News & Updates

  • Why are white nationalist groups targeting LGBTQ groups?

    Posted by · July 05, 2022 11:53 AM

    NPR - Ayesha Rascoe asks Kathleen Belew, author of "Bring the War Home: The White Power Movement and Paramilitary America," why white supremacists target the people and events they do.

    AYESHA RASCOE, HOST: January 6 featured Proud Boys and Oath Keepers. A week ago, members of another white supremacist group, Patriot Front, were arrested before, authorities allege, violently disrupting a gay pride event in Coeur d'Alene, Idaho. What do county electoral ballots and pride parades have to do with white supremacy? Kathleen Belew studies the far right She is the author of "Bring The War Home - The White Power Movement And Paramilitary America." And she says there is a direct connection.

    KATHLEEN BELEW: That's the key thing to understand if we would like to combat this problem. And the other one we need to put on that list is seemingly individual acts of violence that result in mass casualties against targeted populations, like the one we just saw in Buffalo, but that we've also seen in El Paso and Charleston and Pittsburgh.

    These groups see gay rights, immigration, interracial contact, and especially the birth of interracial children, feminism as all being a problem because they believe that those things will undermine the white birthrate. And that means that for these activists, they see those as apocalyptic threats that are somewhat interchangeable in a larger project of protecting and preserving whiteness itself and advocating for a antidemocratic, white ethno-state, which is what they're doing.

    RASCOE: So this is separate and apart from, like, the KKK, you know, after reconstruction and things like that. You look at these as different movements?

    BELEW: Sort of. So there's two different things that happened. In 1979, the Klan joins together with a whole bunch of other people for the first time in American history. They join together with neo-Nazis, skinheads, later with militiamen, radical tax resisters, people in white supremacist religious groups. That amalgamated group - that sort of coming together - that's the white power movement. So it includes the Klan, but it's not just the Klan.

    RASCOE: It seems like targeting LGBTQ people could be a way to talk about an issue on somewhat mainstream outlets in a way that you cannot do so much when it comes to, like, targeting, like, Black people or even Hispanic people. If you just outright say, I don't think my kids should be around Black people, it seems like that might make some people uncomfortable. But if you say, I don't want my kids - I'm worried about my kids being around gay people or around drag performers, there's this whole kind of movement that allows that type of conversation to happen or feels like this kind of conversation is OK to happen. Like, is there a difference there?

    BELEW: That's an excellent observation. And you're very right to point particularly to the anti-LGBTQ activism at work right now because it goes with a larger conversation about the myth of people grooming children for "alternative lifestyle," quote-unquote, or ideas about, like, whether or not Disney is creating problems for children. So we see the mainstream manifestation, and then we see the violent, opportunistic use of that issue.

    Think about it this way. We're talking about the same activists who appeared at the Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville in 2017 and infamously were chanting antisemitic chants and doing a lot of activity that made a lot of people feel really uncomfortable. When those same activists and groups showed up on January 6, they, by and large, were not wearing swastikas and using Nazi chants and wearing Klan uniforms. They were mostly uniformed as militiamen because that is a bid for public acceptance.

    What they are always doing is looking for the open window - right? - the people that can be persuaded, recruited and radicalized further. And in our culture, with this intense political polarization that we're experiencing, there is a larger and larger set of opportunities for these groups. And this kind of opportunistic mobilization is very well-practiced and is something that they have been working with for a very long time.

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  • Thomas calls for overturning precedents on contraceptives, LGBTQ rights

    Posted by · June 27, 2022 10:03 AM

    TheHill - Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas on Friday called for overturning the constitutional rights the court had affirmed for access to contraceptives and LGBTQ rights in an opinion concurring with the majority to decision to overturn Roe v. Wade.

    In his separate opinion, Thomas acknowledged that Friday’s decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization does not directly affect any rights besides abortion. But he argued that the constitution’s Due Process Clause does not secure a right to an abortion or any other substantive rights, and he urged the court to apply that reasoning to other landmark cases.

    Thomas wrote, “In future cases, we should reconsider all of this Court’s substantive due process precedents, including Griswold, Lawrence, and Obergefell.”

