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

Racists React With Shock, Anger to Fellow Activist’s Renunciation

By Mark Potok on July 18, 2013 - 1:00 pm, Posted in White Nationalism

White nationalists, learning yesterday of activist Derek Black’s renouncing of the movement, reacted with disbelief, conspiracy theories and unbridled fury. But it was the fact that Black, son of the former Alabama Klan leader who now runs the largest racist Web forum in the world, made his comments to the Southern Poverty Law Center that seemed to be the single factor that most rankled the racist world.

The reaction that may have been the most noticed came from Don Black, who expressed his shock about his son’s comments on his Stormfront blog. “Derek was here all weekend, helping us build and replace old windows” at the family home in West Palm Beach, Fla., the elder Black wrote. “He’s made it annoyingly obvious over the past few months he was no longer interested in WN [white nationalist] activism, but he always said he was still WN. I knew the Jews at the Poverty Palace [SPLC] were working hard, since he would be such a big prize for them.

“But he didn’t give us a clue as to what he planned today.”

“I don’t want to talk to him, but his big sister called him, and he confirmed that he had written what the SPLC posted,” Black added. “He says he doesn’t understand why we’d feel betrayed just because he announced his ‘personal beliefs’ to our worst enemies. Oh well. Just when I thought I couldn’t lose anything else.”

On Vanguard News Network (VNN), another racist Web forum, one Leonard Rouse sounded similar. “He sent an email, meant for publication, to his worst enemy, repudiating everything he formerly stood for and that his father claimed and claims to stand for. …. I want to give people the benefit of the doubt, but Jesus.”

Others were far harsher. On the white nationalist Occidental Dissent website, “Maxfield Parrish” didn’t hold back. “He is a traitor, one without hope and one without redemption,” he said of Derek Black, 24. “Should WN’s ever seize power his name should figure prominently on the ‘Hunt Down List.’” Parrish went on to describe how the younger Black should be “softened up with brass knuckles to the face and groin, then water-boarded,” ultimately “reducing him to a quivering, gelatinous lump of obedient flesh,” before being exiled to Africa.

“He is now an open enemy of the survival of the race,” said a VNN posting from “N.B. Forrest” — a reference to Nathan Bedford Forrest, an antebellum owner of a major slaveyard, Confederate general and first national leader of the Ku Klux Klan.

Others, less furiously, were shocked by what they saw as Black’s adoption of “politically correct” language — talking about “people of color,” “structural oppression,” the need for affirmative action and so on. Some were particularly incensed that he apologized for actions that had harmed minorities and “activists striving for opportunity and fairness for all.” Doubtless, that sounded suspiciously like SPLC staffers to many of those reacting angrily to Black’s statement.

“Black has not only rejected WNism, he appears to have embraced the hardest of hardcore anti-racism in the process, and with the zeal of a convert,” a poster who gave his name only as Lew complained on the Occidental Dissent thread. “He covered the bases in regurgitating every anti-white cliché I can think of.”

Numerous posters on racist websites theorized that Derek Black had taken up with a Jewish, liberal or non-white girlfriend; that he was secretly gay; that he was acting out of anger at his father; that he was being blackmailed by the SPLC with an unspecified secret; or that he was still a believer, but wanted a normal life.

There were a few who tried to look at their own movement for answers. On Occidental Dissent, “Pro White Joe,” who is actually well-known Montana neo-Nazi April Gaede, said the problem with the white nationalist movement was its “overwhelming Negativity.” “The problem I see with WN and Nationalist websites in general, is you go to them expecting WN to be about ‘identity, preservation and self determination for Whites’ — Yet almost all of the discussion is rants about ‘niggers, jews and nazis’ and everyone is angry and paranoid.” Gaede is the mother of two daughters who once formed a racist band, Prussian Blue, but who have since renounced white nationalism like Derek Black.

And then there were those who acknowledged the most obvious conclusion — that it’s an error to indoctrinate young children and then expect them to hold to those beliefs as they become adults. “It’s a mistake to involve kids in the Movement, as we have learned the hard way,” “Kievasky” wrote on the Occidental Dissent thread. “Teach your kids right and wrong but don’t use them as spokesmen or public faces for anything. Religions do that too — they force children to publicly announce beliefs when they are too young to even have formed beliefs. You got to let kids be kids. White nationalism is like booze, guns and fast cars — for adults only.”

