The Hatewatch blog is managed by the staff of the Intelligence Project of the Southern Poverty Law Center, an Alabama-based civil rights organization.
Reaction from anti-LGBT extremists to the U.S. Supreme Court’s landmark ruling today that the Constitution guarantees the right to same-sex marriage was fast and furious, defiant and hysterical.
They called the 5-to-4 decision an “illegitimate” ruling by a “Rogue Court” and, according to Westboro Baptist church, a “stamp of approval on an outrageously grotesque sin against God. #doomed.”
In a series of tweets minutes after the decision was announced this morning, Bryan Fischer of the American Family Association (AFA) compared the ruling to the 9/11 terrorist attacks and said that he spotted Satan celebrating.
“I saw Satan dancing with delight, the day the music died in the United States of American,” Fischer tweeted.
“From a moral standpoint, 6/26 is now our 9/11,” Fischer whined in another tweet, adding that governors should defy the ruling and “refuse to issue sodomy-based licenses in their states.”
In the AFA’s official statement, President Tim Wildmon said the Supreme Court had chosen “to be a tool of tyranny” and that its ruling would “imperil religious liberty in America, as individuals of faith who uphold time-honored marriage and choose not to advocate for same-sex unions will now be viewed as extremists.”
In a long written statement under the headline, “SCOTUS Finds for Fiction and Iniquity 5-4,” Laurie Higgins of the Illinois Family Institute said the ruling was produced from the “imaginations” and “the gaseous emanations” of “five of our supremacist justices” who “discerned a heretofore nonexistent constitutional requirement that homoerotic unions be recognized as ‘marriages.’”
Higgins predicted the decision would give “birth to relentless cultural turmoil, division, and suffering,” adding “these five judges have watered the seeds of strife planted by sexual anarchists.”
She concluded, “This pernicious SCOTUS decision also provides evidence that the moral arc of America – at least with regard to marriage – bends not toward justice, wisdom, or morality but, rather, toward perversity and injustice. Liberals are once again on the shameful side of history and will once again foment cultural conflict and human suffering.”
In one of a series of tweets, Tony Perkins, who heads the Washington D.C.-based Family Research Council (FRC), called the ruling, a “shocking abuse of power” that “will never be accepted.”
In a longer statement on FRC’s website, Perkins said, “No court can overturn natural law.”
“It is folly for the Court to think that it has resolved a controversial issue public policy,” Perkins said in the statement. “By disenfranchising 50 million Americans, the Court has instead supercharged this issue.”
In a statement, Scott Lively, a veteran of the anti-LGBT movement, called the ruling “illegitimate.”
“In response to the ruling, Mr. Obama called it an example of ‘justice that arrives like a thunderbolt,’” Lively said. “That phrase turns logic and morality on its head as it relates to official government endorsement of sexual perversion.”
Mat Staver, founder and chairman of Liberty Counsel, also called the ruling “illegitimate,” adding it “robs children of the right and joy of having both moms and dads.”
“The Court,” Staver said, “can no more redefine marriage than it can redefine gravity.”
The Killing Season: are racists using the internet to Indoctrinate killers or are they instructing them?
For the third time in less than three years, a “lone-wolf” racist killer has attacked a religious institution in the United States.
All the attacks have been mass shootings, involving one individual with a single firearm. And they have been particularly lethal, leaving 18 dead and only 4 wounded. All of the shootings occurred at a time when a large number of congregants were present at the targeted institution.
These killings have also occurred within about a three and a half month period, between mid-April and early August. This inexplicable compression of attack timing, what investigators call an “offense cluster,” is historically consistent with other mass killings by racist extremists, including the July 22nd, 2011 murders in Norway by Anders Breivik, the May 2nd, 2012 mass shooting in Phoenix by neo-Nazi, JT Ready, and the April 19th, 1995 Oklahoma City bombing by Timothy McVeigh.
Before we dismiss the timing and targeting as mere coincidence, we should at least ask the question: Are racists using the Internet to indoctrinate their fragile- minded followers into killers or are they instructing them?
