Archive for the ‘bigotry’ Category

SPLC Intelligence Report Profiles 30 Leaders of the Rising Radical Right

July 5, 2012 Comments off

SPLC Intelligence Report Profiles 30 Leaders of the Rising Radical Right
Source: Southern Poverty Law Center

Extremists leading a powerful resurgence of the American radical right are pushing baseless conspiracy theories and demonizing propaganda about minority groups into the mainstream, according to the latest issue of the SPLC’s Intelligence Report, released today.

Thirty key leaders of the radical right, both longtime agitators and newcomers, are profiled in the report. These extremists – including anti-government activists, racist neo-Nazis and propagandists who promote falsehoods about Muslims and the LGBT community – are making headway by exploiting anger over the nation’s ailing economy, non-white immigration and the shrinking white majority.

Intelligence Report — Racist Skinheads: Understanding the Threat

June 28, 2012 Comments off

Intelligence Report — Racist Skinheads: Understanding the Threat (PDF)
Source: Southern Poverty Law Center

Racist skinheads are among the most dangerous radical-right threats facing law enforcement today. The products of a frequently violent and criminal subculture, these men and women, typically imbued with neo-Nazi beliefs about Jews, blacks, homosexuals and others, are also notoriously difficult to track. Organized into small, mobile “crews” or acting individually, skinheads tend to move around frequently and often without warning, even as they network and organize across regions. For law enforcement, this poses a particular problem in responding to crimes and conspiracies crossing multiple jurisdictions. As these extremists extend their reach across the country, it is vital that law enforcement officers who deal with them become familiar with the activities of skinheads nationwide.

What follows is an examination of the history and nature of the skinhead movement, prepared with the needs of law enforcement officers in mind, a glossary of common skinhead terms, a timeline, and a gallery of insignias and tattoos commonly used by racist skinheads.

The Relationship Between Immigration and Nativism in Europe and North America

May 21, 2012 Comments off
Source:  Migration Policy Institute
In Greece, neo-Nazi anti-immigrant party Golden Dawn made unanticipated gains in last week’s parliamentary elections and France’s nationalist National Front made a strong showing in the first round of the presidential election in April. In the Netherlands and Belgium, far-right parties have launched websites inviting the public to report crimes allegedly committed by unauthorized immigrants. And the Dutch coalition government collapsed last month after the nationalist party of anti-immigration politician Geert Wilders quit budget talks.

As far-right parties across Europe capture headlines and in some cases shape government policy, significant confusion remains about the nature of their public support and how closely it is rooted in xenophobic feelings. While immigration is thought to be a major factor fueling the rise of the European far right, a new Migration Policy Institute (MPI) report finds that although there clearly is a relationship, the connection is not as straightforward as is often assumed.

In The Relationship Between Immigration and Nativism in Europe and North America, political scientist Cas Mudde examines the electoral performance of far-right parties in Europe and North America since 1980, noting that only a handful have had moderate electoral success (defined as gaining 15 percent of the vote or better in two or more elections.)

Disentangling the role played by immigration – particularly at a time of economic austerity, high unemployment and rising skepticism in some quarters about the European Union – is a complex proposition.

Gay Men Report High Rates of Hate-Motivated Physical Violence

May 18, 2012 Comments off
Source:  Williams Institute
According to a new study from the Williams Institute, gay men face higher rates of hate-motivated physical violence than lesbians, bisexuals or other federally protected groups with high rates of hate crimes. This finding is especially troubling given prior research has shown that sexual orientation-motivated hate crimes tend to be more violent.
Among the research findings, 26 in 100,000 gay men reported being victims of hate-motivated crimes against persons, compared to 10 in 100,000 lesbians, 5 in 100,000 African Americans, and 5 in 100,000 Jewish Americans. Gay men also face the second highest risk of being victims of hate-motivated property crime (9 in 100,000 gay men). Further, reporting of such hate crimes is likely under represented since data reflect only those who report such crimes to local law enforcement, who then choose whether to report the data to the FBI.
Although prior research has suggested that lesbians, gay men, and bisexuals, Jews, and African Americans experience similar levels of overall victimization, this study is the first to demonstrate that when lesbians, gay men, and bisexuals are considered separately, gay men experience more hate crimes.

