Hate Groups on the Rise

 The article below is from ABC News and was written by Ben Forer. It talks about the number of hate groups has been on a steady rise over the last decade or so. Read this article! It is definitely worth it.

ht hate groups chart wy 120308 wblog Hate Groups on the Rise in U.S., Report SaysImage Credit: Southern Poverty Law Center

The number of hate groups in the U.S.  has grown each year for the past 11 years, according to a new report from the Southern Poverty Law Center. In 2000 the center reported that there were 602 hate groups;  in 2011 that number had climbed to 1,018.

“We’ve never had a count that high before,” Mark Potok, the author of the report, told ABC News. “It’s just steady significant growth, 3, 4, 5  percent every year going back to the turn of the millennium.”

Potok said the increase from 2000 to 2008 was primarily fueled by the immigration debate.

“Around 2000, we saw very dramatically neo-Nazi groups, Klan groups and similar kinds of groups simply drop their propaganda about the alleged evils of black people, of gay people, of Jewish people in order to concentrate pretty much 100 percent on illegal immigrants,” he said. ”In 2008, we have two more factors come into play. We have Obama and the economy.”

The most recent report reveals that there where two types of hate groups that saw a significant increase  from 2010 to 2011: anti-Muslim and anti-gay groups.

Anti-Muslim hate groups tripled from 10  to 30 last year, and anti-gay hate groups increased from 17 to 27.

Potok attributes the rise in anti-Muslim groups to the debate over the ground zero mosque in 2010 and to “opportunistic politicians and activists.”

“It was a completely artificial thing,” Potok said. “That anti-Muslim wave is the work of propogandists and nothing more.”

In regards to the rise in anti-gay groups, Potok believes it is likely the result of desperation that public opinion is not on their side.

“Basically, we’re seeing real anger, real fury, on the part of some religious right groups, and I think that’s related to the fact that they are losing,” he said. “Every year the majority of Americans who support same sex marriage grows. … What we’re seeing is a kind of rage on their part.”

Potok expects the rage to grow and the number of hate groups to continue to rise if President Obama is re-elected.

“I think it has the potential to get worse before it gets better,” Potok said. “As  it becomes more likely that Obama will ultimately win, these groups are getting angrier and angrier. They’re looking at four years under a black guy who they hate.”


About Haley Behre

I graduated from Syracuse University in December 2011 with majors in newspaper journalism and women and gender studies. Using these majors, I aspire to become a journalist who writes about human rights issues. I have held internships at the Syracuse New Times, Dash Media PR Firm, Syracuse Post-Standard and the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press. I also had an internship at the Not For Sale Campaign Syracuse chapter, which is a non-profit organization dedicated to eradicating human trafficking. I was born in Seoul, Korea on September 30, 1990 and moved to the United States before I was one year old. When I was 8, my family and I moved to Norwich, England for three years. While I was here I was immersed into a new culture and got to experience many things other children my age do not get to. Over the three years, I visited Ireland, France and the Netherlands several times, and Belgium, Wales and Sweden once. In the winter of 2010, I got an amazing opportunity to visit Kenya for a month. This was by far the single most eye-opening experience of my life thus far. The natural beauty of the landscape and its people do not compare to anything I have seen. I currently intern for the Reporters Committee for the Freedom of the Press in the hopes of getting a full-time job at a newspaper or non-profit after.
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2 Responses to Hate Groups on the Rise

  1. Pingback: Hate Groups Fueled By Intolerance and GOP Are on The Rise! « Beneath the Tin Foil Hat


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