The three religious institution attackers are linked to only four racist websites. Wade Michael Page shot and killed six people at a Sikh Temple on August 5th, 2012 and had accounts on Stormfront and Crew38. Frazier Glenn Miller shot and killed three people outside a Jewish Community Center on April 13th, 2014 and had accounts at VNN Forum and Stormfront. And Dylann Storm Roof, who murdered nine parishioners at an African American church last week, acknowledges the Council of Conservative Citizens website as his primary ideological influence.
At least in Mr. Roof’s case, the website he frequented may have been more than just a source of indoctrination.
Less than three days before Roof committed mass murder at the AME church in Charleston, the president of the Council of Conservative Citizens suggested taking a .45 caliber pistol into the black community to “help mitigate violent black crime at its source.”
“Old guys like me should dress in a disheveled manner, pretend to be intoxicated, hang-out in “the hood,” and bring along a large-caliber handgun (with backup!) and help mitigate violent black crime at its source…”
Minutes later, Holt added:
“I prefer my Sig .45 with HP loads…”
Almost as if in response to this suggestion, Roof wrote in his manifesto,
“I have no choice. I am not in the position to, alone, go into the ghetto and fight. I chose Charleston because it is most historic city in my state, and at one time had the highest ratio of blacks to Whites in the country. We have no skinheads, no real KKK, no one doing anything but talking on the internet.”
Five days before the shootings, Holt posted a comment on the CCC website on the topic of “wreaking revenge on innocent nigros [sic]”:
“As much as I hate “those people”?—?especially the violent black criminals who seek out white victims?—?I am somewhat repulsed at the thought of wreaking revenge on innocent nigros,[sic] not involved in crimes against whites.
But then Holt went on to say:
“Nigros, on the other hand?—?with their under-evolved Frontal Lobes?—?think nothing of taking revenge against ANY WHITE for whatever alleged grievances they harbor, real or imagined…”
Since the killings, the CCC has denounced Roof’s actions but stands by their statements, maintaining they mean what they say on their website.
Perhaps we should take them at their word.
Three weeks before the shootings, Earl Holt advocated lynching black people on the CCC site. He wrote:
“A tall tree, a short rope, and a good knot are not an expensive endeavor…”
Six weeks before the shootings, responding to an April 28th American Renaissance article about crime in the city of Charleston, South Carolina, Holt advocated the type of domestic terrorism used by the Ku Klux Klan when he wrote about the coming “race war”:
“It occurs to me that if if [sic] TSHTF?—?and we attack the enemy head-on and in force?—?we will very soon become the targets of law enforcement. However, the exploits of Nathan Bedford Forrest should be an inspiration to every Patriot wishing to do his duty, and should serve as an example of how to successfully manage the coming race war…”
In the same April article, Holt advised “White Crackers” to purchase a handgun. He wrote:
“LISTEN UP YOU WHITE CRACKERS:
Some time that same month, Dylann Storm Roof went to a gun shop and purchased the .45 caliber Glock pistol he would use to murder nine innocent parishioners at a Bible study class in Charleston last week.
Whether these attacks are random and just coincidental, the asymmetrical “hive mentality” of the often-unstable people who frequent racist forums on the Internet seems to be encouraging the targeting of minority religious institutions for attack.
Churches, synagogues, and mosques are usually among the softest targets in town. “Soft targets offer militant planners an advantage in that they can frequently be attacked by a single operative or small team using a simple attack plan,” according to a study on the security intelligence websiteStratfor.
Racist attacks on minority religious institutions are increasing and have been since Barack Obama took office. In Springfield, Massachusetts on November 5th, 2008, within hours of Obama’s election, three racist arsonists burned an African American church to the ground. The Macedonia Church of God in Christ was set ablaze in retaliation over the election of our first black president.
And church attacks are accelerating in frequency. Three weeks ago, on June 3rd, racist vandals slashed the tires of a African American church bus near Dallas and poisoned a puppy belonging to the pastor’s family. They also spray painted the words “No Niggers” on the church van.
Four weeks ago, on May 22nd, the congregation of the Sanctuary at Wilmington, NC arrived to find several nooses dangling from the trees in front of their church.
