Redemption

There are many similarities between American History X, Autobiography of a Recovering Skinhead what I have discussed with the KKK in this blog.  Even though the book and the movie were about skinheads there are many similarities between skinheads and the Klan. The reasons that people joined the movements in most cases had elements that were very similar, the most common being a painful past filled with either neglect or abuse.

 Frank Meeink, the author of the Autobiography of a Recovering Skinhead, said that the reason he was attracted to the skinheads was because he was always abused and afraid and when he saw that people were afraid of the skinheads and in turn him because he was with the skinheads and he liked the feeling of power that came with that. He also said that he like how they accepted him and how he was a part of the group and treated like an adult, whether they were drinking, training or going out he got to be involved. Frank soon became a recruiter, and targeted kids in high schools who were picked on, outcast and alternative as he talks about in this video . This is similar to the reason that Derik and Danny Vinyard in American History X joined a white power group, for a sense of belonging and to find a father figure since their father was killed by a black man when they were younger. Derik was both hurt and angry and the skinhead group gave him the opportunity to take his anger out on a cause that they told him would make the world a better place. Both of these examples are real reasons that I have found to why people join the Klan today, either for power, belonging, family, pride of being white or a let out for anger and aggression.

One point that both the book and the movies makes is that prison was the event that turned both of their lives around was prison. I don’t agree that prison always reforms members of white nationalist groups. In face the prison turn around rate is less than 25% of inmates, the majority get together with members of their same group in prison and then go back to their original group once out of prison.  

Even though to Klan says that it is no longer violent as Frank Meeink addresses in his book, all white supremacy groups are violent. For example, burning a cross is defended and used as an act of war, even if the Klan says that burning a cross is tradition it is a tradition of war, as can be seen when in their rallies they declare there is a war upon the white race and all white people must fight in order to survive. The level of violence and hatred that is displayed by the KKK greatly depends on which sect is being looked at. Some like the Knights of the Ku Klux Klan are making an effort to seem more proud than hateful, however most groups still hold to the Klan’s reputation of violence and have declared war against all other races and any white person who will not join them.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Christianity and the Klan

One of the largest problems that I personally have with a majority of white power groups including the Ku Klux Klan is the fact that they claim to be Christians and blessed by God in their missions. For example the leader of the largest faction of a white power movement in the KKK, is also a pastor at the Christian Revival Center. On the churches website they have included their mission statement, which includes things such as “We believe that the Anglo-Saxon, Germanic, Scandinavian, and kindred people are THE people of the Bible – God’s separated and anointed Israel.” (Even though the Israelites who live in Israel have traced their ancestry back to Abraham and his promise), “For the mission God has bestowed upon His chosen people, the white race, he requires their separation… “Our people must not only resist the call of Satan, which the Bible says will come disguised as light and love – (brotherly – interracial love {Leodecian church age – the apostate (modern) church) – But His people must overcome, prevail, and help open the eyes of their lost brethren – lest they perish.” The Biblical verses that are used, generally from Deuteronomy or Numbers, talk about how the Israelites should not marry the women from the tribes around them, however this was not because of race, it was because the women from the tribes around them believed in a different God and would cause the Israelite men to struggle with idolatry and was therefore forbidden.

The KKK talks about no longer being racist and instead being proud Christians who love the white race, however in the now “Christian” message they are still saying white people are the chosen people and that whites are under a “satanic” attack of race mixing. These are the same messages of war and discrimination that the Klan has always been teaching, it is now just cleverly hidden in radical religion. I believe religion is now the cover for white nationalist groups because it is easier to defend a belief system than racism. ­­­This is because the language is much less offensive even if giving the same message for example “Interracial marriage is white genocide” V.S. “Whites are God’s chosen people and it is his will that his people say together to maintain purity.” Even of a person believes that it sounds racist, very few will challenge it on the account that it is someone’s religion.  

