As we approach the first anniversary of the insurrection at the US Capitol, more than 700 people have been indicted and more indictments are expected. 129 rioters have entered guilty pleas. Several have been sentenced to prison terms.
Did the mob that stormed the Capitol simply coalesce around the fantasy that the election was stolen from Donald Trump? Or can the roots of the violence be traced back to rage about government that began in the 1970s?
In Charlotteville, Virginia, on the day before Thanksgiving, a federal jury found twelve defendants and five organizations liable for $26 million dollars in damages stemming from the Unite the Right rally.
What effect will this verdict have on the future of the neo-Nazi and White supremacist organizations that sparked the tragic, deadly violence in 2017?
Tom's guest today is Dr. Kathleen Belew. She’s an assistant professor of history at the University of Chicago, where she is also the faculty affiliate at the Center for the Study of Race, Politics and Culture. She is the author of Bring the War Home: The White Power Movement and Paramilitary America.
And along with Ramón Gutiérrez, she is the editor of, and contributor to, a new collection of essays called A Field Guide to White Supremacy, in which she and other leading scholars explore how different forms of White supremacy and hatred manifest in events like those that took place on January 6th, and extend to domestic partner violence, homophobia, transphobia, Islamophobia, anti-immigration, and anti-Semitism. The authors chronicle how hate groups have moved from the fringe to the mainstream in America, and they send a clear warning that the violence we’ve seen in recent years may well be repeated.