Nine weeks ago, on April 15th, after years of racist harassment, an African American church in Oak Harbor, WA was burglarized and vandalized.
Ten weeks ago, on April 7th, a synagogue in Gaithersburgh, MD was defaced with swastikas and the letters “KKK.”
On February 17th, the New Shiloh Christian Center in Melbourne, FL, an African American church, was set ablaze and a swastika was spray painted on the wall with the words “we see u.”
On February 16th, racist vandals attacked a Hindu Temple and a local school in Bothell, Washington with racist graffiti and swastikas. In December, three African American churches in Wakula, Florida were vandalized with the letters “KKK” spray painted on their walls. And in October, John White, a 40-year-old neo-Nazi, told his mother he was going out to “shoot Jews”.White drove to Congregation Etz Chaim in Lombard, Illinois, smashed out several windows and wrote “Kill Israel and Death” on the entrance of the synagogue before police arrived and arrested him at the scene.
Let’s not kid ourselves. If ISIS were involved, these attacks would be viewed as coordinated, organized acts of domestic terrorism. And until federal law enforcement calls them what they are and begins to connect some dots, the racist “killing season” in America is likely to continue.
The Aryan Nations, whose messages of hate and white superiority have fueled violent crimes and domestic terrorism for decades, is applauding the murderous acts of accused racist killer Dylann Storm Roof.
Only hours after the 21-year-old was arrested for brutally shooting nine people at Charleston, South Carolina’s Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, S.C., Aryan Nations leader Morris Gulett offered praise and urged others to follow Roof’s example.
“I, for one, am very glad to see young people like Dylan Roof acting like men instead of the old 60’s era hippies stoned on weed and interracial love,” Gulett posted on his web site.
“We had better see much more of this type of activism if we ever expect to see our America return to it’s [sic] rightful place in the world and our children grow up in a clean safe healthy enviroment [sic],” Gulett wrote.
Other racists individually have offered support or praise for Roof in comments posted on a forum hosted by Stormfront, the world’s largest hate site.
Gulett’s inflammatory comments came in response to a statement by Mark Pitcavage, the director of the ADL’s Center on Extremism. He was quoted in a slate.com piece as saying the idea idea of black on white crime “is one of the staples that white supremacists harp on over and over again.”
Pitcavage spoke of flags worn by Roof — the Rhodesian flag and the flag of Apartheid-era South Africa – which have become symbols for white supremacy in the United States and around the world.
“Whites actually were persecuted in Zimbabwe after the end of white rule and so white supremacists dating back all the way to the early 1970s have had a fascination with or concern over Rhodesia/Zimbabwe,” Pitcavage told Slate writer Jeremy Stahl.
Gulett responded with a headline reading: “Us Bad Ole White Supremacists and our Harps.”
“Oh really?” Gulett said of Pitcavage’s comments. “Maybe we ‘harp’ on black on white crime because it is a genuine and valid concern for our people.”
“I don’t see Mark Pitcavage saying these sort of things about Al Sharpton and the blacks in Baltimore, or Ferguson, or Trayvon Martin’s Florida or even Texas where Black Panthers are calling for a wholesale killing of Whites including our children,” Gulett said.
“We better be doing more than harping that’s for damn certain or we will end up like Rhodesia and South Africa, two places these people try to swipe under the rug in order to keep Whites from taking a genuine look at what takes place there,” Gutlett said.
Gulett has had his own brushes with the law and has done considerable prison time. His lengthy criminal record, public documents show, including aggravated assault, unauthorized use of a motor vehicle, homicide, felonious assault, possession of drugs and receiving stolen property. His most-recent arrest on a charge of conspiracy to commit bank robbery sent him to prison for five years.
Released in 2010, Gulett set up shop in Converse, La., and declared himself “senior pastor” of the Aryan Nations which he described as “most-feared and revered white supremacist organization the world has ever known.”
It the past five years, Gulett has held annual “Aryan World Congress” gatherings of white supremacists – usually attracting a small number of followers – and he has continued to have a web presence with podcasts of his hate-filled sermons. His operation now appears to be the largest publicly visible remnant of the Aryan Nations and its so-called religious arm, the Church of Jesus Christ Christian, started by the late Richard Butler. He ran the operation out of North Idaho from the late 1970s until his death in 2004.
