Authorities were working Saturday to determine whether the man accused of killing nine African Americans in a venerable Charleston, S.C. church left a racist manifesto targeting blacks, Jews and Hispanics found on a Web site, a denunciation that appears to offer a rationale for the shooting.
The broadside, loaded with offensive racial characterizations of blacks and others, ends with the declaration that “someone has to have the bravery to take it to the real world, and I guess that has to be me.”
“I have no choice,” reads part of that section, titled An Explanation. “I am not in the position to, alone, go into the ghetto and fight. I chose Charleston because it is [the] most historic city in my state, and at one time had the highest ratio of blacks to Whites in the country.”
Federal and local law enforcement authorities said they were trying to determine whether the declaration was the work of Dylann Roof, the 21-year-old man accused of gunning down nine people at a bible study in Charleston’s historic Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church Wednesday night. It was not clear that Roof had written the words, but they accompanied photos of him on the site.
The manifesto says that “the event that truly awakened me was the Trayvon Martin case,” which, a friend of Roof’s said Saturday, was a theme Roof spoke of. Martin, an African American high school student in Florida, was shot dead in 2012 by George Zimmerman in a racially charged case. Zimmerman, who claimed he acted in self-defense, was found not guilty of second-degree murder.
SOURCE: Lenny Bernstein and Sari Horwitz
The Washington Post