Last week’s attack in Portland was horrifying, but unfortunately expected. As Anarchists and other leftists predicted, the rise of reactionary elements under the current administration has left blood in its’ wake both in the Empire and abroad.
These attacks are echoes of Dallas in the 80s and 90s, when the Confederate Hammerskins would wreak havoc in the streets of Deep Ellum. It wasn’t until The G*psy Tea Room attack that the violent racist elements of Deep Ellum would go underground. The CHS member, Jesse Chaddock, was jailed for almost 20 years.
Denton-based American Vanguard, Identity Evropa, and Anticom DFW have attempted to recruit using stickers and posters around college campuses and Deep Ellum. These groups have evolved their rhetoric to include identity politic language as a dog whistle for their white supremacist politics.
Racism and fascism are cultural memes that evolve to infect the minds of the new generation.
In the 1920s, Dallas had one of the biggest KKK memberships in the US. This photo was taken 10 years after the lynching of Allen Brooks. The murder of Brooks was part of a concerted tactic to use visibility, violence and fear to maintain the societal order of White supremacy. A theme we will see over and over in each variety of fascist, reactionary, and white supremacist groups. Without access to counter information, young racists grow to be old racists.
We see that throughout the 20th century every push from oppressed people to access the wages, rights, and justice, have been met by reactionaries. Concerted efforts of anti-racist organizing during the early half of the 20th century helped push reactionary groups into unpopular fringe groups, where they belong. Consider this picture from 1970s Dallas.
In this November 1979 file photo, 40 Klansmen are pictured marching in Dallas, escorted by riot-equipped policemen and chased by thousands of jeering people.
Here we see that with the opposition to white supremacist ideas, their numbers dwindled. Direct action forces reactionaries underground. Like a chameleon, the reactionaries changed their colors to blend into their environment and grow.
From the Confederate Hammerskins’ own website:
The skinhead presence in Dallas was first chronicled in 1979 and like other cities in the USA it was an offshoot of the punk scene. Numbers were quite small in the early 80`s but by 1984 enough seeds had been planted and the USA was ready for a skinhead explosion. Between 1984 and 1987 the skinhead scene in Dallas reached a peak for violence but lacked political direction, with a few exceptions the skinheads in the area had always been geared towards White Power.
Fortunately, there was never a ska, scooter, or mod fashion in the 80`s however Dallas did have a small population of anti-racist skins and punks known as DSB (dumb skater boys). The anti-racist scene was weak but the White Power scene was coming into its own. Most of the skinheads in the area had grown up as such, educated themselves without the help of a central leader and soon realized they could create a force to be reckoned with if they formed a dynamic, focused and productive group.
It’s important to note the relation of state protection and collusion in all of this. Traditionally, the police protect white supremacists, partially because of shared ideology, but also because it provides an outlet for officers to exercise extrajudicial violence against People of Color, LGBTQ, and community organizers.
The biggest battle against White supremacy isn’t just on the street, but in our living rooms, schools, and workplaces.
- Physicial Resistance
- Political Organization
We urge our readers to take direct action and responsibility in the streets to combat the rise of new reactionary groups.