Dear Commons Community,
In the aftermath of the killings of nine black church parishioners in Charleston, racial hatred is what drove the disturbed killer, Dylann Roof, to commit this heinous act. “This was not merely a mass shooting, not merely a matter of gun violence, this was a racial hate crime and must be confronted as such,” said Cornell William Brooks, president of the NAACP.
“I grew up when racism was just a way of life,” said Mary Meynardie, 90, who is white, as she stopped by the police tape that still surrounded the church known as “Mother Emanuel.” “I wouldn’t have been surprised if it was somebody 60, 70 years old who had that much hate, but where does this hate come from?”
The gun Roof used was his birthday present when he turned 21. As state Representative Wendell Gilliard, a Democrat who represents Charleston, said: “The elephant in the room is guns. “How many times do we need to come together? How many times do we need to unite?”