The Hatewatch blog is managed by the staff of the Intelligence Project of the Southern Poverty Law Center, an Alabama-based civil rights organization.

New Direction Apparent at Washington Times

By Mark Potok on February 27, 2008 - 9:53 am, Posted in Media Extremism

Just one month after taking the reins of The Washington Times — a paper with a long history of far-right reporting and several top editors linked to white supremacist ideas — Editor-in-Chief John Solomon has signaled a major change in direction.

In an internal memo issued on Monday, Feb. 25, the Times’ Patrick Tuohy listed a set of five changes to the publication’s rules of style. The brief E-mail spoke volumes.

No longer will the Times refer snidely in headlines to “Hillary”; the new headline reference to the New York senator and presidential candidate will now be “Clinton.” The word “gay” will replace the word “homosexual” in copy — “except in clinical references or references to sexual activity,” as Tuohy writes. The newspaper, which had fiercely opposed gay marriage in its editorials and less explicitly in many of its news columns, will stop using sarcastic quotes around the word “marriage” when discussing same-sex unions. It has now approved the word “moderate” (“centrist” was the formerly preferred term) for discussing a particular range of political views — a word it apparently avoided in the past because it carried the connotation of “reasonable.” Finally, the newspaper will now refer to “illegal immigrants,” not “illegal aliens,” a term many immigrants and human rights activists feel is denigrating and conjures up visions of frightening other-worldly beings. ( continue to full post… )

Minuteman Project Ally Protests Airport Prayer Space For Muslims

By Hatewatch Staff on February 26, 2008 - 6:53 pm, Posted in Uncategorized

To hear Jeffrey Brueningsen tell it, he’s a modern-day Rosa Parks. He likens himself to the civil-rights legend when he speaks of the charge he led to shut down “the mosque,” which is how he refers to the building.

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Editorial Writer Argues Immigration With Lou Dobbs

By Hatewatch Staff on February 26, 2008 - 6:51 pm, Posted in Uncategorized

My point to Dobbs was that the little-little guy – the “illegal alien” crossing our “broken borders” – was the wrong target. His overriding emphasis on solving globalization’s many ills by urgently sealing the borders strikes me as populism gone astray.

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Utah Senators Rework Minuteman-Back Immigration Bill

By Hatewatch Staff on February 26, 2008 - 6:48 pm, Posted in Uncategorized

Senators are reworking parts of a comprehensive immigration package to make the measure more palatable to the business community and religious leaders, its sponsor said Tuesday. […]

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Immigration Debate Has Devolved Into Open Season

By Hatewatch Staff on February 26, 2008 - 6:46 pm, Posted in Uncategorized

It’s getting ugly out there for illegal immigrants. States and cities are cracking down with harsh new ordinances, and the courts are upholding them. Not only are deportations at record highs, but immigrants are being detained at places previously understood to be off-limits, such as schools. The debate about illegal immigration, labor, social justice and international trade has devolved into open season on illegal immigrants. […]

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Campus Hatemonger Lays Down ‘Torch of Freedom’

By David Holthouse on February 26, 2008 - 7:57 am, Posted in Academic Racism, Anti-Immigrant, Anti-Latino, Anti-LGBT, Anti-Muslim, Hate Groups, Hate on Campus, White Supremacist

Kyle Bristow — the pugnacious chair of the Michigan State University chapter of Young Americans for Freedom (MSU-YAF), a student organization listed as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center — announced Sunday that he’s resigning “so that the next generation of YAFers can replace me.”

Kyle BristowBristow (right) also confirmed that an MSU-YAF-sponsored lecture by Jared Taylor, the editor of the academic racist journal American Renaissance, would not occur on the MSU campus in March as originally planned. “Though MSU-YAF is not officially hosting Jared Taylor as a speaker this semester, I did see to it that he will be able to speak at a location near MSU and be hosted by another organization (the show will go on!),” Bristow wrote. (As it happens, the three-day biannual conference of American Renaissance, held in Herndon, Va., and featuring former Klan leaders and other assorted white supremacists, wrapped up the same day he spoke.)

MSU-YAF was added to the SPLC list in early 2007, after MSU-YAF attempted to organize a “Catch an Illegal Immigrant Day” contest, held a “Koran Desecration” competition, joked about distributing smallpox-infested blankets to Native American students, and hosted a series of lectures by hate group leaders such as Nick Griffin that drew skinheads and other white supremacists to the MSU campus. Griffin is the Holocaust-denying leader of the extreme-right British National Party. ( continue to full post… )

Watchmen Founder Wants High School Teachers Fired

By Casey Sanchez on February 21, 2008 - 9:04 am, Posted in Anti-LGBT, Christian Right

A founder of Watchmen on the Walls, an international organization that is ferociously anti-gay, isn’t who Hatewatch would choose to speak at an MLK day event. But that’s what happened on Jan. 17, when the Rev. Ken Hutcherson spoke at Mt. Si High School in Snoqualmie, Wash.

