If only we all understood how to get along. Mayor Joe Riley has led a remarkable transformation of race relations in the city of Charleston for the last four decades. Let us not forget this is the city in which the Civil War began, for very clear reasons. I cannot claim Charleston as home, yet I lived and visited there enough to understand its character. To see this provincial city reform and embrace the international visitors to Giancarlo Menotti’s Spoleto Festival is nothing compared to the marvelous vision of people of every race attending memorials to those slain during devotional prayer at Emanuel AME Church in downtown Charleston, the College of Charleston Arena and the Ravenel bridge.
However twisted the rationale formed in the mind of the alleged shooter, what comes shining through reports of grace and forgiveness is the possibility of rebirth and redemption.