Full Report

The Rationality of Prejudices

March 14, 2012 Comments off

The Rationality of Prejudices
Source: PLOS ONE

We model an -player repeated prisoner’s dilemma in which players are given traits (e.g., height, age, wealth) which, we assume, affect their behavior. The relationship between traits and behavior is unknown to other players. We then analyze the performance of “prejudiced” strategies—strategies that draw inferences based on the observation of some or all of these traits, and extrapolate the inferred behavior to other carriers of these traits. Such prejudiced strategies have the advantage of learning rapidly, and hence of being well adapted to rapidly changing conditions that might result, for example, from high migration or birth rates. We find that they perform remarkably well, and even systematically outperform both Tit-For-Tat and ALLD when the population changes rapidly.

The Year in Hate and Extremism 2011

March 9, 2012 Comments off

The Year in Hate and Extremism 2011Source: Southern Poverty Law Center
From press release:

The American radical right grew explosively in 2011, a third consecutive year of extraordinary growth that has swelled the ranks of extremist groups to record levels, according to a report issued today by the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC). The rise was led by a stunning expansion of the antigovernment “Patriot” movement.

“The dramatic expansion of the radical right is the result of our country’s changing racial demographics, the increased pace of globalization, and our economic woes,” said Mark Potok, senior fellow at the SPLC and editor of the new report.

“For many extremists, President Obama is the new symbol of all that’s wrong with the country – the Kenyan president, the secret Muslim who is causing our country’s decline,” Potok said. “The election season’s overheated political rhetoric is adding fuel to the fire. The more polarized the political scene, the more people at the extremes.”

Many Americans are enraged by what they see as America’s decline, and opportunistic politicians have done their best to stoke those fears and demonize President Obama in the process. For some, the prospect of four more years under the country’s first black president also is an infuriating reminder that non-Hispanic whites will lose their majority in this country by 2050.

The SPLC report details the growth of hate groups to a record 1,018 in 2011, up from 1,002 the year before and the latest in a series of increases going back more than a decade. But the dramatic growth came in the Patriot movement, which is composed of armed militias and other conspiracy-minded organizations that see the federal government as their primary enemy. These groups saw their numbers skyrocket for the third straight year in 2011, this time by 55 percent – from 824 in 2010 to 1,274 groups last year. In 2008, just before the Patriot movement took off, there were 149 Patriot groups, a number that metastasized to 512 in 2009.

In all, Patriot groups have increased by 755 percent during the first three years of the Obama administration. Their number has now surpassed – by more than 400 groups – the previous all-time high set in 1996, when the first wave of the militia movement peaked shortly after the Oklahoma City bombing that left 168 people dead.

New SPLC Report Finds Growing Hostility, Discrimination Against Latinos in Wake of Alabama’s Anti-Immigrant Law

March 4, 2012 Comments off

New SPLC Report Finds Growing Hostility, Discrimination Against Latinos in Wake of Alabama’s Anti-Immigrant Law
Source: Southern Poverty Law Center

Latinos in Alabama have experienced harassment, hardship and discrimination, regardless of their immigration status, as a result of the state’s anti-immigrant law, HB 56, and the xenophobic climate it has created, according to a report released today by the SPLC.

The report – Alabama’s Shame: HB 56 and the War on Immigrants – features stories told by Latinos from across Alabama. They describe being cheated out of wages, being denied medical treatment and facing a growing hostility since the passage of HB 56. The report calls for the law’s repeal, citing evidence that it attacks the basic human dignity of all Latinos.

“The people in this report are the mothers, fathers and children living under a law that has given a nod and a wink to the worst prejudices harbored by some residents,” said SPLC Legal Director Mary Bauer, author of the report. “If lawmakers are unwilling to repeal HB 56 – knowing this is the type of misery they have created – we can only assume they intended to inflict this cruelty all along.”

The SPLC has challenged the law in federal court and will present oral arguments on March 1 before the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Atlanta.

+ Full Report

Allegations of Misconduct and Illegal Discrimination and Retaliation in the Federal Air Marshal Service

February 8, 2012 Comments off

Allegations of Misconduct and Illegal Discrimination and Retaliation in the Federal Air Marshal Service (PDF)Source: U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Office of Inspector General

In January 2010, CNN reported allegations of misconduct and illegal employment discrimination and retaliation in the Federal Air Marshal Service’s Orlando field office. The reports included descriptions of an agency rife with cronyism; age, gender, and racial discrimination; and unfair treatment in promotions, assignments, and discipline. Also included were photographs of a game board modeled after the television show “Jeopardy!” created and displayed by supervisors there, with categories containing derogatory nicknames referring to veterans, females, African Americans, Hispanics, and lesbians and gays. Senator Bill Nelson and Congressmen Edolphus Towns and Darrell Issa asked us to review the allegations in Orlando and throughout the agency as well as the circumstances surrounding the game board.