  • Solomon

    I want to give Derek Black and the Gaede twins a handshake and a nice BIG hug.

  • Gregory

    Weewal,

    Personally I favour the Pentavirate conspiracy, as expressed by Stuart McKenzie.

    “Well, it’s a well known fact, Sonny Jim, that there’s a secret society of the five wealthiest people in the world, known as The Pentavirate, who run everything in the world, including the newspapers, and meet tri-annually at a secret country mansion in Colorado, known as The Meadows. “

    So who’s in this Pentavirate?

    “The Queen, The Vatican, The Gettys, The Rothschilds, *and* Colonel Sanders before he went tits up. Oh, I hated the Colonel with is wee *beady* eyes, and that smug look on his face. “Oh, you’re gonna buy my chicken! Ohhhhh!”

  • http://SPLC steve

    In response to my critics I will say this:
    This defection by Mr. Black is just a baby step, a “foot in the door”, as it were. I don’t trust anyone associated w/ the WN movement. These nefarious white “supermen” would love to deal a blow to progressive morale, or worse.
    For those who disagree w/ me, that is certainly your prerogative, but I feel it is better to be safe than sorry.

  • Weelwal

    Gregory,

    ‘Do you think that Mark is going to invite Derek over and reveal the secret network of Joos who run the world on his first visit?’

    Can U tell us who R they?

  • Reynardine

    Ann, stick around.

  • http://depressionmymuse.wordpress.com hunglikejesus

    These people are extremely dramitcal. LOL!!

    I think the son may convince the father to drop his tiringly wicked ways. It must take a lot of energy to hate that much.

  • http://kathmanduk2.wordpress.com Ann

    “But he didn’t give us a clue as to what he planned today.”

    He did not give you a clue because he knew how you and your ilk would respond—-so the less you knew of his plans, the better for him.

    “I don’t want to talk to him, but his big sister called him, and he confirmed that he had written what the SPLC posted,” Black added. “He says he doesn’t understand why we’d feel betrayed just because he announced his ‘personal beliefs’ to our worst enemies. Oh well. Just when I thought I couldn’t lose anything else.”

    On Vanguard News Network (VNN), another racist Web forum, one Leonard Rouse sounded similar. “He sent an email, meant for publication, to his worst enemy, repudiating everything he formerly stood for and that his father claimed and claims to stand for. ….”

    Maybe, your son has realized that continuous hate consumes a person in heart, in body, in mind, in spirit. Your son obviously had enough of the poison that he was drowning in. The hate you fed him as a child. The vicious destruction you committed against him in the form of child abuse–teaching him to hate his fellow human beings.

    “On the white nationalist Occidental Dissent website, “Maxfield Parrish” didn’t hold back. “He is a traitor, one without hope and one without redemption,” he said of Derek Black, 24.”

    No, Mr. Parrish. You are a traitor. You are a traitor to treating all people right; you are a traitor against the Constitution of the United States of America; you are a traitor against all that is moral and right in accepting the decision that this young man made for himself.

    “Parrish went on to describe how the younger Black should be “softened up with brass knuckles to the face and groin, then water-boarded,” ultimately “reducing him to a quivering, gelatinous lump of obedient flesh,” before being exiled to Africa.”

    So, terroristic threats to commit bodily injury is how you attempt to bring this young man back to the racist secesh fold? Keep in mind, any harm that befalls young Mr. Black will result in criminal charges against the attacker. Assault with intent to commit bodily injury; torture (waterboarding), and “reducing him to a quivering, gelatinous lump of obedient flesh” (“There must be obedience, or die!”), all fall under felony charges. Since young Mr. Black is an adult, he still has the right to make decisions for himself. Forcing him to continue beliefs in racist hate is stupid, and if you are able to forcibly detain him against his will, whether in his own home, or anywhere else, that constitutes kidnapping, which is still a federal offense.

    As for young Mr. Black “being exiled to Africa”, all I can say is “WTF!?”

    So, that is the ultimate punishment for this young man: send him on a vacation to Africa? And where to in Africa?

    Tanzania? Kenya? Cote d’Ivoire?

    I hear that Tanzania is very beautiful, the people friendly, and the flora and fauna are off the chain.

