Report: Racist rhetoric rising on campuses
NEW YORK — Colleges in the U.S. are seeing more racist rhetoric on campus, a new report finds.
Instances of white supremacist propaganda showing up on college campuses trended higher in the recently completed academic year, according to a recent report published by Anti-Defamation League report.
That follows a major spike in documented cases of white supremacist fliers, stickers, posters and other material in the 2017-2018 academic year, the hate watchdog group said.
And it’s only getting worse.
The just-completed spring semester saw more extremist propaganda on campus than any preceding semester, the ADL said, with 161 incidents on 122 different campuses across 33 states and the District of Columbia.
The ADL report documented 313 cases of white supremacist propaganda on college campuses between Sept. 1, 2018, and May 31, 2019, all of them stemming from organizations associated with what’s known as the alt-right movement.
That was a 7% increase from the previous academic year, when there were 292 cases, according to the ADL.
The 2017-2018 tally marked a 77% increase from the previous academic year.
Occurrences of white supremacist propaganda in non-college settings also spiked, with 672 instances in the first five months of 2019, the ADL said.
The recent surge in college campuses points to greater efforts within hate groups to recruit young, impressionable minds, while the overall increases reflect a political climate where white supremacist rhetoric is increasingly tolerated, ADL CEO Jonathan Greenblatt said.
“There’s no doubt that these extremists feel emboldened when they’ve suddenly become present in the public conversation,” Greenblatt said.
White supremacist groups are working social media to push their message to the masses and, in turn, have achieved a level of influence in the political discourse not seen in decades, Greenblatt said.
Some elected officials are echoing white supremacist messaging and retweeting their memes, Greenblatt said. Their phrasing, he said, “has literally become staples of discussions on cable talk programs.”