The nine innocents who died while praying inside the Emanuel African Methodist Church in Charleston, S.C., last week is a national tragedy of the first order. It is, in every way, a shocking obscenity, a horrific act of cowardice and violence. We join the nation in sending our condolences to the families who lost love ones and we also send our support to the larger community of Charleston, especially the African American community.
Slaughtering innocents inside a church and turning a sacred house of worship into a bloody crime scene serves as a stark reminder to all that blind, unjustified hatred continues against the black people of this nation. Simply decrying the outrage of this act of insanity isn’t enough.
Killing innocents in a church, a synagogue, or a mosque, indeed in any house of worship, should be a federal crime.
If Americans of every race, color, and creed can’t be safe from slaughter in a house of worship then all is lost. Let these lost lives lead to a critical, impactful change to our laws.