Archive for the ‘Alt-right’ Category

Journalist says she was the target of an ‘alt-right’ lynch mob – PRI

It all started with a column.

On Jan. 30, Rosa Brooks wrote an editorial in Foreign Policy magazine speculating about what would happen if Donald Trump actually went insane. She mused that Trump could be impeached, or that he could be removed by the vice president and the cabinet. “And then at the very end of the column, I said there’s something I always assumed was unthinkable in this country, which is the military refusingto obey orders, or even a coup. But for the first [time] in my life, I could imagine a scenario where that actually happens, and that’s frightening.”

At first, nothing happened. But then a few days after the column came out, she boarded a plane from Washington, DC,to Houston. Everything was quiet when she got on the plane. “But I got off, and I had hundreds and hundreds of new tweets and emails. And I thought, ‘What the heck happened?'”

Breitbart News the website pandering to the “alt-right” and white supremacists previously run by Steve Bannon, now Donald Trump’s top political adviser had run a story about her column, called “Ex-Obama Official Suggests Military Coup Against Trump.”Soon, conspiracy-oriented outlets from InfoWars to white supremacist websites likeDaily Stormer claimed she was threatening the violent overthrow of the USgovernment.

“I swear I wasn’t actually planning a coup!” she says.

Still, the hate mail flowed in. She was bombarded with obscene, racistand violent tweets, callsand emails. One email warned, “I AM GOING TO CUT OFF YOUR HEAD … BITCH.” Other messages threatened to shoot her, hang her, deport herand imprison her.

At first, Brooks says she downplayed the threats. “I thought, ‘Oh, OK. So you get a bunch of crazy people who have nothing better to do than sit down and send you nasty emails. So what else is new?'”

But then she remembered theshooting at Comet Ping Pong in December.

Comet Ping Pong restaurant was the target of fake news stories saying it was harboringa child sex ring run by Hillary Clinton. “Everybody including myself said, ‘Oh that’s so silly. Nobody could possibly believe that. It’s just goofy,” recalls Brooks. But a North Carolina man read the story and stormed the pizzeria with a military-style assault rifle. Brooks says events like that make it harder to dismiss the threats against her as hot air.”That kind of incident is sobering. It only takes one crazy person to take silly crazy internet rumors seriously to create a real danger.”

Brooks concedes online harassment of journalists is nothing new. Over the years, Brooks says she’s received plenty of hate mail. But something feels different now.

With Trump and Bannon in the White House, Brooks says she’s no longer confident that journalists are safe from government crackdowns.”When you have a president in the White House who feels free to go make personal attacks on federal judges, foreign leaders, etc. … it does start feeling like all bets are off.”

At the end of the day, Brooks says journalists must not be intimidated into silence. “My biggest fear is that people will stop speaking truth.”

Brooks, who wrote her own column about the experience, promises to redouble her efforts to ask the hard questions, have uncomfortable conversationsand challenge executive overreach.

“We do have a set of really important Constitutional norms in this country. And we’re seeing them challenged from the White House itself in a very public way. And that’s scary, and we have to call it scary,” Brooks says. “Pushing back against treating this as if it’s just normal is really, really important for all of us to do.”

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Journalist says she was the target of an ‘alt-right’ lynch mob – PRI

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February 8, 2017   Posted in: Alt-right  Comments Closed

JK Rowling Has Been Roasting Alt-Right Trolls and it’s Glorious – Forward

In case you missed it, J.K. Rowling has been absolutely killing it on Twitter.

When the Harry Potter author isnt busy giving her take on Donald Trump or retweeting powerful messages on Holocaust Memorial Day, shes going to toe-to-toe with alt-right trolls.

Case in point: Rowlings response to a user with a Pepe the Frog avatar (the signature alt-right symbol) calling her Mrs. Shitty Writer (burn)

Rowling took the comment in stride, writing: sighs Well, who knows? If I try harder, I might be reincarnated as a lonely virgin hiding behind a cartoon frog.

One user commented back in jest wondering if Rowling had beef with all virgins, to which the author quickly clarified her position.

Unless theyre sublimating their frustration in alt-right politics, I wish every one of them fulfilment and happiness

She then wrote back to another avatar-masked troll, who accused her of hiding behind a fictional dweeb ass child.

Unless youre actually a hooded chihuahua, Im pretty sure I win on the not hiding front. I quite like old whore, though. #Shakespearean, Rowling wrote.

Keep at it, J.K., keep at it.

Thea Glassman is an Associate Editor at the Forward. Reach her at glassman@forward.com or on Twitter at @theakglassman.

The Forward’s independent journalism depends on donations from readers like you.

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JK Rowling Has Been Roasting Alt-Right Trolls and it’s Glorious – Forward

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Reddit Co-Founder Alexis Ohanian on Trump’s ‘Muslim Ban,’ Deleting the Alt-Right, and the Internet’s Future – Daily Beast

The Mayor of the Internet has spoken. And he is deeply unhappy with President Trumpnamely, with the commander-in-chiefs recent executive order banning immigrants from seven Muslim-majority countries, a controversial decision that has sparked protests at airports around the country, and led to the unprincipled detainment of the elderly, infirm, and even children.

On Feb. 1st, Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian, who sits on the board of the aggregation and discussion site boasting approximately 280 million users, posted an open letter to the Reddit community about Trumps immigration ban.

President Trumps recent executive order is not only potentially unconstitutional, but deeply un-American, the letter read. As many of you know, I am the son of an undocumented immigrant from Germany and the great grandson of refugees who fled the Armenian GenocideWithout them, theres no me, and theres no Reddit. We are Americans. Lets not forget that weve thrived as a nation because weve been a beacon for the courageousthe tired, the poor, the tempest-tossed. Right now, Lady Libertys lamp is dimming, which is why its more important than ever that we speak out and show up to support all those for whom it shinespast, present, and future.

Ohanians post soon went viral, attracting over 1 million unique visitors and 1 million votes, making it one of the highest-scoring Reddit blog posts ever. The 33-year-old wrote the letter after returning from witnessing his fiance, sports legend Serena Williams, win the Australian Open. And then, after generating headlines for his letter and dedicated performance as sideline cheerleader, the popular site created plenty more when it chose to ban three alt-right forums for violating their content policy. Though the site calls itself the front page of the internet and is home to many positive forums (or subreddits), it has also served as a breeding ground for the so-called alt-right: a community of lonely-boy shitposters turned white nationalists.

The Daily Beast spoke to Ohanian about these recent developments.

What inspired you to share your story and speak out against President Trumps executive order on immigration?

I was out of the country for the last two weeks [at the Australian Open] so I missed the inauguration, and I missed the first couple of weeks of the presidency. I felt pretty disconnected. Id been talking to friends, family, and consuming social media, but it was when I was lying back that I really thought about the country I was going back to. And with all the news around the immigration ban, I just felt like I would be such a hypocrite if I did not say something. On my fathers side Im descended from immigrants, one of whom was a Syrian refugee from the Armenian genocide, and my mother was an immigrant from Germany whose visa had expired and, for a year and change, was undocumented here in the U.S. Im grateful that she was not deported, and Im grateful that this country opened its doors to my family, and its the reason Im here, and its the reason Reddit can be here. I knew that, and I knew that I wouldnt be okay with myself if I didnt say something.

When I landedthis was one of those international flights where you get excited because theres Wi-Fi, but the Wi-Fi is so bad that you cant actually use itand started catching up on emails, the executive team at Reddit was talking about a post on Monday (this was now Sunday), and I suggested that perhaps mine could work in addition to an official Reddit statement. Everyone seemed pretty excited about that. I suppose I could have published it other places, but Reddit is the home of conversation online. There was a suggestion by one of our other execs that posting it and making a call to action for other stories would generate a ton of people telling their own story or their familys story, and sure enough thousands of people came through and delivered on this. It was really heartwarming. And those stories from the comments have been shared, and reposted, and talked about. There are stories that are far more inspirational, moving, and even funnier than mine, and they are American stories.