Although individual employees may have experienced discrimination or retaliation, our review does not support a finding of widespread discrimination and retaliation within the Federal Air Marshal Service. However, employees’ perceptions of discrimination and retaliation are extensive, and we heard too many negative and conflicting accounts of events to dismiss them. Many Federal Air Marshals and some supervisors think they have been discriminated against, fear retaliation, and believe there is much favoritism. There is a great deal of tension, mistrust, and dislike between non-supervisory and supervisory personnel in field offices around the country. We identified factors that contributed to strained relations and became the basis for the allegations. Limited transparency in management decisions is also at the center of fears of retaliation and perceptions that management is mistreating its workforce.

These issues pose a difficult challenge for the agency, but they do not appear to have compromised the service’s mission. Transportation Security Administration and Federal Air Marshal Service senior leadership are committed to addressing these issues and have implemented several proactive initiatives to address them. We are making several recommendations to help the agency mitigate these issues.

See also: Spotlight: Department of Homeland Security, Office of Inspector General (PDF)

Hate Crimes against the Homeless: Violence Hidden in Plain View

January 25, 2012 Comments off

Hate Crimes against the Homeless: Violence Hidden in Plain View (PDF)
Source: National Coalition for the Homeless

In the past twelve years (1999-2010), the National Coalition for the Homeless (NCH) has documented one thousand, one hundred eighty-four acts of violence against homeless individuals by housed perpetrators. These crimes are believed to be motivated by the perpetrators’ bias against homeless individuals or their ability to target homeless people with relative ease. The documented violence includes everything from murder to beatings, rapes, and setting people on fire. Hate Crimes against the Homeless: Violence Hidden in Plain View is the twelfth annual report documenting violence against homeless persons.

The violence continues, and with twenty-four known deaths, 2010 ranks in the top-five deadliest years for attacks on homeless people in a decade, and with one hundred thirteen attacks, ranks as the fourth most violent year since NCH began tracking the violence in 1999. NCH has found startling data in the number and severity of attacks. However, the reports also acknowledge that since the homeless community is treated so poorly in our society, many more attacks go unreported. Hate crimes against the homeless community is a growing wave in need of public attention.

  • 1,184 reported acts of bias motivated violence have been committed against homeless individuals between 1999-2010.
  • 312 homeless individuals lost their lives as a result of the attacks
  • Reported violence has occurred in 47 states, Puerto Rico, and Washington, DC

Our data also suggests that the perpetrators of these attacks tend to be young men and teenage boys. In the twelve year history of our hate crime reports, the vast majority of the attacks against homeless people have been committed by youth as young as nine years old.

GLSEN Releases Groundbreaking Study of Bias, Bullying and Homophobia in Grades K-6

January 20, 2012 Comments off
Source:  Gay, Lesbian & Straight Education Network (GLSEN)
The Gay, Lesbian & Straight Education Network (GLSEN) today released a new report on school climate, biased remarks and bullying, Playgrounds and Prejudice: Elementary School Climate in the United States. The report, based on national surveys of 1,065 elementary school students in 3rd to 6th grade and 1,099 elementary school teachers of K-6th grade, examines students’ and teachers’ experiences with biased remarks and bullying, and their attitudes about gender expression and family diversity. The surveys were conducted by Harris Interactive on behalf of GLSEN during November and December 2010.
“School climate and victimization can affect students’ educational outcomes and personal development at every grade level,” said GLSEN Executive Director Eliza Byard. “Playgrounds and Prejudice offers invaluable insights into biased remarks and bullying in America’s elementary schools. The report also shows the need for elementary schools to do more to address issues of homophobia, gender expression and family diversity.”