Many of the racists who met at the Aryan Nations, including more than two dozen members of a violent domestic terrorism group called The Order, formed in the mid-1980s, went on to commit assorted violent crimes, including the assassination of a Jewish radio personality and other murders.
Later Aryan Nations attendees, such as Buford Furrow Jr., carried out similar murderous rampages. In 1999, Furrow walked into a Jewish community center in Granada Hills, Calif., and opened fire with a semiautomatic firearm, wounding five, including three children. He then fatally shot a U.S. Postal Service worker because he was a person of color.
SPLC on Medium: Are racists using the Internet to indoctrinate killers or are they instructing them?
New York Times: Homegrown terrorists tied to deadlier toll than Jihadists in the U.S. since 9/11.
Salon: Scholar of Christian Identity warns that lone-wolf killings like Dylann Roof’s rampage are part of a larger scheme.
Slate: How hate groups have used the deaths of Trayvon Martin and other black men to grow their ranks.
NPR: Narrative change makes white supremacy groups more dangerous, SPLC’s Richard Cohen says.
Right Wing Watch: The religious right’s deep connections to the Council of Conservative Citizens.
Media Matters: NRA radio regular says it would have been OK for Charleston victims’ families to retaliate against perpetrator’s family.
Clarion Ledger (Jackson, MS): Ku Klux Klan group postpones planned summer rally in Jones County because of election season.
Raw Story: Fired racist Alabama cop tries to cash in with support from neo-Confederates at the League of the South.
Colorado congressman drops out of conservative gathering that includes anti-LGBT and anti-Muslim speakers
The anti-LGBT stance of some speakers lined up for next month’s Breaking the Silence conference in Colorado Springs may have proved too much for one Republican congressman.
U.S. Rep. Ken Buck was slated to speak at the conference but withdrew yesterday after he learned that one of the other speakers is Ugandan bishop Joshua Lwere, who oversees a network of Pentecostal churches in his home country. Lwere lobbied for the infamous anti-LGBT bill in Uganda that was signed into law in early 2014. The original 2009 bill called for the execution of LGBT people in some circumstances, but the 2014 version changed that to life in prison. In August of last year, a Ugandan court annulled it on a technicality.
Buck has claimed in the past that homosexuality is a choice but that birth might have something to do with it, the same way birth might have something to do with alcoholism. However, Lwere’s views are apparently too extreme for Buck, who told the Denver Post, “I can’t share the stage with someone like that.”
As the funerals are set to begin for the nine victims of last week’s terrorist attack on an historic African-American church in Charleston, another reign of terror continues to quietly spread across the country.
For at least the ninth time this year, a transgender woman has been murdered.
The most recent to die in the slow-moving slaughter is 17-year-old Mercedes Williamson, an aspiring cosmetologist with long, dark hair and a beautiful smile from Theodore, Alabama. Her partially decomposed body was found on June 2 in a field in George County, Mississippi, about 40 miles west of her home. The authorities say she was killed a day or two earlier, her body left in the field, hidden under brush and debris.
“It’s shocking to me that I’m not hearing more about it from people in the community,” James Robinson, of the Huntsville, Alabama-based LGBTQ social service agency, Free2Be, told Hatewatch today. “I think it’s just getting lost and it shouldn’t. This was a 17-year-old girl in rural Alabama who was murdered.
An alleged street gang member, Josh Brandon Vallum, 27, has been charged with her slaying and is in jail. Bond for the ex-con has been set at $1 million.
A motive for the slaying has not been established. Agents with the FBI’s Safe Streets Task Force have joined deputies from the George County Sheriff’s Department in the investigation, according to the Sun Herald newspaper of Gulfport, Mississippi.
“We are trying to determine whether (the killing) is drug-related, gang-related or a hate crime,” George County sheriff’s Capt. Ben Brown told the paper this week. “We will do a thorough investigation to bring justice to the victim’s family.”
The Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) recently published an in-depthreport on anti-transgender violence taking place across the country. The report quotes a study by the National Center for Transgender Equality (NCTE) that says since 2013 nearly 30 transgender women, most of them black and Latino, have been slain.
