Monday: Truth about Orangeburg Massacre might not be pleasing

April 22, 2013 

I would like to thank Jordan M. Simmons III for his service to our country and congratulate him on his life’s accomplishments.

But like most people who write about the events occurring on Feb. 8, 1968, in Orangeburg (“45 years later, many wounds haven’t healed,” March 7), Mr. Simmons has selective memory; he fails to mention the mob consisting of hundreds who were throwing firebombs, bottles and bricks.

There is another item that is not mentioned: the report of gunshots originating from the campus that night. I have been told by a businessman, a prominent public servant and a member of the National Guard who were there that night that gunfire indeed was coming from the campus.

It was indeed a tragedy that three people were killed and many wounded; however had a peaceful nonviolent demonstration occurred, I don’t believe the incident would have happened.

Could it be possible that the students were pawns being used by radicals such as Cleveland Sellers, who for years filled empty heads at USC with his distorted version of America?

Mr. Simmons advocates a new investigation to reveal the truth and heal the offended; however if the true story is told, it might not please him.

Rodney Beard

Columbia

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