The rise in hate groups and hate crimes in the past year is staggering
Hate is a powerful emotion; it has fueled countless events throughout history. In the 21st century, hate still manages to be a destructive force.
The change of demographics in America brings extremists out of the crevices. Hate groups have had an increase of 14% while a minimum of 52 people in the United States were killed by domestic extremist movements in the past 12 months.
America pushed the envelope when the Supreme Court ushered in marriage equality. Even with the progressive move, the LGBT community continues to be killed because of who they are.
The fear of terrorism burdens the minds of Americans. The Islamic State massacre in Paris, the similar murder of 14 people at a San Bernardino, Calif., and Trump’s call for a Muslim ban paves the path of hatred and fear.
There have been 38 anti-Muslim hate crimes in the U.S. since the attacks in Paris. American mosques and Islamic centers have been victims of bigotry at least 63 times. Many anti-Muslim groups focused their energy on the immigration by Syrian refugees. At least 30 states have prohibited refugees.
Black separatists groups have increased their numbers within the last year. The number of chapters went from 113 to 180, at least 59%. It’s obvious the rise came from the continuing institutionalized racism and the killings of unarmed black men by police. Unlike the racial justice that motivates the Black Lives Matter movement, the separatists condemn Jews and whites instead of working towards solutions to the racial issues in America.
Ku Klux Klan chapters grew from 72 to 190. The growth spurt was granted by the 364 pro Confederate flag rallies that took place in South Carolina after the massacre in June of last year, which channeled white anger over the declining demographic position.
The Klan has managed to create new groups to spread their hate. The new groups include the Confederate White Knights of the Ku Klux Klan, the Militant Knights of the Ku Klux Klan (with 20 chapters), the Texas Rebel Knights of the Ku Klux Klan, the Rebel Brigade Knights of the True Invisible Empire, and the Traditional Confederate Knights of the Ku Klux Klan.
White supremacist have also learned to utilize the internet as a source. The major hate forum Stormfront now has more than 300,000 members, and the site has been adding about 25,000 registered users annually for several years.
Even though demographics are a contributing factor to the incline of hate groups, another factor is the rhetoric of the presidential candidates. Donald Trump’s crude statements about Latinos and Muslims fueled the radical, extremist right which led to endorsements. He’s also been accused of inciting violence at his rallies.
He’s managed to tap into the fear and anger of the working-class and, to a lesser extent, middle-class white people, especially the less educated.
Trump has created a whirlwind of belligerence and confrontation by acting like George Wallace, who ran in 1968 as a third-party populist with the same undertones of racial resentment.
America has the possibility to change with the wave of diversity. The problem is that the communication between groups is lost. Americans of all creeds will need to work together to build our community or let hate devastate the nation.