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Old 11th April 2019, 11:34 AM   #1
Checkmite
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Louisiana man arrested in burnings of 3 black churches

The arrested man is the 21-year-old son of a sheriff's deputy in St. Landry Parish, where all of the burned-down churches were located. The churches were torched between March 26 and April 4 and all are churches with historically African-American congregations.

In Louisiana, if you were going to burn down a random church, there's a fairly decent chance it could turn out to be a black-congregation church. If you were going to burn down three random churches however, the chances of all of them being black churches seem quite a bit lower. The town of Opelousas, where two of the churches were burned, is a little less than three-quarters black; however the village of Port Barre, where the other arson occurred, is exactly the opposite, around 70% white; and yet a black church was burned there. This suggests at least a decent possibility that that the churches were targeted for racial reasons.

However, since the arrest was just made, police are still looking into the motive and nothing concrete suggesting racism has been made public yet in the initial hours of the investigation. Police have reported that the suspect claims to be a fan of "black metal", which has a possible connection insofar as being a genre of music whose themes often include the desecration or destruction of churches; but again, this is just a possible connection that's being explored.
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Old 11th April 2019, 11:51 AM   #2
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In so sick of the " who gets the blame" game.

Opeth, arch enemy, gwar, cannibal corpse, Alex Jones or Donald trump are not responsible for this. The ******* who lit the fires is.

Yet the main focus is trying to find out which side we can needle for this guy's actions. It wasn't kosher when we were doing it to ice cube and it isn't now.
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Old 11th April 2019, 11:57 AM   #3
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I'm gonna guess that the arsonist is at least a little bit racist.
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Old 11th April 2019, 11:57 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by sadhatter View Post
In so sick of the " who gets the blame" game.
I'm not.

Whenever we have incidents at work, we do a "root cause analysis." Because if we can figure out what caused something to happen, it can help us prevent it from happening again.

Sometimes, there is not an identifiable cause other than, "things happen." But that doesn't mean we shouldn't look for something else.
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Old 11th April 2019, 12:10 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
I'm gonna guess that the arsonist is at least a little bit racist.
What do you think the over under should be for "number fo rebel flags (or items with rebel flag decorations on them) found in his bedroom"?

10?

20?

Am I low by an order of magnitude?
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Old 11th April 2019, 04:02 PM   #6
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Been noting this story since the first fire was noted - as well as the fourth, quite possibly unrelated, church burning in the northwest corner of Louisiana (Chaddo Parish). I'm paying much more attention to mayor Pugh's corruption allegations and the GoGo protests in DC, but this did show up on my Twitter feed as well.

The fondness of death metal and Norse mythology points towards another Nazi wannabe idiot - this is not to say that either scene is mostly Neo Nazi, but both do have Neo Nazi subsets, which other fans/practitioners loathe.

(Shout out to the sheriff's deputy that turned his own son in for these crimes, that has to be tough.)

Last edited by Mumbles; 11th April 2019 at 04:05 PM.
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Old 12th April 2019, 01:44 AM   #7
Eddie Dane
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Originally Posted by Mumbles View Post
Been noting this story since the first fire was noted - as well as the fourth, quite possibly unrelated, church burning in the northwest corner of Louisiana (Chaddo Parish). I'm paying much more attention to mayor Pugh's corruption allegations and the GoGo protests in DC, but this did show up on my Twitter feed as well.

The fondness of death metal and Norse mythology points towards another Nazi wannabe idiot - this is not to say that either scene is mostly Neo Nazi, but both do have Neo Nazi subsets, which other fans/practitioners loathe.

(Shout out to the sheriff's deputy that turned his own son in for these crimes, that has to be tough.)
I'm somewhat into Metal and the scene is mostly very friendly and open. BUT there are sub-genres that are not and produce people like Varg Vikens, the rural prepper and Neo-Nazi who has (or had?) a Youtube channel where you can hear him ramble at length about how the Jews are trying so silence him and stuff.

I think Sadhatter was referring to the nasty inclination of the media and politicians to blame Jazz for corrupting white women, Marilyn Manson for school shootings and Ice Cube for the state of ghettos.

Having said that, here in Europe we've had actual Black Metal bands that unironically hate Christianity, have actually told their fans to burn churches and these fans have actually burned down churches.
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Old 12th April 2019, 01:49 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by sadhatter View Post
In so sick of the " who gets the blame" game.

Opeth, arch enemy, gwar, cannibal corpse, Alex Jones or Donald trump are not responsible for this. The ******* who lit the fires is.

Yet the main focus is trying to find out which side we can needle for this guy's actions. It wasn't kosher when we were doing it to ice cube and it isn't now.
I blame Arch Enemy for over-produced power metal, though the hot vocalist goes a long way to compensate.
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Old 12th April 2019, 01:52 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by Eddie Dane View Post
Having said that, here in Europe we've had actual Black Metal bands that unironically hate Christianity, have actually told their fans to burn churches and these fans have actually burned down churches.
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Old 12th April 2019, 07:42 AM   #10
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The article says they got this loser because he left a specific brand of gas can at the fires...which he bought two of, along with a 10 pack of rags and the freaking lighter, three hours before the first fire was set, on his debit card with his name on it.

I demand a higher quality of criminal. These idiots can't do anything right.

Also, seconding props to the deputy for turning him in.
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Old 12th April 2019, 08:56 AM   #11
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I luv's ma Jesus,,,,BUT I HATE YOURS!!!!!!!!!!!
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Old 12th April 2019, 09:13 AM   #12
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There's a South-will-rise-again corpse paint joke in here somewhere. Give me a minute.
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Old 12th April 2019, 12:34 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by Checkmite View Post
Police have reported that the suspect claims to be a fan of "black metal", which has a possible connection insofar as being a genre of music whose themes often include the desecration or destruction of churches; but again, this is just a possible connection that's being explored.
That certainly sounds a bit niche.
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Old 12th April 2019, 01:09 PM   #14
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Really, you guys are bringing music into this? I wonder what other kinds of music glorifies criminal lifestyles, violence and killing? I can think of several.