    But, of course, in your twisted mind, Mr. Parrish, sending anyone to Africa is supposed to be some sort of death knell. On the contrary. Had this young man remained with the likes of his father and people like you, he most certainly would have gone through a death of the soul, as well as the body–if he messed with the wrong person.

    “On Occidental Dissent, “Pro White Joe,” who is actually well-known Montana neo-Nazi April Gaede, said the problem with the white nationalist movement was its “overwhelming Negativity.” “The problem I see with WN and Nationalist websites in general, is you go to them expecting WN to be about ‘identity, preservation and self determination for Whites’ — Yet almost all of the discussion is rants about ‘niggers, jews and nazis’ and everyone is angry and paranoid.”

    Oh, wow, who’d have thunk it?

    Constant harping about niggers, Jews, and nazis (why Nazis, since so many of your ilk are just as venomous as they are) and your rampant demented paranoia, only serves to drive people away from such monsters as yourselves, Mr. Black senior and Mr. Parrish, as well you, Ms-well-known Montana neo-Nazi April Gaede.

    ”White nationalism is like booze, guns and fast cars — for adults only.”

    And just like booze (alchoholics), guns (excessive puerile love affairs with AK-47s), and fast cars (driving at top speeds to get away from the scenes of crimes some of you have committed), so many of you haters have pretty much destroyed yourselves by your own hands.

    No need for anyone to go looking for a fight with any of you.

    All of you are so very, very good at annihilating yourselves.

  • Reynardine

    Gregory, I hear you. In fact, my late device, a Pantech, was even a rotten little tyrant that went back and changed what I said to what it thought I should have said. This Galaxy is a sweetheart by comparison, but, of course, the keyboard is still tiny.

  • Gregory

    Classic, not cassic. Damn this tiny keyboard.

  • Gregory

    Cassic Sam: When confronted with facts, respond with bumper sticker slogans.

  • Erika

    and sam, do you know waht the monthly amount that the principle “welfare” program SSI pays???

    SSDI payments can be substantially higher but they are based upon the amount that a person made before becoming disabled.

  • Erika

    sam, everything you said was demonstratably false even before the Clinton/Gingrinch “end welfare as we know it” “reform” – and needless to say compltely false at this point.

    The majority of people receiving “welfare” (and let’s not even talk about “corporate welfare” at this point) now are in fact working Americans – including many members of the military. From the Earned Income Tax Credit and Child Care Tax Credit to Section 8 Vouchers to Food Stamps the majority of welfare programs are designed to benefit working Americans. Even much ADC now is going to people who are working full time in jobs which simply do not pay enough to support children.

    And speaking of ADC (or WIC), the cost of having a child and providing care for a child is orders of magtitute beyond the meager additional payment.

    The only people who are receiving “welfare” over long periods of time now who are not working are those who have been found to be disabled which is defined as being unable to work. The government is even now trying to enable people with disabilities (who overall want to work) to be able to return to work (or enter th eworkforce for the first time) through the Ticket to Work program. This program was developed in fact, because many people who are “disabled” and unable to work really are able to work (at least part time) with appropriate supports – its just that by working they would not be able to get health insurance (even if they could find a job that provides health insurance, a private health insurance was able to refuse to provide coverage to “preexisting conditions” and a person found to be disabled by the federal government is going to have serious pre-existing conditions) – and in many cases, not having health insurance would mean no medication which would render a person unable to work (there is a really vicious cycle there).

    Fix health insurance (and the best way to do that is a single payer system) and a large number of people with disabilities will be able to work at least part time.

    And in any case, welfare payments to individuals is a miniscule portion of the state and federal budgets. And if you were better infrmed, you’d also realize that most “welfare” (again this is even leaving aside “corporate welfare” programs are actually designed to benefit rich people or people with money (food stamps are as much a subsidy to farmers as anything, section 8 is primarily a subsidy to landlords, Medicare and Medicaid are as much subisdies to doctors and hospitals as anything) as benefiting poor people.

  • Sam Molloy

    Ruslan, welfare is very good for a temporary safety net, but when it replaces the work ethic, encourages unemployed poor people to have more children to increase their benefits, and disallows two parent households from receiving benefits, it works against the people it was claimed to help.

