Charleston Church Massacre suspect arrested
Dylan Storm Roof, a 21-year old white man of Lexington was arrested by the police as a suspect in the mass killing of 9 people at the AME church, Charleston, USA. Roof was arrested when the police got a tip from Debbie Dills, who spotted him on her way to work. Roof was known to have had a history of professing anti-black views.
In a hate crime, nine black people were shot dead by a young white gunman at the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal (AME) church in Charleston, South Carolina. The victims included Rev. Clementa C. Pickney - the church pastor and a prominemt state senator. Police issued surveillance images of the suspect and said that he sat in the church for an hour before opening fire.
President Barack Obama mourned the victims and said, "Once again, innocent people were killed in part because someone who wanted to inflict harm had no trouble getting their hands on a gun." Governor Nikki Haley said, "We woke up today, and the heart and soul of South Carolina was broken." Charleston Mayor Joe Riley said that 'hate' was the only reason for what happened.
Brady Act, 1993 requires that background checks be conducted on firearm purchasers in USA. The Act was named after James Brady who was shot during the attempted assassination of President Ronald Reagan.
The shooting suspect was found to be a man named Dylan Roof. Roof had been "planning something like that" according to his roommate. A friend said Roof wanted segregation between whites and blacks and told him that "blacks were taking over the world and someone needed to do something about it for the white race." The suspect was gifted a gun by his parents.
Racism and guns are issues deeply rooted in America's history. Racism is lethal because of the ease with which people can acquire guns. In the wake of the shooting, top democrats are calling for strong gun control. Hillary Clinton said, "In order to make sense of it, we have to be honest. We have to face hard truths about race, violence, guns and division."
Ku Klux Klan killed hundreds of black people in the 1960s including civil rights leader Martin Luther King. They opposed the civil rights movement and desegregation.