I have a problem with any white supremacy group spewing racism under the cover of Christianity. I am a Christian and have studied the bible for over 12 years. I have read through it cover to cover many times and devoted my life to its teachings. I am not as wise as some people older than me that is true but I know for a fact and will stand beside the truth that Scripture does not segregate people by race, only by faith in Jesus Christ and be you White, Black, Hispanic, Asian or any other race the bible says that as long as you believe in Christ as your savior you are a part of the family of God. As it says in Romans 10: 8-10 – ““The word is near you; it is in your mouth and in your heart,”[a] that is, the message concerning faith that we proclaim: 9 If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. 10For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved.”” As well as John 3:16 “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” These are verses that the Ku Klux Klan do not preach in their sermons because in these passages there is no discrimination, no segregation, no race, only faith.The Bible’s message and the Klan’s message are completely different, and it is be impossible for them both be right let alone be the same.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Mainstream vs Extreme

The idea of mainstream vs extreme is an interesting topic when it comes to white power movments and the KKK in particular. Most people think of white natonalists as either covered in racist tattoos or in a Klan robe. Both of which are shown below:

 

Thinking about white power groups in this way is comforting for people because it makes it less frightening and more disconnected. It is reassuring to believe that you could tell a racist from miles away. The truth however is much more realistic and discomforting. Most hate crimes are done by people who are not directly connected with any white power group, while they may be influenced by them they are not part of the organization. They also look like normal people who hold down jobs, some are even in political office and support white power groups financially. These types of people are called lone wolves, most of whom will never be found because of cyber racism and hiding behind the internet and screen names which is the topic of Jessie Daniel’s book titled “Cyber Racism”. The internet is a place where anyone can say anything and for the most part get away with it. There have been very few cases of cyber racism that have ever been to court because of the freedom of speech act. I was actually able to speak with Daniels about this and it is her opinion that the free speech laws should be modified in ways that better insures the protection and rights of everyone and stops being a buffer that people can hide behind when hurting, slandering or insulting others.  

Interestingly the Klan itself is using the ideas of extremist to help better its own image in the eyes of the public. Many different sects of the Klan are taking a different tactic to segregation and white nationalism. Leaders of the Klan have declared publically that the Klan is no longer hates other races and the only reason people are in the Klan is because they love being white and their white heritage. Leaders like Thomas Robb declare that there is no more hate, and no more talk of violence, and the only people who engage in this are on the fringe and were probably acting alone. This was a video less than two years old was taken during a Ku Klux Klan rally and is just one of several showing that not all Klansman share Robb’s view. The leaders of the KKK know that it is comforting for the majority of people to think that racists are the extreme members of extreme organizations and so that is what they tell the public. Disowning actions and members who commit violent acts, however as was shown in the clip and what can be found online is the complete opposite. Members are encouraged and even charged with violence in the war for the white race. The Ku Klux Klan has two faces, one of peace and heritage, the other of hate and war, so far the actions of the members of the Klan have shown that violence and racism is not a thing of the past nor is it only on the fringes, it is a part of what the Klan is and who the Klansmen are.

Summing it all up, the truth about extreme vs mainstream racism is this: racism is all around us from stereotypes, slurs and a lack of concern shown by most people in their everyday lives. Until as a culture we are able to undo stereotypes and eliminate the daily acts of racism and ignorance that is so prevalent in society racism, violence and hatred will still exist, both in the “mainstream” and the “extreme”.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Was the KKK racist or political?

This was an interesting video because it entertains the idea that the Ku Klux Klan were less racist and more political and the only reason that black people were being killed in great numbers is because they were a part of the opposing political party. While I think that being politically opposed did contribute to the violence it was not the cause.

I believe that there were members of the Klan who were concerned about political issues and used violence to affect the outcome of elections, however there were many more who were intimidated or afraid of black people gaining power and joined the Klan and supported the Klan as a way to threaten, hurt and kill blacks to ensure that power stayed in the white race. Some evidence of this is shown even in the video ‘Birth of a Nation’ where the Klan saves the South from black people. This movie was shown in the Whitehouse and shortly thereafter all the African American people working in the Whitehouse were fired and violence against black people increased drastically. This was not the actions of people looking to win an election, for they had already won. These actions were solely to keep black people from gaining any social or political power. Jack Levin’s book “The Violence of Hate” does an excellent job at explaining this, as he puts it “competition for scarce resources often contributes to hate and prejudice between ethnic and racial groups in a society, even more likely to raise the hostility of the masses.” Otherwise put, when hard times fall upon society then people who would not normally be racist become so and those who already are become even more radical. This explains why the Klan grew to the size it did during those times, people were afraid and tried to make sure that everything stayed the same because what is familiar is comforting. The Klan made it seem like everything would stay the same as long as black people were not able to gain power. So the already existing segregation set up by people with power, fuelled by fear, enabled violence and racism to grow. 

