The Hatewatch blog is managed by the staff of the Intelligence Project of the Southern Poverty Law Center, an Alabama-based civil rights organization.
The FBI has joined the hunt for three suspects wanted for a possible hate crime in Dayton, Ohio, that sent a white bus driver to the hospital with stab and gunshot wounds and a miraculous story of survival.
The driver, Rickey Wagoner, 49, told authorities that he was shot once in the leg and twice in the chest in the pre-dawn darkness of Monday morning, but a religious tract titled “The Message” in his breast pocket stopped two of the bullets, apparently saving his life, the Dayton Daily News reported today.
Wagoner was attacked on a sparsely traveled stretch of his route. “I’ve been hit in the leg,” Wagoner told an emergency dispatcher at 5:20 AM, according to the News. “My chest feels like I’ve been hit with a sledgehammer.”
Wagoner described his attackers as three black males, probably in their late teens. Their faces were covered, however, by blue bandanas. They fled in a dark-colored 1990s Ford, leaving behind a .25-caliber handgun believed to have been used in the shooting.
A 10-year veteran of the Regional Transit Authority and a union steward with a sterling employment record, Wagoner told investigators that he was on the street, trying to determine why his electric-powered trolley bus had lost power when he was approached by the three males, the News reported.
Wagoner told investigators the attack may have been a street gang initiation. Wagoner said just before the shooting he heard one of the suspects tell another one to kill him “if you want to be all the way in the club,” according to the News, quoting from a Dayton Police Department crime report. ( continue to full post… )
Ted Nugent, the metal guitarist-turned-hunting-aficionado, has been in the news a lot lately – and not in a good way. His former friends in the conservative and mainstream media who had smiled and turned a blind eye to his extreme rhetoric over the years finally seemed to reach their limit this week after Nugent’s shtick descended into outrageously racist remarks attacking President Obama. That in turn was followed by a series of increasingly bizarre media appearances by Nugent in which he made outrageous claims and exhibited a strange and twisted worldview.
Of course, none of this is really news to people who have followed Nugent for long: he has a long track record of extremist rhetoric and behavior, often violent and outrageous in nature. The more pertinent question, perhaps, is why it took this long for everyone else to figure it out.
The most recent explosion of nuttiness surrounding Nugent revolved around an interview he gave in January to Guns.com at a gun-industry trade show, when he called President Obama a “subhuman mongrel” who should tried for treason:
NUGENT: I have obviously failed to galvanize and prod, if not shame enough Americans to be ever vigilant not to let a Chicago communist raised communist educated communist nurtured subhuman mongrel like the ACORN community organizer gangster Barack Hussein Obama to weasel his way into the top office of authority in the United States of America. I am heartbroken but I am not giving up. I think America will be America again when Barack Obama, [Attorney General] Eric Holder, Hillary Clinton, [Sen.] Dick Durbin, [former New York City Mayor] Michael Bloomberg and all of the liberal Democrats are in jail facing the just due punishment that their treasonous acts are clearly apparent.
He went on to also refer to Obama as a “chimpanzee”.
The issue might have just festered and gradually died away were it not for Nugent’s busy schedule campaigning on behalf of a number of Tea Party-oriented Republican candidates, notably Texas gubernatorial hopeful Greg Abbott. After Nugent made campaign appearances on his behalf, Abbott’s campaign began facing questions about Nugent’s recent remarks. The Abbott campaign released a statement distancing itself from Nugent. The issue reached a head when CNN’s Wolf Blitzer interviewed Abbott and asked him about Nugent. ( continue to full post… )
Talking Points Memo: Texas Republican admits he called immigrants wetbacks, but denies he said they should be shot on sight.
Media Matters: CNN anchor effectively calls out extremist organization behind Arizona anti-gay legislation.
Joe.My.God.: Atheist group will be at annual Conservative Political Action Convention, and Tony Perkins is livid.
CNN: CPAC reverses decision, will not allow atheist group at conservative conference
Right Wing Watch: Phyllis Schlafly and talk host Sam Solomon urge viewers to launch Ukraine-style popular uprising against Obama administration.
