Many are wondering if the nation’s more militant racists are showing solidarity with right-wing terrorist Dylann Roof. Three black churches have burned under mysterious circumstances since Roof entered a historic South Carolina African-American church with one goal: to kill a bunch of black people and kick off a new Civil War.
Roof stopped several times to reload his .45 caliber handgun — but what he really wanted, he told police, was an AR-15. “That’s scary. We ought to be thankful he never got his hands an AR-15,” said former U.S. Attorney and State Law Enforcement Division director Reggie Lloyd.
Since Roof’s attack, four black churches across the South have burned — though officials believe one fire to have been caused by electrical issues rather than foul play (an investigation is still ongoing).
On Tuesday, a Macon, Georgia church was set ablaze. While officials are reluctant to call it a hate crime, it was determined that God’s Power Church of Christ was burned intentionally. The investigation is ongoing, with assistance from the Federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.
On Wednesday morning, a Charlotte, North Carolina church burned to the ground. On Thursday, the Charlotte Fire Department announced that the fire, which caused more than $250,000 in damages, was set deliberately.
“We completed our work on the scene and determined this was intentionally set,” Charlotte Fire Department Senior Fire Investigator David Williams said. Officials are determining if the fire was set as a hate crime.
On Friday, Glover Baptist Church in Gloverville, South Carolina was burned. Details are few at the moment, and an investigation is ongoing. The FBI is assisting the investigation.
While it absolutely could be coincidence that African-American churches are being set ablaze in a region of the country that has not traditionally been friendly to black folks so shortly after a Confederacy-worshipping, right-wing, ammosexual terrorist murdered nine people, this is probably one of those “Occam’s Razor” moments.
Three churches burned, two of which absolutely were burned intentionally (with one too early into the investigation to make a determination). The events occurred shortly after a white supremacist lunatic murdered people and was very publicly coddled by police and treated to lunch. The events also occurred after a public outcry against the Confederate battle flag, which led to numerous businesses and governmental entities choosing to remove them from shelves and/or property — quite a sore spot with many conservatives, especially in the South. These churches, at least two of which were deliberately burned, were attacked in the midst of a debate surrounding the removal of the Confederate battle flag from the South Carolina statehouse.
With all of this information combined, the simplest explanation is that someone, motivated by the intense climate surrounding very emotional events, set the fires on purpose — After all, we are at the point that “not-racists” are demanding the removal of civil rights monuments if the Confederate flag is taken down in South Carolina.
According to the FBI, right-wing terrorism is on the rise. With recent Supreme Court rulings both legalizing same-sex marriage in all 50 states and protecting Obamacare from ruination, how long do we have until attacks targeting groups conservatives don’t like become even more deadly?
Featured Image via Forward In Christ