This is not to excuse anything that was done to either whites or blacks in the name of preservation or fear, what the Klan did during that time was wrong and what is worse is the fact that so many people who cried out for freedom and their rights so easily oppressed and murdered others. However we cannot be so quick to judge the people back then because even though most people are not in white power movements like the KKK they also do nothing to stop it and worse perpetuate stereotypes and racial slurs that have an enormous impact on our culture to this day. When I comes to racism there is no such thing as a harmless bystander. If people do not doing anything to stop racism and racial stereotypes then simply by complacency they are contributing to the problem. This does not mean everyone needs to get heavily involved with anti-racism groups; it is as simple as not telling racist jokes and if your friends do inform them of the damage that it causes. If everyone did their part then racial stereotypes would die out we would be a little closer to ending racism entirely.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Thomas Robb

There have been many influential leaders of the Klan that have furthered the Klan’s ideas, power, membership and influence. Most have done so by spreading a message of hate and fear. This is why KKK leader Tomas Robb is both unique as well as influential. Tomas Robb is the current leader of the largest KKK group in America today, the Knights of the Ku Klux Klan. According to the book “White Man Falling” Robb is moving the Klan away from both hate speech and instead about the love of the white race. He tells members to be proud of being white and to have a love of the white race as every other race loves what they are as well. However behind his message there is a profound hate of the Jewish race, as he is quoted saying “I hate Jews. I hate race-mixing Jews. We’ve let anti-Christ Jews into our country and we’ve been cursed with abortion, inflation, homosexuality and the threat of war.”

Tomas Robb was born into a Baptist family in Detroit. He grew up with conservative values and it was at 13 he said he found out the “myth of the Holocaust.” While in high school he was a spokesman of segregation and excelled in English and writing.  Robb became a proficient writer and defends the Klan saying that they are harmless, gentle, upbeat, friendly and traditional, comparing hoods to ties and ceremonies as traditional and non-aggressive. Robb became a pastor preaching creationism and broadcasting Stormfront radio at his church “Christian Revival Center.” As you can see in this video he defends the movement as white people loving their heritage and having nothing to do with supremacy.                However when you look at the actions of his against people of color and then how those actions are either rewarded or looked over, it is clear that there is still a mentality of war in the Ku Klux Klan.

Robb preaches that there is currently a race war going in in America against white people. Taken from http://www.kkk.com/ the mission statement is written by Thomas Robb and states that whites are under violent attack and need to help all other whites become aware and become proud of their white heritage without the use of violence. Under the sites Party Platform page some of the topic included; the recognition that America was founded as a white Christian nation, stop all foreign aid, abolish all discriminatory affirmative action programs, drug testing for welfare recipients, repeal of all anti-gun laws and have every adult carry a weapon, and national laws against the practice of homosexuality. These propositions show a narrow far right political ideology with no room for any differing ideologies. If a person has different ideology from the Klan the argument is made that that person is either ignorant and does not have all the correct information, or that they are making war upon the white race.

 

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Racial Purity

The idea of white purity is one that all white nationalist groups hold in highest regard. The KKK is no different. To the Klan, the white race is not only superior to all other races genetically but also because God ordained it. One example of this is the Christian Identity Church. On their website (http://www.christianidentitychurch.net/our_mission.htm) their mission statement declares “Our mission here at Thomas Robb Ministries is simple.  We wish to see a restoration of Biblical principles in the lives of individuals, families, and nations.” It goes on to say “For the mission God has bestowed upon His chosen people, the white race, he requires their separation.  They must honor their heritage – not despise it. Other races must honor their heritage as well. In a well ordered world – this is God’s way.” As can be seen from this, the wording is not extreme and it does not speak of hate. It speaks more of heritage and simply alludes to the fact that whites are superior to all other races. This is a good example of the teachings of Thom Robb who is the current leader of the largest current Klan called Knights of the Ku Klux Klan. Robb urged his members to avoid hate speech, instead to use terms such as white pride, and love of the white race, instead of hate of all others. However a part of loving the white race is making sure that there is racial segregation, with no interracial relationships what so ever.

