allowed to fly – and “but it had no legal standing!” is the wriggling that’s being done to try and prove this belief. That part, I don’t think they really care if it’s true or not. All it has to do is justify the Confederate flag’s right to keep flying.
@Mandalay: I hate to say it, but I realized after the fact that Punchy beat me to it.
ETA: That’s what happens when you don’t refresh your screen enough.
@Suzanne: To me, it’s not even mental illness. (Though it qualifies as crazy.) Mental illness is more like organic brain dysfunctions, like OCD or depression. Awful things happen to and around people dealing with such illnesses, but they don’t do it deliberately.
You couldn’t convince this person to go to therapy or take medication. He thought his way into this through environment and rejection of other alternatives. It’s a stupid and hateful and awful thing to do, but I really wonder if it can be called mental illness.
And is the Right Wing calling for better mental health services? They are not. So it’s just an excuse.
To not talk about race.
Sounds like he’s arguing on a pointless technicality, which he thinks is very clever.
The flag you see people waving around as “the Confederate flag” today, the saltire with stars on a rectangular background, was rarely used by the actual Confederacy (a few obscure CSA army units used it, and a version with a different shade of blue was used as a naval jack).
A square flag with a similar design was the flag of Lee’s Army of Northern Virginia, flown by the Confederates during many major battles of the war, and that’s what our notion of “the Confederate flag” is of course really based on. But it’s technically not the same since it’s a different shape.
The flag of the Confederacy itself was originally the Stars and Bars, which looked a bit too much like the US flag, so they changed it to a white one with Lee’s saltire flag up in the corner, and later added a red stripe at the fly end so that it wouldn’t look so much like a flag of truce. And then they ran out of time.
I’m perfectly comfortable with that generalization too, because it’s an appropriate use of a generalization. Your odds of being treated shitty (or worse) by a cop are much higher if you’re black than white.
What I object to is the automatic implication that every individual cop is a racist hothead just waiting to go off. That’s just indulging in the very same cultural problem the LEO community has, except in inverse.
Indeed. The excellent article about Roof in the NYT details the closest miss of all:
Those people will surely live with awful guilt for the rest of their lives over what happened.
@schrodinger’s cat: On one of the recent TV shows about Hitler, they traced his knowledge of the symbol to a carving of it as part of a carving in the RC church he attended as a child and where he sang in the choir. I think he was probably hoping that using it would give success to his ideas and actions.
…though it appears to me that the flag in front of the South Carolina capitol is, in fact, the square ANV version.
What the rectangular Confederate saltire really is, of course, is the primary flag of massive resistance to the civil rights movement.
@Chris: I think the ‘true belief’ starts with the modern southern conception of the war that was fought between 1861 and 1865, It was the ‘war of Northern aggression’ and the issue was states rights. It had absolutely nothing to do with the issue of slavery. This morphed into the romantic ‘Lost Cause’ and the world of ‘Gone with the Wind’.
The fact that there is ample written documentation that the basis of the confederacy was slavery and the war was fought over the issue of slavery is totally ignored. One hundred years of black codes and Jim Crow, which was slavery by another named’ are just a minor point. The flag represents southern heritage as recalled by Gone with the Wind. Slavery most assuredly is not part of that history (never mind the ‘happy singing darkies ‘). As long as this is the mindset of the region (and those outside of the region who buy into that story) then there is no use arguing about it. You might as well try and convince a flat earthier that the world is round.
Racist-hothead cops are extremely dangerous to the general population, though, more dangerous than violent criminals are to the cops (since the cops are likely better-armed and -armored). It’s a risk-management question.
@WereBear: There are plenty of mental illnesses that aren’t “organic”, and that doesn’t make them less real. At the very least, this dude may be delusional. There are plenty of rational motives for murder, like revenge, to cover up another crime, for profit, etc., and none of those look like they’re in play right now. We don’t know much about this asswipe yet, but I’m sure we will find out more. I would not be surprised if we learn that he has been thought of as “weird” or “off” or “scary” for years.
