Many years ago as a teenager, we were warned of the dangers of gay men who sought to corrupt and recruit kids like myself into their way of life. Stories of abduction, Satanic rituals and all sorts of fantastic tales weren’t uncommon as gay hysteria ran wild in the Christian homeschooling/fundamentalist movement.
Even though it had moved out of the mainstream at that point, it once was back in the 1950s and 1960s. If you browse through YouTube, you can find a number of old films like this, which are utterly ridiculous by modern standards.
This sort of homophobic nonsense is still preached today in the pulpits and internet forums of the religious right. It is no longer in the mainstream, but it is very much alive and well.
While the gay community has never tried to recruit and corrupt young men, Neo-Nazis, the KKK, and other white supremacist organizations have been doing so ever since the end of the Civil War. Trump tapped into that same vein of anger to get elected, and now it is spilling over into physical violence in the streets of Charlottesville, VA.
The crowd of angry, white, mostly young men that showed up in Charlottesville last weekend weren’t born racist. They were recruited and groomed, led into the Nazi-white supremacy lifestyle by people who wanted to pass on their traditions of hatred, fear and violence.
The alt-right industry needs fresh blood to keep money flowing into their coffers, people who will spend their paychecks on Nazi gear, or attend rallies and conferences. YouTube channels, Facebook pages, websites and forums all drive traffic, ad revenue and sales.
It’s easier than ever before for white supremacists, Nazis and other extremists to recruit followers. Just look at how Islamic terror groups have managed to radicalize people around the world simply through social media. Like Nazis, ISIS draws in young men and women who are susceptible to terrorist propaganda. Their formula is nearly identical, the religion is the only real difference.
Facebook, Twitter and Reddit have been refuges for Nazis and white supremacists. My public figure Facebook page has been swarmed by alt-right trolls and Russian operatives since the Trump campaign began. Only now are these sites starting to shut down hate groups, pages, and the profiles of their leaders.
THIS IS LITERALLY THE DAY WE'VE BEEN WORKING TOWARDS FOR THE LAST 10 MONTHS! TECH COMPANIES ARE FINALLY WAKING UP!! https://t.co/IaWh9ECFfc
— Sleeping Giants (@slpng_giants) August 16, 2017
Other sites and ad agencies have refused calls to shut down white supremacists, because it is too valuable to their ad revenue.
— Sleeping Giants (@slpng_giants) August 17, 2017
If and when it happens, it’s too little, too late. The racist genie escaped the bottle long ago.