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WP Makes Up Hate Site ‘Explosion’ Story

From the professional race-baiters at the Washington Post:

Hate Groups’ Newest Target

White Supremacists Report an Increase in Visits to Their Web Sites

By Eli Saslow
Sunday, June 22, 2008; A06

Sen. Barack Obama’s historic victory in the Democratic primaries, celebrated in America and across much of the world as a symbol of racial progress and cultural unity, has also sparked an increase in racist and white supremacist activity, mainly on the Internet, according to leaders of hate groups and the organizations that track them.

Neo-Nazi, skinhead and segregationist groups have reported gains in numbers of visitors to their Web sites and in membership since the senator from Illinois secured the Democratic nomination June 3. His success has aroused a community of racists, experts said, concerned by the possibility of the country’s first black president.

"I haven’t seen this much anger in a long, long time," said Billy Roper, a 36-year-old who runs a group called White Revolution in Russellville, Ark. "Nothing has awakened normally complacent white Americans more than the prospect of America having an overtly nonwhite president."

Such groups have historically inflated their influence for self-promotion and as an intimidation technique, and they refused to provide exact membership numbers or open their meetings to a reporter. Leaders acknowledged that their numbers remain very small — "the flat-globe society still has more people than us," Roper said. But experts said their claims reveal more than hyperbole this time.

"The truth is, we’re finding an explosion in these kinds of hateful sentiments on the Net, and it’s a growing problem," said Deborah Lauter, civil rights director for the Anti-Defamation League, which monitors hate group activity. "There are probably thousands of Web sites that do this now. I couldn’t even tell you how many are out there because it’s growing so fast." …

Obama has worked hard to minimize the issue of race in his presidential campaign. When asked about divisiveness and hate, he talks instead about ways in which unity between blacks and whites has inspired him. He chose to "reject and denounce" an endorsement from Nation of Islam minister Louis Farrakhan. Obama quit his church after his pastor, the Rev. Jeremiah A. Wright Jr., spoke of racism and oppression in the "United States of white America."

But on a Web site run out of a house in West Palm Beach, Fla., the other side is also fighting.

Don Black spends 16 hours each day on his laptop computer reading hundreds of derogatory Obama comments posted on Stormfront.org, a Web site with the motto "white pride world wide." Black, a former Ku Klux Klan leader, launched the site in 1995 to create a central meeting place for the white power movement. In the wake of Obama’s securing enough delegates for the nomination, Stormfront, he says, has begun to fulfill his vision.

A site that drew a few thousand visitors per day in 2002 has expanded into Black’s full-time job, attracting more than 40,000 unique users each day who can post on 54 different message boards, he said. Black has enlisted 40 moderators and his 19-year-old son to help run Stormfront…

"I get nonstop e-mails and private message from new people who are mad as hell about the possibility of Obama being elected," said Black, a white power activist since the 1970s. "White people, for a long time, have thought of our government as being for us, and Obama is the best possible evidence that we’ve lost that. This is scaring a lot of people who maybe never considered themselves racists, and it’s bringing them over to our side."

Almost all white power leaders said they are benefiting from the rise in recruits. David Duke, a former Louisiana state representative and a longtime advocate of racial segregation, said hits to his Web site have doubled and that more organizations now request him as a guest speaker. Dan Hill, who runs an extremist group in northern Michigan, says his cohorts are more willing to "take serious action" and plan rallies to protest politicians and immigration. Roper says White Revolution receives about 10 new applicants each week, more than double the norm.

The past few months reflect a recent trend of hate group growth, watch organizations said. Fueled primarily by anti-immigration sentiment, white supremacy groups have increased by nearly half since 2000, according to the Southern Poverty Law Center, which monitors hate groups. The KKK has diversified regionally and now has about 150 chapters spread through 34 states…

The new interest has led to a debate among white supremacists about how to harness it. So far, groups have executed a few small efforts to disrupt Obama’s campaign. A bar in Georgia sells T-shirts depicting Obama’s campaign slogan under the image of a monkey. A New York group distributed bumper stickers that read: "Wake up white people." Hill, who trains in militia and survival techniques with his group in northern Michigan, drove to an Obama rally and tried to "fire people up, maybe get a riot started or something."

Please note gentle reader that the Washington Post does not post one piece of evidence to support their claim that there has been an "explosion" of visits to online racist "hate sites."

Only two of the organizations mentioned in the article have internet sites with enough visitors to be tracked by the traffic mavens at Alexa.

The first, Stormfront, shows no such increase in visitors, according to the Alexa’s charts:

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Whereas the Washington Post’s website (the blue line on top) does show an up-tick.

Indeed, upon closer inspection, every indication is that there are actually fewer visitors to Stormfront than there were just a few months ago:

Enlarge

The only other organization whose website gets enough traffic to be ranked by Alexa, the "official" site of the Ku Klux Klan, shows a similar lack of "explosion":

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But why should the reporters at the Washington Post let such petty details get in the way of a great story?

Still, one wonders why did the "reporters" at the Washington Post would write such an article based on such an unsubstantiated claims.

Are they just taking their marching orders from the Obama camp, which has announced that the Republicans will use his (half) race against him?

Indeed, according to Google Trends online interest from regular users (in the upper box) in "white supremacy" has remained about the same over the last year:

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In contrast to our news media (lower graph), whose references to "white supremacy" have spiked twice.

First, in January, at around the time Mr. Obama announced his run for the Presidency, and then just recently, when he clinched the Democrat nomination.

Why is that?

This article was posted by Steve Gilbert on Sunday, June 22nd, 2008. Comments are currently closed.

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