They truly are. This is a country of immigrants, founded by immigrants.

It is the story of this country: people who came here for some reason, and were able to make the country as great as it is. Tech, as an industry, has obviously benefitted from so many immigrants over the years, and so many amazing companies have been founded by immigrantsor the children of immigrantsso we know how important this is, as an industry. In the face of what seems like a daily dose of something new that catches us off-guard, its been really heartening to see. All of us now, just a couple of weeks in, are still very curious to see where this goes, because it really doesnt seem like theres a precedent for this. Thats why its going to be so important for people to talk about these things. If this election taught us anything, its that we need more discussionand not within echo chambers, but in communities where we dont normally venture.

Weve learned some things about this executive order. The Trump administration has tried to talk around it, but as Rudy Giuliani confirmed, this does seem to be a Muslim ban, and theres been quite a bit of disinformation concerning it. The administration initially said it only affected 109 people, but now weve learned that anywhere between 60,000 and 100,000 visas were affected. How troubling is that, for you? The deluge of misinformation coming out of the administration thus far?

It all seems very frenetic, and I think thats where its going to be more important for us to use technology, as we have it, and obviously the media has a really important role to play hereto make sure that were finding out and getting to the bottom of what is happening. This has become such a polarizing time in our country, and I want to believeI really, really want to believethat this experiment will continue to improve and continue to evolve (this experiment being our country). And even when there are times that I feel like we are making steps backwards, I do feel that the trend overall is forwards. I think we have to be vigilant right now, and I think that technology can really help us. All of us who are here are trying to figure out how we can keep this trending in the right direction, and it just comes down to more discussion, more understanding, and hopefully more empathy.

What are your thoughts on the #DeleteUber campaign in the wake of Trumps executive order on immigration that resulted in Uber CEO Travis Kalanick quitting Trumps advisory council, as well as an estimated 200,000 people deleting the app?

Every company is going to be taking a different approach to these issues. Overall, Im really proud of how the tech industry has been aligned in defending the very people who have built this industry, and one of the benefits of the age we live in now is your usersyour customershave a platform to help them let you know in real time how they feel. I know what our priorities are with Reddit, and as I said in my letter to the community, Reddit would not exist without immigrants. Apple, Intel, Tesla, etc. as well. As a nation its been our unfair advantage, and I hope that it continues to be.

OK but Uber did break a taxi strike. What do you actually think about Ubers actions in the wake of the executive order? They turned off surge pricing about midway through the strike, but did not honor the strike.

You know, I missed a lot of that as it was happening in real time, but I have seen Travis [Kalanick] resign, and that right there, like I said, is a reflection of audience, or is a reflection of a community and a user base whose voice was clearly heard by it in response to everything that [Uber] was doing.

Lets discuss the shutting down of three alt-right forums on Reddit. I enjoy browsing Reddit, but I recognize that at the same time, this is a place where the alt-right organized. Why did you choose to delete the forums, and how do you feel about the presence of what many would consider a hate group in the alt-right on Reddit?

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One of the first things that Steve [Huffman, co-founder] and I did when we came back a couple of years ago was update the content policy. This provides rules of the road for the whole site. There are hundreds of thousands of communities, those communities are managed by volunteer moderators, and then once we had the rules of the road, we created a trust and safety team of Reddit employees who would then enforce them. So when moderators or users run astray, we have a whole policy that decides how we would temporarily ban them, or if we outright ban them theres a whole set of procedures that are in place. And at what point would we eventually shut down a community for violating the policy? What happened last week is an example of that all working. This is our trust and safety team enforcing a violation of our content policy regarding personal informationdoxxing is the shorthand for itbut basically, these communities continue to violate our policy, and we shut them down.

Now, there are communities among the hundreds of thousands that I find awful, that I disagree with. Were having monthly policy reviews to make sure that were continuing to trend in the right direction overall with the policies we have, and how to enforce them. Theres never been a platform of 280 million people all sharing hundreds of thousands of communities, and many, many discussions and conversations. So we are constantly looking to make sure to be the way we want to be. The best metric that we have right now is, any piece of content on Reddit can be reported by another user for being a violation, an infraction, harassment, etc., and that is every message, every comment, every post. That user base of 280 million, 99.98% of the time, has no reports by another user. Were constantly trying to push that 0.02% of reports down to zero, but thats one of our strongest barometers to see the temperature of the content across the platform.

Wheres the line between free speech and hate speech? There are many positive groups on Reddit, of course, but theres also r/Nazi, r/altright, and other subreddits that primarily deal in hate speech. So where do you draw the line?

Well, our goal here is for Reddit to be a global home of conversation. What makes Reddit special is that people feel free to express themselves. Where we want to draw the line is where that feeling of being able to express oneself freely starts to infringe on someone feeling like they can express themselves. This is not a bright and clear line; this is something were continuing to look at, and continuing to discuss internally, because at the end of the day, our goal is to be worldwide. Our goal is to have anyone on this planet feel like they can find their homes on Reddit for whatever their passions, hobbies, or loves are, and to find people with whom they share common groundand then hopefully learn a few things about people with whom they dont. Thats what guides us.

One of the more bizarreand fascinatingcharacters in the Trump administration is Peter Thiel. Have you had any interactions with this guy, and what do you think of his role within the administration?

Im probably the worst Silicon Valley insider ever. I dont hang out with Silicon Valley people. Im in a long-distance relationship [with Serena Williams], so I usually spend my weekends wherever my fiance is. I dont run in Peter Thiels circles, and I have shockingly little insight into his role within the administration. Everything I know is just based on what I read on Reddit.

Another figure is Steve Bannon. Im sure youre familiar with Breitbart. Its concerning to many that Bannon, who ran a site like Breitbart, which hes called a platform for the alt-right, is the presidents right-hand man. And then you have Infowars, which the presidents appeared onand has repeated several of its unfounded conspiracy theories. These bogus sites seem to be gaining legitimacy because of Trump, and now people dont know where to turn for real or fake news.

Well, I grew up walking by checkout lanes and seeing racks and racks and racks of what people would consider fake newsabout UFOs abducting werewolvesand I think the difference now is, in a digital age, any resource, whether its some random bloggers musings and clickbait-y headline or a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist, they all are on essentially a level playing field in a sense that anyone can access them in an open internet as equally as any other. I think this is an overall positive thingthat information can be accessed equallybecause there are many people for whom knowledge used to be a giant barrier where people who had it kept it away. The challenge now is providing those tools and those resources for people to make the best decision possible. I do genuinely believe that, when given and presented with all the information and all the actual facts, the vast majority of people will make the right choice. Thats why right now its really, really important for us to be pushing on those facts. So far, the administration seems to be playing it fast and loose with a lot of things. The hope is that all the folks who voted the president into officeand all the folks who didntall equally appreciate truth. I think thats a pretty reasonable assumption. And for the folks who want to muddy that, thats where we have to shine our lights of truth even brighter.

Are you worried, given how corporate this administration is and how much of a fan of censorship it appears to be, about the freedom of the internetnet neutralityunder the Trump administration?

Yeah. You know, the new FCC head definitely has my eyebrows raised. But you know what? This is just now one part of a lot of things that we have to be paying attention to. Even back when we defeated SOPA and PIPA, and even back when we got that victory for Title II, we knew this was a consistent, ongoing thing. A lot of it, frankly, is education. A lot of it is the fact that there are digital natives and digital non-nativesnot the best word for it, admittedlyand we have a lot of people in office who are not digital natives, and historically our industry has not done the best job of educating about technology. I think thats our opportunity. We have a lot of people who are very well-intentioned, and Ive seen it firsthand: when you sit down with them and take time to explain to them why an open and free internet is good for American society and American business, once they see that presented to them, and were doing it as people who just genuinely want to help explain the situation, things ended up going pretty well. With the new administration, no matter whos going to be taking over, there was going to have to be a new dialogue, and a new discussion. And this is the new one.

