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

Hatewatch Headlines 4/23/15

By Hatewatch Staff on April 23, 2015 - 7:52 am, Posted in Hatewatch Headlines

New York Times: Deputy blames Sheriff Joe Arpaio for disobeying court over immigration sweeps.

Right Wing Watch: FRC’s Tony Perkins claims that Obama and gay-rights movement inspire ISIS to execute Christians.

Wonkette: Men’s rights activists tells Fox & Friends why marriage is just a female scam to take men’s money away.

Raw Story: Woman donates savings for new house to anti-LGBT rally because gays are ‘like Hitler’s Nazi regime.’

Huffington Post: Seven states’ designation of April as ‘Confederate History Month’ is an embarrassing abomination.

Think Progress: The U.S. Congress could be the next legislative body to fall victim to the ‘religious freedom’ scam.

Mayor: Confederate Flag at Rural County Courthouse ‘Must Come Down’

By Don Terry on April 22, 2015 - 4:08 pm, Posted in Neo-Confederate

A large Confederate battle flag snapping in the wind at the top of a pole in front of the county courthouse in the small rural Georgia town of Summerville must come down and “it shouldn’t have been put up there in the first place,” the city’s first black mayor told Hatewatch today.

“It certainly sheds a negative light on the city and the county,” Mayor Harry Harvey said. “We have a lot of positive things going on in the area, a lot of progress, and this distracts from it. It’s not something we want to be known for.”

With permission from the Chattooga County Commissioner, Jason Winters, the local chapter of the Sons of Confederate Veterans (SCV) raised the flag at the beginning of April (Confederate History and Heritage Month in Georgia) with plans to replace it at the end of the month with a rotation of other Confederate emblems, such as the Bonnie Blue flag, according to journalist Tyler Jett.

Jett said Commissioner Winters had told him two weeks ago that he would consider removing the flag if it caused any controversy in the city of 4,600 residents, about 28 percent of whom are black.

It has done just that, yet the flag remains, just yards from the front door of the Chattooga County Courthouse.

“County governments in Georgia should not approve another permanent display of the Sons of Confederate Veterans,” Rev. Dr. Francys Johnson, a civil rights attorney and president of the Georgia NAACP, said in a statement on April 13. “[SCV}’s insistence on using the Rebel Battle flag, a patently offensive symbol of hate, for display from the Courthouse and places of sovereignty such as flagpoles is a part of their effort to win a war that was lost 150 years ago.”

The flag overlooks a 7-foot tall granite monument on the courthouse lawn honoring Confederate soldiers. Stan Hammond, commander of the local SOCV chapter, told Jett that the monument and flag commemorate the fallen sons of the South. “They’ll never be forgotten,” he said.

But it is not just Summerville’s black population that wants the flag to come down, Jett said. “A ton of white people, that I’ve talked to in that town, aren’t happy with it either,” he said.

Sutton Connelly, an attorney who practices law in Summerville with his legendary grandfather Bobby Lee Cook, told Hatewatch that “people are starting to galvanize against” the battle flag.

“I do not believe that flag should be flying in front of the courthouse given the connotations it carries,” Connelly said. “We should have two flags in front of the courthouse: the Georgia State flag and the flag of the United States of America.”

Mayor Harvey, who took office in 2013, said the monument, which has been in place for about eight months, should also be removed from the front lawn of the courthouse – “one of those places where justice is supposed to be dispensed to everybody fairly.”

The mayor said he has spoken with Winters about removing, at the very least, the battle flag and the commissioner is “working hard on a resolution.”

“I don’t have a time table for when that will happen,” the mayor said. “But the commissioner wants to see the city progress, too.”

The telephone at Commissioner Winters’ office was repeatedly busy on Wednesday, and Hatewatch was not able to reach him for a comment.

When members of his congregation recently told Rev. Solomon Missouri that there was a large Confederate battle flag in front of the courthouse, the young pastor was incredulous. He could not believe that local and county officials would allow such a display on government property, not in 2015, 150 years after the Confederate surrender, not with a black man in the White House, not with Summerville’s black population pushing 30 percent and not, for the first time in the town’s history, with a black mayor and a black police chief.

