‘White Lives Matter’ or ‘Only White Lives Matter’?

The Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC), has announced that ‘White Lives Matter’ will be listed as a hate group in the next update of the SPLC’s ‘Hate Map’, which allows visitors to track the whereabouts and activities of various hate groups across the US.

Heidi Beirich, the Director of SPLC’s Intelligence Report, told the Houston Chronicle that she could not speak to the number of chapters of ‘White Lives Matter’ being listed. However, she stated that “It’s clear that the leadership of the group, the ends of the group – it’s just a flat-out white supremacist group.” Hedi Beirich also made it clear that the “The ideology behind it, the racist leaders, everything about it is racist.”

‘White Lives Matter’ announced itself to the world earlier this month when they sent armed protesters to a NAACP office in Housten waving  Confederate flags. It is believed, by the Anti-Defamation League, that the protest was organised by the well-known white supremacist organisation ‘The Aryan Renaissance Society’ (ARS). The Anti-Defamation League released a statement regarding the August 21 protest in which they lay out clear evidence linking the ARS and the ‘White Lives Matter’ groups. The links put forward in the statement are that “the ARS symbol, a lightning bolt and a runic symbol, was visible on the group’s ‘White Lives Matter’ banner and on white shirts worn by some of the dozen or so participants.” The Anti-Defamation League also highlighted a sign reading ’14 words’. ’14 words’ is a reference a highly common white supremacist phrase: “We must secure the existence of our people and a future for white children.”

Beirich told Vice News that “we are listing them [White Lives Matter] because they are clearly white supremacists, their motto should be ‘only white lives matter.'”

The listing of ‘White Lives Matter’ as a hate group comes as some call for ‘Black Lives Matter’ to be listed. These calls come after the shooting deaths of police officers across America in the name of the group, and the numerous offensive chants heard at group events.

However, the SPLC said this on their blog last month:

Before we condemn the entire movement for the words of a few, we should ask ourselves whether we would also condemn the entire Republican Party for the racist words of its presumptive nominee – or for the racist rhetoric of many politicians in the party over the course of years.

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