    Since Justice Samuel Alito’s draft majority opinion overturning Roe was leaked earlier this year, Democrats and liberal activists have warned that the conservative majority would soon turn its attention to other rights that the court has affirmed.

    The three cases Thomas mentioned are all landmark decisions establishing certain constitutional rights.

    In Griswold v. Connecticut, the court ruled in 1965 that married couples have a right to access contraceptive. In 2003, the court said in Lawrence v. Texas that states could not outlaw consensual gay sex. And the court’s 2015 decision in Obergefell v. Hodges established a constitutional right to same-sex marriage.

    While Thomas’s comments outline the worst-case scenario for the majority’s liberal critics, it’s unclear whether the other conservative justices are willing to go as far as the court’s most senior member.

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  • Juneteenth and America’s Racial-Justice Backslide

    Posted by · June 21, 2022 10:51 AM

    NYMag - On June 17, 2021, President Biden signed legislation making Juneteenth, a Texas-based commemoration of the last group of slaves learning in 1865 that slavery had ended, a federal holiday. It was an ambivalent accomplishment, representing a tardy response to the racial-justice protests of 2020 and the payment of an overdue debt that Biden in particular, and Democrats generally, owed to Black voters. There were already signs that the “racial-justice summer” wave had crested, and the holiday’s embrace by corporations and the federal government would be a hollow gesture. The holiday’s “mix of low risk and low cost has made it an appealing virtue signal,” my colleague Zak Cheney-Rice argued at the time.

    Indeed, the ensuing year has been deeply discouraging for the cause of racial justice. Congress’s bipartisan talks on police reform, given new urgency by the murder of George Floyd, petered out as Republicans lost interest. Those same Republicans successfully filibustered various voting-rights measures, including a bill named after civil-rights icon John Lewis that simply restored Voting Rights Act provisions that the GOP once supported routinely. And Democrats could not muster the votes to rein in the filibuster, itself a hateful relic of Jim Crow.

    Beyond these setbacks for racial-justice legislation, it’s been a terrible year for the politics of race more generally. There are various factors driving the debate within the Democratic Party over how to approach “divisive” cultural issues and “wokeness,” but it’s hard to avoid the impression that many Democrats fear that associating too closely with Black political aims has fatally reduced their ability to win over both white working-class voters and white suburbanites. After defensively denying Republican claims that they favor “defunding the police,” some Democrats are opportunistically embracing a law-and-order backlash to selectively rising crime rates.

    Meanwhile, Republicans are zestfully embracing thinly veiled and not-so-veiled racist messaging. During Donald Trump’s administration, some conservatives supported bipartisan criminal-justice reform so strongly that the president felt compelled to (begrudgingly) sign the First Step Act; now these Republicans are in full retreat. Restoring “election integrity” — which in the absence of any actual evidence of voter fraud has to be regarded as an effort to make it harder for Democratic-leaning minority groups to vote — has become a holy cause for the GOP. And the very idea of a reckoning with slavery’s legacy has come under fire in the ubiquitous Republican assault on any discussion of racism in public-school classrooms.

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  • 31 linked to white nationalist group arrested near Pride event in Idaho

    Posted by · June 13, 2022 10:17 AM

    NBC - Thirty-one people affiliated with the white nationalist group Patriot Front were arrested near an annual LGBTQ+ event Saturday in Coeur d'Alene, Idaho, police said.

    The suspects were booked on suspicion of conspiracy to riot, Coeur d'Alene Police Chief Lee White said at an afternoon news conference. Among those in custody late Saturday was a man with the same name as Patriot Front's Dallas-based founder, Thomas Ryan Rousseau.

    White said police were made aware in recent days that a number of groups planned to disrupt Pride in the Park, an annual event highlighting the civil rights struggles of LGBTQ+ communities.

    Staffing was increased and awareness was heightened by the time dispatchers fielded a report of 20 people in a U-Haul vehicle Saturday afternoon, he said.

    The suspects wore masks, had shields, and "looked like a little army," the chief said, quoting the caller who reported the suspicious activity.