“The flag must come down,” the pastor said in a letter he personally delivered to Winters’ office, according to Jett. “If this sign is part of your collective heritage, then your heritage bears the stench of oppression. If this sign evokes feelings of pride than (sic) your pride is indeed a sin.”

Stars Behind Bars: League of the South Joins Republic of Florida Militia for FSU Protest

By Keegan Hankes on April 22, 2015 - 3:47 pm, Posted in Neo-Confederate

Members of the League of the South (LOS), the Republic of Florida Militia (ROF) and student protestors from Florida State University faced off last weekend in front of the Old Capitol Building in Tallahassee, Fla.

Members of the Republic of Florida, including Jordan Jereb, right, join the League of the South's Michael Tubbs, far right, to protest the burning of a Confederate flag in Florida. (Source: Facebook)

Members of the Republic of Florida, including Jordan Jereb, second from left, join the League of the South’s Michael Tubbs, far right, to protest the burning of a Confederate flag by students Florida State University. (Source: Facebook)

Prominent LOS leaders, including Brad Griffin, a key organizer, and Michael Tubbs, LOS chief of staff and an ex-Green Beret who stole weapons and explosives from the U.S. Army for the Ku Klux Klan (KKK) in 1987, stood alongside members of the ROF to protest the school’s Students for Democratic Society (SDS) recently burning a Confederate flag to protest increased KKK recruiting in the Tallahassee area. Within days, the League and ROF, led by Jordan Jereb, organized a protest that culminated with a tit-for-tat response –– burning a Soviet flag.

“After talking it over, we decided that we would show up in Tallahassee, confront SDS, tell the communists to get out of Florida, and then spit on, stomp on, and burn the Soviet flag in front of them,” Brad Griffin, who sometimes goes by Hunter Wallace and runs the racist blog Occidental Dissent, wrote.

“A crowd of about 30 spoiled brats, communists, and trannies chanted for a while, shouted some unimaginative slogans, and gave a few speeches about the tyranny of ‘cisgender heteronormative privilege’ while 13 or us starred them down in bemusement while holding Reds Out of Florida Signs” and two flags, the Florida State Flag and the Bonnie Blue Flag,” Griffin wrote. “We unfurled the Soviet flag, laid it out before them, and took turns spitting on it, stomping on it, and standing on it underneath our boots.”

What seems especially notable about the event is the alliance between ROF and the League, which in recent years has grown more radical despite serious efforts to perfect its public image. While League members are encouraged to wear black polo shirts and khaki pants to public events in order to improve the public perception of the group, clothes can only do so much to make the man.

In fact, the League’s public makeover has proved to be nothing more than a mirage. Despite his desperate wishing for the LOS to become a respected voice in an imaginary struggle for the future of the South, Griffin, one of the standard-bearers for the League’s new image, has brought to the table an angry coalition of misfits and ex-cons – like Jereb and Tubbs.

“I’m angry. I’m full of HATE,” Jereb wrote on Facebook last week. “I’m not gonna lie about it. If there were a few hundred clones of me this system would have quite a situation on its hands. That is really how I feel. Is feeling that way a crime? Maybe. But blacks feel the same way and nobody seems to get mad at them for it.”

Days before that, barely a month after being released from jail on burglary charges, Jereb also professed his love for Molotov cocktails and shared a video that details an argument for when it’s okay to shoot a police officer.

As a convicted felon who can no longer own firearms, Jereb need not worry about shooting anyone, let alone a police officer – a fact he may be coming to terms with if his recent stream of Facebook photos is any indication. Photos of Jereb toting firearms have been replaced by workout selfies with captions such as, “Turning my body into a weapon.”

But perhaps LOSers hanging with criminals isn’t that surprising given recent developments in the organization.

Last September, Hatewatch revealed that LOS leadership, after years of increasingly violent rhetoric, had taken steps to make its vision for a new southern uprising a reality by forming its own paramilitary organization called the “Indomitables.” LOS president Michael Hill also recently espoused an anti-Semitism worldview in his online writings, posting articles written by disgraced, anti-Semitic professor Kevin MacDonald, claiming the South’s biggest problem is the “Jewry” problem.

Despite its best attempts to sterilize its vitriolic message, the façade put forth by the LOS continues to crumble.