In white man falling, Abby Ferber talks in detail about the concept of white purity in relation to white nationalist groups. Interracial relationships are a treat to white identity, especially white male identity. Race mixing is viewed as the ultimate threat as the Klan put it “Mongrelization of the White race is the single greatest danger facing the world today. It is far greater threat than an atomic attack or a depression. We could make a comeback from such temporary disasters, but we could never again rebreed the White Race out of interracial mongrels.” As you can see, the greatest fear is that the white race will be ‘tainted’ by interracial relationships. Along with this fear goes the belief that white women are the most beautiful and need the protection of white men. There is a mentality that they white race is going extinct and need to be protected and whites need to only marry whites and also all non-married whites need to marry white people and reproduce. This is just one of many videos that show that mentality.

In conclusion, the Klan believes that the white race is endangered and needs to be protected. That race mixing is genocide and whites are the only pure race. White women and children are a rare thing and need white men to protect them from the desire of the other races. This is a boiled down version of why they believe in segregation and even though their message is not as clear cut as I am describing it, the motive behind the Klan’s attempt at segregation is as I have described.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Stetson Kennedy

I was reading an article in the New York Times about Stetson Kennedy. Kennedy died on August 27th 2011 at the age of 94. In the 1940s and 1950s he was very influential in revealing secrets about the clan and wrote a book originally called “I rode with the Klu Klux Klan” later it was renamed “The Klan Unmasked.” http://www.nytimes.com/2011/08/29/us/29kennedy.html?ref=kukluxklan

Stetson felt like it was every person’s job to fight racism and while most of his friends were fighting in WWII he decided to do his part in the fight by exposing the Klan. Once he infiltrated the KKK he worked with the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, the Anti-Defamation League and a columnist from the Washington post named Drew Pearson. With the information he was able to supply, at no small risk to his personal health and wellbeing the Internal Revenue Service was able to collect an outstanding debt of $685,000 from the Klan as well as giving the State of Georgia the information it needed to revoke the Klan’s national corporate charter.  He testified in the federal court about the Klan not allowing Blacks to vote in elections and gave evidence connecting the Klan to several bombings including the targeting of Catholic and Jews centers in Miami.  http://www.nytimes.com/2011/08/30/us/30kennedy.html?ref=kukluxklan

During his time undercover Stetson leaked information to the radio show “superman” which used real passwords and locations on the show causing great frustration and time consuming restructuring among the Klan. http://www.supermansupersite.com/radio.html His involvement with the Klan did not come without price. His family disowned him and as quoted by him “they have still not spoken to me in 40 or 50 years.” He lost many friends and marriages to what he believed were the best way to fight racism.

While his work is without question some of the most effective in regards to shining a light on the Klan, later in life he was criticized for exaggerating some of the work done in his book and also for taking credit for stories and/or experiences that were not his own. When asked about it he simply said “It was hardly a cover-up, I’ve been doing this for too many decades to owe anybody much of an apology.” Once a reporter came to him and stated that he was starting to lose his fire he replied “my last words will be my most militant.” http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mr9S3crx9Lc&feature=player_detailpage He contended writing into his 90s and remains one of the most influential people to becoming involved in the fight against racism.

Mr. Kennedy you will be greatly missed.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

The KKK According to Stormfront

I wanted to see how the KKK was viewed by other white nationalists and so I went to Stormfront, the most popular of white nationalist websites. What was talked about most on the website was not hate; it was rights ritual and heritage. http://www.stormfront.org/forum/t752520/. The Klan is trying to rebuild it membership and on one of the blogs they talk about how for the first time in 50 years a cross burring ceremony was made public and how if that can pass without too much of a public outcry then maybe they can start to do more and more.

Much of the website is focused on recruitment and ways in which to donate. To help in this effort popular antigovernment slogans are pasted all over the site such as Political correctness means:
1) I will not display leadership
2) I do not care enough about my future, or my childrens’ future to do what is right
3) I do not have enough confidence to stand up and be counted
4) I will be a victim, rather than a victor.

and

A newspaper has three things to do. One is to amuse, another to entertain, and the rest is to mislead.

