Where do you stand when it matters most?

Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer, center right, and Orlando Police Chief John Mina, center left, arrive to a news conference after a multiple shooting at a nightclub in Orlando, Fla., Sunday, June 12, 2016. (AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack)

Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer, center right, and Orlando Police Chief John Mina, center left, arrive to a news conference after a multiple shooting at a nightclub in Orlando, Fla., Sunday, June 12, 2016. (AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack)

In an ironic twist, the same night and weekend that the late boxing legend, humanitarian and peace prophet Muhammad Ali was laid to rest following an interfaith ceremony and public displays of adoration, the nation was thrust into mourning due to acts of domestic terrorism.

Former “The Voice” contestant Christina Grimme, 22, was murdered after performing at a concert in Orlando, Florida, on Friday, June 10, by Kevin James Loibl, 27, who traveled from St. Petersburg with two guns. He killed himself after murdering Grimme. According to reports, he did not know Grimme. In the wee hours of Sunday, June 12, Omar Mateen, 29, of  Fort Pierce, a trained security guard, unleashed a fusillade of bullets on revelers at gay club Pulse, also in Orlando, killing 50 and injuring 53.

Grief-stricken shooting victims comfort each other as they try to cope with the trauma they experienced.

Grief-stricken shooting victims comfort each other as they try to cope with the trauma they experienced as a result of the massacre inside Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Florida.

As loved one flocked to the streets to learn the fate of the victims, elected officials took to the airwaves to share their views, extend condolences and, in the case of Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick of Texas, tweet unsparingly “Do not be deceived, God is not mocked. A man reaps what he sows,” in reference to the lifestyle embraced by the victims. Calling the massacre “an act of violence and hate,” President Barack Obama ordered all flags around the nation to be flown at half staff in honor of the victims.

Ali was admired and celebrated in life and in death for taking a principled stand against the Vietnam War. He was unapologetic and willing to accept any consequence associated with his position. Some responded with hate and anger, while African-Americans stood taller, in awe of a man who risked it all at the height of his career and in the prime of his youth.

Omar Mateen, who was born in New York to parents from Afghanistan, killed 53 people enjoying themselves at Pulse, a gay nightclub located in Orlando, Florida, on 6/12, 2016. He was killed by police.

Omar Mateen, who was born in New York to parents from Afghanistan, killed 53 people enjoying themselves at Pulse, a gay nightclub located in Orlando, Florida, on 6/12, 2016. He was killed by police.

Where do you stand when it matters most? Today, that’s an increasingly difficult question to answer. Individuals, whether they are famous athletes, so-called celebrities, professionals or the everyday person, are reluctant to take a stand on principle. As wall to wall coverage of the Pulse massacre continues unabated, Ali’s boldness, sense of integrity and unwavering commitment to his principles stand out more than ever.

Kevin James Loibl gunned down singer Christina Grimme as she signed autographs after performing in Orlando, Florida on June 10, 2016.

Kevin James Loibl gunned down singer Christina Grimme as she signed autographs after performing in Orlando, Florida on June 10, 2016.

Today’s athletes are too politically correct and focused on money to take a stand and mean it; celebrities are more concerned with garnering followers and vacuous publicity rather than influencing others and cementing a legacy; many professionals are too complacent and devoid of passion to shape their brand around principles that define them.

But as details filter out about Mateen’s 911 call to pledge allegiance to ISIS prior to the bloodbath he inflicted at Pulse, and investigations continue into unearthing the motives of both killers, it bears asking: What defines me? What drives my sense of integrity? What are my principles? Where do I stand when it matters most? The answers to those question could shape the future of our society as a whole, while building the character of every individual so that, like Ali, we all aspire to be greater than we ever envisioned.–OnPointPress.net-

FBI reward in Colorado Spring’s NAACP office bombing is a good first step

This Jan. 6, 2015 photo shows at the bottom right the char marks from a device detonated Tuesday along the northeast corner of a building occupied by a barber shop near the Colorado Springs chapter of the NAACP in Colorado Springs, Colo. Chapter President Henry Allen Jr. told The Colorado Springs Gazette the blast was strong enough to knock items off the walls. (AP Photo/The Colorado Springs Gazette, Mark Reis) MAGS OUT

This Jan. 6, 2015 photo shows at the bottom right the char marks from a device detonated Tuesday along the northeast corner of a building occupied by a barber shop near the Colorado Springs chapter of the NAACP in Colorado Springs, Colo. Chapter President Henry Allen Jr. told The Colorado Springs Gazette the blast was strong enough to knock items off the walls. (AP Photo/The Colorado Springs Gazette, Mark Reis) MAGS OUT

On Tuesday, January 6, three days before the historical film, “Selma” opened in wide release in movie theaters, there was a bombing at the NAACP branch office in Colorado Springs. This time, to the relief of many and to the disappointment of the perpetrator, no one was hurt.

According to details disclosed by the investigating authorities, an explosive device detonated but failed to ignite a gasoline canister to which it was connected, thereby sparing the lives of staffers in the office and in the surrounding area, which includes a barber shop. However, the building was damaged as a result of the blast, and Colorado Chapter President Henry Allen. Jr. told The Colorado Springs Gazette that articles were thrown from the walls due to the force from the explosion.

naacp

Eyewitnesses described seeing a balding white male placing the bomb behind the building then walking to his pickup truck as the device exploded, according to statements issued by FBI special agent Thomas Ravenelle. From the descriptions, the FBI released a sketch of the suspect but the investigators have declined to characterize the bombing as racially motivated, domestic terrorism, an act of intimidation or attempted murder.

crime scene

In the meantime, the investigation continues with the FBI and federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives offering $10,000 in reward for information about the bombing. This is a good first step in solving this crime and bringing the criminal responsible to justice.

The long history of racial intimidation, oppression and discrimination in this country has been chronicled for decades. And while in some circles this era is often described as the “post racial” period due to the two-time election of President Barack Obama to office, it bears noting that there is noting post racial about planting a bomb at the office of NAACP which has an enduring history of championing the rights of African-Americans.

Sketch of the suspect in the bombing of the NAACP's Colorado Springs office, released on Friday by the FBI.

Sketch of the suspect in the bombing of the NAACP’s Colorado Springs office, released on Friday by the FBI.

Why the eyes of the world are trained on Paris where 12 journalists and four civilians were slaughtered, the eyes of African-Americans, the FBI and other investigators need to remain firmly glued to the developing situation in Colorado Springs. Bombing a chapter office of the NAACP is an act of domestic terrorism and racism, regardless of the reluctance of the FBI to characterize it as such.–OnPointPress.net.