Last night the city of Charleston, S.C., was faced with a hideous tragedy: a white gunman entered the historically black Emmanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church and murdered 9 people, one of whom was Democratic state senator Clementa Pinckney. The theory that this massacre was a hate crime seems increasingly likely as information about the shooting and the suspect come forward. When one congregant told the gunman to stop, he allegedly replied with, “I have to do it. You rape our women and you’re taking over the country.” Photos from the shooter’s Facebook page show him wearing a jacket adorned with the flags of apartheid South Africa and Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe) — African countries characterized by their racist, white minority rule. My condolences go out to the victims and their families during such a trying time. The alleged killer is currently in custody, and at this point we can only hope that justice will be served.
The New York Times – Charleston shooting suspect, Dylann Storm Roof, has been captured in North Carolina.
Politico – Census Bureau considers dropping ‘race’ from survey.
Talking Points Memo – Presidential candidate Rick Santorum uses Charleston shooting to condemn the broader “assaults on our religious liberty.”
Raw Story – Pro-gun pastor E.W. Jackson tells Fox that a ‘hate crime’ means the shooter is prejudiced against ‘biblical views’ — not race.
Media Matters – Fox & Friends exploits South Carolina church shooting to call for more guns.
Right Wing Watch – Michigan GOP lawmaker wants school officials held criminally liable for teaching students about homosexuality.
Think Progress – Justice Thomas deals an unexpected blow to the Confederacy.