“We’ve had people burned in their homes,” Raffi Freedman-Gurspan, a policy adviser for the Washington D.C.-based group, told the SPLC. “We’ve had people’s genitals mutilated after they’re dead. It’s absolutely rooted in transphobia and hatred and it’s absolutely a national crisis. And that’s just confirmed murders. It’s probably more.”
Just last year, for the first time, the FBI published statistics on the number of hate crimes based on gender identity, finding that 33 people were victimized in 2013, the latest numbers available. But the National Coalition of Anti-Violence Programs released a similar report last year, finding that 344 trans people had been victimized in 2013, 13 of them killed.
There is no dispute that the life of young transwoman has been snuffed out.
Williamson lived in a rented, $50-a-week, one-bedroom camper in Theodore with Jeanie Miller, 41, according to the Sun Herald. Williamson slept on the sofa in the front of the camper. Miller took the back bedroom. They were more like mother and daughter than roommates, Miller told the paper.
“I was overprotective of her because she was closer to me than my own daughter,” Miller said.
Miller told the paper she last saw Williamson around 2 p.m. on May 30 when Williams left the camper, saying she was going to Gulf Shores. When Williamson did not return for a couple of days, Miller said she grew alarmed and called one of the teenager’s friends, who informed her that Williamson was dead.
On June 1, according to Sun Herald, Josh Vallum, the ex-con gang member charged with the murder, told his father that he had killed someone and left the body in the underbrush behind his father’s house. The father called the authorities and helped them search for and find the body.
Vallum later turned himself in.
Miller, the dead girl’s roommate, told the paper that she knew Vallum and that Vallum knew Williamson was transgender.
“It’s a horrible case, a sad situation,” Shonna Pierce, spokesperson for the George County sheriff, told Hatewatch today. “She was a beautiful person.”
Newsweek: Anti-government activists are illegally mining for gold in a protected Idaho river to protest EPA ‘tyrants.’
Politico: Vladimir Putin’s Russian cabal plotted with right-wing American extremists to get Texas to secede.
New York Times: Council of Conservative Citizens promotes white supremacy along with Republican ties.
Talking Points Memo: FBI director says he wouldn’t classify Charleston shootings ‘terrorism,’ but DOJ attorneys appear to differ.
Esquire: What was deeply wrong with the gun-violence segment on Sunday’s ‘Meet the Press’, and why heads should roll.
Crooks and Liars: Texas man bolts six-foot Confederate flag on wall across from courthouse, refuses to take it down.
Review-Journal (Las Vegas, NV): It’s time to hold Cliven Bundy and his lawbreaking backers accountable.
Organic Student Ministry: Heritage, hate, and the juvenilization of free speech.
USA Today: Walmart announces it will no longer sell items with Confederate flags on them.
Talking Points Memo: Experts say that attacks like the Charleston massacre worry cops more than Islamic extremism.
The Daily Beast: Onetime radio personality the ‘Southern Avenger’ now says he was wrong about the Confederate flag.
Salon: One insane Fox News segment illustrates how far conservatives will go to downplay the existence of racism.
Media Matters: CNN analyst destroys League of South leader’s assertion that removing Confederate flag is ‘cultural genocide.’
AL.com: Alabama KKK leader denounces Charleston shooting: ‘Violence is not the answer.’
AOL.com: Utah baseball team cancels ‘Caucasian Heritage Night’ after fans complain.
O.C. Weekly (CA): KKK fliers found in downtown Fullerton, but with ‘California’ misspelled.
Militia, Assault-rifle Guru and Companion Face Murder, Assault Charges in House-Squatting Case in Washington State
A man with ties to militia organizations and nationwide assault rifle training program faces a murder charge in Washington state in a case that began with the attempted eviction of house squatters.
James J. “Strat” Faire, 55, and Angelina M. Nobilis, 51, were arrested late last week in Okanogan County after two people were struck and run over by a pickup truck while assisting a property owner evict squatters from his property, authorities said.