  • Marty

    Not sure how the discussion changed to welfare, but you hit my nerve hard enough to drop the lurker status for a minute. Simply put, welfare doesn’t cause poverty. Just look around you, Sam. The manufacturing base of this country is a mere fraction of what it used to be, and those were the jobs that you took when you wanted to pick yourself up by your bootstraps and bottle that American dream. That’s where you went when you didn’t go to college or join the military, and you were guaranteed a decent wage & a place in the middle class. Slowly & steadily we’ve outsourced all those jobs overseas for cheap labor and higher corporate profits. We then re-import these products cheaply and sell them in mega-marts that pride themselves on being affordable for the families that can no longer afford much, while said mega-mart keeps their prices low and profits high by keeping their own employees at part-time status, depriving them of a living wage and health insurance. Then you, the Fox Newsies of the world, have the nerve to get upset by the idea of healthcare for all, when American companies do what they can do to not provide it for their workers in order to maximize the CEO bonus this year. Then you, the Fox Newsies of the world, have the nerve to accuse your fellow Americans of being lazy and looking for a hand-out, of making welfare a lifestyle choice and not the only thing between life & death for some of your American brothers & sisters. God forbid you find yourself on hard times, my friend. I agree with your point, Ruslan, regarding the inherent prejudice America has for its poor.

  • Ruslan Amirkhanov

    I’m sorry Sam, but the entire field of sociology says you are wrong. Everyone is entitled to his own opinion, not his own facts. America’s current state has nothing to do with welfare, but it does partially stem from a lack thereof.

  • Sam Molloy

    The official “Poverty Rate” is based on arbitrary figures to make statistcs look better than they really are. Changing welfare from a temporary safety net to a way of life has unarguably, absolutely proveably, made things worse. Just look around you.

  • Ruslan Amirkhanov

    The problem Sam, is that welfare systems DO work and this is a historical fact. In fact, states which had higher cash benefits had fewer people on welfare for shorter periods of time than those with lower benefits.

    If you’re going to have capitalism, you’re going to have low wage jobs and unemployment. So unless you want a situation like gilded age America(PROTIP: It sucked), you need a strong welfare system.

  • Gregory

    Also, Sam, there are more poor people now than in the ’60s because there are more people now, period. Population increase will do that.

    As for the poverty rate, I suggest you do a bit of research here, since you are not a simplistic guy. You might be shocked to learn that welfare does not cause poverty.

    http://www.npc.umich.edu/poverty/

    “In the late 1950s, the poverty rate for all Americans was 22.4 percent, or 39.5 million individuals. These numbers declined steadily throughout the 1960s, reaching a low of 11.1 percent, or 22.9 million individuals, in 1973. Over the next decade, the poverty rate fluctuated between 11.1 and 12.6 percent, but it began to rise steadily again in 1980. By 1983, the number of poor individuals had risen to 35.3 million individuals, or 15.2 percent.

    For the next ten years, the poverty rate remained above 12.8 percent, increasing to 15.1 percent, or 39.3 million individuals, by 1993. The rate declined for the remainder of the decade, to 11.3 percent by 2000. From 2000 to 2004 it rose each year to 12.7 in 2004.

    Since the late 1960s, the poverty rate for people over 65 has fallen dramatically. The poverty rate for children has historically been somewhat higher than the overall poverty rate. The poverty rate for people in households headed by single women is significantly higher than the overall poverty rate.”

  • Gregory

    Sam,
    Again, Fox News is not a good source for factual information. A quick search will bring up many examples, such as the link I have provided. http://mediamatters.org/resear.....ncy/190375

    Just out of morbid curiousity, which urban area have you strolled through to come to these conclusions?

  • Reynardine

    Sam, people here have tried to tell you why things have changed since the Sixties, and, as one who saw it happen, I’m telling you they’re right and you’re simple.

  • Sam Molloy

    Ruslan, not everybody who is against the Welfare Culture is so simplistic. Since poor people spend every dime they get immediately, most welfare is actually a stimulus package for the general economy. And compared to the Military, the percentage of the National budget is nearly negligible. I count myself with the people who believe that welfare should not become a way of life because it simply does not work. There are more poor people now, in numbers and percentages, than when it was greatly expanded from a safety net to a way of life in the 1960′s. We were told there was a “dire need” to bring everyone into the “Great Society”. Since then the Liberal solution to it’s failure has always been “just a little more will fix it”. A stroll through our urban areas should tell you that has not worked and will never work. If I thought it really helped people I would be all for it.