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Reddit Co-Founder Alexis Ohanian on Trump’s ‘Muslim Ban,’ Deleting the Alt-Right, and the Internet’s Future – Daily Beast

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Richard Spencer, alt-right leader, celebrates Super Bowl win by ‘NFL’s Whitest Team’ – Washington Times


Washington Times
Richard Spencer, altright leader, celebrates Super Bowl win by 'NFL's Whitest Team'
Washington Times
Altright ringleader Richard Spencer sent a series of racially tinged tweets on Sunday night following the New England Patriots' Super Bowl win over the Atlanta Falcons. In his messages, he attributed the team's success to its comparative whiteness and …
The AltRight Appropriates Patriots WinYahoo News
Alt Right's Richard Spencer Calls Patriots Victory a Win for the 'White Race'Eurweb.com
White Nationalist Richard Spencer Revels in Patriots' Super Bowl VictoryBoston magazine (blog)

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Richard Spencer, alt-right leader, celebrates Super Bowl win by ‘NFL’s Whitest Team’ – Washington Times

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How Breitbart Turned Tom Brady Into an Alt-Right Hero – Vanity Fair

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No alt treatment for the alt-right – Duke Chronicle

Opinion By Editorial Board | Sunday, February 5

Last Wednesday, a fiery pother erupted on the University of California, Berkeleys campus in response to the planned appearance of the inflammatory conservative editor Milo Yiannopoulos. Angry that Yiannopoulos had been allowed on campus, masked agitators infiltrated a protest against his speech and turned it violent, throwing rocks at police and breaking windows in what was deemed by the Berkeley College Republicansthe group that invited Yiannopoulosas the killing of free speech. The ordeal was shameful for all parties involved, but especially for liberals trying to regain respect after devastating electoral losses last November.

Contrary to the expressed feelings of some, it is not a crazy idea that the Berkeley Republicans would have sought to bring Yiannopoulos to campus. Although he is widely viewed as a far-right bomb thrower, his movementthe so-called alt-righthas been legitimized as a force in politics through the rise of President Donald Trump. Representing the alt-right through speakers on campuses is, perhaps, an educational necessity.

To be sure though, Yiannopoulos is a strange character to choose for a group looking to show off the positive sides of the alt-right movement. A blatant racist and sexist, he has espoused views that are despicable to most college students. In his mind, the number of female STEM students ought to be capped, gay people ought to get back in the closet and Muslims ought to be banned from the west. And although all of that is hugely objectionable, it doesn’t justify banning him from campus. What does make Yiannopoulos worth banning (and the general test that those who utter hate speech should be held against) is that he has repeatedly instigated his cultish followers to target people he does not agree with. Time after time, hes shown that he is willing to single out individual victims to be the focus of his vitriol, knowing fully well that doing so could cause them serious harm. In December 2015, he persuaded his Twitter followers to harass actress Leslie Jones, ultimately leading to her deleting her account. A year later, he singled out a transgender student on the University of Wisconsins campus and urged a crowd to mock her appearance. Both instances cross the line of free speech and make it clear that Yiannopoulos is not simply a race-baiting provocateur, but is someone who purposefully harms others and thus isnot worthy of the honor of speaking on a campus. If the Berkeley College Republicans truly wanted to bring in a speaker from the alt-right, they ought to have opted for a standard-bearer like Tomi Lahren or Stephen Millerboth equally alt-righty, but neither threatening to the safety of others.

It would, of course, be ridiculous to blame Yiannopoulos and the Berkeley Republicans for the entire brouhaha. The reactions of agitated protesters cannot be condoned. Their decision to fight fire with fire only legitimized claims that the left is terrified of free speech and is hypocritical in its calls for rule of law in the country. This was a cut-and-dry case where violence was clearly not the answer, and bygiving into their emotions and abusing them, protesters failed their cause.

Although we strongly hold that Berkeley student protesters were just in the cause of their protest against vile racist and sexist beliefs, we equally strongly condemn the masked marauders who infiltrated their protest and turned it violent. Nothing is ever built on fire, whether the flames are of the burning, hateful rhetoric of Milo Yiannopoulos or the literal conflagrations set by protesters.

The Chronicle is your source for Duke news, sports, culture and dialogue.

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Responding To Anti-Semitism In The Age Of The ‘Alt-Right’ – Huffington Post

Two weeks ago, a man wearing a swastika armband showed up twice on our university campus. Citing his First Amendment right to freedom of speech, Michael Dewitz, 34, questioned the Holocaust and extolled the Nazi party, seemingly well aware that authorities could legally do nothing to obstruct him.

Coincidentally or not, his unwelcome visits happened to fall during the week of International Holocaust Remembrance Day, a day the United Nations designated to commemorate the victims of the genocide that resulted in the murder of over six million Jews, along with homosexuals, disabled people, and other groups the Nazis deemed undesirable.

Alan Alvarez / The Independent Florida Alligator

That same day, President Trump provoked anger within the Jewish community when he signed an executive order banning Syrian refugees from entering the United States, evoking memories of Jewish refugees turned away from U.S. shores during World War II, and then proceeded to issue a statement regarding Holocaust Remembrance Day which failed to mention Jews or anti-Semitism at alla move later endorsed by white supremacist Richard Spencer.

Last week, the latest in a series of ongoing bomb threats were called in to Jewish Community Centers in Albany, N.Y.; Syracuse, N.Y.; West Orange, N.J.; Milwaukee, Wis.; San Diego, Calif.; and Salt Lake City, UT. The centers were evacuated, and though the threats were deemed not to be credible after the fact, that did not quench the feelings of intense vulnerability and uneasiness that lingered.

Over the weekend, Chicago authorities released a surveillance video of a man smashing the front window of a synagogue and placing swastika stickers on the front door. In Houston, Rice University campus police launched an investigation after a swastika was drawn on the base of a school statue. In Manhattan, passengers on a subway car witnessed anti-Semitic graffiti, including swastikas and the phrases Jews belong in the oven and Destroy Israel, Heil Hitler, scribbled with Sharpie over advertisements and windows. As passengers sat in uncomfortable silence, one brave man announced that the alcohol in hand sanitizer could remove Sharpie. Promptly, passengers searched their pockets for sanitizer and tissues, and proceeded to scrub away the hate-filled messages.

Photo by Gregory Locke

These instances are only the most recent in a long list of hate crimes that have been targeting the Jewish community. The Federal Bureau of Investigation reported that of the 1,402 victims of anti-religious hate crimes reported in the United States in 2015, 52.1 percent were victims of crimes motivated by anti-Jewish bias. Based on the dramatic spike in hate crimes following the recent presidential election, there is reason to suspect the 2016 figures will be even higher.

Some people find these statistics hard to swallow for several reasons. Just as there are still those who think racism is a specter of the past because America elected a black president, some look to Jewish individuals who have risen to positions of prominence and influence and conclude that anti-Semitism died with Hitler. Moreover, there is often a conflation of race with ethnicity, nationality, and religion when it comes to defining Jewish identity, which is complex and far from monolithic. Some inaccurately assume that all Jews are of Eastern European descent and neatly fit into the paradigm of whiteness. In reality, Jews are predominantly an ethnoreligious people, and we can be found across a wide and diverse racial and ethnic spectrum. We are proud members of Black, Asian, and Latinx communities. In Israel, where a majority of Jews hail from across the Middle East and Northern Africa, Jews of color are the norm.

However, in the United States, where a majority of Jews are of Eastern European ancestry and tend to be fairer in complexion, it is sometimes difficult for some to comprehend the legacy of fiery hatred and discrimination that these white Jews have themselves faced at the hands of white supremacist groups. To truly understand anti-Semitism, one cannot look through the lens of race-based discrimination alone. This insidious form of bigotry goes beyond racism and colorism, affecting Jews of all races and hues. Even light-skinned Jews with blonde hair and blue eyes were targeted for extermination by Hitler and his mass-murdering Nazi regime. Of the Jewish refugees aboard the S.S. St. Louis who were cast away from the shores of the United States and sent back to their untimely deaths in Europe, the majority were from Germany and other predominantly white European countries.

