The Hatewatch blog is managed by the staff of the Intelligence Project of the Southern Poverty Law Center, an Alabama-based civil rights organization.
Police in the small northeastern Oregon city of Pendleton have arrested three suspected members of a nascent white supremacist gang believed to be responsible for a string of violence, including drive-by shootings and a bombing.
Jeremiah Jerome Mauer, 30, who is believed to be the founder of United Aryan Empire, was arrested last weekend on multiple charges of being a felon in possession of weapons, Pendleton Police Chief Stuart Roberts told Hatewatch today.
Steven Ray Grangood, 22, was arrested at the same time and booked into the Umatilla County Jail on charges of illegally buying firearms and providing them to fellow gang members who are felons.
A third suspected member of the racist gang, Gregory Charles Tinnell, 43, was arrested Tuesday on charges of being a felon in possession of firearms.
The Pendleton police chief said an ongoing investigation suggests the United Aryan Empire is the brainchild of Mauer, a felon who was unsuccessful in his attempt to join European Kindred, a neo-Nazi skinhead gang with multiple members in Portland and others in the state’s prison system.
“We believe United Aryan Empire is a hybrid he (Mauer) created,” Stuart told Hatewatch. “I think it goes back to his desire to be somebody.”
The gang has been linked to at least three violent crimes. Now, with the three arrests gaining media attention, victims of other crimes linked to the group are coming forward and reporting other unknown incidents, Roberts said.
“We are now learning of other incidents that went unreported because the victims feared retaliation if they contacted police,” Stuart said. “This thing is big, quite frankly, in terms of what’s out there.”
Police became aware of the United Aryan Empire when members of the group, including Mauer, were involved in a large gang fight last October at a residence in Pendleton, Stuart said. Mauer sustained a serious head wound in that fight, while a member of a Hispanic gang suffered a severe knife wound in the abdomen.
On Nov. 23, members of UAE detonated an improvised explosive device outside another residence in north Pendleton before firing multiple rounds from a .45 caliber handgun into the occupied home, Stuart said. The home’s occupant was reluctant to cooperate with police, but officers did recover expended bullets from the walls of residence.
Then, on Christmas Eve, in another drive-by shooting, rounds from a .45 caliber handgun were fired into a third residence occupied by an excommunicated UAE who had refused to carry out an order from leaders of the gang, the police chief said.
No one was injured in that incident. Responding officers stopped and arrested Tinnell five blocks away from the shooting. He was carrying a .45 caliber bullet, a handgun ammunition clip and a holster, but he did not have a weapon. He was arrested on a weapons violation because he was carrying an illegal switchblade knife, Stuart said.
The investigation culminated with the serving of a search warrant last Saturday at Mauer’s residence in Pendleton, where police found five weapons, including a sawed-off shotgun and assorted “gang-related literature,” the chief said.
In recruiting members, the United Aryan Empire has said its goal is to rid the community of 17,000 of methamphetamine dealers. “They said, “We’re not about violence. We’re not about racism,’ but that is a total contradiction of the activities the group has carried out,” Stuart said.
The police chief said additional charges are possible after the Umatilla County District Attorney reviews the case and presents it to a county grand jury. Federal authorities, meanwhile, are aware of the investigation and monitoring developments, Stuart said.
IREHR: Despite dropping white nationalist speaker, South Carolina Tea Party gathering still features array of racists and bigots.
Vox: It’s not just Fox News, the Islamophobia is wildly out of control on all the cable news networks.
Last Best News: Here are the Montana legislators – or is that ‘lesser magistrates’? – who hosted extremist pastor’s sermon.
East Oregonian: Pendleton police chief reveals presence of white supremacist gang behind a spree of shootings, stabbings and fights.
Media Matters: Meet the extremists who are leading Fox News’ discussion of terrorism.
Talking Points Memo: The crazy, often racist things Bob Beckel has said on the air at Fox News.
Vice: Should Amazon still let white supremacists sell merchandise on its site?
Update: The RNC voted yesterday to censure its member Dave Agema for posting material on social media that is insensitive to gays, Muslims and African Americans. Ironically, RNC Chairman Reince Priebus is working closing with a group, American Family Association, that could be described in the exact same way.