  • Reynardine

    You tell me, Steve, exactly what sort of deadly secrets a cunning rascal like the one you’re describing could uncover. As for hit men, I’ve had ‘em. I’m not writing this from The Other Side.

  • Kiwiwriter

    For once in her absurd, wasted, life, April Gaede has said something useful:

    “The problem I see with WN and Nationalist websites in general, is you go to them expecting WN to be about ‘identity, preservation and self determination for Whites’ — Yet almost all of the discussion is rants about ‘niggers, jews and nazis’ and everyone is angry and paranoid.”

    You finally figured it out, did you, April? After all these years and having gravely damaged three young girls?

    Ruslan Amirkhanov serrated April’s outburst pretty efficiently earlier, but I will add my three cents:

    The fact that “discussion” on these groups is solely angry rants about the various “enemies of the white race,” filled with paranoia and fury, is to be expected.

    The truth of the matter is that these “White nationalists” HAVE NO PROGRAM. No policy. No plan. No real, coherent, logical, feasible agenda, plan, or ideas. They can’t even define “white culture” except in terms of what they hate and fear…what it isn’t.

    They have no idea of what their solution or replacement to the issues or government of the day are or should be, beyond adolescent fantasies about “race wars,” filled with beer-sodden imagery of bloody violence, mass killings, and a vague idea of an all-white nation, separated from the rest of the world, somehow self-sufficient.

    They have absolutely no idea of anything beyond cut-and-paste slogans, buzzwords, jargon, and lies spouted at them by fakes, con men, and cynics, eager to take their money and turn them into semi-slaves.

    There is no “white nationalist” philosophy, no program, no depth. Just as there is no “white culture,” or “white civilization.” Just a lot of ignorant and angry men (except for April Gaede), all expressing various inner torments and fury.

    The problem is, when they express those torments and fury, all too often…they wind up hurting innocent people. And that — as the death of JT Ready should remind us — includes their own families and children. Eventually their behavior of utter hate turns upon themselves and those they love…and that is the greatest tragedy of all. The utter waste.

    So April’s right for once…she needs one more time to be right, so she can be as good as a stopped clock.

  • john

    We should treat everyone equally.

    Whether you are a Klansman, a muslim Extremist, a Nazi, a Communist, or just a simple man selling candy bars.

  • Linnea

    Well, this is either the mother of all twisted conspiracy plots, or evidence that Derek Black’s change of heart is real, and therefore threatening to his former allies.

    I’m going with the second possibility.

  • http://n/a Ken

    Ruslan Amirkhanov – I love the redhead analogy. Your whole post pretty summed things up. People power and #personism.

  • Somebody

    I saw Derek in a grocery store with a fellow student the day following the article release. He seemed fine and though I am sure he is feeling the repercussions of the article, I’m sure he fully thought through and prepared for the consequences with his family. I hope the best for him.

  • Gregory

    steve,
    What “secrets” do you think Mr. Black will obtain through this fiendishly clever manuever?

    Do you think that Mark is going to invite Derek over and reveal the secret network of Joos who run the world on his first visit?

    Just because you are paranoid doesn’t mean you are not crazy.

  • Aron

    Steve,

    I don’t think Black is going to become the next Mark or Heidi. Yes, he could be a mole, but what could he learn? He isn’t in a position of power or influence. Much less information.

  • http://SPLC steve

    I’m not so sure of this” reaction” by the WN community. Maybe they are ensuring Mr. Black’s acceptance into the beating heart of the Progressive movement, the SPLC. The so-called turncoat then has access to info from deep inside. You may call me another paranoid conspiracy theorist if you wish. However, as I stated in my post from the other article about Black in this issue; I would postulate that this is part of a plan to infiltrate SPLC at the highest levels. One just cannot dismiss all right-wingers as brain dead morons. Perhaps some are more intelligent than we are willing to grant. Intelligent enough to come up with a plan to give them access to info they would not be privy to otherwise. Just a thought.

  • Reynardine

    Actually, Arthur Conan Doyle wrote a story called “The Red-Headed League”, concerning what purported to be just such a society. In fact, it was a cover scheme for a bank robbery.

  • Ruslan Amirkhanov

    A few LULZ to be had.

