MOORHEAD – White supremacist groups have switched tactics and are attempting to spread their ‘alternative facts’ to a local Nordic cultural organization. Last year, groups including the Ku Klux Klan and Identity Evropa launched a massive national mail campaign focused on recruiting college students by saying they weren’t racist, but pro-white.
So far in 2018, the white supremacist front has remained relatively quiet, in fact, many are hoping their 15 minutes of Presidential validation are over. Days after the so-called “Alt-right” leader Richard Spencer uploaded a YouTube video begging for money to help face federal civil lawsuits brought against him and other organizers of the Charlottesville “Unite the Right” rally, a new type of white supremacist letter arrived for the Nordic Culture Club.
On Tuesday, Alisa Jacobson, director of the Nordic Culture Club, received a manila envelope filled with poorly photocopied Alt-right propaganda from a group known as F.W.G, or “Fight White Genocide,” from Columbia, South Carolina.
“Every once in a while, we end up getting mail from such groups,” Jacobson said. “Today, we received two anonymous packets with a variety of articles in it with a return address from a South Carolina group. There were two of them, and we each opened one. When we opened them, business card sized pieces of paper with the words ‘Beware - Why White Women should not date Black Men’ fell out of the one I opened.
“It was unsettling, but even more so when we saw the articles in them,” Jacobson said. “It's also frustrating that people send us mail like that because we are a Nordic club.”
The Nordic Culture Club, situated at the Hjemkomst Center, is one of six area Scandinavian clubs. It is a nonprofit organization, with a “mission to preserve, celebrate, and perpetuate Nordic cultures,” according to its website.
In addition to old articles, questionable FBI statistics, and two dizzying 2018 reports from conspiracy theorist Donald S. McAlvany, of the McAlvany Intelligence Advisor, a hand scrawled note said the letter was from the F.W.G.
“Be informed – pass the word,” the card stated.
Jacobson struck back on the club’s Facebook page quickly. She said she usually throws white supremacist propaganda away, but this time the information was unusual.
“No matter the skin color, if you’re Scandinavian you’re Scandinavian,” Jacobson wrote. “We do not accept solicitations from white supremacy groups.”
Other letters included played with persuading readers to fear minorities, whose plan is to eliminate the white race. The F.W.G. also added a list of boycotts -- part anti-Semitic, part activist -- which included the Federal Reserve, secret societies, mainstream media, drugs, gambling, Hollywood, diamonds, night clubs – because they’re all owned by minorities or Jews, Monsanto, cosmetics, and petrochemicals.
“Identity Evropa” is defined as a racist white supremacist organization by the Anti-Defamation League, and is designated as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center.
"In regards to this article, Identity Evropa has no relationship to the events or other organizations discussed here," Identity Evropa Spokesperson Sam Harrington said.
"We are a peaceful identitarian movement. In regards to the allegations made against us, organizations like the SPLC and ADL are attempting to silence and shame Americans through political correctness. Given their slanderous and reckless attitude, Americans from across the political spectrum are doubting their legitimacy."
The Red River Danes President Vern Hunter said his organization hasn’t received racist literature.
“The Danish community’s stance is well known, and has gone on record, World War I and World War II, and I don’t think we have to say anymore,” Vern Hunter, vice president of the Red River Danes, said.
Kyle Handegard, president of the Sons of Norway Kringen Lodge, said her organization also has not received white supremacist letters, but condemns them.
“Our lodge is open to anyone, and even on our membership forms, it asks if they’re Norwegian by birth, marriage, interest, or affiliation, you don’t have to be Norwegian to be here and we really welcome everyone to come and join or be a part of our organization,” Handegard said.
“The mission of the Nordic Culture Clubs is to celebrate Scandinavian culture,” Jacobson said. “By heritage, by marriage, by interest: all are welcome to take part. There is no one right way to be Scandinavian, or to look it."
Barry Nelson, of the North Dakota Human Rights Coalition, also condemned all forms of hate speech, including letters from white supremacist organizations.
“I cannot imagine the depths that certain groups go to incite divisiveness and hatred and do that through organizations that have been about bestowing the virtues of cultures, which doesn’t mean you denigrate others,” Nelson said. “It just seems to be the most pathological of efforts. It’s just pathetic.”
“It’s been kind of quiet lately with the hate crime issues,” Nelson said. “And then someone told me because it’s been cold. Haters go underground when it’s cold, but we’re going into summer now, and I’m taking that seriously. We need to be ready for what happens now that the weather has warmed up.”
[Additions have been made to this story since it was published.]
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