Emanuel Kidega Samson, a Sudanese refugee from Murfreesboro, entered a predominantly White church in Antioch, TN and opened fire. He shot Melanie Smith in the back as she was walking to her car, turned her over and fatally shot her in the face like a dog. Then he went inside the Burnette Chapel Church of Christ and shot six more people including the pastor and his wife.
Even though Burnette Chapel Church of Christ is a multiracial congregation, the victims are all White people. The fact that the Department of Justice and FBI have opened a federal civil rights investigation suggests the victims in Antioch were targeted on the basis of race or religion. In light of the fact that Samson appears to be a Christian who once attended the church, this suggests the motive in Antioch was racial. We’re going to know a lot more about this very soon.
Charles Johnson has reviewed Samson’s Facebook account. There is strong evidence that he was interested in groups like the New Black Panthers. He was sharing videos like this. There is nothing on his social media accounts that suggests he was a Muslim:
If Antioch turns out to be a racially motivated church shooting, it will be a reverse Charleston and Emanuel Kidega Samson will be a reverse Dylann Roof. It will mean that President Trump ignored the incident and dropped Sudan from the travel ban after being lobbied by the UAE.
I’m sure everyone remembers Dylann Roof. The CofCC was blamed and our national conference in Nashville was cancelled. The Confederate Battle Flag was blamed. The entire White South was blamed. Democratic and Republican politicians sprang into action. Charleston was the biggest story in America for months. That’s what started the orgy of removing Confederate monuments which still isn’t over. We were still dealing with the fallout in New Orleans a few months ago.
It turns out the only thing Charleston required to be a local or regional story was to reverse the races. Instead of a white supremacist with a Confederate flag, a Sudanese refugee murdering White people in a church isn’t “a story about race in America” the media wants to talk about. In this case, the murderer is basically a DREAMer who came to the United States from Sudan as a child when Bill Clinton was president, so Antioch is unlikely to have any policy implications.
We see the double standard and so do millions of people. We’re not going to let this story go away. Something as big as this isn’t going to be buried without us raising hell about it.