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The world is full of people of different races, tribes and skin colors. Indeed, this is not a weakness, but a show of diversity. However, some individuals and groups have used their sociological status to oppress others. So far, racism remains the most common form of oppression. The white people have always believed that they are superior as compared to other people of different racial backgrounds. Undeniably, the notion of white supremacy, which is a belief in white dominance, is a reality, at least for those who have experienced it.
The notion of white supremacy advocates, and promotes the social and political supremacy of the white people over the rest. White supremacy bases its foundation in ethnocentrism and craving for racial hegemony. Consequently, this has resulted into oppression, social prejudice, anti-black sadism and anti-Semitic hostility. Astonishingly, very many supremacist groups have come up, each with its own conception.
For example, in United States of America, the emergence of white supremacist groups such as Ku Klux Klan, skinheads, and church of Creator have caused so much uproar and racial segregation in America. These groups are the common enemies of the state and those who vehemently stand to oppose them, put their lives at risk. For instance, these groups have managed to introduce white supremacist dogmas into the social fabric of American politics and key institutions resulting into unprecedented intolerance. Hitherto, United States has moved into a new-fangled era- an era of white preeminence (Wildman, 1996, pp.86-87).
Many Americans believe that the emergence of White Supremacist groups occurred after the end of the American civil war. At first, these groups run their affairs clandestinely in order to circumvent the attention of the media and government institutions responsible for maintenance of law and order.
Traditionally, the white supremacist groups relied principally on the tittle-tattle notoriety to overawe their intended victims. However, as time went by, the groups increased its membership, and widened their territories. Interestingly, 25,000 white Americans seemed to support the ideologies of the white supremacist groups.
However, it is important to note that this is indeed a tiny faction as compared to the population of white people in United States of America at that particular time and even the present. The paper will discuss the strategies and ideologies employed by white supremacist groups to carry out their mission. The paper will also examine the liaison between three congregating and vastly expanding white supremacist groups- religious fundamentalists, the far right and the ultra-conservatives.
It is important to note that these white supremacist groups use various antagonist mechanisms of human rights desecrations such as racism, violence on women, religion and political leanings to fulfill their egoism. The paper will also examine and perhaps make lucid explanations on the correlation between gender disparity, homophobia, racial discrimination and anti-Semitism, under the umbrella of social structures and institutions (Adams & Roscigno, 2005, pp. 759-788).
White supremacist groups
History indicates that there are over three hundred white supremacist groups in America, and that no more than two groups resemble. Each group has its own way of operation that stretches from ostensibly inoffensive religious sects or levy dissenters to overtly confrontational, even brutal factions such as the Ku Klux Klan Klaverns (KKK) and the neo-Nazi skinheads.
It is vital to note that these white supremacist groups emanate as religious factions, who later recruit survivalists, anarchists and paramilitary operational mechanisms to achieve their mission. While some groups such as the Ku Klux Klan are on the decline now, some Hitler-inspired factions for example, Church of Creator and National Alliance are gaining momentum to replace the falling Ku Klux Klan.
History also records that some groups are adopting new named to replace the old ones for example, the hoods are now Swastikas. Likewise, the historical crosses group has changed its name to Uzis. Research shows that over two hundred thousand Americans not only support the operations of these groups, but also, make sure that they avail themselves whenever a group has a meeting or a rally.
These people have increasingly become too loyal to the point of donating money in order to support the activities of their groups. Additionally, each group has its own operational call network, with succinctly recorded messages that inform members on the venue and date of their next meeting.
The recorder messages are full of hate-motivated discourses that later initiate disharmony between the white and other people of different racial backgrounds for example, the Jews and the black people. Other intended targets include the gay persons, lesbians and women. The development of sophisticated technology has even made these supremacist groups to open their own racist radio and television shows, which appeal to white people to join their groups (Adams & Roscigno, 2005, pp. 759-788).
Ku Klux Klan
History asserts that although the American Civil war was a great success towards the realization of human rights, it cultivated hostility between the whites and blacks. In those days, the whites hated the blacks so much, and could go as far as beating and even killing them. In 1866, general Nathan Bedford Forrest founded the famous Ku Klux Klan whose members were mainly rich white business merchants who dressed differently from the rest by wearing white robes, pointed hats and masks.