It’s only been a few weeks since we learned that majority whip Rep. Steve Scalise (R-La.) had spoken to a white supremacist group in 2002, and again the Republican Party has a scandal about race on its hands.
As the RNC gathers today in San Diego for its annual strategy meeting to draft plans for its future, particularly how it will improve its outreach to minorities, another prominent GOP lawmaker has been discovered to be a fan of white supremacist thinking.
Dave Agema, a member of the Republican National Committee from Michigan, republished an essay by the white nationalist publication American Renaissance in a New Year’s Eve Facebook post. The racist article, par for the course for American Renaissance, said “blacks are different by almost any measure to all other people. They cannot reason as well. They cannot communicate as well. They cannot control their impulses as well. They are a threat to all who cross their paths, black and non-black alike.”
Agema reportedly found it “very enlightening.” Can that possibly be true?
Agema has since pulled the piece down, but he refuses to apologize or resign from the RNC. And this isn’t his first racist rodeo.
According to the National Journal, Agema has a well-documented history of making inflammatory and false remarks, such as that President Obama is a Muslim. The Journal points to another Agema Facebook faux pas. He apparently shared what he called an “eye opening” essay that posed the question: “Have you ever seen a Muslim do anything that contributes positively to the American way of life?”
At least in this case, some in the RNC have reacted appropriately by calling for Agema to resign or be removed. They include RNC head Reince Priebus and Michigan’s entire GOP delegation. That’s all well and very good, but where’s the outrage from Priebus or other prominent Republicans over Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal’s plan to hold a prayer rally with the American Family Association (AFA)? Emails to Priebus’ and Jindal’s offices asking for comment were not returned.
On Jan. 24, Jindal, with AFA backing, will be praying at Louisiana State University in an event billed as “The Revival.” His partner, AFA, has defamed immigrants, the LGBT community and women. And just like American Renaissance, it has had horrible things to say about black people.
Let’s take a look at Jindal’s prayer partners.
- An AFA leader has said, “Homosexuality gave us Adolph Hitler, and homosexuals in the military gave us the Brown Shirts, the Nazi war machine and 6 million dead Jews.”
- The same staffer said African Americans “rut like rabbits” and women have no place in politics or the military.
- Another has argued that Hispanics are “socialists by nature” and come to the United States to “plunder” our country.
- And the group has repeatedly made the point that non-Christians are second-class citizens—“we are a Christian nation, and not a Jewish or Muslim one.” (Find a comprehensive look at AFA’s extremist statements and positions here).
Given a track record like that, I have to ask where’s the outrage from Jindal’s fellow Republicans? American Renaissance is clearly racist, but so are these statements about black people and Latinos. Shouldn’t they be condemned as well? And what about blaming gay people for the Holocaust?
So, if Agema is the big Republican elephant in the room stalking the GOP’s efforts to reach out to minorities, isn’t that true as well of any politician who is close to AFA?
Sadly the hypocrisy goes much deeper. As RNC Chair Priebus has berated Agema, rightly saying, “The tone and rhetoric from Agema is consistently offensive and has no place in politics or any rational conversation,” the chairman is also working closely with AFA.
At the end of this month, Priebus is leading an all expenses paid trip to Jerusalem for RNC members. So far, about 60 members (about 36 percent) of the RNC have accepted the offer, according to Haaretz.
And guess who is picking up the tab for this “incredible opportunity” Priebus is offering his fellow RNC members? You guessed right: the AFA.
Pacific Standard: Cross burning is more common than you think.
Think Progress: Anti-LGBT activists stage rally to demand the right to keep bigots on government payroll.
National Journal: RNC member Dave Agema’s racist Facebook post threatens GOP winter meeting in San Diego.
Right Wing Watch: American anti-LGBT activists play key roles in Moscow convention.
The Hill: Steve Scalise voted against a state apology for slavery, too.
Las Vegas Sun: A Metro detective’s racist rant on Facebook creates long-term divisions within police department.
Media Matters: How right wing scapegoating and stereotyping worsens the threat of terrorism and hurts the fight against it.
