Federal prosecutors said Roof drove about 20 miles to Branch AME Church.
The media and public reactions to the contemporary history of terrorist attacks in the US give the impression that the designation of "terrorist" is exclusively reserved for Muslim or Muslim-born wrongdoers who, regardless of their belief or disbelief in Islam, are treated as the face of the entire Muslim world.
Followers of Jesus have every reason to be afraid but no reason to stay fearful. We have every reason to feel concerned but no justification for being violent. For in Jesus' own words as He was murdered by the state we have a practical response. "Father, forgive them for they know not what they do."
Let's use the Charleston anniversary as an opportunity to rededicate ourselves to ensuring that we, as a nation, are doing all we can to fight haters, extremists, and the threat they pose to our communities.
Rev. Dr. Betty Clark is helping Charleston heal and move forward through prayer, faith and forgiveness.
The flag is slated to go on display in a Civil War museum.
We do not know who will next be taken in by toxic ideology and turn into a terrorist. You cannot spot a terrorist by religion, gender, income, or marital status. For once, the right and most advantageous responses coincide. Treat each person with a skeptical, rebuttable presumption of innocence.
What we need is a Czar of Forgiveness. Someone who has been around the block and has acquired understanding and compassion on top of a keen intelligence and a willingness to set examples so that potential sinners might be deterred.
He told the FBI that he had not known the specifics of Roof's planned attack.
We must wake up, open our eyes and ears, avoid convenient ignorance, seek the truth, speak up, stand up, and never give up fighting for justice for all. How long?