Last night a white gunman killed 9 people in Charleston’s oldest black church … and Gov. Nikki Haley (R) said we may never know why…. (More)

“We’ll never understand what motivates anyone….”

Part of white privilege is insisting that white criminals have reasons, and that we shouldn’t infer racism as a motive unless and until it is proved beyond and to the exclusion of every white person’s doubt. So I wasn’t shocked to read Gov. Nikki Haley’s response the mass shooting last night in Charleston:

Yes, what could possibly motivate a white man to commit mass murder in Charleston’s historic “Mother Emanuel?”

The church’s history, so interwoven with Charleston’s, begins around 1816 when Morris Brown, a free shoemaker and devout Methodist, walked out of a predominantly white and racially segregated Methodist Church in Charleston.

Brown formed the African Methodist Episcopal Church of Charleston, now Emanuel AME Church on Calhoun Street. Since that day, the AME Church has proven pivotal in South Carolina in matters of faith and social justice.

Denmark Vesey was a founding member who led failed slave rebellion that drove the church underground for decades, Darby said.

Someone reported the plot to authorities and during the chaos and paranoia that ensued, the church was burned. Congregants slipped underground to worship until 1865 when the church formally reorganized and adopted the name Emanuel.

The dead include pastor and state senator Clementa Pinckney, who campaigned against police violence:

In April Pinckney helped lead a prayer vigil for Walter Scott, a black South Carolina man who was shot dead by a police officer as he tried to run away.[…]

Pinckney campaigned for legislation to require police officers to wear body cameras while working. He said: “Body cameras help to record what happens. It may not be the golden ticket, the golden egg, the end-all-fix-all, but it helps to paint a picture of what happens during a police stop.”

Charleston police have released a photo of the suspect:

But of course one right wingnut already knows who to blame:

This sure sounds like a government psyop. This administration has been trying to create a race war 24-7. If not an actual government mind controlled idiot, it could simply be someone conditioned by the constant news coverage of the “race war”, that the compliant media is presenting.

And he’s not alone:

Horrific news! Unfortunately, I cannot say that I’m surprised by this at all. I think this summer is going to be one of the worst summers America has seen in a long time as far as violence and racial tension is concerned. Obama and his minions have stirred up racial tension in a this country into a hornets nest. This is not going to be a good summer for America!

So even if this was a race-driven hate crime – and Gov. Haley seems sure we can never know, because I guess white racists are inscrutable – this was still President Obama’s fault. If he hadn’t run for president, and won, twice, whites wouldn’t have to walk into black churches and kill people.

“Trying to make it look like a racist thing”

And in the latest incident of Swimming While Blackfour Cincinnati residents including two juveniles face criminal charges for refusing to leave a public swimming pool:

The staff reportedly asked the kids to leave because one child was not wearing a proper swimsuit. The park ranger was summoned with the kids refused to leave. The kids told the ranger that their mother said they did not have to leave, according to the police report.

[Bishop Bobby] Hilton said Krystal Dixon got the appropriate swimwear for the child but was told he could not get back into the pool area when she returned.
A series of videos posted online showed Dixon arguing with pool staff. She can be heard asking for a refund, which was shot down. The police officer asked for Dixon’s identification and appeared to grab her wrist in one video.

The second clip shows more officers arriving at the pool. A white officer can be seen grabbing a young girl around the neck and pushing her against a patrol cruiser. There are allegations that pepper spray was used during the confrontation. Maya Dixon also accused officers of punching her 12-year-old daughter.

Or, as a pool employee told 911:

“There’s two officers here and they are fighting with them. They are beating up the officers and breaking out of the handcuffs. We need you guys immediately,” the pool employee said to the 911 dispatcher.

The dispatcher asked, “Do you feel like you are safe right now?”

“Not really,” the caller answered.

“Everything’s going crazy and they’re videotaping, trying to make it look like a racist thing and it’s not at all. They were breaking our policy and we told them they couldn’t be here anymore and it’s really scary and I don’t feel safe,” the employee said.

“They were breaking our policy.” Even though the mom returned with the right kind of swimsuit and was still told to take her kids and leave. And I’m quite sure that 12-year-old girl was “breaking out of handcuffs.” Those People Have Superpowers, after all.

And the police insist they did nothing wrong:

But Fairfield Police Chief Michael J. Dickey said the video clips only reinforced his opinion officers acted appropriately.

“All they are trying to do is calm everyone down,” Dickey told The Enquirer. “It’s just business.”

Hrmm, where have I heard “It’s just business” before….

