Saturday, August 29, 2015
This week we have suffered additional senseless and tragic shootings of innocent people here in America.
This past Wednesday, Vester Flanagan II (aka: Bryce Willisams) executed two, former co-workers from WDBJ-TV in Roanoke, VA. Flanagan had a history of anger issues mostly stemming from his being both a black man and gay. It appears his anger continued to grow over several years and between multiple jobs. He had reached a point where common sayings or items and street names were viewed as racial attacks and taunts against him. His hate grew right along with his anger and this week it reached a boiling point.
It has been reported that he considered the following as racial attacks: seeing a watermelon on top of an ice chest at work, someone stating that it was time to “go into the field” before going out on location for their job, and someone saying the name of a street “Cotton Lane”. He had filed a discrimination suit against another former employer claiming he was harmed due to being gay. When that was dismissed and it was shown that there are other gays at the same employer, he changed the suit to racial discrimination.
Flannigan approached, after what appears to have been a planned attack, reporter Alison Parker and her cameraman Adam Ward while they were conducting a live interview of another person (all white) out in public for the morning show on the station. He had taken issue with each of these two while he worked at the station, prior to being fired over his anger. Video footage has been made public from not only the cameraman but also the shooter, who filmed the attack. The shooter walked up and stood slightly behind and to the left of the cameraman. The three people standing in front of him were all absorbed in the interview and did not notice him. He pulled out his semi-automatic pistol and aimed it at Alison. Then, it appears that he noticed that Adam had directed his camera away from the two ladies and was shooting a scene to the side. Flanagan lowered his gun and waited for the cameraman to get the ladies back on camera before raising the gun again and beginning to shot.
He ended up shooting 17 rounds, murdering both the reporter and cameraman and wounding the lady being interviewed. Even though he had no beef with the third person, he shot her in the back while she was lying on the boardwalk. He was later found dead from a self-inflicted gunshot after crashing his get-away car during a police chase.
He had planned the senseless crime and posted the video of his deeds on social media and sending his manifesto to a news station prior to the police locating his car and chasing him down.
Flannigan had never been diagnosed as being mentally ill, as far as has been reported. He purchased the gun legally earlier in the year. He had no police record that would have been a red flag or stopped him from having a gun. His problem was not that he was a criminal or mentally ill, he was just an angry man full of hate. This is not something that can be solved with more laws or regulations; it is an issue with the private soul of the man. This is evil incarnate!
Then, last night an on-duty and in-uniform Harris County Sheriff’s Deputy in Texas was executed while pumping gas. He, a white man, was approached from the rear by a black man who opened fire and shot the officer in the head and back several times, killing him on the spot. So far, there is no known connection between the two and it appears to be only due to the victim being a white cop.
These two events and others like them over the recent past, appear to be part of a pattern across the nation. Recently, several Black activist groups (I will not name them due to some of their names being vulgar) have called for the lynching and hanging of white people and cops. They want to kill people who are white and cops in order to send a message against the killing of black people.
One show, which appears to be an online radio show, posted a screen shot stating, “Find one person alone kill him take a picture send it to people”.
Yes, we can blame the media, politicians and racist individuals or groups for some of this. But, for the vast majority of these situations, they have nothing to do with mental illness. They are pure and simple examples of hate and out of control anger. Some of it is justified and much not.
Our society, in general, seems to have lost a moral compass. To many, there no longer exists a “right and wrong”, only what is right in a man’s own eyes. This is a social issue in general and a heart issue individually. Apart from God, this will not be solved. People need Jesus! Only when they find grace, mercy and love from God will they be able to show that love to others. Our society has turned away from God to a large degree and we are experiencing the predictable results. As a nation and as individuals, we must repent and seek forgiveness from God and then He may heal this land.