But you’re right, we’re not going to talk about how we might actually have helped the dude. We’re just going to write him off as broken, and say that we couldn’t have possibly done anything to avoid this. Not going to talk about race, not going to talk about gun control, not going to talk about terror.
Another Holocene Human
Your sarcasm is well-honed, Zander. That’s an industrial grade cutting edge there.
From Daily Kos
“Jeb! Bush becomes the latest Republican who just can’t bring himself to admit that racism motivated the mass murder of nine African Americans in Charleston, South Carolina, on Wednesday night:
“I don’t know what was on the mind or the heart of the man who committed these atrocious crimes,” Bush said in remarks at a Faith and Freedom Coalition summit in Washington.”
What an incredible weasel.
Another Holocene Human
@schrodinger’s cat: They’re not shying away because it’s a cheap shot for NY Yankees to call South Carolinians racist backwoods fuckturds. They call Southerners that anyway.
Before anything starts, I am a Northerner, and I’m not apologizing for Southern racism. I have some personal experience with NY, Boston, and Charleston, SC and the latter city takes the fucking cake in terms of pervasive, ugly, nasty racism. Papered over with a very fine antique wallpaper of It’s Not Happening If We Pretend It’s Not.
All I’m saying is that for a Northeasterner, calling (white) Southerners (see, we’re racist too, we say Southerners when we only mean white Southerners) racist pigs is just kneejerk tribalism. The weirder and more arcane the racist signs and symbols (funny hats, weird patches, dorky organization names) the better the gawking value for Northerners who want to pat themselves on the back and thank G-d on Saturday morning that they were not born in the South.
@Suzanne: Again, on the subject of dealing with potential mass shooters, I recommend hilzoy’s long article from 2007, just after the Virginia Tech massacre, about her friendship with a potential shooter:
The theme that develops is that there was little that she could legally do to restrain this person from doing anything, given that he had committed no crime and there are well-justified constraints on getting people involuntarily committed. All she could really do was try to talk him down and urge him to get help, which in this case ultimately worked. But she was really walking a tightrope, and often at a loss despite actually having a bit of relevant training.
To partially paraphrase Jon Stewart, that is a society where the streets are named for Confederate generals and a variant of the Confederate battle flag flies over the capital, yet there is the nexus of white people who think “their” country is being taken away from them. Delusional doesn’t even begin to cover it.
@Matt McIrvin: Agreed, and more needs to be done about it. LOTS more.
…”But,” he continued, “I do know what was in Terri Schiavo’s mind and it was that she wanted to live!”
Oh, well, that sounds reasonable. States’ rights to do what…?
There is such a place. It’s called “Vermont.”
Yup. It means “100 years later and we still hate nigras and the meddlers from elsewhere who try to help them.”
Another Holocene Human
@shell: Florida Injustice System from stem to stern is so racist it makes SC state troopers look like a model of efficiency.
Another Holocene Human
@Kropadope: slow clap
@Another Holocene Human: is it ok that I, black person who has seen confederate flags in Virginia and Maryland and West Virginia and down south and has been been very uncomfortable in south carolina, feel a certain way about this? Is it ok with you? Just checking. Because I know it is never too early to focus on white southerners hurt feelings or to downplay those silly flags. We are just so darn gosh mean here in the north. I hope they get these folks in their graves real soon cause this is the real concern here. Right?????
@Another Holocene Human: I’m in Texas. They’re racists all over the place here. My parents are racist. Some of my coworkers are. People in McKinney are.
@Kropadope: own slaves of course
See, I always knew big government wanted to socialize all the slave ownership. Slaves should be owned by good, God-fearing landholders, not the state.
@Baud: Agreed. Ban this troll.
So…plain statement admitting reality or weasel wording ( “they said”, “appears”) leaving lots of room for wiggling?
Keep in mind that he can’t talk. He’s bad at talking.
