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.