888: The Mark of the Bigots?
That’s the number of hate groups in the United States as of 2007: 888. This marks a steep rise in the number of these groups since 2000, driven almost exclusively on anti-immigrant sentiments in the post-9/11 era.
I know that not all of my friends (and others who read my blog) agree with me on the immigration issue. I believe in a path to citizenship for the millions of unregistered workers who are keeping our economy moving forward—not everyone believes in that.
If you don’t believe in “amnesty” or even think that all “illegals” should be deported, and don’t consider yourself to be racist, I encourage you to watch this video from the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) that attempts to expose the white supremacist roots of the anti-immigration movement in this country and how it is fueling the rise of blatant racist hate groups (like the KKK, which has seen growth in my North Carolina county in recent years):
Now before you get too upset, let me clarify a couple things about the video:
1) The SPLC is considered by some to be a “controversial” group in their own right. I acknowledge that. They have an inherent bias, but that doesn’t mean their information is wrong.
2) Tying all of these things back to one guy in Michigan is a bit of a conspiracy theory way to go. I’m sure it’s much more complex than that, but clearly there are connections that are relevant.
3) Even if you don’t “buy” all the information and connections that the SPLC presents in this video, how do you feel about 888 hate groups in this country? A sharp increase since 9/11? That should make you feel like I do, sad and angry and motivated to do something about it. I’m just trying to raise awareness. We can stop the hate.
If you can handle more of these videos, check out:
If you want to add your voice (with mine and others) to those who are standing strong against hate, check out this awareness campaign from the SPLC: