In the middle of an icy Michigan forest, a group of white supremacists and neo-Nazis march with torches across a frozen lake and to the opposite shore. A search party enters the woods and finds the group. White smoke rises from their burning torches. A group of white men searches the field. Another white man is found nearby with a can of spray paint. White supremacists and Neo-Nazis wearing red and wearing masks replace the painted faces with their own and their red Power Ranger power hoses. Their own faces wash away as they stare the lower half of a spray-painted anti-fascist rallying group with tears in their eyes.

Today, the video was tweeted by the Anti-Defamation League, along with the caption, “Is anti-Semitism real for you?” The ADL video features 20 images, more than two dozen videos and footage of experts sharing their thoughts on growing anti-Semitism in all forms. The video serves as a reminder that, in today’s troubled landscape, as long as we see anti-Semitism and racism in the mainstream, the discourse online can be just as dangerous. As the Anti-Defamation League’s Center on Extremism declared in its 2018 study, “Membership in neo-Nazi, white supremacist, and other right-wing extremist groups nearly tripled in the past six years.”

The ADL used data from the Southern Poverty Law Center, combining that with data on the FBI’s hate crime statistics. It found that 1,000 people affiliated with hate groups were counted as part of hate incidents in 2018, a seven percent increase from 2017. Of those incidents, 73 were connected to the white nationalist movement.

“The internet and social media are great in many ways, but just like with the opioid epidemic, the internet is great for releasing a mass amount of narcotics,” said Charles Baker, a pro-white activist in Alaska, in an ADL post. “The only thing that keeps it contained is the people getting addicted to the narcotics. If you put too many Muslims or Jews online or if you let people out of prison and they come back online, we’re going to see a massive explosion of violent crimes.”

Read the full story at TheADL.org.

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