The first impulse was to dismiss Dylann Storm Roof?s manifesto, viewing it as nothing more than a racist rant, a Neanderthal screed akin to Hitler?s Mein Kampf.? But, on second thought, this howl from a cretin touches on a number of critical issues at the core of our national dilemma about race.
Throughout the manifesto, Roof invokes or infers the term white nationalism, a movement that over the last decade or so has increased exponentially, particularly beyond the United States.? A recent article from the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) cites Roof as ?expressing sentiments that unite white nationalists from the United States and Canada to Europe, Australia and New Zealand.?? In other words, white supremacists nowadays are not limited by borders.
Roof?s fetish for symbols of apartheid are further underscored in his manifesto when he uses the minority white regime in South Africa as an example of how whites in the South can restore their dominance, despite the numbers.? Of course, Roof is off-kilter on this point, as with many others, since the South remains dominant and as racist as ever when you consider most states views on Obamacare and their ties to the Republican Party.
As Roof states, based on his southern background, ??Almost every white person [in the South] has a small amount of racial awareness.?? But he concludes that he was not raised in a racist home or environment.
For a young southern white man and a dropout from school, Roof has devoted an uncommon amount of time studying Black history and culture.? Obviously, much of it is half-digested and or twisted to suit his own malicious purposes.??
He said that he has read hundreds of slave narratives from his state, ?and almost all of them were positive.? Reading narratives only from the state of South Carolina does not present a full picture of the slave condition and when he mentions George Washington Carver it?s done derogatorily and hardly complimentary.
So, from where has Roof gathered all this misinformation?? At the beginning of his manifesto he references the Council of Conservative Citizens (CCC).? ?There were pages upon pages of these brutal black on White murders,? he wrote of his discovery. ?I was in disbelief. At this moment I realized that something was very wrong. How could the news be blowing up the Trayvon Martin case while hundreds of these black on White murders got ignored??
According to the SPLC, the CCC is ?a modern reincarnation of the old White Citizens Councils, which were formed in the 1950s and 1960s to battle school desegregation in the South.?? A visit to the CCC website has a headline that expresses sadness about Roof?s rampage.? ?The 21-year old was a lone wolf that is not believed to have ever been a member of an organization. Friends say he was never active in politics and had lots of black friends in High School,? is a portion of a posting on the site.? There are reports that Roof made donations to the organization.
Clearly, Roof resorted to other sites to compose his full warped impressions about race and the motivation to act out his hatred.? Stormfront, created in 1995 by former Alabama Klan boss and long-time white supremacist Don Black, might have appealed to Roof since his middle name is Storm.? And he didn?t need to search outside of South Carolina for white nationalists and hate groups; there?s more than a dozen there.
In this case, Roof is again mistaken when he says ?We have no skinheads, no real KKK, no one doing anything but talking on the Internet.? Well, someone has to have the bravery to take it to the real world, and I guess that has to be me.?
At the end of his manifesto, Roof asks readers to forgive his typos, but there is more than typos that needs correcting.