Full Report (PDF)

Bigots on Bikes: The Growing Links Between White Supremacists and Biker Gangs

December 13, 2011 Comments off
Source:  Anti-Defamation League

Key Findings

  • Growing connections. In recent years, there have been growing connections between outlaw motorcycle gangs and white supremacists. Increased connections between the two movements can expand their respective recruiting pools and lead to increased criminal activity, from hate crimes to organized crime.
  • Cultural overlaps. Overlaps between the outlaw biker subculture and the white supremacist subculture make it easier for members of both movements to interact with each other and facilitate the forming of connections between them. these overlaps include similar symbols and language, as well as shared practices.
  • Increasing crossover. Cross-membership is becoming increasingly common—racist bikers may be attracted to white supremacy, while some white supremacists may be attracted to the mystique and power of motorcycle gangs. Sometimes outlaw motorcycle gangs and white supremacist groups may even cooperate or associate with each other on a group level; these include both social and criminal connections.
  • New white supremacist biker groups. Finally, in recent years a number of explicitly white supremacist biker gangs have emerged across the country. though small in membership, they represent a disturbing new trend that may pose even more problems should their numbers grow.

2010 Audit of Anti-Semitic Incidents

October 6, 2011 Comments off

2010 Audit of Anti-Semitic Incidents
Source: Anti-Defamation League

The Anti-Defamation League’s annual Audit of Anti-Semitic Incidents recorded 1,239 anti-Semitic incidents across the United States in 2010, which represents a 2.3% increase over 2009.

These included:

  • 22 physical assaults on Jewish individuals;
  • 900 cases of anti-Semitic harassment, threats and events;
  • 317 cases of anti-Semitic vandalism.

This slight increase in incidents shows that anti-Semitism in the U.S. remains unacceptably high. From assaults to online hate content, from vandalism to harassment, the U.S. is far from immune to the world’s oldest hatred. Taken together with the fact that anti-Semitism routinely appears in online environments, the 2010 ADL Audit of Anti-Semitic Incidents demonstrates that anti-Semitism is a serious, persistent and ingrained phenomena in America.

The 2010 Audit comprises incidents from 45 states and the District of Columbia, including official crime statistics as well as information provided to ADL’s regional offices by victims, law enforcement offices and community leaders and members.

Fair Housing Report Demonstrates HUD’s Efforts to End Housing Discrimination

September 2, 2011 Comments off

Fair Housing Report Demonstrates HUD’s Efforts to End Housing Discrimination
Source: U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development

A report released today by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) shows that the agency is resolving individual housing discrimination complaints faster, increasing its focus on complaints that affect multiple people, and launching more investigations using its authority to initiate cases on behalf of discrimination victims where no one has filed a complaint. HUD’s Annual State of Fair Housing Report also illustrates how the agency is helping municipalities and state and local agencies receiving HUD funding to comply with civil rights requirements and holding non-compliant recipients accountable.

More than 10,000 fair housing discrimination complaints were filed in fiscal year 2010, according to the report. Discrimination based on a person’s disability continued to be the largest single category of complaints. Of the 10,155 complaints filed with HUD and its Fair Housing Assistance Program partner agencies, 48 percent alleged disability discrimination, 34 percent alleged discrimination based on race, and 15 percent alleged discrimination based on family status – consistent with the number and type of complaints received during the previous three years.

The report shows that in fiscal year 2010, HUD and its Fair Housing Assistance Program partner agencies processed 4,494 new complaints within 100 days, 328 more than in 2009 and 583 more than in 2008. The report also shows that HUD proactively pursued its own Secretary-initiated investigations, charging four and conciliating eight cases that developed from such investigations, and launching another 10 such investigations.

+ Full Report (PDF)

SPLC Report: Campus Group has History of Associating with Racist Leaders, Espousing Racist Beliefs

August 12, 2011 Comments off

SPLC Report: Campus Group has History of Associating with Racist Leaders, Espousing Racist Beliefs
Source: Southern Poverty Law Center

A student group that claims to defend “Western civilization” and is hosting its first national conference this week in the Washington, D.C., area, has a history of associating with racist ideologues and espousing racist beliefs, according to a report issued today by the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC).

The report describes how Youth for Western Civilization (YWC) has frequently participated in racist circles and promoted racist beliefs despite claims that it’s not a racist group. The group has allowed a notorious white supremacist organization to raise funds for it; one of its top officials was arrested in a violent racist attack; and its officials have invited racist extremists to speak and in turn addressed hate groups themselves. At least one YWC member has met with and spoken to right-wing extremist groups overseas.

Yet YWC, which has chapters on at least nine college campuses and some 1,600 followers on Facebook, hopes to become a national force following its first national conference beginning Friday in Washington.

