Categorized | Baron_Lawrence, USA

Sidebars to the Charleston tragedy

Editor’s Note:  Lawrence “Laurie” Baron usually writes the “Humoring the Headlines” column, but in the wake of the racist murders in Charleston, South Carolina, he preferred to address this far more serious topic.

By Laurie Baron

Laurie Baron

Laurie Baron

SAN DIEGO─ I find little to humor about this week’s main headline, the murder of 9 African-Americans at a bible study group in the Mother Emanuel A.M.E. Church in Charleston, South Carolina by a white supremacist who intended to “ignite a civil war.”  Nevertheless, here are a few rants.

The last mass murderer who wanted to trigger a race war was Charles Manson.

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I searched the term “Charleston South Carolina Shooting” on Google and the second entry was the website for Quick Shot Shooting Range in Charleston.  It advertised a Father’s Day membership special and will be open on the 4th of July.

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The shooter’s roommate revealed that the shooter “had been planning to do something like that” for six months.  What part of “if you see something, say something” public service announcement did the roommate not understand?

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A photograph of the shooter shows him wearing a jacket with patches representing apartheid-era Rhodesia and South Africa.  I think he should be extradited for trial to one of those countries.

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The shooter claimed he killed his victims because African Americans are raping white women and taking over the country.  FBI crime statistics indicate that 65 % of all rapes are committed by whites.  Among males in the shooter’s age group, the “dominant” African-Americans have an unemployment rate that is twice that of whites.  African Americans constitute 13 per cent of the population of the United State, 9.6 per cent of the members of the House of Representatives, 1 per cent of the US senators, and 0 percent of state governors.  27.4 per cent of African Americans live below the poverty line; only 10 per cent of whites do.  The shooter not only needs to control his anger, he needs to learn basic math.

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The Charleston Police Chief labeled the murders a hate crime the night they were committed.    The problem is that South Carolina is one of only five states not that does not have a hate crime law.

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The Confederate flag still waves above the state capitol of South Carolina, a state that has been in the forefront of trying to reverse the Voting Rights Act of 1965 since it was passed and which was one of the states that filed the successful suit to get the Supreme Court to gut section 5 of the Act in 2013.

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Je suis Mother Emanuel!

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Baron is professor emeritus of history at San Diego State University.  He may be contacted via [email protected] .

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