Associated Press

Anti-Semitism at its core is based on conceptions of ethnoreligious, cultural and nationalistic otherness. Thus, we have historically seen such prejudice manifested through the depiction of Jews as Christ-killers; as greedy, swindling shysters; as all-powerful, sinister puppet masters of media and politics; as inherently disloyal citizens incapable of true assimilation.

We often hear chants of Never Again from within the Jewish community. Our generation has grown up hearing first-hand the personal accounts of Holocaust survivors, and we are all too aware that we will likely be the last. Some of us within the community are descendants of Holocaust survivors, carrying the anguish of those who came before us in our genes, allowing them to live their lives through us. As survivors are dying out, we have promised to pass on their stories. We have taken the words of Elie Wiesel to heart: When you listen to a witness, you become a witness. But now, less than one hundred years after the Holocaust, we see warning signs that Never Again is already happening. In Europe, anti-Semitism is once again thriving. Moreover, Rwanda, Darfur, Bosnia, and Kosovo stand as shameful stains on the hands of history, attesting to the fact that the possibility of genocide is ever-present.

Despite isolated incidents, the United States has more or less been a haven for our people since the end of World War II. For many American Jews, this has been the only home we have known. Thus, these increasing incidents of unfounded hatred are profoundly disconcerting.

For decades, American Jews have stood alongside other marginalized groups as allies. In the 1960s, we marched in the Civil Rights Movement. Today, we stand alongside our brothers and sisters proclaiming Black Lives Matter. We position ourselves on the ground among those at Standing Rock. We advocate for LGBTQ rights, womens rights, and Muslim rights. Many Jewish organizations like the Anti-Defamation League, originally constructed with the purpose of fighting anti-Semitism following World War II, have since expanded their mission to encompass all forms of bigotry. Perhaps due to our own collective trauma, social justice runs through our veins, heeding us to stand up to injustice anywhere as a threat to justice everywhere. Otherwise, Never Again will be nothing more than a hollow slogan.

Photo by Wilson Dizard (SOURCE: http://mondoweiss.net/2016/08/hundreds-lives-matter)

Now as anti-Semitism again rears its ugly head, we reach out to those with whom we have stood, and with whom we continue to stand, asking you to stand also with us, to show up on our behalf, to not be silent or indifferent to our struggle. Just as non-Jewish residents of Billings, Mont., placed menorahs in their windowsills during Hanukkah in 1993 to demonstrate their solidarity with the Jewish community following waves of anti-Semitism, we need allies today who will rise up, who will refuse to let their citiesor even their subwaysbe overrun by hatred, who will place figurative menorahs in their windowsills, allowing the collective light to drive away the darkness of discrimination. Most importantly, we need our generation to know that the Holocaust and its symbols, far from being mere relics of the past, continue to bear witness today, serving as reminders of what can happen to any minority group subjected to bigotry. The hatred fueling the fires that consumed so many of our ancestors was never fully extinguished.

When hatemongers like Michael Dewitz and Richard Spencer like to hide behind the free speech protections of the First Amendment, they ought to be reminded that the First Amendment does not protect them from private actors exercising their free speech rights to call them outloudlyon their bullshit. When Dewitz arrived on our campus for the second time two weeks ago, we were encouraged to see the outpouring of students and faculty members rallying against him in protest.

Over the next four years, as the political climate grows more hostile, as hate groups are emboldened, as civil rights activists and lawyers launch the fight of their lives to uphold liberty and justice for all, we pray that these words from our tradition guide us together along the way:

Standing on the parted shores, we still believe what we were taught before ever we stood at Sinais foot; that wherever we go, it is eternally Egypt; that there is a better place, a promised land; that the winding way to that promise passes through the wilderness. That there is no way to get from here to there except by joining hands, marching together.

Lauren Levy, 3L, and Yuval Manor, 1L, are law students at the University of Florida Levin College of Law. Lauren is the current President of the UF Jewish Law Students Association. Yuval Manor, an Israeli-American, is a third-generation descendant of Holocaust survivors.

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Editorial: ‘Alt-right’ movement isn’t conservatism – Tyler Morning Telegraph

The Associated Press is the best kind of a self-correcting news agency. But its not infallible. Because its a distributed news organization – more precisely, many news organizations that have come together in an association – it can police many of its own members errors.

And thats why its important to talk about the APs representation of the alt-right. The phrase has become very, very important lately, with the ascension of Steve Bannon (of Breitbart News) to White House adviser, and even closer to home, with the appearance last week of some fliers around town allegedly touting an alt- right groups ideology.

The AP has some guidelines that are misleading about the alt-right.

Whenever alt-right is used in a story, be sure to include a definition: an offshoot of conservatism mixing racism, white nationalism and populism, or, more simply, a white nationalist movement, the AP says.

But thats inaccurate.

As we are sure the AP would agree, words mean things. And conservatism has a clear meaning. Its an ideology with tenets that include limited government, personal freedom, free markets and the rule of law.

The alt-right holds to none of those things. The AP is more accurate when it goes into a more lengthy description of the movement.

The movement has been described as a mix of racism, white nationalism and populism, the AP reports.

How, then, is it an offshoot of conservatism? Its not. One of the best analyses of the alt-right movement comes from Robert Tracinski in The Federalist.

This alt-right agenda is not really part of the right because it is thoroughly collectivist in a vile and personal way, Tracinski explains. It says that your most personal, individual, deeply meaningful decisions – such as whom you marry and have children with – should be determined by some larger social program based on group identity. Thats why they are openly opposed to free markets in favor of economic nationalism: this is an anti-freedom, anti-individualist movement.

Nor is the alt-right movement a defense of Western civilization, as it sometimes claims.

The central theme of the Western intellectual tradition is about rising above tribalism to arrive at universal values, Tracinski writes. Thats a common theme that connects both secular and Christian traditions in the West. It was the whole distinctive idea behind the Ancient Greek revolution in thought. Philosophers like Socrates launched the Western tradition by asking probing questions that were meant to sort out which ideas and practices are based merely on historical accident and social convention, versus those that are based on universal laws of human nature.

The alt-right movement isnt alone in its errors, of course.

As Tracinski points out, Yes, of course the left does it, too. They have their own racist theories dressed up under the heading of identity politics. So what? Your mom told you the answer to this when you were 5: two wrongs dont make a right.

The Associated Press must be more careful. The alt-right movement is in no way an offshoot of conservatism. Just ask conservatives – who are its frequent targets.

Continued here:

Editorial: ‘Alt-right’ movement isn’t conservatism – Tyler Morning Telegraph

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‘Alt-right’ is not all right – Green Bay Press Gazette

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Letter to the editor 10:03 a.m. CT Feb. 6, 2017

Old typewriter(Photo: Getty Images/iStockphoto)

GREEN BAY – It is difficult to read a newspaper today without seeing a reference to the alt-right; an expression most of us had never heard a year ago. New words are developed all the time; helicopter parent and frenemy are prime examples. Most new words simply make it easier to express ourselves, but there is something much more sinister about the usage of alt-right.

White nationalist Richard Spencer coined the term alt-right in 2010, it first came into common usage through its use by Breitbart News chair Steve Bannon, now White House chief strategist for Donald Trump.

The term alt-right is used to refer to groups that formerly were called white supremacists, Neo-Nazis, KKK, or racists. On the evening news we see rallies with people giving the Nazi salute, chanting Sieg Heil and Hail Trump, and they are referred to as alt-right rather than neo-Nazis.

In some cases the press intentionally uses the expression to sanitize racist behavior, but many times I think the expression is used because it is just too horrifying to fathom that our president could not have been elected without the support of the most extreme racist groups, and that Trump has a white supremacist, Steve Bannon, as his chief strategist.

