It's hard to conduct accurate surveys of racists, who tend to exaggerate their strength and importance. But it's fair to say that in the Age of Obama, there's growing concern. This spring, the Southern Poverty Law Center released its annual "Year in Hate" report, which outlines that in 2008 the number of hate groups rose to 926, up 4 percent from 2007, and 54 percent since 2000.
(The SPLC doesn't measure the number of members in the groups.) An April Homeland Security intelligence report states that "the economic downturn and the election of the first African-American president present unique drivers for right-wing radicalization and recruitment."
Home foreclosures, unemployment and an inability to obtain credit "could create a fertile recruiting environment," the briefing adds, and extremist groups are aiming to "broaden their scope and appeal through propaganda." The haters are doing their best, in other words, to move out from the fringe and toward the mainstream—and they're boasting some success.
The Nationalist Coalition, a small outfit based in St. Petersburg, Fla., claims it has seen a jump in new members in just the past few months. In March, the Arizona chapter held a family "spaghetti night" meet and greet. Members also blanketed a Phoenix suburb with fliers depicting a white toddler and the word MISSING—an attempt to show that the future of the white race is in trouble.
One of its national chiefs, Todd Weingart, says the group does not condone violence and is composed of doctors and lawyers as well as blue-collar workers. "If it was only immigration or the economy or a nonwhite running the country, there wouldn't be this interest. We know that," he says. "It's the combination that is getting people to stand up and get interested."
Winston Smith, a host of the white-supremacist radio show "The Political Cesspool" in Millington, Tenn., says, "The emphasis is different now. We don't talk as much about what blacks have done to us; we're more focused on ourselves and our own culture."
The Nationalist Coalition. The Nationalist Coalition (and its recent predecessors, the National Vanguard and National Alliance) has been particularly active in Tampa and St. Petersburg Florida.
Its members have spread virulently racist and anti-Semitic propaganda in a variety of Florida towns and cities, have rented billboards promoting the group’s Web site, and have distributed racist music CDs.
One member developed a social networking Web site similar to MySpace intended for white supremacists. After Hurricane Katrina, National Vanguard members urged people to “Support White Victims of Hurricane Katrina.”
Indoctrination often starts on the Internet as seen above. Some crazies posting on MySpace, for instance, have called for armed revolution; at least one has referred to Barack Obama as "a dead man." But many leaders of white-supremacist groups and Web forums are toning down their rhetoric.
The aim is to attract the kind of person described as "the guy down the road who until now had his plasma TV and car in the garage, but just lost his job and won't find a new one because some illegal already has it."
See my prior post Friday, February 27, 2009, PLOTS TO ASSASSINATE BARACK OBAMA ON THE RISE, NINE (9) SO FAR, RACIST RIGHT WING BLOGGERS FUEL WHITE SUPREMISTS, SECRET SERVICE NEEDS TO INVESTIGATE.
See my prior post Friday, January 30, 2009, EXTREME RIGHT WING CONSERVATIVE BLOGS FUEL PLOTS TO ASSASSINATE PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA, COLORODO MAN ARRESTED TODAY, MISSISSIPPI MAN ARRESTED JAN 27th
See my prior post Sunday, December 14, 2008, TOP TEN RACIST BLOGGERS AND/OR HATE WEBSITES HOSTED IN THE USA, The Nationalist Coalition in St. Pete FL is number 8. Friday, January 16, 2009, Florida man indicted in threat to kill Barack Obama, 21 year old Nathan Wine from Lakeland, Another White Supremacist Locked Up. TAMPA, Fla. (AP) - A Florida man has been indicted on charges of threatening to kill President-elect Barack Obama.Twenty-one-year-old Nathan Wine was indicted Thursday in Tampa on charges that he threatened to kill and inflict bodily harm on the president-elect. According the indictment, Wine made the threat on Nov. 5. The Lakeland man turned himself in to Tampa police on Thursday 1/15/08 on a warrant out of Polk County. Authorities there have charged him grand theft of a firearm.