Members like Jereb demonstrate the realities of its increasingly extreme membership — a membership that, at the end of the day, spends its free time harassing student organizations under the guise of moral outrage.

Hatewatch Headlines 4/22/15

By Hatewatch Staff on April 22, 2015 - 8:36 am, Posted in Hatewatch Headlines

Right Wing Watch: Judicial Watch’s Tom Fitton claims the group prevented a terrorist attack by reporting an ISIS base in Texas. Twenty years after Oklahoma bombing, Michigan Militia linked to the case remains active.

Raw Story: Wal-Mart closings, military exercise ignite right-wing conspiracist fears of martial law and Russian ‘death domes.’

JoeMyGod: Far-right Catholic group Opus Dei sues LGBT group over rights to ‘Opus Gay.’

KSPR-TV (Springfield, MO): League of South billboard urging secession spurs residents of Ozarks town to confront racism.

Talking Points Memo: Michelle Bachmann thanks President Obama for bringing on the Apocalypse.

Mercury-News (San Jose, CA): Mountain View man arrested for hate crime after threatening to kill a black man.

Salon: What the Tea Party’s adherents will never understand about the Constitution they revere.

Hatewatch Headlines 4/21/15

By Hatewatch Staff on April 21, 2015 - 7:45 am, Posted in Hatewatch Headlines

Kansas City Star: By ignoring terrorism from homegrown extremists, federal authorities have opened the door for more.

Media Matters: Meet ‘Oregonians for Immigration Reform,’ the nativist group using the media to derail reform.

Bloomberg News: Alex Jones wonders whether Jeb Bush will be attending a Bilderberg meeting, and a spokesman responds.

Toledo Blade (OH): Neo-Nazis from National Socialist Movement are outnumbered by protesters in downtown rally.

Raw Story: Michigan Man taunts neighbors with yard display featuring Confederate flag and nooses.

Buzzfeed: Pennsylvania high school students organize ‘Anti-Gay Day,’ complete with a ‘lynch list.’

Right Wing Watch: On Oklahoma City bombing anniversary, Alex Jones claims it was a ‘false flag’ operation to demonize conservatives.

American Renaissance Conference Draws Record Audience

By Hatewatch Staff on April 20, 2015 - 4:37 pm, Posted in White Nationalism

With a theme of being a “refuge from lies and delusions” about race in America, the annual American Renaissance (AmRen) conference last weekend in rural Tennessee drew the largest audience since 2008 – a benchmark cementing it as the premier annual white nationalist event in the United States.

Jared Taylor.

Jared Taylor.

Despite the larger audience of about 200 participants, the broader themes remained remarkably similar to previous years: IQ differences between the races, opposition to non-white immigration, a call for community among white nationalists and questioning whether the American political system can be used to a white nationalist advantage.

But let’s not forget the virulent anti-Semitism sitting deep at the heart of the conference. While American Renaissance founder Jared Taylor historically has avoided public criticism of Jews – a fact that has made him a polarizing figure among his fellow white nationalists – others at the conference have not been so careful.

For example, during his comments at the conference, held in Burns, Tenn., Peter Brimelow, founder of the racist website VDARE, remarked that nobody under the age of 40 remembers the Cold War. But he quipped that “surprisingly” most know about the Holocaust. Brimelow called those promoting criticism white nationalist position, “the Holocaust-haunted rich,” a claim he has made before.

There were others, too.

( continue to full post… )

Hatewatch Headlines 4/20/15

By Hatewatch Staff on April 20, 2015 - 9:12 am, Posted in Hatewatch Headlines

ProPublica: Racist posts on New York police blog raise ire at a time of increasing tension.

Kansas City Star: Ex-police chief from Arkansas warns his fellow officers about the lethal threat of antigovernment ‘sovereign citizens.’

BuzzFeed: Iowa Rep. Steve King claims President Obama is ‘importing illegal aliens’ to create ‘massive electorate’ for Democrats.

Talking Points Memo: Bill O’Reilly insists that since he gives ‘big money’ to minorities, he has no complicity in white suppression.

BlackVoiceNews: Westboro Baptist protest at Howard University met with huge counter-protest.

Left In Alabama: Chief Justice Roy Moore hankers for the logic of segregation by praising Plessy v. Ferguson.