I dont know whether Trump is a racist, but he did everything possible to woo the racist vote; from Obama-birther, Mexican rapists, to radical Islamic terrorists.

I am calling on the press to reject the words alt-right; they misrepresent something that is truly evil.

Charles Frisk

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‘Alt-right’ is not all right – Green Bay Press Gazette

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Journalist says she was the target of an ‘alt-right’ lynch mob – PRI

It all started with a column. On Jan. 30, Rosa Brooks wrote an editorial in Foreign Policy magazine speculating about what would happen if Donald Trump actually went insane. She mused that Trump could be impeached, or that he could be removed by the vice president and the cabinet. “And then at the very end of the column, I said there’s something I always assumed was unthinkable in this country, which is the military refusingto obey orders, or even a coup. But for the first [time] in my life, I could imagine a scenario where that actually happens, and that’s frightening.” At first, nothing happened. But then a few days after the column came out, she boarded a plane from Washington, DC,to Houston. Everything was quiet when she got on the plane. “But I got off, and I had hundreds and hundreds of new tweets and emails. And I thought, ‘What the heck happened?'” Breitbart News the website pandering to the “alt-right” and white supremacists previously run by Steve Bannon, now Donald Trump’s top political adviser had run a story about her column, called “Ex-Obama Official Suggests Military Coup Against Trump.”Soon, conspiracy-oriented outlets from InfoWars to white supremacist websites likeDaily Stormer claimed she was threatening the violent overthrow of the USgovernment. “I swear I wasn’t actually planning a coup!” she says. Still, the hate mail flowed in. She was bombarded with obscene, racistand violent tweets, callsand emails. One email warned, “I AM GOING TO CUT OFF YOUR HEAD … BITCH.” Other messages threatened to shoot her, hang her, deport herand imprison her. At first, Brooks says she downplayed the threats. “I thought, ‘Oh, OK. So you get a bunch of crazy people who have nothing better to do than sit down and send you nasty emails. So what else is new?'” But then she remembered theshooting at Comet Ping Pong in December. Comet Ping Pong restaurant was the target of fake news stories saying it was harboringa child sex ring run by Hillary Clinton. “Everybody including myself said, ‘Oh that’s so silly. Nobody could possibly believe that. It’s just goofy,” recalls Brooks. But a North Carolina man read the story and stormed the pizzeria with a military-style assault rifle. Brooks says events like that make it harder to dismiss the threats against her as hot air.”That kind of incident is sobering. It only takes one crazy person to take silly crazy internet rumors seriously to create a real danger.” Brooks concedes online harassment of journalists is nothing new. Over the years, Brooks says she’s received plenty of hate mail. But something feels different now. With Trump and Bannon in the White House, Brooks says she’s no longer confident that journalists are safe from government crackdowns.”When you have a president in the White House who feels free to go make personal attacks on federal judges, foreign leaders, etc. … it does start feeling like all bets are off.” At the end of the day, Brooks says journalists must not be intimidated into silence. “My biggest fear is that people will stop speaking truth.” Brooks, who wrote her own column about the experience, promises to redouble her efforts to ask the hard questions, have uncomfortable conversationsand challenge executive overreach. “We do have a set of really important Constitutional norms in this country. And we’re seeing them challenged from the White House itself in a very public way. And that’s scary, and we have to call it scary,” Brooks says. “Pushing back against treating this as if it’s just normal is really, really important for all of us to do.”

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JK Rowling Has Been Roasting Alt-Right Trolls and it’s Glorious – Forward

In case you missed it, J.K. Rowling has been absolutely killing it on Twitter. When the Harry Potter author isnt busy giving her take on Donald Trump or retweeting powerful messages on Holocaust Memorial Day, shes going to toe-to-toe with alt-right trolls. Case in point: Rowlings response to a user with a Pepe the Frog avatar (the signature alt-right symbol) calling her Mrs. Shitty Writer (burn) Rowling took the comment in stride, writing: sighs Well, who knows? If I try harder, I might be reincarnated as a lonely virgin hiding behind a cartoon frog. One user commented back in jest wondering if Rowling had beef with all virgins, to which the author quickly clarified her position. Unless theyre sublimating their frustration in alt-right politics, I wish every one of them fulfilment and happiness

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Reddit Co-Founder Alexis Ohanian on Trump’s ‘Muslim Ban,’ Deleting the Alt-Right, and the Internet’s Future – Daily Beast

