In one of the most ambitious efforts in recent memory to recruit young people to the white-power movement, neo-Nazi Panzerfaust Records began a mass distribution of 100,000 hate-music CDs in September. Dubbed "Project Schoolyard USA," the campaign targets white teenagers with an inexpensive 20-song sampler of Panzerfaust bands.
According to the Minnesota-based label, the aim is not only to "entertain racist kids," but also to "create them." Panzerfaust is offering the CDs for just 15 cents apiece, making it easy for neo-Nazis to order them in bulk and distribute them for free to middle-school and high-school kids.
The guitar-heavy CD features hard-driving tunes with lyrics like these from the Bully Boys: "Whiskey bottles/baseball bats/pickup trucks/and rebel flags/we're going on the town tonight/hit and run/let's have some fun/we've got jigaboos on the run."
In "Wrecking Ball," a band called H8Machine advises kids to "destroy all your enemies," promising, "The best things come to those who hate."
"Hopefully it will have a big impact on these kids who would otherwise get into rap," wrote Panzerfaust's Bryant Cecchini (a convicted felon who also goes by the alias of Byron Calvert) on the label's Web site. "It's the wigger kids [whites who emulate black street culture] that we are making this CD for."
Cecchini, formerly warehouse manager for neo-Nazi Resistance Records, claims to have purchased mailing lists of teens who subscribe to skateboard and heavy metal magazines.
When the first shipment of 20,000 CDs went out in September, Cecchini reported on his Project Schoolyard Web site, the entire batch was scarfed up in just two weeks. Cecchini said kids were telling him "our music blows away anything they hear on MTV," and added, "[W]e know the impact that is possible when kids are introduced to white nationalism through the musical medium."
In October, Panzerfaust's scheme hit a roadblock — in Madison, W. Va., at least. Officials at Madison Middle School and Scott High School confiscated copies from about 40 students who said they'd been handed the CDs as they walked to school or boarded buses earlier in the week.
That didn't sit well with Cecchini, who called Scott Principal Leonard Bolton and threatened legal action against the school in a profanity-laced tirade that he taped and posted on the Panzerfaust Web site. Cecchini claimed he had been contacted by "several students" who said the principal told them they would "burn in hell" if they listened to the CDs.
"You had no authority to confiscate those CDs," Cecchini bellowed into the phone.
He was just getting warmed up. "I suggest you mind your fucking business and stop stealing CDs from your students before you get the shit sued out of you," Cecchini told Principal Bolton.
"I may not be able to force you to return the CDs to those kids, but since your students have contacted me and they like this music so much, I'm going to send them enough fucking CDs to give one to every goddamn kid in that school."