I’m a mother. I get it.
No matter how much our children disappoint us, they’re still our children.
Some heartbreaks, however, are just too much. I can only imagine that the mother of Dylann Roof, the young man who walked into a Charleston, South Carolina church last summer, then gunned down nine black parishioners, is in deep mourning and distress.
On Thursday, the court hearing Roof’s case saw just how broken this has left Roof’s mother. Upon hearing the testimony of her son’s actions on that horrible day in Charleston, had a heart attack.
Roof’s attorney, David Bruck, asked for a mistrial in the court documents, citing the heart attack as one of the reasons. Bruck added that one survivor’s testimony was so emotional that “spectators and even court personnel — including members of the prosecution and defense — were crying with her.”
The mother of the self-avowed white supremacist who is accused of gunning down nine black parishioners in a racially motivated attack last summer in Charleston, S.C., collapsed on Wednesday and said “I’m sorry” several times as help came to her side.
And that is a mother who is taking on the sins of her child.
It’s hard to say how much of what Dylann Roof became was the fault of his upbringing. History is full of horror stories of monsters who were raised in what was otherwise normal, seemingly happy homes, only to become “twisted” somewhere along the way.
In the ongoing case against Roof, he is charged with 33 federal crimes, including hate crimes. Prosecutors are seeking the death penalty and rejected an offer from Roof to plead guilty for life in prison without parole.
In a separate case in South Carolina, he faces nine counts of murder.
Roof deserves whatever is coming to him through the courts. It is unfortunate, however, that those who are his victims didn’t end with the nine people he shot.