The Mayor of the Internet has spoken. And he is deeply unhappy with President Trumpnamely, with the commander-in-chiefs recent executive order banning immigrants from seven Muslim-majority countries, a controversial decision that has sparked protests at airports around the country, and led to the unprincipled detainment of the elderly, infirm, and even children. On Feb. 1st, Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian, who sits on the board of the aggregation and discussion site boasting approximately 280 million users, posted an open letter to the Reddit community about Trumps immigration ban. President Trumps recent executive order is not only potentially unconstitutional, but deeply un-American, the letter read. As many of you know, I am the son of an undocumented immigrant from Germany and the great grandson of refugees who fled the Armenian GenocideWithout them, theres no me, and theres no Reddit. We are Americans. Lets not forget that weve thrived as a nation because weve been a beacon for the courageousthe tired, the poor, the tempest-tossed. Right now, Lady Libertys lamp is dimming, which is why its more important than ever that we speak out and show up to support all those for whom it shinespast, present, and future. Ohanians post soon went viral, attracting over 1 million unique visitors and 1 million votes, making it one of the highest-scoring Reddit blog posts ever. The 33-year-old wrote the letter after returning from witnessing his fiance, sports legend Serena Williams, win the Australian Open. And then, after generating headlines for his letter and dedicated performance as sideline cheerleader, the popular site created plenty more when it chose to ban three alt-right forums for violating their content policy. Though the site calls itself the front page of the internet and is home to many positive forums (or subreddits), it has also served as a breeding ground for the so-called alt-right: a community of lonely-boy shitposters turned white nationalists. The Daily Beast spoke to Ohanian about these recent developments. What inspired you to share your story and speak out against President Trumps executive order on immigration? I was out of the country for the last two weeks [at the Australian Open] so I missed the inauguration, and I missed the first couple of weeks of the presidency. I felt pretty disconnected. Id been talking to friends, family, and consuming social media, but it was when I was lying back that I really thought about the country I was going back to. And with all the news around the immigration ban, I just felt like I would be such a hypocrite if I did not say something. On my fathers side Im descended from immigrants, one of whom was a Syrian refugee from the Armenian genocide, and my mother was an immigrant from Germany whose visa had expired and, for a year and change, was undocumented here in the U.S. Im grateful that she was not deported, and Im grateful that this country opened its doors to my family, and its the reason Im here, and its the reason Reddit can be here. I knew that, and I knew that I wouldnt be okay with myself if I didnt say something. When I landedthis was one of those international flights where you get excited because theres Wi-Fi, but the Wi-Fi is so bad that you cant actually use itand started catching up on emails, the executive team at Reddit was talking about a post on Monday (this was now Sunday), and I suggested that perhaps mine could work in addition to an official Reddit statement. Everyone seemed pretty excited about that. I suppose I could have published it other places, but Reddit is the home of conversation online. There was a suggestion by one of our other execs that posting it and making a call to action for other stories would generate a ton of people telling their own story or their familys story, and sure enough thousands of people came through and delivered on this. It was really heartwarming. And those stories from the comments have been shared, and reposted, and talked about. There are stories that are far more inspirational, moving, and even funnier than mine, and they are American stories. They truly are. This is a country of immigrants, founded by immigrants. It is the story of this country: people who came here for some reason, and were able to make the country as great as it is. Tech, as an industry, has obviously benefitted from so many immigrants over the years, and so many amazing companies have been founded by immigrantsor the children of immigrantsso we know how important this is, as an industry. In the face of what seems like a daily dose of something new that catches us off-guard, its been really heartening to see. All of us now, just a couple of weeks in, are still very curious to see where this goes, because it really doesnt seem like theres a precedent for this. Thats why its going to be so important for people to talk about these things. If this election taught us anything, its that we need more discussionand not within echo chambers, but in communities where we dont normally venture. Weve learned some things about this executive order. The Trump administration has tried to talk around it, but as Rudy Giuliani confirmed, this does seem to be a Muslim ban, and theres been quite a bit of disinformation concerning it. The administration initially said it only affected 109 people, but now weve learned that anywhere between 60,000 and 100,000 visas were affected. How troubling is that, for you? The deluge of misinformation coming out of the administration thus far? It all seems very frenetic, and I think thats where its going to be more important for us to use technology, as we have it, and obviously the media has a really important role to play hereto make sure that were finding out and getting to the bottom of what is happening. This has become such a polarizing time in our country, and I want to believeI really, really want to believethat this experiment will continue to improve and continue to evolve (this experiment being our country). And even when there are times that I feel like we are making steps backwards, I do feel that the trend overall is forwards. I think we have to be vigilant right now, and I think that technology can really help us. All of us who are here are trying to figure out how we can keep this trending in the right direction, and it just comes down to more discussion, more understanding, and hopefully more empathy. What are your thoughts on the #DeleteUber campaign in the wake of Trumps executive order on immigration that resulted in Uber CEO Travis Kalanick quitting Trumps advisory council, as well as an estimated 200,000 people deleting the app? Every company is going to be taking a different approach to these issues. Overall, Im really proud of how the tech industry has been aligned in defending the very people who have built this industry, and one of the benefits of the age we live in now is your usersyour customershave a platform to help them let you know in real time how they feel. I know what our priorities are with Reddit, and as I said in my letter to the community, Reddit would not exist without immigrants. Apple, Intel, Tesla, etc. as well. As a nation its been our unfair advantage, and I hope that it continues to be. OK but Uber did break a taxi strike. What do you actually think about Ubers actions in the wake of the executive order? They turned off surge pricing about midway through the strike, but did not honor the strike. You know, I missed a lot of that as it was happening in real time, but I have seen Travis [Kalanick] resign, and that right there, like I said, is a reflection of audience, or is a reflection of a community and a user base whose voice was clearly heard by it in response to everything that [Uber] was doing. Lets discuss the shutting down of three alt-right forums on Reddit. I enjoy browsing Reddit, but I recognize that at the same time, this is a place where the alt-right organized. Why did you choose to delete the forums, and how do you feel about the presence of what many would consider a hate group in the alt-right on Reddit? Thank You! You are now subscribed to the Daily Digest and Cheat Sheet. We will not share your email with anyone for any reason One of the first things that Steve [Huffman, co-founder] and I did when we came back a couple of years ago was update the content policy. This provides rules of the road for the whole site. There are hundreds of thousands of communities, those communities are managed by volunteer moderators, and then once we had the rules of the road, we created a trust and safety team of Reddit employees who would then enforce them. So when moderators or users run astray, we have a whole policy that decides how we would temporarily ban them, or if we outright ban them theres a whole set of procedures that are in place. And at what point would we eventually shut down a community for violating the policy? What happened last week is an example of that all working. This is our trust and safety team enforcing a violation of our content policy regarding personal informationdoxxing is the shorthand for itbut basically, these communities continue to violate our policy, and we shut them down. Now, there are communities among the hundreds of thousands that I find awful, that I disagree with. Were having monthly policy reviews to make sure that were continuing to trend in the right direction overall with the policies we have, and how to enforce them. Theres never been a platform of 280 million people all sharing hundreds of thousands of communities, and many, many discussions and conversations. So we are constantly looking to make sure to be the way we want to be. The best metric that we have right now is, any piece of content on Reddit can be reported by another user for being a violation, an infraction, harassment, etc., and that is every message, every comment, every post. That user base of 280 million, 99.98% of the time, has no reports by another user. Were constantly trying to push that 0.02% of reports down to zero, but thats one of our strongest barometers to see the temperature of the content across the platform. Wheres the line between free speech and hate speech? There are many positive groups on Reddit, of course, but theres also r/Nazi, r/altright, and other subreddits that primarily deal in hate speech. So where do you draw the line? Well, our goal here is for Reddit to be a global home of conversation. What makes Reddit special is that people feel free to express themselves. Where we want to draw the line is where that feeling of being able to express oneself freely starts to infringe on someone feeling like they can express themselves. This is not a bright and clear line; this is something were continuing to look at, and continuing to discuss internally, because at the end of the day, our goal is to be worldwide. Our goal is to have anyone on this planet feel like they can find their homes on Reddit for whatever their passions, hobbies, or loves are, and to find people with whom they share common groundand then hopefully learn a few things about people with whom they dont. Thats what guides us. One of the more bizarreand fascinatingcharacters in the Trump administration is Peter Thiel. Have you had any interactions with this guy, and what do you think of his role within the administration? Im probably the worst Silicon Valley insider ever. I dont hang out with Silicon Valley people. Im in a long-distance relationship [with Serena Williams], so I usually spend my weekends wherever my fiance is. I dont run in Peter Thiels circles, and I have shockingly little insight into his role within the administration. Everything I know is just based on what I read on Reddit. Another figure is Steve Bannon. Im sure youre familiar with Breitbart. Its concerning to many that Bannon, who ran a site like Breitbart, which hes called a platform for the alt-right, is the presidents right-hand man. And then you have Infowars, which the presidents appeared onand has repeated several of its unfounded conspiracy theories. These bogus sites seem to be gaining legitimacy because of Trump, and now people dont know where to turn for real or fake news. Well, I grew up walking by checkout lanes and seeing racks and racks and racks of what people would consider fake newsabout UFOs abducting werewolvesand I think the difference now is, in a digital age, any resource, whether its some random bloggers musings and clickbait-y headline or a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist, they all are on essentially a level playing field in a sense that anyone can access them in an open internet as equally as any other. I think this is an overall positive thingthat information can be accessed equallybecause there are many people for whom knowledge used to be a giant barrier where people who had it kept it away. The challenge now is providing those tools and those resources for people to make the best decision possible. I do genuinely believe that, when given and presented with all the information and all the actual facts, the vast majority of people will make the right choice. Thats why right now its really, really important for us to be pushing on those facts. So far, the administration seems to be playing it fast and loose with a lot of things. The hope is that all the folks who voted the president into officeand all the folks who didntall equally appreciate truth. I think thats a pretty reasonable assumption. And for the folks who want to muddy that, thats where we have to shine our lights of truth even brighter. Are you worried, given how corporate this administration is and how much of a fan of censorship it appears to be, about the freedom of the internetnet neutralityunder the Trump administration? Yeah. You know, the new FCC head definitely has my eyebrows raised. But you know what? This is just now one part of a lot of things that we have to be paying attention to. Even back when we defeated SOPA and PIPA, and even back when we got that victory for Title II, we knew this was a consistent, ongoing thing. A lot of it, frankly, is education. A lot of it is the fact that there are digital natives and digital non-nativesnot the best word for it, admittedlyand we have a lot of people in office who are not digital natives, and historically our industry has not done the best job of educating about technology. I think thats our opportunity. We have a lot of people who are very well-intentioned, and Ive seen it firsthand: when you sit down with them and take time to explain to them why an open and free internet is good for American society and American business, once they see that presented to them, and were doing it as people who just genuinely want to help explain the situation, things ended up going pretty well. With the new administration, no matter whos going to be taking over, there was going to have to be a new dialogue, and a new discussion. And this is the new one.