Even as same-sex marriage expands (36 states, as of last week) and even in the wake of numerous former leaders in the so-called ex-gay movement admitting they didn’t change (including former Exodus vice president Randy Thomas, who came out as gay with “bisexual tendencies” yesterday) and even after the closing of Exodus, the largest ex-gay ministry in the country, a hardline fringe continues to push for reparative therapy, a pseudoscientific practice that claims to change homosexuals to heterosexuals.
Case in point.
The Christian Post reported last week that Voice of the Voiceless, an ex-gay group that claims to “defend your rights and the rights of all who desire to fulfill their heterosexual dreams,” is planning to sue the District of Columbia over its ban of so-called reparative (or conversion) therapy of minors.
Challenges to similar bans in California and New Jersey have also been mounted. The Supreme Court rejected the California challenge last summer while the ban in New Jersey was upheld by a federal appeals court in September.
But that hasn’t deterred Christopher Doyle, founder and president of Voice of the Voiceless (VoV), who told The Christian Post that the group is in the process of seeking a plaintiff to bring a lawsuit against the government of D.C. over the ban, which became law in December. Upon the passage of that ban, Doyle, who is married to a woman and claims to be “ex-gay,” lamented that it was a “victory for gay pedophiles everywhere.”
The recent scandal that erupted over Rep. Steve Scalise’s speaking appearance before David Duke’s white-supremacist organization, the European-American Union and Rights Organization (EURO), inevitably meant that mainstream media would be turning to Duke himself for answers to their questions. And indeed, Duke was interviewed on several media outlets early this month, on CNN and on Fox News.
And as usually occurs when Duke gets airtime, he parlayed the interview into an opportunity to propagandize and sell both his twisted worldview and his books. Most of all, Duke performed his specialty, which is to sell outright falsehoods and self-serving distortions.
Duke appeared first on CNN with Michael Smerconish for his weekly news-interview program on Jan. 3, then on Jan. 5 for an appearance on Fox News’ “The O’Reilly Factor” with Bill O’Reilly. On both programs, Duke attempted to make the familiar claim that he isn’t a white supremacist or a racist.
“I have never supported white supremacism,” Duke told Smerconish.
“I was never a white supremacist,” he told O’Reilly. “I’m not a white supremacist at all. In fact the European American Unity and Rights Group was in fact a chartered civil rights organization and I in fact in Louisiana legislature sponsored a bill that forbid racial discrimination and these programs called Affirmative Action which are racial discriminations.” ( continue to full post… )
Orlando Sentinel: Convicted neo-Nazi leader describes the rise and fall of his American Front group.
Arizona Republic: Vandals desecrate Orthodox church in Phoenix with fascist symbols.
Access ADL: White supremacist American Freedom Party launches youth recruitment drive.
Myrtle Beach Online: If ISIS gets to be the definition of Islam, then the KKK gets to be the definition of Christianity.
Right Wing Watch: Religious-right activist wants National Guard deployed to stop LGBT marriages.
The News Courier (Athens, AL): FBI helping investigate vandalism of black woman’s home with racial slur.
Terry Jones has given up cooking Qurans for the time being in favor of taking a new stand in Bradenton, Florida. Jones and his two brothers opened “Fry Guys Gourmet Fries,” a French fry stand at the food court of the DeSoto Square mall.
Jones is the pastor of the Dove World Outreach Center, an anti-Muslim hate group that received international attention for planning to burn 2,998 Qurans—one for each victim from the September 11th terrorist attacks—in 2013. He was arrested on his way to the event for felony unlawful conveyance of fuel and also charged with unlawful open-carry of a firearm.
Previous plans to burn a Quran in 2010, eventually aborted, and 2011 resulted in a $2.2 million bounty being placed on Jones’s head by an Al-Qaeda affiliate.
According to a recent interview in VICE, Jones sees his fry stand as an act of patriotic defiance.
“I hope that it’s somewhat of an asset for people that are tired of what is going on and want to speak out, and want to believe that someone will stand up, and take a chance, and speak out. People can support us by coming out to eat,” Jones said.
Jones, who also made headlines in 2011 for holding “Good Friday protest” in Dearborn, Michigan, at the Islamic Center of America where he claimed that the city was ruled by sharia law, seems to have toned down his rhetoric.
