Though the neo-Nazi Aryan Nations have always expressed interest in youth recruiting, their Youth Action Corps was less than active for almost five years — until 15-year-old Logan Brown came on the scene.
Hoping to secure the next generation of neo-Nazi leaders, the Idaho-based Aryan Nations has made energetic efforts throughout its history to recruit 14- to 20-year-olds for its Aryan Nations Youth Action Corps (ANYAC).
But convincing white youth to see Jews as "the literal children of Satan" and view people of color as "m---" has not proven easy, and the last active ANYAC contingent died out in 1999.
Logan Brown is out to change all that. In January, the 15-year-old organized a Southern California chapter of ANYAC that is now six members strong. He's also put up two ANYAC Web sites to attract kids from elsewhere in the U.S.
Logan believes that most teenagers are "brainwashed by the media — the Disney Channel, MTV with their multiculturalism, Jewish traditions, black traditions. It's unmoral. A cesspool." By contrast, he believes he's working for the betterment of the future — the white future.
But don't get him wrong. "I'm not the stereotypical racist," he insists. "You know, I'm not a redneck. I don't generally get picked on by minorities at my school."
There aren't many minorities around to pick on him. Like many youthful newcomers to white supremacy, Logan is growing up in a predominantly white, middle-class milieu — the mountain community of Lake Arrowhead, Calif.
Logan and his "racially aware" ANYAC allies attend predominantly white Rim of the World High School. "We do get a select number of blacks that are bused here," Logan says. "Gangsters or thugs, or whatever they want to call themselves."
Masquerading as Mainstream
To make their politics look more palatable, Logan and his comrades have also started a campus group called the Council of Concerned Students.
"Inside the school we're being conservative" rather than extremist, Logan says, "so we won't be prosecuted [sic] or attacked." But the real purpose is to woo prospective neo-Nazis.
"I'm using [the group] as a way to get the word out about ANYAC," Logan says.
In lieu of racial violence, the council's chosen weapon has been circulating petitions. "Basically, you know, we don't want to take drastic action like stereotypical maniac racists," Logan explains.
The first petition called for the banning of gay pride T-shirts; Logan says wearing the shirts is "vulgar — shoving it in my face," and he claims 150 students have signed on. (School administrators would not comment.)
Logan and his buddies have also started a petition to ban the display of Jewish symbols at Rim of the World High. Logan casts it as a simple matter of fairness. "They can wear their Star of David, but I can't wear my swastika?"
Logan hopes to inspire other kids to follow his path into neo-Nazism. He says his "traditional" upbringing made for an easy segue into white power. "I basically had some of the roots of a racialist," he says, "anti-immigration, anti-drug, et cetera."
After joining the racist Skinhead movement at age 12, Logan "grew out of that" pretty quickly. Then he picked up White Power. Published in 1967 by George Lincoln Rockwell, the founding father of American neo-Nazism, White Power explores the racial "mongrelization" of the U.S.
"That was a real eye-opener," Logan says. "Say it's the 1920s when everything was white and beautiful. We were a white, civilized nation."
After imbibing Rockwell's views, Logan sought something more spiritual — and found it in the Aryan Nations' anti-Semitic theology, Christian Identity.
"Jews are basically the literal children of Satan," he says, echoing fundamental Identity tenets. "They can go back to their country. They don't belong here."
Same goes for people of color. "Africans can go back to Africa," he says. "I mean, technically they are not citizens." Mexicans, he says, "are illegals anyway. Immigration is only for pure white immigration — that's what our forefathers meant."
Logan's extremism has come with a cost. He says his family doesn't "support me whatsoever" — especially his stepmother. "She's just close-minded," he says. His older brother doesn't like Logan's activism, either.
"[He] raided my room and stuff like that," Logan complains. "He's just a middle-class white boy trying to fit in with the black crowd."
Logan vows he won't follow the path of the last youngster to lead ANYAC, Shaun Winkler. Winkler's activism began with peaceful activities like distributing flyers — but as he rose up the ranks of national leadership in the Aryan Nations, he became more violent.
This April, Winkler, now 25, was convicted on charges stemming from a confrontation with another Nations member and his children; following an outburst during his trial, Winkler now faces charges of resisting arrest and battery on a police officer.
Logan says he'll remain nonviolent — unless violent methods are needed to create a white homeland. "I just want what's best for our people," he says.
Logan's ANYAC chapter has been busy recently — holding a fund-raising concert in honor of Hitler's birthday, celebrating the prison release of former Klan leader David Duke — but his plans stretch way beyond Rim of the World High.
His Web sites and frequent postings on white-power message boards helped inspire a new ANYAC chapter in Illinois. Logan says he's also recruited members in Arkansas, Maryland, and several other states.
Meanwhile, he's mapping out a plan to restore the grown-up Aryan Nations to its former prominence among neo-Nazi groups. Posting on an Aryan Nations forum, Logan lamented the loss of the group's Idaho headquarters and, with a teenager's enthusiasm, urged members to rise up.
"It is time to rebuild and show these filthy Jews we mean business," he wrote. "I purpose [sic] to set up a fund to raise enough money to rebuild HQ bigger and better than ever!"
That might have to wait, Logan admits, until he finishes college, gets his Ph.D. in history, attends law school and becomes a district attorney.
"Then I'd like to go to Idaho and take over," he says, pausing to correct himself, "or help the Nations."