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Richard Spencer, alt-right leader, celebrates Super Bowl win by ‘NFL’s Whitest Team’ – Washington Times

Washington Times Richard Spencer, alt – right leader, celebrates Super Bowl win by 'NFL's Whitest Team' Washington Times Alt – right ringleader Richard Spencer sent a series of racially tinged tweets on Sunday night following the New England Patriots' Super Bowl win over the Atlanta Falcons. In his messages, he attributed the team's success to its comparative whiteness and … The Alt – Right Appropriates Patriots Win Yahoo News Alt Right's Richard Spencer Calls Patriots Victory a Win for the 'White Race' Eurweb.com White Nationalist Richard Spencer Revels in Patriots' Super Bowl Victory Boston magazine (blog) all 16 news articles »

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How Breitbart Turned Tom Brady Into an Alt-Right Hero – Vanity Fair

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No alt treatment for the alt-right – Duke Chronicle

Opinion By Editorial Board | Sunday, February 5 Last Wednesday, a fiery pother erupted on the University of California, Berkeleys campus in response to the planned appearance of the inflammatory conservative editor Milo Yiannopoulos. Angry that Yiannopoulos had been allowed on campus, masked agitators infiltrated a protest against his speech and turned it violent, throwing rocks at police and breaking windows in what was deemed by the Berkeley College Republicansthe group that invited Yiannopoulosas the killing of free speech. The ordeal was shameful for all parties involved, but especially for liberals trying to regain respect after devastating electoral losses last November. Contrary to the expressed feelings of some, it is not a crazy idea that the Berkeley Republicans would have sought to bring Yiannopoulos to campus. Although he is widely viewed as a far-right bomb thrower, his movementthe so-called alt-righthas been legitimized as a force in politics through the rise of President Donald Trump. Representing the alt-right through speakers on campuses is, perhaps, an educational necessity. To be sure though, Yiannopoulos is a strange character to choose for a group looking to show off the positive sides of the alt-right movement. A blatant racist and sexist, he has espoused views that are despicable to most college students. In his mind, the number of female STEM students ought to be capped, gay people ought to get back in the closet and Muslims ought to be banned from the west. And although all of that is hugely objectionable, it doesn’t justify banning him from campus. What does make Yiannopoulos worth banning (and the general test that those who utter hate speech should be held against) is that he has repeatedly instigated his cultish followers to target people he does not agree with. Time after time, hes shown that he is willing to single out individual victims to be the focus of his vitriol, knowing fully well that doing so could cause them serious harm. In December 2015, he persuaded his Twitter followers to harass actress Leslie Jones, ultimately leading to her deleting her account. A year later, he singled out a transgender student on the University of Wisconsins campus and urged a crowd to mock her appearance. Both instances cross the line of free speech and make it clear that Yiannopoulos is not simply a race-baiting provocateur, but is someone who purposefully harms others and thus isnot worthy of the honor of speaking on a campus. If the Berkeley College Republicans truly wanted to bring in a speaker from the alt-right, they ought to have opted for a standard-bearer like Tomi Lahren or Stephen Millerboth equally alt-righty, but neither threatening to the safety of others. It would, of course, be ridiculous to blame Yiannopoulos and the Berkeley Republicans for the entire brouhaha. The reactions of agitated protesters cannot be condoned. Their decision to fight fire with fire only legitimized claims that the left is terrified of free speech and is hypocritical in its calls for rule of law in the country. This was a cut-and-dry case where violence was clearly not the answer, and bygiving into their emotions and abusing them, protesters failed their cause. Although we strongly hold that Berkeley student protesters were just in the cause of their protest against vile racist and sexist beliefs, we equally strongly condemn the masked marauders who infiltrated their protest and turned it violent. Nothing is ever built on fire, whether the flames are of the burning, hateful rhetoric of Milo Yiannopoulos or the literal conflagrations set by protesters. The Chronicle is your source for Duke news, sports, culture and dialogue. Subscribe to the Chronicle: Newsletter | The Dirt | Overtime

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Responding To Anti-Semitism In The Age Of The ‘Alt-Right’ – Huffington Post

Two weeks ago, a man wearing a swastika armband showed up twice on our university campus. Citing his First Amendment right to freedom of speech, Michael Dewitz, 34, questioned the Holocaust and extolled the Nazi party, seemingly well aware that authorities could legally do nothing to obstruct him. Coincidentally or not, his unwelcome visits happened to fall during the week of International Holocaust Remembrance Day, a day the United Nations designated to commemorate the victims of the genocide that resulted in the murder of over six million Jews, along with homosexuals, disabled people, and other groups the Nazis deemed undesirable. Alan Alvarez / The Independent Florida Alligator That same day, President Trump provoked anger within the Jewish community when he signed an executive order banning Syrian refugees from entering the United States, evoking memories of Jewish refugees turned away from U.S. shores during World War II, and then proceeded to issue a statement regarding Holocaust Remembrance Day which failed to mention Jews or anti-Semitism at alla move later endorsed by white supremacist Richard Spencer. Last week, the latest in a series of ongoing bomb threats were called in to Jewish Community Centers in Albany, N.Y.; Syracuse, N.Y.; West Orange, N.J.; Milwaukee, Wis.; San Diego, Calif.; and Salt Lake City, UT. The centers were evacuated, and though the threats were deemed not to be credible after the fact, that did not quench the feelings of intense vulnerability and uneasiness that lingered. Over the weekend, Chicago authorities released a surveillance video of a man smashing the front window of a synagogue and placing swastika stickers on the front door. In Houston, Rice University campus police launched an investigation after a swastika was drawn on the base of a school statue. In Manhattan, passengers on a subway car witnessed anti-Semitic graffiti, including swastikas and the phrases Jews belong in the oven and Destroy Israel, Heil Hitler, scribbled with Sharpie over advertisements and windows. As passengers sat in uncomfortable silence, one brave man announced that the alcohol in hand sanitizer could remove Sharpie. Promptly, passengers searched their pockets for sanitizer and tissues, and proceeded to scrub away the hate-filled messages. Photo by Gregory Locke These instances are only the most recent in a long list of hate crimes that have been targeting the Jewish community. The Federal Bureau of Investigation reported that of the 1,402 victims of anti-religious hate crimes reported in the United States in 2015, 52.1 percent were victims of crimes motivated by anti-Jewish bias. Based on the dramatic spike in hate crimes following the recent presidential election, there is reason to suspect the 2016 figures will be even higher. Some people find these statistics hard to swallow for several reasons. Just as there are still those who think racism is a specter of the past because America elected a black president, some look to Jewish individuals who have risen to positions of prominence and influence and conclude that anti-Semitism died with Hitler. Moreover, there is often a conflation of race with ethnicity, nationality, and religion when it comes to defining Jewish identity, which is complex and far from monolithic. Some inaccurately assume that all Jews are of Eastern European descent and neatly fit into the paradigm of whiteness. In reality, Jews are predominantly an ethnoreligious people, and we can be found across a wide and diverse racial and ethnic spectrum. We are proud members of Black, Asian, and Latinx communities. In Israel, where a majority of Jews hail from across the Middle East and Northern Africa, Jews of color are the norm. However, in the United States, where a majority of Jews are of Eastern European ancestry and tend to be fairer in complexion, it is sometimes difficult for some to comprehend the legacy of fiery hatred and discrimination that these white Jews have themselves faced at the hands of white supremacist groups. To truly understand anti-Semitism, one cannot look through the lens of race-based discrimination alone. This insidious form of bigotry goes beyond racism and colorism, affecting Jews of all races and hues. Even light-skinned Jews with blonde hair and blue eyes were targeted for extermination by Hitler and his mass-murdering Nazi regime. Of the Jewish refugees aboard the S.S. St. Louis who were cast away from the shores of the United States and sent back to their untimely deaths in Europe, the majority were from Germany and other predominantly white European countries. Associated Press Anti-Semitism at its core is based on conceptions of ethnoreligious, cultural and nationalistic otherness. Thus, we have historically seen such prejudice manifested through the depiction of Jews as Christ-killers; as greedy, swindling shysters; as all-powerful, sinister puppet masters of media and politics; as inherently disloyal citizens incapable of true assimilation. We often hear chants of Never Again from within the Jewish community. Our generation has grown up hearing first-hand the personal accounts of Holocaust survivors, and we are all too aware that we will likely be the last. Some of us within the community are descendants of Holocaust survivors, carrying the anguish of those who came before us in our genes, allowing them to live their lives through us. As survivors are dying out, we have promised to pass on their stories. We have taken the words of Elie Wiesel to heart: When you listen to a witness, you become a witness. But now, less than one hundred years after the Holocaust, we see warning signs that Never Again is already happening. In Europe, anti-Semitism is once again thriving. Moreover, Rwanda, Darfur, Bosnia, and Kosovo stand as shameful stains on the hands of history, attesting to the fact that the possibility of genocide is ever-present. Despite isolated incidents, the United States has more or less been a haven for our people since the end of World War II. For many American Jews, this has been the only home we have known. Thus, these increasing incidents of unfounded hatred are profoundly disconcerting. For decades, American Jews have stood alongside other marginalized groups as allies. In the 1960s, we marched in the Civil Rights Movement. Today, we stand alongside our brothers and sisters proclaiming Black Lives Matter. We position ourselves on the ground among those at Standing Rock. We advocate for LGBTQ rights, womens rights, and Muslim rights. Many Jewish organizations like the Anti-Defamation League, originally constructed with the purpose of fighting anti-Semitism following World War II, have since expanded their mission to encompass all forms of bigotry. Perhaps due to our own collective trauma, social justice runs through our veins, heeding us to stand up to injustice anywhere as a threat to justice everywhere. Otherwise, Never Again will be nothing more than a hollow slogan. Photo by Wilson Dizard (SOURCE: http://mondoweiss.net/2016/08/hundreds-lives-matter) Now as anti-Semitism again rears its ugly head, we reach out to those with whom we have stood, and with whom we continue to stand, asking you to stand also with us, to show up on our behalf, to not be silent or indifferent to our struggle. Just as non-Jewish residents of Billings, Mont., placed menorahs in their windowsills during Hanukkah in 1993 to demonstrate their solidarity with the Jewish community following waves of anti-Semitism, we need allies today who will rise up, who will refuse to let their citiesor even their subwaysbe overrun by hatred, who will place figurative menorahs in their windowsills, allowing the collective light to drive away the darkness of discrimination. Most importantly, we need our generation to know that the Holocaust and its symbols, far from being mere relics of the past, continue to bear witness today, serving as reminders of what can happen to any minority group subjected to bigotry. The hatred fueling the fires that consumed so many of our ancestors was never fully extinguished. When hatemongers like Michael Dewitz and Richard Spencer like to hide behind the free speech protections of the First Amendment, they ought to be reminded that the First Amendment does not protect them from private actors exercising their free speech rights to call them outloudlyon their bullshit. When Dewitz arrived on our campus for the second time two weeks ago, we were encouraged to see the outpouring of students and faculty members rallying against him in protest. Over the next four years, as the political climate grows more hostile, as hate groups are emboldened, as civil rights activists and lawyers launch the fight of their lives to uphold liberty and justice for all, we pray that these words from our tradition guide us together along the way: Standing on the parted shores, we still believe what we were taught before ever we stood at Sinais foot; that wherever we go, it is eternally Egypt; that there is a better place, a promised land; that the winding way to that promise passes through the wilderness. That there is no way to get from here to there except by joining hands, marching together. Lauren Levy, 3L, and Yuval Manor, 1L, are law students at the University of Florida Levin College of Law. Lauren is the current President of the UF Jewish Law Students Association. Yuval Manor, an Israeli-American, is a third-generation descendant of Holocaust survivors.