    Ten minutes after that 1:38 p.m. U-Haul report, police stopped the vehicle and 31 people in "similar attire" were arrested, White said.

    Suspects resided in multiple states, including Texas, Utah, Idaho, Colorado, South Dakota, Illinois, Arkansas, Wyoming, Washington, Oregon and Virginia, he said.

    "They came to riot," White said.

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  • Confronting the invisibility of anti-Asian racism

    Posted by · June 06, 2022 11:25 AM

    Brookings - Last week, a gunman opened fire in a Korean-owned hair salon in the Koreatown section of Dallas, Texas and shot three Korean women who suffered non-life-threatening injuries. The police are now investigating this as a hate crime that may be linked to two other shootings of Asian-owned businesses in the area. Anti-Asian violence and racism have surged since the Atlanta massacre last year that left eight dead—six of whom were Asian American women—but many Americans still fail to notice.

    According to a national survey by AAPI Data and Momentive, anti-Asian hate crimes have increased since the start of the pandemic: 1 in 6 Asian American adults reported experiencing a hate crime in 2021, up from 1 in 8 in 2020. In the first three months of 2022, the figure has already reached 1 in 12. This trend may continue given the rise in anti-Asian racism.

    The 2022 STAATUS Index shows that 1 in 5 Americans believe that Asian Americans are at least partly responsible for COVID-19 compared to 1 in 10 last year (see Figure 1). Americans are also now more likely to believe that referring to the coronavirus as “Chinese virus” and “Wuhan virus” is appropriate, and 1 in 3 believe that Asian Americans are more loyal to their country of origin than to the U.S., up from 1 in 5 in 2021.

    In the past year alone, 1 in 10 Asian Americans have been coughed on or spit on, and nearly 1 in 3 have been told to “go back to your country.” In the previous administration, it was easy to blame Trump, but we are in a new administration, and racist attacks against Asians have increased. One-third of Americans, however, continue to remain unaware.

    The invisibility of anti-Asian racism is a reflection of the invisibility of Asians in the American imagination: 58% of Americans cannot name a single prominent Asian American, and 42% cannot think of a historical experience or policy related to Asian Americans.

    The invisibility is also glaring in funding priorities. Between 1992 and 2018, the National Institutes of Health invested only 0.17% of its budget on research on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders. Foundations have not fared better: of the $19 billion awarded between 1983 and 1990, 0.18% was awarded to AAPI organizations, increasing to 0.20% by 2018. So for every $100 awarded by foundations, 20 cents was designated for AAPI communities.

    Asian Americans also remain invisible in our school curricula: last year, Illinois became the first state to require that Asian American history be taught in public schools, and this year, New Jersey became the second. So should we really be surprised that 42% of Americans cannot name a single Asian American historical experience?

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  • STAATUS Index Report 2022

    Posted by · May 31, 2022 3:24 PM

    Executive Summary

    Asian Americans face a somber reality in 2022: Despite a new administration, a relative decline in the severity of the COVID-19 pandemic, and an improved economy, attacks against the Asian American community continue to increase at alarming rates.

    No longer can we blame the current wave of anti-Asian American hate and violence on a single politician or on a pandemic.

    The root causes are deeper, systemic and tied to the xenophobia, fear, and “othering” of Asian Americans, manifested in harmful stereotypes and misperceptions, that have persisted in our society since Asians first arrived in the U.S.

    This year’s expanded STAATUS Index builds on the work of the ground-breaking 2021 study to better understand these stereotypes and misperceptions with a representative sample of Americans across racial groups, demographics, and geographies. The data from 5,113 respondents provide multiple important issues and opportunities:

    • The U.S. is in the midst of a racial crisis, and there is broad agreement that people of color are much more discriminated against and much less advantaged than White Americans.
    • Like Black and Latino Americans, Asian Americans face high levels of discrimination, yet many Americans are unaware of the spike in anti-Asian American racism and hate over the past year.
    • Asian Americans are least likely among all racial groups to feel we belong and are accepted in the U.S., even if born in the U.S.
    • On one hand, Americans see the contributions of Asian Americans to the U.S. and view Asian Americans in stereotypical “model minority” terms as nice, smart, hard-working, and successful in business.
    • On the other, an increasing percentage of Americans in 2022 question the loyalty of Asian Americans and blame Asian Americans for the COVID-19 epidemic, fueling the “perpetual foreigner” stereotype.