They went with the saltire (X) rather than St George’s Cross on account of Jewish pushback.
The christian nation bit was compromised from go.
@LAC: I think it is important to recognize the different sorts, varieties and degrees of racism, bigotry and prejudice that exist in different parts of the country. I can understand a person feeling a special kind of threat in the South, doesn’t mean that other areas do not have different, perhaps less personally threatening, but just has harmful varieties of racism.
As for the topic of the post. I thought it was too early for a person to confidently assert what the motive was when all we knew was a white person went into a church and shot some people who happened to be black. But that changed within hours. The shooter went out of his way to leave a witness and told her to spread his message, and the message was unmistakable. And every bit of evidence that has come in since is consistent with the message he asked the witness to spread: he wanted to start a racist civil war in the hopes of starting genocide against blacks.
So, OK, he is said to have some black friends on facebook. But why would they not disappear into his desired societal inferno? Maybe he would have an some sorrow on a personal level that his black friends had to go. Who knows? In addition to being a hateful racist, he is probably completely delusional and nuts in some ways, and has problems with basic consistency.
Absolutely ridiculous to pretend it was not about genocidal racism after the details of the shooting came out.
I think journalism schools teach the use of alleged incorrectly. For years the LA area news media referred to Reginald Denny as an alleged victim.
Thanks to the poster who put up that quote by Baldwin, who was a truth-telling prophet.
I wish someone would commit an act to end the race war. You know, the one we’ve had since, oh, 1492.
Again we see the libertarian delusion that it’s impossible for any entity except the government to oppress someone. Everything else is Freedumb and if you don’t like it you have a “choice” to leave.
Just a few bad apples. Move along.
Another Holocene Human
I think they came to that realization years ago. All the more reason to shriek louder. Case in point, Anders Breivik. His manifesto quoted US hate-right “lights” approvingly.
Another Holocene Human
And neither have you, because you jerkfaces with your “kill the bill” torpedo’d the more broadly bipartisan job-loss-insurance measure. Nader 2015, bitchez.
Another Holocene Human
@Germy Shoemangler: The real story is that non-Hispanic whites are a shrinking demographic, so less Millennials are white. Than, say, Boomers.
Another Holocene Human
This is the best post yet. All the upfists. But here we have le dilemma ~~ white folk are convinced that Blacks don’t feel pain as white folk do. (Not digging up cites but it’s in the healthcare research, especially healthcare delivery–look it up.) So how can you really get that outraged, nevermind frightened. As you say, the Muslim Borg IS coming FOR you, but that white supremacist guy is like that half-feral rescue cat that brought you a dying bird, just trying to do you a favor in a demented way.
Another Holocene Human
@kc: whiny? they went nuclear and shut that whole thing down. the reaction from the right actually hampered counter terrorism badly.
The right WANTS their lone wolves unhindered and empowered. They are evil.
@Another Holocene Human:
It isn’t “job loss insurance”. It’s a program that’s been around since 1974 as a fig leaf for Democrats who vote for trade deals.
They coupled it with fast track in order to set it up as an “exchange” for fast track so they could say they got something.
If the only way they can sell this trade deal is to pretend it’s all about TAA, Trade Adjustment Assistance, I question whether this is all about “middle class economics”, myself. Maybe we’re back to the Asia Pivot justification, though, I haven’t checked in the last 30 minutes.
Another Holocene Human
@rikyrah: Just stroll in a white neighborhood and knock on the door.
They don’t need to hound his family like they did the Tsarnaevs because they have met the enemy and “he is us”.
Another Holocene Human
@Matt McIrvin: It’s a shame nobody has keyed his car or punctured his tires by now.
@Another Holocene Human:
“Trade that’s fair and free and smart will grow opportunity for our middle class.”
Shouldn’t the trade deal stand alone to “create opportunity” or is it about something else? I think it’s great they want to talk about trade assistance, but it’s tiny and incidental to trade deals. Let’s talk about how the trade deal creates opportunity for our middle class, rather than a small program we already had that mitigates some of the damage done by trade deals.