The group targeted black men and women. Whenever they caught the victim, they will beat and finally kill him or her. Three years later, the architect of this group, Nathan Forrest, demanded the demobilization of the Ku Klux Klan. Although this happened, it gave members an opportunity to establish small Klans. In 1876, the Ku Klux Klan completely fished out due to the enactment of Jim Crow laws.
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However, in 1915, Joseph Simmons founded the next Ku Klux Klan. The new group became so popular; the reason being, a film star by the name Griffith released a film that praised and instituted a renewed hope and apparition to the emerging new KKK. Joseph Simmons appointed Hiram Wesley as the head of the group, something he did up to 1939. Five years later from this time, the new Ku Klux Klan disintegrated.
However, the rise of civil rights movements in America in 1950s provides yet another opportunity for the emergence of another Ku Klux Klan- one that will perhaps continue to present time. It emerged that the group was far ruthless and had a special message from that of the foremost and subsequent Ku Klux Klans (Kronenwetter, 1992, pp. 19-23).
The first Ku Klux Klan founded by Nathan Bedford performed the roles of coercing rascals, carpetbaggers, and those imprisoned. In addition, this period saw the emergence of other groups based religion rater than racism and ready to perform hazing rituals.
Reasonably, these people wore differently to masquerade their identities. Initially, this first Ku Klux Klan used to flee slaves. However, as time went by, they realized that the freed slaves imposed danger to the Southern lifestyle. They therefore decided to manage the social and political status of the freed persons.
Additionally, they instituted new mechanisms aimed at blocking the African Americans from achieving education, advancing economically or take positions of leadership. The number of recruits kept on increasing, and the Klansmen sought to violent acts to perfect their mission. However, in 1867, a significant thing happened in America. The congress passed established ne law, Reconstruction Laws, aimed at wiping out this secular group.
The laws allowed black Americans to vote, and hold various positions in the government. However, these laws elicited anger among the Southerners who were mainly white-they themselves did enjoy these rights. The southern region constituted five military districts. Thus, some African Americans headed some of these military districts. The white residents under the administration of the African American leader felt mortified and mistreated. They could not stand any more shortchanging (William, 2002, pp. 23-27).
Now, the Klan felt that this was the best opportunity to fight the Reconstruction Laws and anything contained therein. Secretly, in 1867, the leaders of Ku Klux Klan called for a meeting at Nashville, Tennessee to derive their agenda. In the meeting, the members agreed to protect their interests and protect their fellow whites from any oppression instituted by the blacks.
Nonetheless, if any white American opposed the activities of Ku Klux Klan, the authority stripped his membership immediately. Soon, the Klansmen started destroying properties owned by blacks, lynching mutilating and whipping them.
Fire became the most common weapon of mass destruction. Whoever stood in their way, whether black or white, they would kill him or her. Although the Reconstruction Laws outlawed the killing of blacks, the Ku Klux Klan had little to care. Soon, America held elections and President Grant assumed power. With the assistance of congress, President Grant introduced new laws to curb the rising violence on black people of the south.
President Grant ordered the disbandment and arrest of Ku Klux Klan members. However, the arrested members did not receive any punishment. Later on, the group faded away following the election of Rutherford Hayes in 1876 (McClymer, 2006, pp. 19-37).
In 1915, something peculiar happened that revamped the forgotten group. A film star, Griffith D.W. released a film that praised the actions of the Ku Klux Klan. After watching the film, a Methodist Episcopal Church pastor, Joseph Simmons opted to establish a supremacist group resembling the one portrayed in the film, The Birth of a Nation.
He managed to recruit 34 members at the start, two of whom had served in the first Klan. However, unlike the first Klan, this clan majorly focused on anti-immigrant and opposition of religious groupings such as Catholicm and Jewish Culture. Five years later, the second Klan had managed to control many political and social institutions of America.
The Klan now enjoyed government protection. In a little while, the Klansmen attacked black and white Americans who dared to stand on their way. Nonetheless, in 1940, the leadership structure of Klan sank in rape and corruption where the courts found David Stephenson, one of the powerful Klan leaders, guilty of rape and murder. Later on, the popularity of the Ku Klux Klan fritters away hastily (Grant, 1916, pp. 13-37).