At the student-planned assembly, Hutcherson, founder of a Seattle-area megachurch, was booed by English teacher George Potratz. Kit McCormick, an adviser for the school’s Gay/Straight Alliance club, asked Hutcherson how he could admire Dr. King but fight against civil rights for homosexuals. “I think her deal was that I don’t believe in equal rights for everybody,” Hutcherson told a reporter later. During his speech, Hutcherson talked about growing up as a black man in the South.

Last week, school principal Randy Taylor disciplined the teachers for their actions with a letter that will be included in their personnel files. But for Hutcherson, that’s not enough. He told the American Family Association that he wants the teachers fired. ( continue to full post… )

Racist Attacks on Obama Growing More Heated

By Mark Potok on February 20, 2008 - 4:16 pm, Posted in Hate Groups, Klan, White Supremacist

With the selection of Barack Obama as the first black Democratic nominee for president seeming more possible by the day, racists and white supremacists are posting increasingly ugly and even threatening remarks on the Internet.

obama.jpeg“OBAMA WILL DIE, KKK FOREVER,” concludes a Feb. 15 post by “Rodney” to a blog run by a person identified only as Strider333. Above that signoff, Rodney wrote: “The KKK or someone WILL assassinate Obama! If we get a NIGGER President all you NIGGER’s [sic] will think you’ve won and that the WHITE people will have to bow to you[.] FUCK THAT.”

On traditional white supremacist and neo-Nazi sites (for instance, here and here), there are lengthy discussion threads about what would happen if Obama were elected president. Dozens of those posts are derogatory and employ all kinds of racist slurs. Others speculate that such an Obama victory would kick off a race war between whites and blacks. And some even raise the possibility that he could be assassinated. But talk like that is rare and extremely careful — probable evidence that the “white nationalists” who inhabit these sites are deeply concerned that their comments are being monitored by law enforcement for any criminal threat relating to the presidential race. In fact, Obama reportedly received federal Secret Service protection unusually early in the campaign season because of concerns about a racially motivated attack.

The most heated anti-Obama talk appears to be on Internet sites that allow people to post messages anonymously. One such site, JD Underground, is a list ostensibly devoted to lawyers, although further details were not available. It has carried a particularly venomous thread, entitled “Nigger President,” that has stretched from January into this month.

“I’m hoping someone will do his public duty of putting a bullet through Obama’s head,” said a poster identified as “Kill Da Nigga.” Another poster suggests “bring[ing] back lynchings” and concludes with a warning: “LOOK OUT NIGGER. THE KLAN IS GETTING BIGGER!!!!!!” And a third, using the screen name “amerikkkan,” says only, “The deep south is making plans.”

White Supremacist, Wife Die in Apparent Murder-Suicide

By David Holthouse on February 20, 2008 - 1:14 pm, Posted in Anti-Semitic, Extremist Crime, Hate Groups, Neo-Nazi, White Supremacist

This Monday, Feb. 18, 52-year-old white supremacist James “Yankee Jim” Leshkevich sat before his computer screen and typed these words: “This will be the last post on [Leshkevich’s blog] The Hudson Valley Freeman for a while. I’m just too depressed over all this to continue. Hopefully that will change in the future.”

It didn’t.

The following morning, police in West Hurley, N.Y., found Leshkevich’s body hanging in a garage attached to the home he shared with his 55-year-old wife Deborah, who was found beaten and strangled to death in the couple’s bedroom, the victim of an apparent murder-suicide.

Leshkevich, a prolific white supremacist blogger, letter-to-the-editor writer and radio host, detailed what was apparently his motive in a rambling blog post spread over 10 days. Beginning Feb. 8, the post was titled, “I Caught My Wife Sleeping With Another Man…” ( continue to full post… )

St. Mary’s Academy Bans Female Referee

By Heidi Beirich on February 19, 2008 - 4:36 pm, Posted in Anti-Semitic, Radical Traditionalist Catholic

St. Mary’s Academy, a K-12 school and college run by the “radical traditionalist Catholic” group known as the Society of St. Pius X (SSPX) and located in St. Marys, Kan., barred a female referee from officiating a boys’ basketball game held on its campus on Feb. 2. According to a Feb. 13 article in Sports Illustrated, the referee, retired police officer Michelle Campbell of the Kansas State High School Activities Association, was told that “as a woman, [she] could not be put in a position of authority over boys because of the academy’s beliefs.” ( continue to full post… )