+ Full Report

Police-reported hate crime in Canada, 2009

July 2, 2011 Comments off

Police-reported hate crime in Canada, 2009
Source: Statistics Canada

The composition of Canada’s cultural, social, linguistic and religious population is rapidly changing. Between the two most recent census years (2001 and 2006), for example, the proportion of visible minorities in Canada grew 27% while those whose mother tongue was neither French nor English rose 18% (Statistics Canada 2008). Over the same period, the number of same-sex couples, including legally married and common-law partners, increased 33% (Milan, Vézina and Wells 2009). Furthermore, between 1991 and 2001, Canada’s religious make-up changed, with some of the largest increases among those who reported Muslim, Hindu, Sikh and Buddhist denominations (Statistics Canada 2003).

With such diversity in the country, discrimination or bias can arise (Boeckmann and Turpin-Petrosino 2002). Some of these incidents may occur in the form of hate crimes, defined as criminal offences motivated by hate towards an identifiable group. Hate crimes may target race, colour, national or ethnic origin, religion, sexual orientation, mental or physical disability, language, sex, age, or any other similar factor (such as profession or political beliefs).

The importance of collecting data on hate crimes has been recognized throughout the world. According to the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe, 47 of 56 participating countries across North America, Europe and Asia compile at least some data on hate crimes (OSCE 2010). In Canada, data on hate crimes are collected by Statistics Canada via the Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Survey.

Hate Crime, 2003-2009

June 20, 2011 Comments off

Hate Crime, 2003-2009
Source: Bureau of Justice Statistics

Presents annual counts and rates of hate crime victimizations that occurred between 2003 and 2009, using data from the National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS). This report examines the victim’s suspicions about the type of bias that motivated the crime and the evidence that suggests the crime was motivated by hate. It compares hate crime victimizations to nonhate crime victimizations, with detailed information about the type of crime, whether the incident was reported to the police, and characteristics of the incident, offender, and victim. Estimates based upon the NCVS are supplemented by data from official police reports of hate crime from the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Hate Crime Statistics Program.

Highlights include the following:

  • From 2003 to 2009, the rate of violent hate crime victimizations in the United States decreased from 0.8 per 1,000 persons age 12 or older to 0.5 per 1,000.
  • In nearly 90% of hate crime victimizations occurring between 2003 and 2009, the victim suspected the offender was motivated by racial or ethnic prejudice or both.
  • An average of 195,000 hate crime victimizations occurred each year from 2003 to 2009.

+ Full Report (PDF)

Persecution Perpetuated: The Medieval Origins of Anti-Semitic Violence in Nazi Germany

June 7, 2011 Comments off

Persecution Perpetuated: The Medieval Origins of Anti-Semitic Violence in Nazi Germany
Source: Social Science Research Network

How persistent are cultural traits? This paper uses data on anti-Semitism in Germany and finds continuity at the local level over more than half a millennium. When the Black Death hit Europe in 1348-50, killing between one third and one half of the population, its cause was unknown. Many contemporaries blamed the Jews. Cities all over Germany witnessed mass killings of their Jewish population. At the same time, numerous Jewish communities were spared. We use plague pogroms as an indicator for medieval anti-Semitism. Pogroms during the Black Death are a strong and robust predictor of violence against Jews in the 1920s, and of votes for the Nazi Party. In addition, cities that saw medieval anti-Semitic violence also had higher deportation rates for Jews after 1933, were more likely to see synagogues damaged or destroyed in the ‘Night of Broken Glass’ in 1938, and their inhabitants wrote more anti-Jewish letters to the editor of the Nazi newspaper Der Stürmer.

U.S. Hate Groups Top 1,000

February 26, 2011 Comments off

U.S. Hate Groups Top 1,000
Source: Southern Poverty Law Center

The number of active hate groups in the United States topped 1,000 for the first time and the antigovernment “Patriot” movement expanded dramatically for the second straight year as the radical right showed continued explosive growth in 2010.

Several factors fueled the growth: resentment over the changing racial demographics of the country, frustration over the lagging economy, and the mainstreaming of conspiracy theories and other demonizing propaganda aimed at minorities and the government.

The report is in the Spring 2011 issue of the SPLC’s quarterly investigative journal Intelligence Report. The Hate Map also contains a comprehensive, state-by-state listing of hate groups and their locations.


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 363 other followers