We’re not passing trade deals in order to get funding to mitigate the damage of trade deals, I hope, because that’s insane.
Another Holocene Human
And let’s look deeper. Spanking. Disciplining with rods, paddles, switches, and plumbing supply line (look it up). Tolerating physical, emotional, and sexual abuse of children. Shaming victims. Looking the other way in cases of physical, emotional, social, and educational neglect of children. Children are chattel in this country. In some jurisdictions you will get in more trouble for abusing an animal than abusing a child.
American adults glorify violence because when they were children they were taught by the adults in their lives that violence is good and you solve problems with violence.
I won’t get into all the psychology around it and how it affects different individuals in different ways. But I think it’s very telling that the US glorified the Duggars, a homeschooling family-cult where older daughters were sister-mom-slaves, a family that disciplined by “blanket training”, which is Soviet orphanage-style child abuse (google this only if you have a strong stomach), and thrashing children only a little older with a rod, right up to the moment where it was acknowledged publicly that there had been incest in that house. Jim Bob (the patriarch) spilled the beans, explaining that many families in his cult-church-community had children molesting other children.
I thought spanking was supposed to “beat the tar out of ya” but it seems like it puts the sin in.
Another Holocene Human
@Linnaeus: My comment got moderated for being too frank. I agree it goes deeper. It goes to physical punishment of small children by their parents and neglect of their basic needs, which is accepted and even encouraged in our society.
@muddy: The swastika has a meaning and provenance beyond the Nazi hate symbol, is all I was saying. This is not in some antiquated past but right now. It is a sacred religious symbol used in most religious ceremonies by Hindus and also Jains and Buddhists.
Not only did a 2009 DHS report (10pp, .pdf) on right-wing domestic terrorism get shouted and screamed at by the Wingnut Wurlitzer, resulting in the Administration backing down, but the DHS dissolved the team of the analyst behind that report (he quit the following year in frustration): DHS CRUSHED THIS ANALYST FOR WARNING ABOUT FAR-RIGHT TERROR
Some days it seems this is Pamela Geller’s world, and we’re only allowed to rent space in it…for now.
Another Holocene Human
@Matt McIrvin: Yeah, I love the idea of the Swiss model. Bring that here.
In GB I understand you have to go the shooting club to shoot, which seems fair enough, but would preclude that favorite Agatha Christie plot where various characters gather for the weekend at a country estate and the crusty old host suggests everyone try shooting before lunch and then after lunch Miss Cranberry is found dead in the garden!
@Another Holocene Human: Christie favors poisons to shootings, anyway. I have read almost all Christies, there are very few shootings in those books.
Another Holocene Human
@dogwood: Lost the ability. Union households voted for Walker. The labor movement has not recovered from the Southern strategy. There’s a terrible divide, part regional, part generational, with the “Lou Dobbs” types pulling one way and a more progressive labor movement pulling in another. And there’s structural weakness due to RTW eating away at the labor movement all the time. Plus all those years of Republican presidents have fucked up NLRB, OSHA, etcet, although Obama has worked really hard to try to turn that around. Bush II fucked hard with FLSA and how your pay gets calculated (whether you’re an employee turns out to be a massively important question).
There’s a bunch of white guys in the AFL who vote against their interests and believe that racist shit, and there’s a bunch of white guys outside of the labor movement who think and act the same way and are actively trying to tear unions down. Meanwhile some of the most impressive movement in labor has been by the most desperate workers in the US–workers of color, often women of color, and also foreign born workers of color. Many of them have been told by courts that they’re not allowed to have a union.
I personally believe the AFL-CIO national leadership is riding this issue like a cheap nag because it’s one of the few legislative issues that unites their membership (although I’m meh). They can’t not showboat, but I wish they’d be more sophisticated than “KILL THE BILL KILL THE BILL” because I think they just killed the best compromise legislation they could have gotten.
