2013 January » ADL Blogs
January 23, 2013 0

White Supremacists Begin New Year With Plot, Murder

Anthony Baum­gart­ner at Char­lotte, North Car­olina, NSM rally in Novem­ber 2012

Amer­i­can white suprema­cists marked the New Year with vio­lence, open­ing 2013 with a mur­der in Ken­tucky and an alleged plot in Ohio.  Sus­pects in both inci­dents have ties to neo-Nazi groups.

The mur­der occurred near the small town of Wal­ton, Ken­tucky, south of Cincin­nati, Ohio, on Jan­u­ary 9. About a week later, Boone County sheriff’s deputies arrested three men on kid­nap­ping, mur­der and abuse of a corpse charges, stat­ing that the sus­pects had beaten the vic­tim in two sep­a­rate loca­tions and stabbed and stran­gled him to death at the sec­ond loca­tion, then dis­mem­bered his body and left parts of it in dif­fer­ent places. The vic­tim was a 19-year old drug addict who also allegedly sold heroin to sup­port his own drug habit.  

The sus­pects arrested were Anthony Baum­gart­ner, 23; Jef­frey Allen, 21; and Stephen Hark­ness, 22. At least one of the sus­pects has ties to the white suprema­cist move­ment. Baum­gart­ner, who has sev­eral white suprema­cist tat­toos, was a rel­a­tively recent recruit to the neo-Nazi National Social­ist Move­ment (NSM), with the rank of “Stormtrooper First Class.” He attended a major NSM rally in Char­lotte, North Car­olina, in Novem­ber 2012 and also attended or orga­nized local NSM events in Boone County. He claimed to have in the past been involved with a Ku Klux Klan group; this has not been verified.

Baum­gart­ner and the oth­ers also admired out­law motor­cy­cle gangs and Baum­gart­ner claimed on one Web site that he was the for­mer pres­i­dent of a biker club called “SS Ban­dits.” This has also not been verified.

Recently, he posted to a white suprema­cist site that “I want to get back in the race war so me and a few other boys in my area are start­ing to clean up [the] area of drugs and so called street gangs…we had […] enough and its time we stand up and take back what is ares [sic].”

In neigh­bor­ing Ohio, mean­while, fed­eral pros­e­cu­tors in mid-January indicted another neo-Nazi, Richard Schmidt of Bowl­ing Green, on weapons charges. Schmidt, a con­victed felon, allegedly had a horde of weapons that included at least 18 assault weapons and more than 40,000 rounds of ammo. Accord­ing to NBC News, a law enforce­ment offi­cer said there was evi­dence that Schmidt pos­si­bly was plan­ning attacks on Jew­ish and civil rights groups in the Detroit area. 

Schmidt was a long-time mem­ber of the neo-Nazi National Alliance, recently act­ing as its Toledo con­tact point, and in the past also occa­sion­ally attended meet­ings of the NSM.

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January 18, 2013 0

White Supremacist American Third Position Party Promoting Gun Appreciation Day

The Amer­i­can Third Posi­tion (A3P), a white suprema­cist polit­i­cal party, is pro­mot­ing Gun Appre­ci­a­tion Day on its web­site. The Jan­u­ary 19 event, spon­sored by a num­ber of pro-gun and Tea Party groups, urges Amer­i­cans to go to their local gun store, gun range or gun show to demon­strate their sup­port of gun own­er­ship and their right to bear arms.

A3P was a co-sponsor of the event but the orga­niz­ers appar­ently removed A3P’s name from the list of spon­sors after Media Mat­ters and other news out­lets revealed the group’s extrem­ist views. In its mis­sion state­ment, A3P states that the group’s goal is “to restore and pre­serve the legit­i­macy of White iden­tity, White her­itage, and expres­sions of White interests.”

The lead­er­ship of A3P includes a num­ber of well-known white suprema­cists and anti-Semites. Chair­man William John­son pro­moted a con­sti­tu­tional amend­ment to Con­gres­sional mem­bers and state leg­is­la­tures in the 1980s that would have lim­ited U.S. cit­i­zen­ship only to whites of Euro­pean descent and repa­tri­ated var­i­ous groups, includ­ing Jews, to places deemed their coun­try of origin.

