Image Source: Anti-Defamation League
New York (AP) — White supremacist propaganda reached alert levels nationwide in 2020, according to a new report provided by the Anti-Defamation League to the Associated Press.
According to Wednesday’s report, there were 5,125 cases of racist, anti-Semitic, anti-LGBTQ, and other disgusting messages spread through physical leaflets, stickers, banners, and posters. That’s almost double the 2,724 instances reported in 2019. Online advertising is much harder to quantify, and these cases are likely to reach millions, anti-hate organizations say.
Founded over a century ago, ADL said last year marked the highest level of white supremacist propaganda seen in at least a decade. The report came when federal officials investigated and prosecuted those who attacked the U.S. Capitol in January, some of which have relationships with hatred groups and rebel militias. Or it has been accused of expressing support.
“When we try to understand and forecast the last four years, we always have the Charlottesville and Capitol Hill bookends,” said Group CEO Jonathan Greenblatt.
“In reality, there are many things that happened during those moments of setting the stage,” he said.
Former far-right radical Christian Picciolini, who founded the de-radical group Free Radicals Project, said a surge in propaganda trucks, where white supremacists and radical recruiters see the crisis as a time of opportunity.
“They take advantage of the uncertainty and fear caused by the crisis to win new employees in their” us vs. them “story and” others “as the cause of their pain, dissatisfaction, or loss. I’m drawing, “Picciolini told AP. “The current uncertainties caused by pandemics, unemployment, fierce elections, protests against the out-of-court police killings of black Americans, and national calculations caused by our country’s long racist tradition , Has created the perfect storm for recruiting feared Americans of change and progress. “
Propaganda, often distributed to attract media and online attention, helps white supremacists normalize their messages and enhance recruitment, ADL said in a report. The language used in propaganda is often covered with a patriotic inclination and looks benign to the untrained eye.
However, some leaflets, stickers and posters are clearly racist and anti-Semitic. One of the promotions disseminated by the New Jersey European Heritage Association included the term “Black Lives Matter.” This is a mockery of the Black Lives Matter movement, a carefully selected criminal statistic of black perpetrators attacking white victims.
The neo-Nazi group, known as Forksfront, has distributed stickers containing the word “White Lives Matter”.
At least 30 known white supremacist groups were reportedly behind the hatred propaganda. However, three groups, NJEHA, Patriot Front, and Nationalist Social Club, were responsible for 92% of the activity.
Propaganda has appeared in all states except Hawaii. According to the report, the highest levels were found in Texas, Washington, California, New Jersey, New York, Massachusetts, Virginia and Pennsylvania.
Despite the overall increase, ADL reports a sharp decline in the distribution of white supremacist propaganda in college, primarily due to the coronavirus pandemic and the shortage of students living and studying on campus. Did. The number of reports of publicity on university campuses in 2020 decreased from 630 in 2019 to 303.
Greenblatt acknowledged that the right to freedom of speech allows the rhetoric of “we hate and hate.” But when the speech spurs violence or creates conditions for normalizing extremism, it must be opposed, he said.
“There is no pixie dust that can be sprinkled on this. Everything seems to be gone,” says Greenblatt. “We need to realize that the root of this problem is deeply rooted.”
Source: Associated Press