Debra Long, of Issaquah, Wash., was killed and George Abrantes, of Marysville, Wash., was seriously injured in the incident, the Okanogan County sheriff’s office reported. The ages of the victims weren’t released.
Faire and Nobilis were arrested on charges of first-degree murder and first-degree assault, jail booking records show.
Authorities say Faire and Nobilis are accused of moving into a home near Tonasket, Wash., owned by Richard Finegold and refusing to leave, resulting in an argument. At some point last Thursday, authorities say Faire is alleged to have pulled a firearm and jumped into a truck, striking the two victims.
Although it’s not known at this point if the pair are sovereign citizens, the practice of house squatting is a technique widely used by these antigovernment activists, who generally believe most laws and licensing requirements don’t apply to them.
A web site espousing the conservative views of the “ReaganWing” is racing to the defense of Faire and Nobilis.
The pro-gun, pro-Republican site claims Faire “is a nationally known, high-impact, open-carrying, Christian Liberty activist who has been in the crosshairs of the corrupt police-state factions of the Federal Government for years” because of his “stands for Liberty and … wide-ranging 2nd Amendment personal defense training he has spearheaded.”
Okanogan County Sheriff Frank Rogers did not immediately return a call seeking comment on the case.
Faire, Hatewatch has learned, served as an administrator for a militia web site and once operated what was described as a militia training site in Snohomish County, near the community of Monroe, in western Washington.
In 2010, Faire was identified as a trainer for the “Appleseed Project,” a militia-based training program that urged every citizen to own an AR-15 assault rifle with the goal of “teaching every American how to fire a bullet through a man-size target out to 500 yards.”
“The government has quite literally become tyrannical,” Faire told a writer for The New York Times who wrote a lengthy piece on the Appleseed Project.
Faire said the federal government “is fulfilling the principles outlined in ‘The Communist Manifesto. It’s completely out of control from city to state to federal to international law.”
“The only thing to do now is to organize citizens into a militia to abolish this government,” Faire told the Times.
It’s not clear when he moved from western Washington to a rural area near Tonasket, a community of about 1,000 people about 15 miles from the Canadian border.
The arrest of Faire is the second time in less than a month that a suspect with ties to militia groups or activities has been arrested and charged with murder in Eastern Washington.
Roy H. Murry, who had lived in Spokane and Lewiston, Idaho, was arrested in late May and charged with torturing and fatally shooting three people, including a Spokane Fire Department lieutenant, before setting fire to a home north of Spokane. Murry honed his shooting skills while practicing with members of the 63rd Light Foot Militia on Stevens County property in northeastern Washington owned by one-time Republican candidate for sheriff, Kenneth L. Barker, of Deer Lake, Wash.
It appears that the Charleston church shooter Dylann Roof may have been even more immersed in the online white supremacist movement than previously thought.
In an attempt to verify the authenticity of a manifesto that was uncovered Saturday morning on “The Last Rhodesian,” a website owned by Roof, Hatewatch ran the document’s full text through Grammarly, a piece of software with plagiarism detection capabilities.
Despite the fact that only 2% of the document was identified as “unoriginal” by the software, a key 18-word passage in the section labeled “Blacks” bemoaning the alleged appropriation of white culture by the rest of the world, was identified as almost identical to a comment left on an article titled “Former Swedish PM Fredrik Reinfeldt: Sweden Belongs to the Hordes, Not the “Uninteresting” Ethnic Swedes” by the user “AryanBlood1488” at The Daily Stormer.
The Daily Stormer is a neo-Nazi website run by Andrew Anglin that both generates original content and aggregates articles from other white supremacist sites across the Internet. Its comment section is much less moderated than its peer sites and hosts a diverse community of white supremacists from across the extremist spectrum.
In his alleged manifesto, Roof writes, “I mean that our culture has been adopted by everyone in the world. This makes us feel as though our culture isnt [sic] special or unique.”
In an almost verbatim statement at the Daily Stormer on January 31, 2015, “AryanBlood1488” writes, “White culture is World Culture, and by that I don’t mean that our culture is made up of ones from around the world, I mean that our culture has been adopted by everyone in the world. This makes us feel as if it isn’t special, because everyone has adopted it.”