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blt MTV-17 hrs -no ads - tribute to victims (22) RE: MTV-17 hrs -no ads - tribute to victims 11 Jan 01


jayohjo - I can give you some basic history (although not very brief) on the White Supremacist Movement. The US has a long history of far right terrorism, including the Ku Klux Klan, the Minutemen, the John Birch Society, the American Nazi Party,and the Aryan Nation, to name just a few. These groups and people who support these groups typically draw their beliefs from several sources: the William Turner Diaries (far right "novel" urging race war); fundamentalist Christianity; "Historical Revisionism" (beliefs that the Holocaust never occurred), and various other racist, anti-semitic, homophobic, sexist tracts.

Groups and individuals with this ideology blow up abortion clinics and assassinate doctors who perform abortions, blow up buildings (such as the Oklahoma federal building), burn down African American churches, commit lynchings, and justify a whole range of hate crimes, from tacking up flyers with hate messages in high schools to beatings and arson.

The Northwest US - Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Wyoming, and Montana - were declared, at one point during the 1980s, to be a prime location for a "white homeland," and followers were urged to moved to the rural areas in these states as a way to band together. Richard Butler became the head "pastor" of a community in Hayden Lake, Idaho called the Aryan Nation. His followers appeared to combine the ideologies of the KKK, Christian Patriots, and the National Socialist Party (Nazi). Several of Butler's followers have been arrested for crimes such as bank robbery, arson, assault and homicide, typically in the Northwest region, but also in California and Colorada. A popular radio talk show host in Denver who was Jewish and activily engaged the far right in strident debates on his show was assassinated by followers of Butler. As Amergin said above, very recently, Butler was sued and basically bankrupted (one legal strategy that was developed by the Southern Poverty Law Center when fighting the KKK).

There is also a far right branch of the environmental movement called the Wise Use Movement, although some might not place it alongside the KKK. However, it represents similar thinking. One view of the spectrum of the US right wing is that the very far right organizations, such as the Nazi Party and the KKK, allow the less virulently right wing groups to flouish as "moderates."

This country has always struggled with itself and its combination of Christianity and violence. That dates back to the 1500s and the pope declaring the taking of Indian land a divine act, as Indian people did not have souls. It's codified in the US Constitution, where it states for all to see that Africans represent a percentage of a human being. An interesting study is how the US (and who in the US)helped various Nazis to escape Europe after WWII. And,a great book to read about all this is Howard Zinn's classic, "The Peoples History of the United States."

Sorry, this is too long and rambling. I worked for a few years as a member of Communities Against Hate in Eugene, Oregon, and this stuff was what I lived and breathed.

blt


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