The recruitment pages were from all different parts of the country and some from other countries such as England. http://www.stormfront.org/forum/t178449/

One topic that reoccurs throughout is the watching or getting information from the TV. It is something that is warned against because it is all controlled by the Jews and shows all white nationalists in the worst possible light. http://www.stormfront.org/forum/t531362/. Many members give email addresses or links to different white nationalist sites and tell people if they have any questions about the real Klan to go there.

Most of the rest of the rest of the blogs concerning the KKK have to do with news updates and threads for common ideology. In conclusion this website showed that just in the KKK membership is growing all across America, some in a group and others not affiliated with any group, what they call “lone wolf.” http://www.stormfront.org/forum/t673463/ 

 For me this showed how much all white nationalists stick together, even if they don’t always agree with one another they put aside their differences in order to further the white race. While some dislike the Klan for their sometimes extreme violence or views, most members support them. White power groups are not something of the past and we need to be aware that white nationalist movements are becoming bolder and gaining more members daily.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

History of the Klan

http://www.history.com/videos/the-kkk?paidlink=1&vid=HIS_SEM_Search&keywords=history%2Bof%2Bthe%2Bkkk&utm_source=google&utm_medium=cpc&utm_campaign=kkk&utm_term=history%20of%20the%20kkk#the-kkk

The history of the KKK is very interesting. It did not start as a white supremacist group, but rather as a fraternity formed by six confederate Civil War veterans in 1865. (Ferber)

The club engaged in mostly horseplay including dressing up and riding horses around town causing fear among many members of the Black community. The membership quickly grew into the thousands and in just a few short years the Klan was a strong force that believed that freed Blacks and White sympathizers were a danger. They gathered together to set ground rules and establish leaders and broke into several different organizations all with the same belief that Blacks were inferior and needed to be controlled. (KKK History) http://www.adl.org/learn/ext_us/kkk/history.asp?LEARN_Cat=Extremism&LEARN_SubCat=Extremism_in_America&xpicked=4&item=kkk

 Between 1867 and 1871 the Klan members became violent whipping, torturing and murdering Black people, so that be the time the Jim Crow laws emerged the public’s view of the Klan was overwhelmingly positive. (Ferber) The Klan grew typical feelings of being oppressed and victims of a corrupt system, which fuelled their violence and hatred. The clan became more and more violent until 1869 when the original leader Nathan Forrest disbanded the Klan and most followed suit, the remaining being forced to by federal troops. (KKK History)

The Klan was revied in 1915 by William J. Simmons following the movie “Birth of a Nation”. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a9UPOkIpR0A. This came at a time where immigration into the U.S. was becoming a more pressing matter and so the American people viewed the revival of the KKK as the saving of the nation. The Klan vowed to protect the nation during WWI and by 1921 there were over 100,000 members, 40,000 of which marched, in robes, on Washington in 1924. Many political members joined the clan including judges, senators, congressmen, governors and even future President Harry Truman. However by the great depression numerous sexual and fanatical scandals committed by the clan’s leadership left the KKK with dwindling numbers and fragmented factions, and stayed this way for decades. http://www.history.com/topics/ku-klux-klan

Although the Klan gained more support and power during the 1970s and 1980s today it is still separated into various groups and is nowhere  

near the strength it amassed in its earlier days. Today the Klan has adopted several Christian symbols and themes and for the sake of recruiting presents itself in a better light doing things like adopt a highway. The leaders also encourage the members to stop using racist speech and promote “national pride” and a “love of the white race.” However the KKK is still a racist white nationalist group that is out rightly anti-Semitic, immigration and anti-homosexual while more subtlety standing against all the “mud people” who try and weaken the white race. (Ferber)

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

What this blogs about

My name is Josiah Nelson, this blog is going to cover the white power group known as the Ku Klux Klan or the KKK. I will be discussing their history, their rise into power as the most influential white nationalist group all the way up to the present day where I will talk about why today many other white nationalist groups disagree with and disapprove of the Klan’s policies in modern times.

 

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment