White supremacist propaganda in US greater than doubled in 2019: ADL


Incidents of white supremacist propaganda distributed throughout the nation jumped by greater than 120 % between 2018 and final 12 months, in keeping with the Anti-Defamation League, making 2019 the second straight 12 months that the circulation of propaganda materials has greater than doubled.

The Anti-Defamation League’s Center on Extremism reported 2,713 circumstances of circulated propaganda by white supremacist teams, together with fliers, posters and banners, in contrast with 1,214 circumstances in 2018. The printed propaganda distributed by white supremacist organisations contains materials that immediately spreads messages of discrimination in opposition to Jews, LGBT folks and different minority communities – but additionally objects with their prejudice obscured by a give attention to gauzier pro-America imagery.


The sharp rise in circumstances of white supremacist propaganda distribution final 12 months follows a soar of greater than 180 % between 2017, the primary 12 months that the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) tracked materials distribution, and 2018. While 2019 noticed circumstances of propaganda circulated on faculty campuses nearly double, encompassing 433 separate campuses in all however seven states, researchers who compiled the info discovered that 90 % of campuses solely noticed one or two rounds of distribution.

Oren Segal, director of the ADL’s Center on Extremism, pointed to the prominence of extra subtly biased rhetoric in among the white supremacist materials, emphasising “patriotism”, as an indication that the teams are trying “to make their hate more palatable for a 2020 audience”.

By emphasising language “about empowerment, without some of the blatant racism and hatred”, Segal stated, white supremacists are using “a tactic to try to get eyes onto their ideas in a way that’s cheap, and that brings it to a new generation of people who are learning how to even make sense out of these messages.”‘

Patriot Front

The propaganda incidents tracked for the ADL’s report, set for launch on Wednesday, embody 49 states and occurred most frequently in 10 states: California, Texas, New York, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Ohio, Virginia, Kentucky, Washington and Florida.

Last 12 months’s hovering circumstances of distributed propaganda additionally got here because the ADL discovered white supremacist teams holding 20 % fewer occasions than in 2018, “preferring not to risk the exposure of pre-publicised events,” in keeping with its report. That marks a shift from the notably seen public presence that white supremacist organisations mounted in 2017, culminating in that summer season’s Charlottesville, Virginia, rally the place a white supremacist drove right into a crowd of counterprotesters, killing 32-year-old Heather Heyer.

About two-thirds of the whole propaganda incidents within the new report have been traced again to a single white supremacist group, Patriot Front, which the Anti-Defamation League describes as “formed by disaffected members” of the white supremacist organisation Vanguard America after the Charlottesville rally.

White Supremacy

Students rally in opposition to white supremacy at Syracuse University in New York [Maranie Staab/Reuters] 

The Anti-Defamation League, based in 1913 to fight anti-Semitism and different biases, has tracked Patriot Front propaganda utilizing messages resembling “One nation against invasion” and “America First”. The report back to be launched Wednesday discovered that Patriot Front performed a significant function final 12 months in boosting the circulation of white supremacist propaganda on campuses by way of a push that focused schools initially of the varsity 12 months.

Segal stated his group’s analysis can equip neighborhood leaders with training that helps them push again in opposition to white supremacist teams’ messaging efforts, together with distribution geared toward college students.

University directors, Segal stated, ought to converse out in opposition to white supremacist messaging drives, taking the chance “to demonstrate their values and to reject messages of hate that may be appearing on their campus.”

Several instructional establishments the place stories of white supremacist propaganda have been reported in latest months did simply that. After white supremacist materials was reported on campus at Brigham Young University in November, the varsity tweeted that it “stands firmly against racism in any form and is committed to promoting a culture of safety, kindness, respect and love”.

The college went on to tweet a particular rejection of white supremacist sentiment as “sinful” by its proprietor, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, with out naming the identification of the group behind the propaganda.

While among the propaganda catalogued within the Anti-Defamation League’s report makes use of oblique messaging in service of a bigoted agenda, different teams’ exercise is extra brazenly threatening in the direction of Jews and minority teams. The New Jersey European Heritage Association, a smaller white supremacist group based in 2018, “contains numerous anti-Semitic tropes and refers to Jews as ‘destroyers'” in its most up-to-date distributed flyer, in keeping with the report.

The ADL’s on-line monitoring of propaganda distribution is distinct from its monitoring of white supremacist occasions and assaults, and that monitoring doesn’t embrace undistributed materials resembling graffiti, Segal defined.