You can pretty much mark it on your calendars for every presidential and midterm cycle that there will be a suspicious “black church burning” somewhere to help gin up the vote. Now that Team Clinton is in full panic after the past week of scandal news, they’ve got to pull out all stops.
African-Americans are failing to vote at the robust levels they did four years ago in several states that could help decide the presidential election, creating a vexing problem for Hillary Clinton as she clings to a deteriorating lead over Donald J. Trump with Election Day just a week away.
As tens of millions of Americans cast ballots in what will be the largest-ever mobilization of early voters in a presidential election, the numbers have started to point toward a slump that many Democrats feared might materialize without the nation’s first black president on the ticket.
The reasons for the decline appear to be both political and logistical, with lower voter enthusiasm and newly enacted impediments to voting at play. In North Carolina, where a federal appeals court accused Republicans of an “almost surgical” assault on black turnout and Republican-run election boards curtailed early-voting sites, black turnout is down 16 percent. White turnout, however, is up 15 percent. Democrats are planning an aggressive final push, including a visit by President Obama to the state on Wednesday.
The Hopewell Missionary Baptist Church in Greenville, Miss., was burned and painted with the message “Vote Trump” late Tuesday night.
According to reports, a majority of the damage was done to the historically black church’s main sanctuary. No injuries were reported, and the words “Vote Trump” were spray-painted in white along side of the building.
Authorities responded to a call about the fire just after 11 p.m. local time.
Clearly we condemn such a criminal act and hope the suspect(s) are rounded up quickly and brought to justice, but this one seems, well, too orchestrated for us. Not long after this was reported earlier today, up popped Vote Trump trending on Twitter, with this item right at the top.
A Black Church Burned in the Name of Trump
Arson is notoriously difficult to prove. Last summer, when a spate of fires took place at black churches in South Carolina, Tennessee, Florida, and elsewhere, investigators looked into whether they were religiously or racially motivated crimes—if the fires were intentionally set at all. Unless someone leaves “you a message in some way that makes it very obvious,” a staffer for the National Fire Protection Association told me at the time, it’s hard to know whether or not a burning was motivated by hate.
In this case, though, someone left a calling card about politics. It’s not yet clear who set the fire, if anyone set it; whether the person who set the fire is the same person who wrote the graffiti; or why, if the fire was intentional, Hopewell M.B. Church was the target. One thing is clear, though: At some point, someone decided to attach the name of Trump to a burned black church.
Gee, you don’t think this could possibly have been the work of Democrats looking to make Trump look bad? By how quickly this was picked up, we smell organized campaign. Enter Clinton stooge Neera Tanden, of Wikileaks fame:
In 24 hrs
1 KKK endorsed Trump
2 White nationalists plan to stop AfricanAmericans fr voting
3 black church burned, vote Trump message left
— Neera Tanden (@neeratanden) November 2, 2016
Gee, you don’t suppose we’re going to hear Mrs. Clinton screech about this at a campaign stop now, do you?
Bank on it. Other media eagerly jumped on the news:
— The Hill (@thehill) November 2, 2016
Then some outlets we wouldn’t quite call news:
NEW: Church burns in Mississippi, spray painted "Vote Trump." A reminder that history HAS brought us a Trump before: pic.twitter.com/0Twbch6D87
— Keith Olbermann (@KeithOlbermann) November 2, 2016
So before the media and Democrats get too hysterical, let’s wait for the authorities to investigate and let’s look back at the not-too-distant past for a reality check:
Reminder: Several of the hyped hate crimes against black churches had been committed by black suspects; a significant number of the black churches were, in fact, white churches; and the complex motives behind the crimes included mental illness, vandalism, and concealment of theft. Once again, falsified history is repeating itself.
The NAACP, which capitalized on the Clinton-era race hustle, is now pushing the new arson-epidemic narrative. The organization remains shamelessly undaunted after fueling the fake NAACP “bombing” in Colorado Springs earlier this year. The group’s CEO, Cornell Brooks, tweeted the incendiary “#WhoIsBurningBlackChurches” hashtag on Tuesday and disclosed that he is “informing churches, reviewing legislation, pushing media awareness, and deciding legal options.”
The left-wing instigators at the Southern Poverty Law Center, whose stated mission is to “destroy” its political opponents and whose target map and list of social-conservative groups were used by left-wing domestic terrorist Floyd Lee Corkins to shoot up the Washington, D.C., office of the Family Research Council in 2012, baselessly reported: “In what may not be a coincidence, a string of nighttime fires have damaged or destroyed at least six predominately black churches in four southern states in the past week.”
Teach for America alumnus agitator DeRay McKesson quickly added his Twitter kerosene to the fire, reflexively claiming that the “KKK” was responsible for a half-dozen black-church burnings. Buried beneath the sensationalized social-media avalanche of panic: the more judicious and careful observations of Los Angeles Times reporter Matt Pearce that the feds have made no official determinations that any hate crimes have taken place and that “it’s unclear whether any of the fires are linked.”
It was observed that one of the half-dozen church fires was most likely “accidental” and had “no element of criminal intent.”
Also worth noting back about a decade there was also a rash of suspicious fires, mostly fueled for insurance purposes.
Now expect extensive coverage of this arson, much of it to gleefully tar Trump with. If indeed it’s found a supporter of his did it, that would be deplorable, so to speak.
Even more deplorable would be for a Clinton supporter to have done it. If that’s the case, don’t expect much if any followup from The Atlantic’s and Olbermanns of the world. The real deplorables.
Update:Of course, it’s a hate crime!
— ABC News Politics (@ABCPolitics) November 2, 2016