I’ve had a few days to think about the horrific events we saw in Charlottesville over the weekend. I did a Periscope speaking candidly about the issue, wrote a veritable storm of tweets, lost about 100 followers, shared my prior article about the start of all this “free speech rally” idiocy, the usual. I write this article knowing that it will not get very many retweets, or hearts, or positive comments. I write this knowing I’ll be called a cuck, weak, on the wrong side of history, and of course “punching right”.
Oh well. The non-right alt-right deserves to be hit, and hit hard.
And no, I don’t mean literally “punching nazis”.
I have a prediction to make, knowing full well that I might be entirely wrong, and look silly for the rest of my career:
Identitarianism, particularly the adoption or rejection of white identitarianism, is going to be the defining issue on the right within the next 25 years. Furthermore, we need to tackle this issue head-on ideologically, sooner rather than later.
I’ve said so publicly before.
Prediction: civic nationalism & patriotism vs. identitarianism and ethno-nationalism will be the defining fight on the Right.
— Stefanie MacWilliams (@StefMacWilliams) May 17, 2017
No one wants to hear it, for several reasons.
1. People simply see the alt-right as such a tiny and unimportant group that my prediction of the future of the right seems hysterical.
This is where I get extremely frustrated with so many of my colleagues in the broader world of alternative media. So many of them want to have it both ways. “The alt-right is like ten people, they don’t matter, why are you even wasting your time calling them out?” is followed up with “We must unite the right, or we will lose to the left! Stop punching right!”
Which is it.
Either the alt-right is a tiny group, and we can easily call out their garbage and denounce them, or they are a large constituency, and we have to debate their ideas ideologically. Or, I begrudgingly suppose, they’re a large, legitimate constituency, and we must respect their place within the right.
It can’t be all three.
My personal belief is that they are a larger group than we want to think (though still a very small portion of the right overall) – and that though I find their ideas morally abhorrent, they are attractive ideas to many. Whether or not the alt-right is 2,000 people or 200,000 people or 2,000,000 people is ultimately irrelevant. They are growing extremely quickly, and will eventually become a real bloc of people if they are not one already.
2. People think the alt-right is the “new right”, and this misunderstanding causes people who are not alt-right to call themselves alt-right, and be reluctant to criticize a group they have become a part of.
The term “alt-right” was coined by Richard Spencer in 2008. During the 2016 Presidential election, the alt-right was also used by a certain faction of Trump supporters to describe themselves.
How many times do I have to remind them that I distanced myself from the "alt-right" 9 months ago, just weeks after the election? pic.twitter.com/w1QlTkkeYU
— Paul Joseph Watson (@PrisonPlanet) August 15, 2017
If you are part of this group – a kek/pepe loving, meme making, MAGA-hat wearing Trump supporter – and do not believe in white identitarianism, you are not a part of the alt-right. Continuing to use this label helps the cause of the the actual alt-right, by inflating their numbers and making it more difficult to understand what ideology we are working against.
Though I have some disagreements about the extent of Milo/Breitbart’s role in the rise of the alt-right, this video by Ben Shapiro has a lot of information on what the alt-right believes, from the alternative right thought leaders themselves.
Please, do your research. Vox Day’s 16 points is a good place to start. If you really are part of the alt-right, let’s debate your ideas. But if you’re not, stop calling yourself alt-right!
3. Taking on this issue ideologically means it’s possible that we will not prevail ideologically, and instead end up strengthening the views of the alt-right.
The tenet I believe to be the most pivotal is the idea that inherent racial identity is more important than culture, and inherently shapes a groups ability to create a culture. The alt-right may not as a whole believe whites are superior, but they do believe only whites can create Western culture. They believe that this is because of racial differences such as IQ, testosterone levels, etcetera.
I think it’s a lot more nuanced than that, and the vast majority of their grievances are actually the fault of authoritarianism, leftism, and forced mass multiculturalism, particularly within North America and Europe. I’m already someone who venerates Western culture (the west is the best!), and I wish more establishment conservatives would do the same.
I also don’t believe in the idea that researching racial differences is racist, nor in the idea of “hate facts” period. If it is true that black people overall have a lower IQ than whites overall, oh well. We have differences between genders, I don’t see why we wouldn’t have any difference between races.
Facts aren’t racist. What matters is the policies we enact based on those facts.
Fearing truth will never bring a positive outcome. Many on the right who are denouncing the alt-right seem to keep things on a surface level: “They’re white nationalists. They believe in identity politics. They’re social justice warriors”. While that may be true, it’s also not really an argument.