     

    Read full STAATUS Index Report

     

  • How the 'Great Replacement' Conspiracy Is Fueling a Global Network of White Supremacy and Terror

    Posted by · May 23, 2022 9:16 AM

    The heavily armed 18-year-old man who allegedly opened fire in a Buffalo, New York, supermarket last Saturday, killing 10 people and wounding three others — most of them Black — was an adherent of a white supremacist conspiracy theory that's become increasingly espoused by the mainstream political right.

    The "Great Replacement," as it's known, was referenced in the 180-page manifesto the alleged shooter wrote and posted online before driving some two hours from his home to indiscriminately murder Black people in one of the worst racist mass shootings in recent U.S. history.

    The unfounded notion, one rooted in racist and antisemitic fanaticism, posits that the U.S. is growing increasingly diverse — the only accurate part — because elite Jewish liberals are importing non-white immigrants to “replace” white Christian people as part of a diabolical scheme to fundamentally reshape American politics and society.

    Moreover, many white supremacists — the alleged shooter among them — insist that the influx of immigrants will, if unchecked, soon lead to the extinction of the white race.

    White supremacist conspiracies, like this one, have always existed in some form or another in American society (not to mention many others), and often form the fuel that ignites horrific, racist acts of violence, like the tragedy that unfolded last week in Buffalo.

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  • Hate groups are organizing in our communities. Donate Now to Goldbridge Institute and help us stop the spread!

    Posted by · May 20, 2022 11:28 AM

    WE ARE NOT SAFE.

    Hate groups are organizing in our communities, and they are sowing the seeds for violence by recruiting impressionable youth. At least three major groups infest San Francisco, and more than 10 operate in the greater Bay Area (according to the Southern Poverty Law Center and other hate trackers).

    The message calls for the elimination of Asians, Blacks, Feminists, Jews, Latinos, LGBTQ+, Muslims, and Liberals.

    Hate-based activity and crimes tripled during 2016-2017, and hate incidents have continued to increase at alarming rates.

       

    The recent spate of mass shootings at a El Paso Walmart (8/19), Pittsburgh synagogue (8/18), the Gilroy Garlic Festival (7/19), Wisconsin Sikh Temple (8/12), Kansas JCC (4/14), Charleston church (6/15), Atlanta spas (3/21), Buffalo supermarket (5/22) represent the horrific results of the  silent sickness that has infected communities across the country. 

    Goldbridge Institute was formed to:

    • Identify supremacist/hate groups and their members in the Greater Bay Area
    • Curate data from hate tracking efforts such and SPLC, ADL, etc.
    • Research their members and activities through social media, forums, and chat groups such as Discord, Telegram, Truth Social, etc.

    We take action by:

    • Exposing identified organizations of hate to share their goals and efforts of potential violence
    • Alerting the community through social media, press, and targeted communications of their existence and activities to deter the further spread of hate and ideology

    Our goal is to stop hate and violence in its tracks NOW, and your support is crucial to our efforts.  Please consider donating to our cause so that we can continue our work to stop the spread of hate and violence in the greater Bay Area.

    DONATE NOW

  • It is happening here: Massachusetts has a growing neo-Nazi movement

    Posted by · May 19, 2022 8:24 AM

    GBH - It was a rare look inside the strategic planning of an upstart neo-Nazi movement.

    In a video posted last summer on social media, Chris Hood, 23, the founder of the Nationalist Social Club - 131, a New England white nationalist collective, gave instructions to a 22-year-old UMass Lowell student named Liam MacNeil.

    “If you’re in college you should be getting together with all the other guys on campus that think like you, circling all the frat parties and bullying the chicks that race mix and start dominating the party and take over the campus,” Hood said. “Same policy as out here [the street] but just do it on campus.”