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February 7, 2017   Posted in: Alt-right  Comments Closed

Editorial: ‘Alt-right’ movement isn’t conservatism – Tyler Morning Telegraph

The Associated Press is the best kind of a self-correcting news agency. But its not infallible. Because its a distributed news organization – more precisely, many news organizations that have come together in an association – it can police many of its own members errors. And thats why its important to talk about the APs representation of the alt-right. The phrase has become very, very important lately, with the ascension of Steve Bannon (of Breitbart News) to White House adviser, and even closer to home, with the appearance last week of some fliers around town allegedly touting an alt- right groups ideology. The AP has some guidelines that are misleading about the alt-right. Whenever alt-right is used in a story, be sure to include a definition: an offshoot of conservatism mixing racism, white nationalism and populism, or, more simply, a white nationalist movement, the AP says. But thats inaccurate. As we are sure the AP would agree, words mean things. And conservatism has a clear meaning. Its an ideology with tenets that include limited government, personal freedom, free markets and the rule of law. The alt-right holds to none of those things. The AP is more accurate when it goes into a more lengthy description of the movement. The movement has been described as a mix of racism, white nationalism and populism, the AP reports. How, then, is it an offshoot of conservatism? Its not. One of the best analyses of the alt-right movement comes from Robert Tracinski in The Federalist. This alt-right agenda is not really part of the right because it is thoroughly collectivist in a vile and personal way, Tracinski explains. It says that your most personal, individual, deeply meaningful decisions – such as whom you marry and have children with – should be determined by some larger social program based on group identity. Thats why they are openly opposed to free markets in favor of economic nationalism: this is an anti-freedom, anti-individualist movement. Nor is the alt-right movement a defense of Western civilization, as it sometimes claims. The central theme of the Western intellectual tradition is about rising above tribalism to arrive at universal values, Tracinski writes. Thats a common theme that connects both secular and Christian traditions in the West. It was the whole distinctive idea behind the Ancient Greek revolution in thought. Philosophers like Socrates launched the Western tradition by asking probing questions that were meant to sort out which ideas and practices are based merely on historical accident and social convention, versus those that are based on universal laws of human nature. The alt-right movement isnt alone in its errors, of course. As Tracinski points out, Yes, of course the left does it, too. They have their own racist theories dressed up under the heading of identity politics. So what? Your mom told you the answer to this when you were 5: two wrongs dont make a right. The Associated Press must be more careful. The alt-right movement is in no way an offshoot of conservatism. Just ask conservatives – who are its frequent targets.

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February 7, 2017   Posted in: Alt-right  Comments Closed

‘Alt-right’ is not all right – Green Bay Press Gazette

Subscribe today for full access on your desktop, tablet, and mobile device. Let friends in your social network know what you are reading about Press should reject use of the word Try Another Audio CAPTCHA Image CAPTCHA Help CancelSend A link has been sent to your friend’s email address. A link has been posted to your Facebook feed. Letter to the editor 10:03 a.m. CT Feb. 6, 2017 Old typewriter(Photo: Getty Images/iStockphoto) GREEN BAY – It is difficult to read a newspaper today without seeing a reference to the alt-right; an expression most of us had never heard a year ago. New words are developed all the time; helicopter parent and frenemy are prime examples. Most new words simply make it easier to express ourselves, but there is something much more sinister about the usage of alt-right. White nationalist Richard Spencer coined the term alt-right in 2010, it first came into common usage through its use by Breitbart News chair Steve Bannon, now White House chief strategist for Donald Trump. The term alt-right is used to refer to groups that formerly were called white supremacists, Neo-Nazis, KKK, or racists. On the evening news we see rallies with people giving the Nazi salute, chanting Sieg Heil and Hail Trump, and they are referred to as alt-right rather than neo-Nazis. In some cases the press intentionally uses the expression to sanitize racist behavior, but many times I think the expression is used because it is just too horrifying to fathom that our president could not have been elected without the support of the most extreme racist groups, and that Trump has a white supremacist, Steve Bannon, as his chief strategist. I dont know whether Trump is a racist, but he did everything possible to woo the racist vote; from Obama-birther, Mexican rapists, to radical Islamic terrorists. I am calling on the press to reject the words alt-right; they misrepresent something that is truly evil. Charles Frisk Read or Share this story: http://gbpg.net/2kFzVsj 3:22 3:45 1:33 1:56 3:24 3:03 3:39 3:14 3:37 3:56 0) { %> 0) { %>

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February 7, 2017   Posted in: Alt-right  Comments Closed


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