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Anniversary of Shame

A year after the hate crime, authorities have no leads

It was one year ago, on December 12, 2008, that the church Sarah Palin’s family attends was torched:

WASILLA — Whoever torched Gov. Sarah Palin’s home church tried to start fires in several places around the building, the federal agency assisting in the investigation said Monday.

Accelerants were found in multiple locations on the outside of Wasilla Bible Church, including around entrances and exits, according to the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

The fire was responsible for an estimated $1 million in damage to the building and endangered the lives of the five church members who were inside when the building was torched. Fortunately, the arsonists fire alarm was still working and warned those inside, and they were able to get out safely.

This one year anniversary is one of shame. It is always shameful when someone harbors such hate that they would try to burn down a house of God. But it’s doubly shameful that authorities from the federal level on down don’t even have a suspect in the case:

The Wasilla Police Department is leading the ongoing investigation, but none of the leads they’ve chased so far have ended up panning out.

“The investigation is still open, and we’re still asking the public to contact us if anybody has heard anything,” Deputy Chief Greg Wood said.

The federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives and the state fire marshal’s office both assisted in the initial investigation, and the state crime laboratory collected evidence at the scene.

[...]

“We don’t have any new leads right now, but we’re still looking,” Wood said.

The reluctance of the lamestream media to report on the arson is shameful also. It is to the credit of The Alaska Dispatch — not Palin-friendly by any means — that it published an update on the unsolved crime earlier this month.

But we’re reminded of Glenn Beck’s observations shortly after the fire:

Do you think it would lead the news if Barack Obama’s old church had been burned down, the church of Jeremiah Wright? Do you think that would have led the news? A man who’s already blaming the government for creating AIDS to kill African-Americans, imagine what he would be saying into any camera that would tape him. Not only would the media suddenly find a way to make a front page story in every single paper, this would squarely be blamed on “hateful” people like Sarah Palin, not to mention there would be calls to get rid of talk radio already today.

The most disturbing thing about the arson, however, is that the person or persons who are responsible are still on the loose and probably emboldened because they got away with their hate crime scot-free. What will they try next?

- JP

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