    “We can do that,” MacNeil responded. “Everyone knows where I am now, but they’re going to have to physically remove me. You know, they’re going to have to kick me out.”

    Hood and MacNeil, now 23, are part of a tiny but growing group of white nationalists who have begun publicly announcing their presence across New England through a rising wave of racist and antisemitic demonstrations, attacks and vandalism. The groups appear to have escalated their activities in the wake of the Jan. 6, 2021, attempted insurrection in the U.S. Capitol, where members of these groups were present. It’s a rise that worries local law enforcement and community members, spurring them to respond.

    In the wake of this weekend’s racially motivated murders in Buffalo — the latest among a series of hate-inspired mass shootings — experts on extremism say there is good reason to be concerned about the spread of neo-Nazism, racism and white ethnonationalism in New England.

    Hate sprouts locally

    In Massachusetts, the Anti-Defamation League counted 388 reported hate, extremism, antisemitism and terror incidents in 2021. Five years earlier, it tallied only 123 reported incidents. Much of this activity is graffiti or leafleting or other acts of racist propaganda. But some of it is violence.

    Investigators last summer found antisemitic and racist writings taken from the internet in the home of Nathan Allen after he murdered two Black people in Winthrop.

    In April 2020, John Michael Rathbun, now 38, was charged in federal court in Springfield with trying to blow up a Jewish assisted-living residence with a five-gallon gas canister. The federal government connected Rathbun to an unspecified white supremacist organization, and said that a user posted a message on one of the group’s social media channels suggesting an attack on “that jew nursing home in longmeadow massachusetts.” Rathbun of East Longmeadow was convicted on two federal arson charges and sentenced to five years in prison.

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  • Mass shooting seen as symbol of spread of white supremacist ideology

    Posted by · May 16, 2022 10:16 AM

    Buffalo News - A racially motivated hate crime spilled the blood of 13 people, leaving 10 of them dead, in Buffalo on Saturday, authorities said.

    "This was pure evil: a straight-up racially motivated hate crime from somebody outside our community, outside of the city of good neighbors," Erie County Sheriff John Garcia said.

    Ten people were gunned down at a Buffalo supermarket Saturday in a horrifying mass shooting that officials were quick to label as "pure evil" and racially motivated. The shooting stunned a community basking in a warm May afternoon, with shoppers filling the Tops in a predominantly Black neighborhood at 1275 Jefferson Ave. 

    And not surprisingly, then, the mass murder in Buffalo's African-American community  and the 18-year-old accused of committing it  quickly came to be seen as something even larger than an unprecedented Buffalo tragedy. They came to be seen by those who study white supremacy as symbols of a growing racist ideology that explodes in gunfire in seemingly random events connected by only hatred and bloodshed.

    The accused shooter, Payton S. Gendron, 18, of Conklin, near Binghamton, was arraigned on a murder charge Saturday, and sources said he is also likely to face federal hate crime charges, which could, under federal law, mean Gendron could spend his life in a federal penitentiary. The federal hate crime statute allows suspects to be charged in federal court when their motive involves race, religion or any of several other defining characteristics.

    Gendron appears to have left evidence for any hate crime charge by publishing a 180-page manifesto spelling out his white supremacist philosophy. Even before law enforcement confirmed the authenticity of the manifesto, national experts in white supremacism and racism were poring over its pages for evidence.

    "The manifesto is 180 pages long, but dozens of pages are nothing more than anti-Black and anti-Semitic memes and statistics and almost 100 pages contain mind-numbingly boring info about every piece of equipment he considered taking on his shooting spree," tweeted J.J. MacNabb, a fellow at George Washington University's program on extremism.

    After reviewing the manifesto, MacNabb also tweeted: "The shooter chose his target because it has a higher percentage of black Americans than other nearby areas."

    The Anti-Defamation League said the manifesto indicated that the suspect believes in the "great replacement theory," a white supremacist conspiracy theory that alleges an attempt to replace White Americans with immigrants and people of color. Other adherents of the great replacement theory have been charged in mass murders at a Pittsburgh synagogue, an El Paso, Texas, Walmart and two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand.

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