A CIU call to denounce racism on anniversary of Mother Emanuel shootings

Columbia Urban League President and CEO J.T. McLawhorn discusses race relations with CIU President Dr. Mark Smith.
June 17, 2020

On the five-year anniversary of the shooting deaths of nine people at Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, South Carolina, Columbia International University President Dr. Mark Smith is calling on Christ followers to denounce racism and injustice. It was on June 17, 2015 that nine people were shot and killed by a white supremacist during a Wednesday night Bible study and prayer meeting at the church also known as “Mother Emanuel.”

In a videotaped message on YouTube, Smith said that CIU formally denounces “racism, injustice and any action of any group seeking to make themselves racially superior to any other group of people. It’s just flat out wrong.”

View Smith’s entire YouTube message recorded on the eve of the anniversary of the shootings.    

Meanwhile, also on the eve of the anniversary, Smith met for lunch and prayer with Columbia leaders to listen and learn about race relations in the community. Meeting with Smith were Columbia Mayor Steve Benjamin, Columbia Urban League President and CEO J.T. McLawhorn, and Richland County Sheriff Leon Lott. Joining Smith from CIU was Special Assistant to the President Dr. Andre Rogers and Executive Vice President Dr. Rick Christman.