However, there came the period of civil rights movement in United States. By 1960, Jim Crow had managed to create the third and more violent Ku Klux Klan whose main mandate was to resist the ongoing civil rights movement in United States. In addition to whipping, mutilation, and hazing, the group also resorted to bombing of African Americans and white civil rights activists. The Klan had expanded expansively in all states of America.
They continued their violence acts of pulling activists out of their cars, beating them ostensibly, before setting fire on the bodies and the cars. Racial discrimination was at the peak. White parents refused to take their children to schools where black children also schooled.
They could go as far as yelling at the parents and even throwing stones to vehicles carrying black children. White teachers refused to teach black children. In 1980, two Ku Klux Klan attacked and killed Michael Donald-black American- and in 2005, Ku Klux Klan members burned a house in Ohio belonging to a Hispanic man on grounds of raping a white girl. Clearly, nobody can deny that the current Ku Klux Klan is the most violent of the three (Kronenwetter, 1992, p. 47-49).
Church of Creator
Another white supremacist group is the Church of Creator. This group started as a religious faction in 1973. The architects of this particular group engaged in what they termed “a racial holy war”. They engaged in violent acts aimed at separating the virulent white Americans (pure Aryan Races) from the African Americans. Perhaps in an attempt meant to fish out and wipe out the group, the government of United States through FBI is carrying out a number of arrests in order to stop the group.
For instance, in 1993, some member of this group developed a failed plot to bomb a Church based in Los Angeles. In addition, the Federal Bureau of Investigations links member of this group with several and mysterious murders, bank robberies and retaliatory attacks. Members of this supremacist group also believe that they car stir a vituperative race war in United States by attacking Jews and African Americans (Kronenwetter, 1992, pp. 49-58).
Neo-Nazi Skinhead Movement
So far, this group is the fastest growing white supremacist group in United States today. Currently, the group has a membership population of 3,500 people aged between thirteen and twenty-five. This group ardently complies with the Hitler worship and members move into a higher rank after consigning a racial crime.
Interestingly, even girls are members of this hate crime faction, and like their counterpart boys, they also engage in gang activities-activities that act as a gang initiation in order to ascend the leadership ladder. Adult skinheads are busy recruiting young adults to commit crimes on behalf of them. According to reports from FBI, the group has committed serious race crimes targeting African Americans, Jews, gays and lesbians.
Some of them have been involved in terror crimes targeting buildings and uniformed police officers. It is also worrying to note that the leaders of this group are busy planning and strategizing various ways of thinning out information that could spark hate and bigotry. The rising opposition to assimilation, interracial marriages and welfare tells much of this group. Members of this group have also been fiercest critics of affirmative actions and educational funding of minority groups.
However, due to leadership combats and interior wrangles, the group has lost some of its members. Indeed, this has threatened the operations of this group. If the squabbles and wrangles persist, then the group will finally fall. In another twist, members of this group have failed to agree on whether to use either violence or politics, or politics and violence in order to attain white supremacy (Dobratz & Shanks-Meile, 2000, pp. 19-31).
Indeed, it is true, the emergence of white supremacist groups has cause more harm than good in United States of America. Historically, these groups have resorted to violence, mutilation, hate crime and torture in their fight for white supremacy. Consequently, many African Americans, white civil rights activists, gay persons and lesbians have all suffered in their hands.
At one point, the unity of the group has made it augment powerfully. On the other hand, internal squabbles, leadership wrangle, congress legislations, and counter attacks have made these groups fall. The truth is these groups still exist-much stronger than in the past. It is now up to the American Congress and government to enact legislations and deal with these miscreant racial gangs.
Adams, J. & Roscigno, V. (2005). White Supremacists, Oppositional Culture and the World Wide Web. Journal Storage, University on North Carolina Press, 84(2005), 759-788.
Dobratz, B. & Shanks-Meile, S. (2000). White power, white pride! The white separatist movement in the United States. John Hopkins University Press.
Grant, M. (1916). The Passing of the Great Race. New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons.
Kronenwetter, M. (1992). United they hate, white supremacist groups in America. New York: Walker Publishing Company.
McClymer, J. (2006). Race riots, lynching, and other forms of racism in the 1920s. Worcester, Massachusetts: Assumption College Press.
Wildman, M. (1996). Privilege Revealed: How Invisible Preference Undermines America. New York University Press.
Williams, M. (2002). The white separatist Movement. San Diego, California: Greenhaven Press.