Am I the one to take on this ideology? Probably not. I can barely understand the Bell Curve, I’m not an expert on history, culture, or law.
However, I am willing to try my best, and I wish more conservatives would do the same, because I don’t think we have a choice. Conservative journalist Will Nardi debated Youtuber James Allsup on diversity, one of the few times I saw a conservative debate an alt-righter head on. I think he made a large number of mistakes – but I respect him for putting himself out there and for treating the ideas of the alt-right as worthy of reasonable discussion. Did he hurt the cause? Maybe. Maybe not.
But win, lose, or draw – debates and discussions need to happen, and the best ideas will win out in the end.
It’s funny to me when members of the alt-right call me a cuck or get mad at me for punching right – I’m actually willing to look at their ideas, not just shout Nazi or assume every member of the alt-right is a horrible person.
4. Taking on this issue ideologically means admitting to ourselves that, as conservatives, we have allowed this cancer to fester within our midst.
The alt-right leaders, especially Richard Spencer, are brilliant. Seriously.
The rise of the alt-right, or a movement like it, was inevitable. For many people, it is a reaction to the left’s racism against white people, their islamophilia, and their prioritization of mostly brown immigrants who are paid for by mostly white citizens. Oh, and their general hatred of America, national identity, and patriotism.
These ideas, that white people are not in fact inherently evil, but inherently capable of creating the best cultures in the world, are attractive.
The alt-right leaders used this natural frustration to develop a following. It took a while – but then the 2016 election happened. This did two things.
It provided a whole new stock of maligned white Americans, mostly men, who were sick and tired of watching their tax dollars go towards sanctuary cities, useless foreign “aid”, and the indoctrination of their children in the education system, all while American jobs were shipped to yet more “brown people” in countries like India.
More importantly, though, the 2016 election turned the media from “liberal biased” to “many-limbed liberal sycophant robot hell bent on calling everyone a Nazi for the crime of being white and breathing.”
This was a perfect storm for the rise of the alt-right. “They’ll call you a Nazi anyway!” became a common refrain, allowing the alt-right to claim more and more members – many of whom would end up actually agreeing with their real core ideas and long-term political goals.
Then, especially during the Trump campaign, and even though the alt-right is a small faction in terms of votes (and likely would have voted Trump over Hillary even if we all called them racists every day for a year), we allowed them to be fellow travelers, for fear of appearing splintered to the left.
The alt-right used this to free themselves from any real criticism – no one wants to argue with a group that will brigade your social media with REEEEEIng about what a cuck you are.
We (many of us, anyway) did what I hate the most about Islam – allowed ourselves to become grass for the snakes to hide in.
This ties in closely with my final point.
5. Taking on this issue ideologically could be seen as legitimizing the left’s idea the the right has a race problem, which would hurt the right politically.
First of all, the right doesn’t have a race problem. Conservatism is inherently individualist and anti-racist.
We cannot continue to allow the left to conflate conservatism with white supremacy.
Conservatives abhor racism.
— John Cardillo (@johncardillo) August 14, 2017
The alt-right are not conservatives. “What exactly have conservatives conserved!” is a common alt-right talking point. They’re not even on the right – when it comes to actual policy, many of them, including leader Richard Spencer, are center-leftists.
So why on earth are we allowing them to consider themselves part of the right?
They may have legitimate grievances, they may have arguments worth looking into honestly, but for goodness sake: we do not owe them the chance to ruin our moral high ground or to poison the right with racism.
But because so many on the right have allowed this, I now have to consider the alt-right as part of our “side” and speak accordingly.
What happened in Charlottesville was a tragedy, and more complicated than the media wants to admit. There was, as Trump said, violence on all sides. There is some ambiguity based on video evidence whether Heather Hayer was killed intentionally or on some level accidentally.
Either way? Someone died. Dozens were injured.
This wasn’t for free speech. This was for white supremacy. The literal KKK. Literal neo-nazis.
I defend their freedom of speech and always will – but I also abhor their ideas and always will.
I support the Westboro Baptist having the right to speak – I have never felt the need to grab a sign and join them.
Charlottesville epitomized the entire problem on the right that we have seen for the past year or so. The left and the media have set an “everyone is a white supremacist” trap, the alt-right has added the bait, and the so-called right has dove right in at every turn.
You want to do something for America? Stop going to these stupid rallies, and start debating the alt-right.
White identitarianism will be a defining issue for us whether we want to admit it or not. Mark my words.