“The perpetrator has been caught, but the killer is still at large.” We can always count on Reverend Barber, head of North Carolina’s NAACP and leader of the Moral Monday Movement, to speak the Truth. The killer is racism in all it’s forms. Nowadays, when blatant racism is seldom seen or heard in public, the underlying racism in our institutions, societal structure, cultural assumptions, classism, and the like, are even more pernicious. The killer who slaughtered nine of the brightest in Charleston is still at large, and as Professor White Cornell puts it, “The killer is us.” All of us who have been complicit or ignorant to racism. All of us who have watched our non-violent prison population explode. All of us who have failed to make eliminating “othering” from education and to make positive racial identity a key piece of education. All of us who have unchecked privilege. We are all responsible for what happened in Charleston. Once we can come forward and admit to that, hope grows. There is hope. There is always hope!!
If you want to hear Reverend Barber’s full sermon, check here. (It really gets going about 30 minutes in.) One thing you will learn that the media has not highlighted, is that the nine people who were killed were being mentored by the Reverend at Mother Emmanual. He had left his post on the SC senate to help his brilliant mentees become leaders in social action and in the church. Nine potential Martin Luther King Jr’s were just slaughtered.
(Photo courtesy of Stony Brook University)