Ya, not a productive road to travel. Better to check what comics they read and video games they are playing.
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Old 12th April 2019, 01:31 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by Eddie Dane View Post
I'm somewhat into Metal and the scene is mostly very friendly and open. BUT there are sub-genres that are not and produce people like Varg Vikens, the rural prepper and Neo-Nazi who has (or had?) a Youtube channel where you can hear him ramble at length about how the Jews are trying so silence him and stuff.

I think Sadhatter was referring to the nasty inclination of the media and politicians to blame Jazz for corrupting white women, Marilyn Manson for school shootings and Ice Cube for the state of ghettos.
I was responding to Dr. Keith's statement about Confederate flags, actually. The music style isn't a cause, it's just a hint as to the sort of bigot this guy is. the fondness for Norse mythology over white Evangelicalism pretty much eliminates the traditional US white supremacist, such as a KKK member or a Neo Confederate. Those guys tend to burn black churches (or shoot them up) because they're correctly seen as sanctuaries, community centers, and seats for civil rights protests, but they use Christianity to justify their supremacism.

I'd expect a US Nazi wannabe to be more into metal and paganism, especially Norse mythology, and to reject Christianity entirely. It's possible that you'd see a bunch of Confederate crap in his room, supremacists aren't known to have a highly sophisticated understanding of history, but I'd expect to see more swastikas, black suns, odal runes and the like.

Quote:
Having said that, here in Europe we've had actual Black Metal bands that unironically hate Christianity, have actually told their fans to burn churches and these fans have actually burned down churches.
Can't say I've heard of that sort of thing here in the US, interesting...
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Old 12th April 2019, 01:32 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by Eddie Dane View Post
Having said that, here in Europe we've had actual Black Metal bands that unironically hate Christianity, have actually told their fans to burn churches and these fans have actually burned down churches.

But we don't have many (or any?) churches whose congregations are predominantly black. Varg Vikernes's fans wouldn't have been able to find one in Norway when he advocated church burnings. He seems to have become a full-blown racist in recent years.
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Old 12th April 2019, 01:43 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by sadhatter View Post
In so sick of the " who gets the blame" game.

Opeth, arch enemy, gwar, cannibal corpse, Alex Jones or Donald trump are not responsible for this. The ******* who lit the fires is.

Yet the main focus is trying to find out which side we can needle for this guy's actions. It wasn't kosher when we were doing it to ice cube and it isn't now.
Originally Posted by theprestige View Post
I'm gonna guess that the arsonist is at least a little bit racist.
Probably but I'm going to hope for the Scandinavian Black Metal connection, that would at least be interesting instead of just sad.

Maybe its a guerilla ad campaign for the upcoming film about the the murder of Euronymous by Varg Vikernes?
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Old 14th April 2019, 04:48 AM   #18
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He looks like a typical metalhead.

A charred gas can and a debit card led to a suspect in the Louisiana black church fires

Quote:
Matthews was active in Facebook groups that focused on black metal and heathenism and Nordic religious beliefs, according to posts seen by CNN. In one post he wrote of his Asatru beliefs, which center around Norse gods.
In two Facebook posts in October, he appeared to admit he illegally carries a handgun -- in addition to a knife and dagger.
"I carry this," he wrote with the photo of a handgun. "Maybe not legally but I only truly follow the law of Odin..... which says as you said, arm yourself."
On the day that authorities said Matthews allegedly set fire to Greater Union Baptist Church in Opelousas, he wrote, "I'll take Arson/assassin/bard" when a group member asked people to choose between a wizard, fighter, sniper, assassin, guardian and warrior.
Here's an article in The Atlantic from a couple years back about Asatru:

What To Do When Racists Try To Hijack Your Religion

Quote:
White supremacists are coopting Norse heathen symbols. Should the heathens ignore them? Protest them? Create a new theology?
Quote:
As white supremacists marched through Charlottesville, the high priest of a pagan religion looked on with horror from Reykjavik, Iceland. It wasn’t just their racist message that bothered him. It was that their banners bore the symbols of his religion: Ásatrú, also known as heathenry.

“I think it’s obscene,” the high priest, Hilmar Hilmarsson, said of the way white supremacists are coopting Norse symbols like Thor’s hammer because they believe the Vikings were a pure white race. This appropriation has been underway for a few years—not only in the United States, but also in Sweden, Germany, Canada, and elsewhere—and it’s rattling many of those who practice the Ásatrú faith in its birthplace. “We are absolutely horrified,” Hilmarsson told me.
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Old 14th April 2019, 05:10 AM   #19
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A few more facebook images here:

St. Landry church fires suspect built altar for pagan god, joined black metal band

Not seeing any confederate flags, but he likes skulls and things like that. I think Mumbles is pretty much spot on. There's these neo-Nazi groups that have adopted Norse mythology as a religion. It's going to be a hate crime either way, whether he was targeting churches because they were black churches or just because they were Christian churches.
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Old 14th April 2019, 01:00 PM   #20
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I have a fair number of friends who are Asatrúar, have been for years, and are now having to hide their beliefs because of the co-option by white supremacists. I can only imagine how frustrating it is, at a time when shows like "American Gods" and "Vikings" are bringing Norse culture and heathen beliefs to the forefront, but the racists are claiming it for their own.

The Celtic pagans have been suffering the same problem with racists, with their religion and symbols being co-opted, but their big popularity thing was back in the 90's so it's not as obvious.
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