    ” “Should WN’s ever seize power his name should figure prominently on the ‘Hunt Down List.’” ”

    Yeah, the guys who can barely run a mail-order business are going to “seize power.” I’m sure Derek is already applying for asylum abroad in response to this “threat.”

    “The problem I see with WN and Nationalist websites in general, is you go to them expecting WN to be about ‘identity, preservation and self determination for Whites’ — Yet almost all of the discussion is rants about ‘niggers, jews and nazis’ and everyone is angry and paranoid.”

    It’s funny when you see WNs actually start to notice this, but nobody asks why. Why is it so negative? Because whites in America are not equipped to deal with failure, a major problem in a society which is in economic decline. We were taught that America is a meritocracy, and poor people have only themselves to blame(this creates animosity towards minorities when they complain about injustice). So then you have a white man who fails because of reasons beyond his control, but he knows that he’s not allowed to talk about that. Everyone around him, including his own family members, blame him. So he has to shift the burden of responsibility somewhere. Suddenly it’s because of the women entering the workplace, the minorities and affirmative action, welfare taking his tax money(even though most recipients are white).

    So there’s where your negative comes in.

    As for identity, well, “white” is not an identity. It’s a contrived identity based on physical appearance which has changed radically over the last two centuries. It’s not a culture or heritage.

    The other problem is that when the basis for belonging in your organizations or movement is simply being “white,” then you’re inevitably going to get masses of people that have nothing else to say for themselves save for the fact that they are white. It’s like if you made an organization which was all about preserving people with red hair, insisting that redheads have a shared culture which crosses national and linguistic borders. It preaches that the most important factor in judging someone is their hair color, so that the smartest non-redhead is considered lower than the dumbest redhead. What kind of people will this attract? Redheads, yes. Intelligent, talented people, not so much.

    That is the WN movement in a nutshell. Actually former president Lyndon Johnson had the WN movement pegged:

    “If you can convince the lowest white man he’s better than the best colored man, he won’t notice you’re picking his pocket. Hell, give him somebody to look down on, and he’ll empty his pockets for you.”

    Is that not what happens in the WN movement? Honestly WNs?

    ““White nationalism is like booze, guns and fast cars””

    It makes you stupid and aggressive like booze. It gives you a false sense of security while costing you money, like guns, and like fast cars it’s a waste of money which will probably end up ruining your life.

  • Carole

    It seems like Derek may have risked a breakdown of family ties, not only for denouncing white nationalism but for doing it so publicly through SPLC. I hope his parents can summon the same courage and maturity that Derek has displayed as they process these new developments. No matter what we think of Don Black, he can and should be proud of his son’s character.

  • Sam Molloy

    Possibly he can come work at the Poverty Palace. :) He should get far far away from those cretins.

  • http://racistnomore1.blogspot.com Scott Shepherd

    I sincerely hope Don Blacks heart will be softened and he will take a hard look within himself and think about his life and his children, Maybe he will see that he has been wrong and change his views..

  • concernedcitizen

    So there is a fall out of “oh my God he grew a brain and a heart and a conscience and told the world about it”.

    Oh where did the white supremacists go wrong?

    Well it’s a really wonderful day when we all learn that despite the poison that has been infused in this mans head he was still able to ignite his cognitive abilities and figure out he was on the wrong side of the fence.

    Glad he decided to join humanity.

  • Reynardine

    Ian, it has already killed millions.

  • http://www.slowlyboiledfrog.com David Cary Hart

    I don’t think that I am being hyperbolic when I say that I fear for this kid’s safety. His detractors are armed, pissed off and dangerous.

  • http://racistnomore1.blogspot.com Scott Shepherd

    I support Derek and his brave change… I think his change is Great! To all the other racist that are upset. Tough shit.. Derek is doing the right thing

  • Ian

    “White nationalism is like booze, guns and fast cars”

    It kills thousands of people?

  • Gregory

    That should read Fatwa. The accented a apparently translates to a question mark in this character set.

  • Gregory

    Sounds like a hillbilly Fatw? to me.

  • Reynardine

    This young man is genuinely in danger from some damned fehmic court of theirs, whether they ever “seize power”in any jurisdiction (say, Wilton Junction, Iowa, or Muleshoe, Texas) or not. I hope to Hell he is cautious, and I hope to Hell the people around him are trustworthy.