“And kith and kin comes before illegal national mandates”

Really, why would people of color suspect police of racism?

In 2013, Josh Doggrell took the stage at the national conference for the neo-Confederate League of the South (LOS). In a non-descript suit-and-tie, he spoke about gun rights, county supremacy, the state of law enforcement in Alabama and his loyalty to the League.

“It’s wonderful to be around sanity,” the founder and chairman of the League’s John C. Calhoun chapter in a video of the event posted to YouTube.
“The vast majority of men in uniform are aware that they’re southerners,” Doggrell said, touching on gun rights and the perennial fear among extremist groups that the Second Amendment is under attack. “And kith and kin comes before illegal national mandates.”

The Southern Poverty Law Center’s Keegan Hankes continues with the racist context of the “kith and kin” remark:

Kith and kin is part of an explicitly racist ideology called “kinism” that Hill has long promoted through the LOS. The Kinist Institute, an organization that promotes kinism, has called for laws against racial intermarriage, an end to non-white immigration, expelling all “aliens” (“to include all Jews and Arabs”), and restricting the right to vote to white, landholding men over the age of 21. In the past, LOS websites have referred to kinism as “a biblical solution for all races” that will save the South by preventing “white genocide.”

But the Anniston Police Department insists there’s nothing they can do about Lt. Doggrell because freedom:

After Hatewatch initially alerted the chief of the Anniston Police Department about Doggrell’s membership, further calls were referred to Brian Johnson, Anniston city manager, who told Hatewatch that even if the city was aware of police officers being a member of such “civic club,” there was only so much they could do.

When posed with the hypothetical of a police officer being a member of the Ku Klux Klan (KKK), Johnson elaborated by stating that, “We could not terminate an employee solely on his or her membership in a legal, lawfully formed, civic club or organization.” He added that it was “unfortunate” the city had to answer for Doggrell’s involvement in the LOS, especially at a time when policing practices are increasingly scrutinized amid a rash of stories of police violence and examples of biased, even racist officers. But, Johnson said, “I do not believe that someone could be terminated solely based on their private sector membership in a properly formed legal organization – as hateful as the KKK might be.”

And Doggrell insists his chief is fine with that:

In a closing question-and-answer session to his 2013 presentation, Doggrell, who was investigated by the police department and cleared in 2009 for his LOS ties, recounted an interaction with his then chief a year prior. In anticipation of questions about his LOS affiliations, Doggrell told the chief, “I’m not going to sell out my position with the League, as something I believe in strongly. If it came down to it, I’d choose the League.”

According to Doggrell, the chief responded, “We pretty much think like you do.”

So a police officer says, in public, that his commitment to white supremacy trumps his commitment to the rule of law … but that’s okay because it’s just “private sector membership in a properly formed legal organization.”

“It limits the possibilities of young people being able to live lives of purpose and meaning”

Moving on, we get GOP White House wannabe Jeb Bush attacking single moms:

Last week, Jeb Bush was asked to answer for a passage from his book from two decades ago, Profiles in Character, in a chapter titled “The Restoration of Shame,” in which he blamed the “irresponsible conduct” of births to unmarried women on a flagging sense of community ridicule and shaming.

Bush responded, according to MSNBC: “My views have evolved over time, but my views about the importance of dads being involved in the lives of children hasn’t changed at all. In fact, since 1995 … this book was a book about cultural indicators [and] the country has moved in the wrong direction. We have a 40-plus percent out-of-wedlock birth rate.”

He continued: “It’s a huge challenge for single moms to raise children in the world that we’re in today and it hurts the prospects, it limits the possibilities of young people being able to live lives of purpose and meaning.”

It’s not just his book. In 2001, then-Gov. Bush allowed the Florida Legislature to enact what was dubbed the Scarlet Letter Law:

Jeb Bush allowed a law to pass in Florida in 2001 that forced single mothers – including minors and rape victims – planning to put their children up for adoption to advertise their sexual histories in a newspaper if they didn’t know the identity of the father.

Bush, who was Florida’s governor at the time, declined to veto the bill, which quickly became known as the “Scarlet Letter Law.” The law’s intent was to notify fathers about potential children so they could take custody if they wanted to do so.

The advertisements, which women had to run monthly in the area where the child may have been conceived, included physical descriptions of the mother, the child’s name and birthplace and a description of the possible father.

