Last week Mark Zuckerberg told Congress that Facebook doesn’t allow hate groups. While most people would scoff at that claim, the social media platform is apparently attempting to get better. When Vice News alerted Facebook to the existence of several Facebook pages from hate groups, Facebook took them down. The casualties included two Richard Spencer Facebook pages.
The two Richard Spencer Facebook pages taken down were for his organization the National Policy Institute (with 4,000 followers) and his online magazine, AltRight.com (with 10,000 followers).
The benignly named National Policy Institute is a white supremacist think tank that advocates for a white ethnostate.
This news comes at a bad time for Spencer and white supremacists in general. In the past six weeks:
- Richard Spencer canceled his college tour after being protested at every stop by anti-fascist protesters.
- Matthew Heimbach, head of the Traditionalist Worker Party, has been arrested after a brawl with TWP spokesman Matthew Parrott. The fight was about Heimbach allegedly sleeping with Parrott’s wife.
- Atomwaffen, the white nationalist group implicated in five murders from May 2017 to January 2018, is splintering over accusations it’s a Satanist front.
- Stormfront, one of the biggest white supremacist websites, shut down earlier this month over not being able to pay its web-hosting bills. Stormfront’s money troubles are also keeping founder Don Black from appearing at a League of the South conference honoring former KKK Grand Wizard David Duke.
But while white supremacists have had setbacks lately, we shouldn’t dismiss them as a threat. After all, there are currently four white supremacists running for political office. (That same article lists an additional six as “flirting with white supremacists.”)
The Vice News article also points out several hate groups that still have pages on Facebook, including AntiComm, a group that has provided security to Richard Spencer in the past and has shared bomb-making information, and groups with names like “White European Bloodlines” and “Hitler Youth.”
Do you agree with the takedown of the Richard Spencer Facebook pages? Let us know in the comments!
Featured image by David J. Phillip/Associated Press
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