[Vision2020] White Lives Matter group recruiting members in the region, officials say
thansen at moscow.com
Thu May 19 05:21:35 PDT 2022
Courtesy of today’s Moscow-Pullman Daily News.
White Lives Matter group recruiting members in the region, officials say
Masked individuals held WLM banner in Lewiston and Moscow last week
LEWISTON — The Nez Perce County Prosecutor’s Office has made local law enforcement agencies aware of a so-called White Lives Matter group that is recruiting members in north central Idaho.
Nick Woods, an investigator with the office, compiled information about the group and sent it to the Lewiston Police Department, Nez Perce Sheriff’s Office and Idaho State Police last week. His efforts were prompted by two masked individuals displaying a banner with the message “It’s great to be white” at the corner of 21st and Main streets in Lewiston. Similar displays were made in Moscow, according to social media posts.
“We are just passing information on to law enforcement,” he said.
Both the Southern Poverty Law Center and the Anti-Defamation League consider the anonymous organization a white supremacist movement with neo-Nazi ties. The group promotes white pride and the “great replacement theory” — the idea that there is a conspiracy to bring people of color to the United States and European nations through immigration with the goal of replacing or suppressing majority white voters. The theory was cited by the 18-year-old white man who shot and killed 10 people and wounded three others in a Buffalo, N.Y., supermarket Saturday. The victims included 11 people of color.
Lewiston Police Captain Rick Fuentes said officers from the department made contact with the masked individuals during their May 11 display but said they did not observe any illegal activity.
“If they are in the roadway or something to that effect, we might be able to get involved, but unfortunately there is not much we can do about it.”
The department received one complaint about the display.
Tai Simpson, a social justice activist from Boise who is Nez Perce and Black, said Nez Perce people and other people of color worry about their safety because of white supremacy movements. But she also said the idea that white people are oppressed is pitiful.
“They are saying, ‘We don’t want to share equality and we don’t want to share power with folks who identify as Black, Brown and Indigenous,’ ” she said. “What they want is sympathy and what they get is derision and shame because it’s laughable.”
Simpson said white supremacy is much more common than many white people believe and it is up to white people to confront it. She said when such displays happen, people should take the opportunity to talk to their children about racism, to educate their family, friends and neighbors about its dangers and to do what they can to disrupt it.
“White supremacy is a white people problem and white people have to dismantle it,” she said.
Seeya 'round town, Moscow, because . . .
"Moscow Cares" (the most fun you can have with your pants on)
“A stranger is just a friend you haven’t met.”
- Roy E. Stolworthy
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