Mt. Zion AME Church in Greeleyville, South Carolina, caught on fire last night. Now, there are lots of reasons why a building might catch on fire, including lightning, which was a possibility last night as strong thunderstorms swept up the entire eastern seaboard. Understandably, the investigators looking into any particular fire need to consider all possibilities. However, there aren’t a whole lot of reasons why seven historically black southern churches would have just happened to catch fire since domestic terrorist Dylann Roof massacred 9 people inside Emanuel AME Church in Charleston a couple of weeks ago. Four of those fires look to have been set deliberately, and the causes of the other three are still unknown. It will be an epic coincidence if all three of these turn out to be just random accidental fires.
To echo Juan Cole, why is it big terrorism news when ISIS torches Christian churches in the Middle East, but when historically black churches are being set on fire right here in the US it gets comparatively little attention? Shouldn’t we be seeing big banner headlines in major news outlets about a wave of terrorist attacks sweeping the South? Are all those Christians who have changed their Facebook and Twitter avatars to the Arabic letter ن in support of Iraqi and Syrian Christians going to offer that same support to their fellow American Christians?