Poor Ron Edwards. Even racist skinheads don’t want to hang out with the former Klan leader.
Edwards — the Imperial Klans of America (IKA) founder who defended himself against a successful lawsuit filed by the Southern Poverty Law Center — was arrested last week on federal drug charges, including methamphetamine distribution.
That was too much for the Supreme White Alliance (SWA), a skinhead group that had been assisting the IKA with its annual hate rock gathering, Nordic Fest. Less than a week before this year's Nordic Fest — planned for Memorial Day weekend at Edwards' compound in Dawson Springs, Ky. — the SWA announced it would no longer be involved with the event. “The Supreme White Alliance drops it's [sic] support of the Imperial Klans of America, Ron Edwards, and Nordic Fest due to current events,” SWA Vice President Richard Kidd, a former IKA member, wrote on Sunday. "Even though innocent until proven guilty, in order to preserve our reputation as a club for our members, the SWA has always been a drug free club and always will be. This is not intended to disrespect Ron Edwards or the IKA, but we will not be affiliated with them until all legal charges have been dropped."
The SWA, which previously considered its leader to be Edwards' son, Steven, wasn’t the only group to distance itself from Nordic Fest. Blood and Honour USA, a coalition of several skinhead groups, posted a similar message Saturday on a web forum: "After discussions among the various crew heads in the US that make up Blood and Honour USA, we have collectively decided that at this time, given the amount of evidence — not only that which led to his being charged — but also that of individuals that have witnessed behaviours of this type — that Blood and Honour USA is pulling any and all support from the Nordicfest music festival and also any and all support of the IKA."
Blood and Honour had stern words for Edwards, who was released Friday on a $25,000 bond. "Drugs, drug users, and those that market them cannot and will not be tolerated – regardless of who the persons are that are involved. Indeed it is even worse when someone that has held themselves up as a standard of white nationalism becomes caught up in this ****** nonsense."
In addition, Nordic Fest participants won’t be able to advertise on Stormfront, the leading white supremacist web forum. Richard Lindstrom, a Stormfront administrator and former board member of the neo-Nazi National Alliance, announced the ban on Saturday.
Ron Edwards has other legal woes: In 2008, the Southern Poverty Law Center won a $2.5 million judgment for a teenager who was beaten by IKA members. Edwards, one of two defendants in that lawsuit, is appealing the verdict.
In a message on its website today, the SWA sounded a more empathetic note. "Drugs are a weakness that we as Aryan Warriors must overcome," wrote National Treasurer James Reeves. "The effects of Meth, speed, cocaine, marijuana, etc. have taken a toll on our country and our people that if not stopped now, may not be stoppable in the future. It is tearing families apart at the seams. If anyone does have a problem, seek proffesional [sic] help or help from one of us. We are a family and we are here to help each other."