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The Audacity of Hate

church-fireIn Springfield, Massachusetts (barely 30 minutes south of my home in Northampton), during the early morning hours immediately following Barack Obama’s election as President, a predominately black church under construction was destroyed by fire.  Earlier this week, the three Massachusetts men, all white, accused of having set the fire, were formally indicted.  The indictment alleges the men talked about their racial motives before setting the fire.  Although I was horrified when I heard the news, I was, sadly, unsurprised that even in Massachusetts, the bluest of blue states, this sort of hate crime could be perpetrated.  Now comes evidence that not only are hate crimes on the rise, but that “A new black president and the deepening economic crisis are creating the perfect storm for racist groups intent on swelling their ranks.”  So says Neo-Nazi David Duke who offers that “Obama will be a ‘visual aid’ for angry white Americans and will provoke a backlash among relatively mainstream whites that will ‘result in a dramatic increase in [the] ranks’ of extremists.”  A sampling of racial incidents, from Maine to California, reported in the wake of the election would appear to support his claim.

Obama Called a “Visual Aid” for White Supremacist Recruiting (via AlterNet)

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