Playing the victim game in reverse

In the aftermath of the Charleston massacre, the left, predictably, is looking for racial slights in developments ancillary to the shootings so it can attribute them to “systemic, pervasive racism.” For example, as I discussed here, it complains that Dylann Roof has not sufficiently been branded a terrorist.

Two can play this game, and though we are better advised not to, let me try my hand.

In 2011, Jared Lee Loughner killed six people and wounded many others during a massacre in Tucson, Arizona. At a memorial service attended by President Obama, the opening prayer, delivered by a Yaqui Indian, was modeled on traditional Southwest Indian blessings.

According to reports, none of the victims was Native American. No rabbi, Catholic priest, or Protestant minister — the known religions of the victims — was included in the memorial program.

Yesterday, a special service for Dylann Roof’s victims was held at the Emanuel A.M.E. Church. Among those attending were Gov. Nikki Haley, Sen. Tim Scott, Rep. Maxine Waters, Mayor Joseph Riley, and Rick Santorum.

From all that appears, the service did not include a prayer from a religion unconnected to that of the victims; nor was the opening prayer delivered by a non-Black.

Nearby, hundreds of people, mostly white, gathered to remember the Charleston victims and to pray. Christian preachers, white and black, spoke.

Happily, from all that appears, there was no “appropriation” of a religious tradition external to the victims. The same was true at a vigil held on Friday night. It seems almost inconceivable that anything resembling the bizarre appropriation that occurred in Tuscon would occur following the death of Roof’s victims.

The services in Charleston fully respected the lives of Roof’s black victims. They did not make the victims’ deaths the occasion for a display of multiculturalism, as was done in Tucson.

Does this mean that anyone thought the white lives lost in Tuscon mattered less than black lives? Of course not. It’s just a sign that multiculturalism has run amok.

But were the races flipped, you can bet that the left would be citing the difference in memorial services as proof of pervasive and systemic racism.


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