Under Article III, Section 8 of the Florida Constitution, a bill passed by the Legislature becomes law unless the governor vetoes it within seven days. So this tweet isn’t quite true:

Governor Bush didn’t sign the bill. But he didn’t have to. And his claiming credit for signing the repeal – but only after state courts ruled the Scarlet Letter Law unconstitutional – is an exercise in hypocrisy.

“I don’t go to Mass for economic policy or for things in politics”

Speaking of hypocrisy, Bush says he’ll ignore Pope Francis’ encyclical on climate change:

“Look, the climate is changing, there’s lots of things that we can do that aren’t political or doesn’t create a partisan divide or political divide about that issue,” he said.

“I respect the pope, I think he’s an incredible leader, but I think it’s better to solve this problem in the political realm,” he added. “I’m going to read what he says, of course, I’m a Catholic and try to follow the teachings of the Church.”

Later, Bush said, “I don’t go to Mass for economic policy or for things in politics. I’ve got enough people helping me along the way with that.”

Odd. He was all-in about letting his religion define his policies when it came to Terri Schaivo:

Bush, a devout Catholic, sided with Terri Schiavo’s parents in the end-of-life dispute and reached for unprecedented authority to intervene. Michael Schiavo said his wife did not want to be kept alive artificially.
Friends and advisers to Bush say his actions were driven largely by his faith, and they believe his effort to keep Schiavo alive – despite wide public disapproval – illustrates principled leadership.

The New Republic’s Jett Heer explains that conservatives have a history of cherry-picking Catholic doctrine:

[William F.] Buckley’s feud with the Catholic left came to a boil when Pope John XXIII released the encyclical Mater et Magistra (Mother and Teacher) in 1961, which reaffirmed the church’s support for government welfare programs and coupled them with calls to fight poverty in the Third World and end colonialism. The anti-imperialism of Mater et Magistra was particularly repellent to National Review conservatives, who thought that European domination of Africa, the Middle East, and Asia was essential for fending off communism.

DeSmog’s Kevin Grandia exposes the rogues gallery of climate deniers pushing back against Pope Francis’ encyclical, and the New York Times’s Andrew Revkin explains why the GOP’s “leave climate change to scientists [and politicians]” is hollow:

They’re implying that settling on a global warming policy (or the lack of it) is somehow special, somehow a matter of science and economics and politics that stands apart from one’s world view or ethics or religious beliefs.
Possible paths have been delineated in recent decades using ever more sophisticated models. But that is where science’s task ends. It is up to individuals and societies to choose which paths to pursue.

Scientific knowledge reveals options. Values determine choices.

That is why the Roman Catholic Church –  with its global reach, the ethical framework in its social justice teachings and, as with all great religions, the ability to reach hearts as well as minds  – can play a valuable role in this consequential century.

This is particularly true for planet-scale problems like human-driven climate change, in which national governments tend to put national interests ahead of planet-scale interests.

Besides, had Pope Francis declared that climate change was a hoax because Genesis – as a certain senator from Oklahoma did this year – no conservative would be challenging his right to speak.

“That people aren’t hurt any more by Obamacare”

And speaking of the Senate, Republicans are coalescing around a plan to burn down the Affordable Care Act in order to save it:

In a closed-door meeting Wednesday, Republicans crafted the outline of a plan that would extend the subsidies for a period of time – potentially through 2017 – and couple it with a delayed repeal of big-ticket pieces of Obamacare, such as the individual and employer mandates.
“As far as I’m concerned that’s the No 1. consideration – that people aren’t hurt any more by Obamacare,” said Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX). “Be clear that this is because of the way this law is written if the court happens to strike down [the subsidies]. It’s not the Supreme Court’s fault. It’s not the people who voted against it. It’s the people who voted for this bill.”

In other words, set off an insurance death spiral, then blame it on President Obama and Democrats for failing to craft the bill so perfectly that “I don’t care how you kill it” opponents couldn’t convince five Supreme Court Justices to shred it on Seinfeld-esque grounds.

Come to think of it, no wonder some white conservatives blame President Obama for last night’s mass murder in Charleston. Blaming President Obama for their own actions is pretty much a Republican mantra. Because personal responsibility is for Those People:

It’s time to take personal responsibility. It’s time to move on.

It’s time to fight for jobs, not welfare. It’s time to look within yourselves. It’s time to stop blaming others. It’s time to blame black fathers. It’s time to blame black leaders. It’s time to blame a black president. It’s time to ask what the Democratic Party has ever done for you except ensure you’re helpless, hopeless and dependent on government to survive. It’s time to blame the war on poverty.

Huh, and I thought “personal responsibility” meant something else….


Good day and good nuts