White robes, hoods, a makeshift pulpit in the basement, an 8- to 10-foot-high cross in the yard and numerous pieces of white supremacist, anti-government and Christian Identity literature.
Those are among the items discovered by investigators from the Boone County Sheriff’s office when they raided the rural Arkansas home Monday morning of a 61-year-old man wanted for drug offenses and sexual assault allegations involving a 13-year-old girl.
The man, Floyd Melton Lewis, was taken into custody at about 10 AM at his home just outside of the tiny town of Zinc, Ark., the headquarters of the Knights Party, once among the largest Ku Klux Klan groups in the country.
But the Harrison Daily Times, which first reported the raid and arrest, said investigators told the paper that Lewis was not associated with the Knights Party.
Lewis has a telephone number listed in his name for the Ku Klux Klan, LLC. Today, the number went straight to voicemail, which directed callers to a website where KKK paraphernalia could be purchased.
The Boone County sheriff, Mike Moore, told Hatewatch today that his department was initially asked several days ago to assist the Arkansas State Police investigating a crime against children case. A tip had come in, according to the Daily Times, that Lewis was growing marijuana in his home, selling prescription medications and allegedly taking naked pictures of the 13-year-old.
Sheriff Moore said investigators removed the girl from Lewis’ home last week. “She was taken to safety,” the sheriff said. Lewis, however, was not arrested at that time.
“We felt there was enough,” Moore said, “and decided to pay him another visit.” ( continue to full post… )
After four years of stunning growth, the radical right declined significantly for the first time in 2013, according to the latest count by the Southern Poverty Law Center, released today. But with a total of more than 2,000 groups, the extreme right remained at historically high levels.
The decline was due to an improving economy, dismay at the re-election of President Obama, law enforcement crackdowns, and the co-optation of the far right’s issues by purportedly mainstream politicians. It also reflected internal difficulties in the radical groups themselves, along with the failure of a whole series of their apocalyptic predictions to materialize.
Hate groups declined by 7% last year, from 1,007 in 2012 to 939 in 2013, and from an all-time high of 1,018 in 2011. But by far the most significant drop came among antigovernment “Patriot” groups, including armed militias, which fell 19%, from 1,360 groups in 2012 to 1,096 in 2013. While those drops were significant, the total number of groups was still almost twice as high as in 1996, when the first wave of the militia movement peaked while hate groups were also relatively high.
As reflected in a number of right-wing terrorist plots uncovered last year, the decline did not seem to dampen the violence coming from the movement. In fact, the movement seemed to grow more hard-line as more moderate members dropped out.
“The radical right is growing leaner and meaner,” said Mark Potok, senior fellow at the SPLC and author of the report. “The numbers are down somewhat, but the potential for violence remains high. Moreover, there is a disturbing dynamic at play. At the same time that the number of extremist groups is dropping, there is more mainstream acceptance of radical right ideas.” ( continue to full post… )
On a gorgeous spring day in Phoenix, a few hundred conservatives gathered at the downtown convention center to hobnob with lawmakers and stars of the movement at an event formerly known as Western CPAC, referencing the annual Washington, D.C.-based right-wing Conservative Political Action Conference, but now called the Western Conservative Conference (WCC). The conservatives spent their time gnashing their teeth at panels dedicated to the usual conservative bugaboos. They hit all the hot topics: President Obama is “lawless,” Obamacare is the worst. law. ever., the Constitution is under attack, OMG taxes, immigration amnesty will cause the collapse of the United States and gun control will lead to Nazi Germany.
The WCC took place last Saturday. It included a red-meat lineup of speakers at the morning plenary session. Keynote speaker and failed presidential candidate Herman Cain provided folksy anecdotes and exhortations to “stay informed, stay involved, and stay inspired” (something you can accomplish via his website, which he made sure to mention several times during the speech), and had the crowd on its feet.
Tea Partier Darla Dawald, the national director of the Patriot Action Network, announced that she’s running for office (Arizona state representative) and Tea Party News Network’s news director Scottie Hughes insisted that the conservative movement “is the true movement of diversity,” a claim that didn’t seem to hold much water, given that the vast majority of the gathered crowd was white and not particularly young.
