2020-09-30 13:39:12

Former Neo-Nazi Says Trump's Call for Proud Boys to "Stand By" Will Encourage More Violence

President Trump refused to condemn white supremacists during the first of three scheduled presidential debates with Joe Biden.

When pressed by moderator Chris Wallace of Fox News to disavow far-right extremism, Trump name-checked the Proud Boys and told them to "stand back and stand by," words widely denounced as a tacit endorsement of the violent, white supremacist organization classified by the Southern Poverty Law Center as a hate group.

The Proud Boys almost immediately responded by changing its logo online to include the Trump quote.

Christian Picciolini, a former neo-Nazi who now leads the Free Radicals Project, a group focused on helping people disengage from violent extremism, says Trump's words were a clear encouragement for "continued violence" from far-right groups.

Democracy Now! also speaks with Temple University professor Marc Lamont Hill, who says Trump's performance at the debate is a continuation of his white supremacist project.

"He wants violence in the streets, he wants chaos at the polls, because he wants Americans to feel a sense of unsafety. It's its own kind of diplomatic terrorism," he says.

Democracy Now! produces a daily, global, independent news hour hosted by award-winning journalists Amy Goodman and Juan González. 

Our reporting includes breaking daily news headlines and in-depth interviews with people on the front lines of the world’s most pressing issues. 

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2020 Election Amy Goodman Christian Picciolini Democracy Now! Donald Trump Free Radicals Project Free Speech TV Joe Biden Neo-Nazi Proud Boys United States Violence White Supremacists

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