@schrodinger’s cat: I’m down with that.
There is an obvious reason this sentence is fucked in the head. But the notion that King ‘identified’ racism like some explorer in a pith hat is bizarre. “Oh hai, I shall name this social phenomena ‘racism.’ Let’s march about it!” It would be a touch more accurate if the said called it the system that killed King.
I’m with radical Leftist Lawrence Summers on trade deals:
For our citizens, and that doesn’t just mean “US citizens”.
First. Not as an afterthought or pot sweetener after 60 corporations and 300 lobbyists get everything they want.
We ARE “the economy”.
@jl: JK, with all due respect, I am not in the mood to humor, help or play the “magical negro” to help white folks parse about the degrees of racism. Not today. I am not that girl. Not after looking at those sweet faces. Maybe when this gets to the point when I don’t burst into tears.
So let me see if I have this right: posting the Ten Commandments and demanding prayer in public schools is essential because that will somehow make people act like decent folks through osmosis. But exposure to the officially sanctioned flag of racism, hate and treason couldn’t possibly foster white resentment and rage? Izzat about right?
@Kay: Yes we are a consumer driven economy, and right now our economy is not working very well for wage earners. There is a demand crunch because wage earners don’t have an expendable income.
@LAC: I understand your viewpoint. I don’t live in the South, I am white. And I agree that right now, issues to specific to this specific act of race terrorism should be the focus.
For me, I feel I have to keep in mind that this horrible act can inspire something in my area, a thousand miles away. A supposedly more enlightened liberal place, but one that has a history that in some ways is just as dangerous as in the South.
@JPL: i don’t think he was charged with a felony. But I can’t find a reliable link to support that opinion.
@Another Holocene Human:
I keep going back to the first scene in American Sniper with Papa Kyle giving his kids the “there are three kinds of people: sheep, wolves, and sheepdogs” speech. It’s that entire pathology in a nutshell.
If we would apply that logic to the Boston bombers, I might be able to accept it but noooooooo!
Eh. First of all, I’m not persuaded by the methodology of the study. Second, and more importantly, it looks solely at the racial attitudes of whites and ignores the fact that whites are a smaller percentage of Millenials than in older groups. Finally, it ignores the fact that the Millenials are a substantially bigger cohort than GenX and even slightly larger than the Boomers. Add all that together, and a 1-3% shift in a racial attitudes is bigger than it looks.
Also, look at it this way — the 31% of “racist Millenials” is closing in on the Crazification factor. I don’t think there’s any question that at least 27% of the people won’t respond to horribly.
@Kay: Preach it, Kay! You are on a roll.
@Citizen Alan: Hundreds or years of racism and class prejudice is not going to completely disappear within a couple of generations. Especially when both have been stoked, very publicly, by major political factions for political advantage over last 40 years. There seems to be clear trend downward, though I don’t know whether that was statistically significant in this study.
Need to keep chipping away at the proportion of racists and bigots. And if a few percentage points a generation is the best that can be done, that is no reason to get discouraged.
Last week we got stern lectures on holding TAA hostage to kill the trade deal.
This week the White House comes up with a new strategy:
It’s just pure spin to make it about the TAA. Why don’t they want to talk up this fabulous trade deal they all read? That’s supposedly the “middle class opportunity creator” not a 40 year old program that funds “displaced worker training” they’re presenting as “new!” and “progressive!”
If reauthorization of a program we’ve had for 40 years is the “progressive” part of this trade deal I believe free traders once again over-promised.
@russell: Isn’t that how Texas
became independent joined the Union joined the Confederacyjoined the Union?
@Kay: Thanks for link article. I noticed that the author seems impartial in the text, and not sure who wrote the headline. But very few opposed to TPP are opposed to free trade treaties. They are opposed to the TPP because it is not enough of a true free trade treaty. The hacks who write headlines and text for tv and radio news can’t seem to get that simple issue straight.
@jl: if it does, then that would a blessing. I appreciate you trying.