When asked by VICE if he wished all Muslims would convert to Christianity, he gave a surprising answer.
“If you’re asking me as an American, then I have no problem with Islam—they are protected under the First Amendment. I have no problem with them being in the country, building mosques, or evangelizing.”
A group of white separatist activists is going hood … oops … hat in hand, trying to raise money to put up a racially charged billboard in an undisclosed northern city to go along with similar sign in such southern locations as Harrison, Ark., and, more recently, Springville, Al.
The Alabama billboard, which looms above a knot of trees about 15 miles north of Birmingham on I-59, says “Diversity Means Chasing Down The Last White Person.”
The group – the so-called White Genocide Project – said on its website today that the Springville sign is “the second White Genocide billboard to go up in Alabama.” The first billboard appeared near Leeds in the spring of 2013 and repeated the white nationalist mantra, “Anti-Racist is a code word for Anti-White.”
After complaining that the media “love to call us ‘supremacist’ because it conjures up images of street gangs with swastikas tattooed on their foreheads” – the group asked for money.
“If you’re tired of tripping over your stacks of cash, how about donating to the ‘Diversity is a codeword [sic] for White Genocide’ billboard project? To get this billboard up in the Northern US they need another $3,500.”
It is unclear who is behind the group or who paid for the billboard. Robert Whitaker, the curmudgeonly segregationist who wrote the 221-word white nationalist mantra that has recently become incredibly popular, today told Hatewatch that he does not know who is responsible for putting up the Springville sign, but that he “is happy and proud” that he has had an influence on spreading the alarm about “white genocide.”
“People are afraid to say anything,” Whitaker said. “Everybody but me has to be anonymous.”
The racially charged billboard near Leeds was the idea of a member of the League of the South (LOS), a neo-Confederate group that advocates for a second Southern secession, the group’s president, Michael Hill told an Alabama radio station this fall.
“I guess even racist idiots have freedom of speech,” the mayor of Leeds, David Miller, told Hatewatch. “As soon as the sign went up, we hopped on it and condemned it.”
The sign, the mayor said, stayed up for about a month.
For anyone who might be a white genocide skeptic, the group includes a list of what it looks like, including, “Moving millions of non-White immigrants into a traditionally White countries over a period of years” and “Legally chasing down and forcing White areas to accept ‘diversity.’ This is known as ‘Forced Assimilation.”
“Society is widely aware,” the group adds, “that White people are becoming a minority in several countries, but anti-Whites don’t want us to bring an end to the policies which are turning us into a minority everywhere.”
In a statement about the new billboard, the mayor of Springville, William Isley, said that the city of about 4,000 residents has been working to promote “racial harmony for many years,” adding, “Any message which cuts against such harmony is very disturbing to the City and is inconsistent with the desires and intent of the City government.
“The City,” the mayor’s statement continued, “has no connection or control over the sign at issue and denounces the message thereon as being racially offensive.”
The Justice Department targeted the “worst of the worst” in its just-concluded successful prosecutions of one of the largest and most-violent racist gangs in the United States – the Aryan Brotherhood of Texas.
The man who supervised the six-year investigation, James Trusty, told Hatewatch in an exclusive interview today that the federal prosecutions didn’t eradicate the racist gang, but dealt a “severe blow” to its leadership and ability to commit crimes.
The Aryan Brotherhood of Texas (ABT), established in the early 1980s, is considered one of the most violent racist crime syndicates in the United States, modeled after the Aryan Brotherhood, a California-based prison gang formed during the 1960s.
In going after the ABT, prosecutors — led by David Karpel from the department’s Organized Crime and Gang Section in Washington, D.C. — obtained 17 separate indictments in judicial districts of Texas and Oklahoma, including one in 2012 in the Southern District of Texas that charged senior ABT leaders with racketeering.
The racketeering charge encompassed various crimes carried out by the gang — murders, attempted murders, conspiracies, arsons, assaults, robberies and drug trafficking — as part of its enterprise. The Justice Department dropped plans in September 2013 to seek the death penalty against some of the defendants. ( continue to full post… )