Other lead­ers of the A3P include Kevin Mac­Don­ald, an anti-Semitic pro­fes­sor of psy­chol­ogy at Cal­i­for­nia State Uni­ver­sity at Long Beach; James Edwards, who runs a white suprema­cist radio show, The Polit­i­cal Cesspool; Don Was­sall, a long-time white suprema­cist whose news­pa­per The Nation­al­ist Times pub­lishes anti-Semitic and racist arti­cles; Vir­ginia Aber­nethy, a white suprema­cist and anti-immigration activist, and Jamie Kelso, a racist and for­mer asso­ciate of ex-Klan leader David Duke.

One of the A3P’s main goals is to appeal to main­stream audi­ences, and it attempts to do so using issues that are of con­cern to the gen­eral pub­lic.  A3P’s attempt to par­tic­i­pate in Gun Appre­ci­a­tion Day is part of this effort. Pre­vi­ously, the party has sought to exploit issues such as immi­gra­tion and gov­ern­ment spend­ing at Tea Party events in dif­fer­ent parts of the country.

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January 18, 2013 1

ADL Workshop Cultivates Ally Behavior Online

Over the past few years the media has cov­ered many sto­ries about cyber­bul­ly­ing and its detri­men­tal effects on youth.  The research, and our own expe­ri­ences, make it clear that cyber­bul­ly­ing hurts the youth tar­geted and cre­ates a neg­a­tive expe­ri­ence for those who wit­ness the behav­ior.   We also know that youth are often tar­geted online because of their iden­tity, includ­ing their weight, real or per­ceived sex­ual ori­en­ta­tion, gen­der expres­sion, reli­gion and race.

To help address issues of cyber­bul­ly­ing, ADL’s AWORLD OF DIFFERENCE® Insti­tute cre­ated Cyber­ALLY®, a half-day (3-hour) or full-day (6-hour) inter­ac­tive train­ing for mid­dle and high school-age youth that pro­vides prac­ti­cal infor­ma­tion and oppor­tu­ni­ties for skill-building.  Cyber­ALLY sup­ports youth in devel­op­ing per­sonal strate­gies for pro­tect­ing them­selves against cyber­bul­ly­ing as well as act­ing as cyberallies—preventing and tak­ing action against cyber­bul­ly­ing and social cru­elty in online forum.

We recently con­ducted a research eval­u­a­tion of Cyber­AL­LYto assess the effec­tive­ness of the train­ing pro­gram and gain insight into areas for improve­ment.  Funded by Cir­cle of Ser­vice and Microsoft, we con­tracted with an eval­u­a­tion research firm, TCC Group, to design and con­duct the eval­u­a­tion.  With TCC Group, we iden­ti­fied in research terms the out­comes we hoped to achieve with Cyber­ALLY:  1) aware­ness and knowl­edge about cyber­bul­ly­ing, 2) demon­stra­tion of respon­si­ble and eth­i­cal online behav­ior, and 3) abil­ity to be a CyberALLY.

The data analy­sis shows highly sta­tis­ti­cally sig­nif­i­cant improve­ment in all three out­come areas, indi­cat­ing that the Cyber­ALLY pro­gram is effec­tively equip­ping stu­dents to take action against cyber­bul­ly­ing. The stu­dents showed the great­est improve­ment in the out­come “the abil­ity to be a cyber­ally.”  Some spe­cific find­ings include: 93% of stu­dents indi­cated that they learned dif­fer­ent strate­gies for respond­ing to cyber­bul­ly­ing and online bias and 81% indi­cated that “all kids my age should par­tic­i­pate in this work­shop.”  By chang­ing the cul­ture from one of pas­sive bystanders to one of active cyber­al­lies, we can change the way stu­dents inter­act online. In all, the results of this eval­u­a­tion have shown that ADL is con­tribut­ing to fur­ther­ing the  over­all goal of fos­ter­ing increased cyber-civility and a cul­ture of e-safety among our youth.

For spe­cific strate­gies on how you can be a cyber­ally and address bias and bul­ly­ing online, visit www.adl.org/combatbullying.

 

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