Des Moines Register: Speakers talk guns, immigration, and gas tax at Oath Keepers’ rally at Iowa Capitol.

Right Wing Watch: Alex Jones marks the anniversary of the Bundy Ranch standoff by promoting false-flag conspiracy theory.

20 Years Later: Hatewatch Looks Back at the Oklahoma City Bombing

By Hatewatch Staff on April 17, 2015 - 3:13 pm, Posted in Antigovernment, Commentary, Patriot

oklahoma-city-bombing-20th-homepageOn April 19, 1995 – 20 years ago Sunday – a truck bomb brought down the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City, killing 168 people, including 19 children in a day care center.

The bombing by antigovernment zealot Timothy McVeigh and several co-conspirators shocked the nation, awakening it to the threat of terrorism from far-right extremists. It remains the deadliest act of domestic terrorism in U.S. history.

Today, the threat from extremists like McVeigh remains very real.

The SPLC has documented a powerful resurgence of the extremist movement that motivated McVeigh. In fact, the movement has spawned numerous acts of terror and violence in recent years.

The SPLC today offers both a look at the movement’s history and an assessment of the current threat:

  • An SPLC timeline of the militia movement.
  • Terror from the Right, a list of more than 100 domestic terrorist attacks, plots and racist rampages since Oklahoma City.

Also, here’s SPLC Senior Fellow Mark Potok discussing his personal experience as a reporter on the scene in Oklahoma City, as well as the current state of the militia movement:

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Remembering Oklahoma City: Don’t Ignore the Homegrown Terror Threat

By Mark Potok on April 17, 2015 - 1:40 pm, Posted in Antigovernment, Domestic Terrorism

Less than six hours after a 7,000-pound truck bomb ripped through the Oklahoma City federal building 20 years ago this Sunday, self-described terrorism “expert” Steve Emerson already was on CBS News, speculating.

“Oklahoma City, I can tell you, is probably considered one of the largest centers of Islamic radical activity outside the Middle East,” Emerson claimed, speaking while the building’s rubble still smoldered over the corpses of 168 men, women and children. The bombing, he declared, “was done with the intent to inflict as many casualties as possible. That is a Middle Eastern trait.” Emerson went on to instruct CBS’s audience not to believe Islamic groups’ denials of involvement.

The next day—still before any suspect was identified—an Iraqi refugee named Suhair Al Mosawi was at home a few miles from the city with her two-year-old daughter when a hail of bricks smashed her windows. Seven months pregnant, the terrified Muslim woman fled with her child to a bathroom, where she began to miscarry. Racing to the hospital a short while later, according to an account in The Boston Globe, her husband asked her to take off her veil, hoping to avoid still more abuse.

The next day, authorities fingered Timothy McVeigh, who had been arrested north of the city on unrelated charges 90 minutes after the bombing, as the primary suspect in the massacre. He was a white, native-born American, a U.S. Army veteran who had no connection to Islam. But for Suhair Al Mosawi and her stillborn baby boy, the revelation that Muslims had nothing to do with it arrived too late.
Steve Emerson was not the only pundit suggesting that the attack came from Muslims, although his comments were probably the most intemperate. And he was not responsible, in any direct way, for Al Mosawi’s miscarriage.

But it was an ugly lesson that Americans would do well to remember. ( continue to full post… )

Hatewatch Headlines 4/17/15

By Hatewatch Staff on April 17, 2015 - 7:34 am, Posted in Hatewatch Headlines

Media Matters: The powerhouse anti-LGBT extremists behind much of the ‘religious freedom’ legislation making the rounds.

Forbes: Where are the Cliven Bundy supporters now?

Associated Press: Suspect in North Carolina community college shooting tells court he’s a neo-Nazi who hates homosexuals.

Houston Chronicle: Teacher resigns after being called out for distributing anti-Muslim materials.

Right Wing Watch: ‘This is not Bundy Ranch,’ implores mine owner at center of latest Oath Keepers standoff.

Raw Story: Man accused of hate crime for burning gay neighbors’ pride flag says he only meant it as a ‘prank.’

USA Today: Looking back at the Oklahoma City bombing 20 years later, and its legacy of victims’ rights.