Joe Miller, perpetual Alaska senatorial candidate and Tea Party favorite, claimed that the government keeps a dossier on all of us and wondered why the House of Representatives has not started impeachment proceedings against President Obama, saying “this man needs to go” to the cheers and applause of audience members. ( continue to full post… )
Right Wing Watch: American anti-gay activist Scott Lively proclaims Putin’s rise, saying he will restore Tsarism, defeat ‘Marxist’ USA and ‘global homosexual agenda.
Media Matters: Ted Nugent warns that America will descend into racial war as we come to resemble Nazi Germany under Obama.
AlterNet: Tea Party candidate in Kansas GOP Senate race once posted X-ray images of dead people online for ‘humor’.
Mother Jones: Now it’s Georgia that wants to allow businesses to kick gay people out of diners.
Seattle Times: Anti-Muslim hate messages found scrawled on pages of books left at suburban mosque.
Laffrey opened his missive by noting that Hatewatch had misinterpreted what he said about President Obama – namely, that he had “bought into the corporate media’s selling of the product called Barack Obama.” We took that to mean he initially supported Obama, but Laffrey says that was not the case. Regardless, Laffrey’s view of Obama quickly darkened after the election:
On that About page, you will see that I described my evolution of thought as I increased my investigations and knowledge. Part of what you will see is that I recognized that Obama was appointing criminals who had infested the Clinton administration. Of course, most of those criminals are jews. Names of cirminal jews reappointed during various administrations? Examples: Volcker and Greenspan (more recently as just “advisors”). Robert Reich. Rahm Emanuel. Many more.
We asked Laffrey, in light of his advocacy for murder, if he considers himself a Christian. He replied:
I am opposed to all religions because they are all mind poisons. This includes, of course, Christianity, Islam, the so-called religion Judaism, and their offshoots. The Creativity movement is specifically and openly against violence, so their efforts certainly will not get the job done of wiping out the parasites of humanity — the jews.
Laffrey chided us for saying that he is calling for the “assassination” of Jews, though that in fact is a perfectly apt word for what he advocates. He then went on to discuss his “kill jews now” strategy:
If you look at my AmericanSolution page … you will also see the evolution of my knowledge and convictions, which I am always open about. (Also, my previous website, which you mentioned in the article, shows my previous level of thought.) I offer two strategies: the “party” strategy and the “kill jews now” strategy. I have said that we must pursue both strategies although, for practical purposes during this decade, “kill the jews” is the only strategy that is certain to provide a measure of success with every individual’s effective effort. ….
Yes, we do have every right to kill invaders, just as the admirable Japanese would have every right to kill every nonJapanese person or group who tries to take control of Japan away from the Japanese.
Laffrey gave Hatewatch permission to republish his views.
Talking Points Memo: Racist vandalism of Ole Miss statue honoring desegregation brings suspension for Sigma Phi Epsilon chapter, expulsion of three members.
NewsNet5: Why Detroit is home to America’s largest neo-Nazi National Socialist organization.
Talk to Action/Frank Cocozzelli: Why ‘Mudsill’ economics remain a powerful force on the American right.
AmericaBlog: The sudden eruption of anti-gay legislation nationwide is not a coincidence.
Montgomery Advertiser: Alabama House passes constitutional amendment allowing for Ten Commandments to be displayed with public funding.
Greenville Online: South Carolina legislators vote to punish two public colleges for assigning freshmen texts with homosexual themes.
Daily Kos: Who keeps trophies made from the skins of lynched African Americans?
James Laffrey has not been publicly advocating ethnic hatred for very long. He does not appear to have many, if any, followers. He is not particularly well-connected to more established entities on the anti-Semitic far right. But what he does have is a website and plans to create a white supremacist political party called Whites Will Win.
Laffrey, a middle-aged man who appears to be based in Michigan, has caught people’s attention with the bloodcurdling nature of his agenda: he openly calls for the assassination of Jewish people by their white neighbors.