International Keystone Knights of KKK Hosting “White Christian Community Event” in Rockmart, Georgia, October 1st 2016

Update 9/23/2016, 6PM: According to The Polk County Standard Journal, the Klan event has now been cancelled.

Update 9/19/2016: Permit for the KKK event in Rockmart is now available here.

On October 1st – the same day the white supremacist Hammerskin Nation will hold a major racist festival in Georgia – the International Keystone Knights of the Ku Klux Klan (IKKKKK) have announced a gathering at Seaborn Jones Park in downtown Rockmart, Georgia.

Rockmart is approximately an hour northwest of Atlanta by car. It is approximately 25 minutes north of Draketown GA where the “Hammerfest” gathering is expected to take place. (The Georgia Peach Oyster Bar in Draketown is also where the “Aryan Nationalist Alliance” will gather on September 17th.)

The October 1st IKKKKK gathering is promoted as a “White Christian Community Event” running from 10AM to 6PM and featuring vendors, music and food. Seaborn Jones Park is a public space operated by the City of Rockmart.

edited-keystone-knights-at-seaborne-jones-park-rockmart-ga-oct-1st-2016Flyer for the Klan event in Rockmart, GA October 1st

A promotional image for the October 1st IKKKKK gathering was circulated online by Greg “Thor” Calhoun of Cedartown, Georgia. At the time of writing, promotion does not seem to have advanced far beyond Calhoun notifying those already in his circles.

Greg Calhoun was previously involved in the Aryan Nations Knights of the KKK, where he was active alongside Shaun Winkler of Mississippi, a longstanding white power militant and one-time “Imperial Wizard” of the Aryan Nations KKK. Both Calhoun and Winkler eventually switched organization affiliation to the International Keystone Knights. (Winkler is now a member of the National Socialist Movement.)

shawn-winkler-photo-posted-to-vk-19-jun-2016-with-greg-calhoun-dl-8-27-2016Greg Calhoun (L) and Shaun Winkler (R) earlier this year.

On November 14, 2015, Greg Calhoun and his wife Jodi organized a “Defend Stone Mountain” rally at Stone Mountain Park – an event where there was an “obvious” Klan presence according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. The November 14, 2015 rally organized by the Calhouns was the immediate precursor to the April 23, 2016 “Rock Stone Mountain” white power rally at the same park, an event which met with concerted anti-racist resistance.

In filings with the Georgia Corporations Division, the International Keystone Knights presently lists “Greg Cochran” as its agent for the State of Georgia – yet the address provided in these filings indicates that “Greg Cochran” is the same person as Gregory Todd Calhoun.

Regionally, October 1st is an unusually busy day for white supremacist organizers. As well as the Hammerskins-sponsored “Hammerfest” in Georgia plus the IKKKKK “White Christian Community Event” in downtown Rockmart, the annual “Stormfront Summit” will be held in East Tennessee on the same weekend, featuring speakers such as David Duke, Paul Fromm, and Atlanta white nationalist/real estate lawyer Sam Dickson.

All Out Against Nazis & Klan at Stone Mountain, GA – April 23rd

Update 4/24/2016: More will eventually be published here about the white supremacist events of April 23 that took place in Stone Mountain, Rome, and Draketown/Temple, GA. There’s also plenty to say about yesterday’s anti-racist resistance at Stone Mountain. Briefly: things went very badly for the racist “Rock Stone Mountain” event, which was met with determined opposition (see coverage here.) Follow this link for a statement from the All Out ATL mobilization about the anti-racist action at Stone Mountain Park (number for anti-racists seems high).

april23fireStone Mountain Park, April 23rd

At the time of writing, all arrestees from Stone Mountain Park are out of jail, including one person now facing a felony charge. Funds are still needed for defense efforts, so consider making a solidarity contribution here.

 

The All Out ATL mobilization is calling for anti-racists to gather 9AM, Saturday April 23rd at the corner of Main & E. Mountain St. in the community of Stone Mountain, GA to oppose the “Rock Stone Mountain” white supremacist gathering.

noklanposter_smallAll Out ATL poster with meeting point for Saturday April 23 – .pdf for printing here.

All out Against the KKK from All Out Atlanta on Vimeo.

For all posts about “Rock Stone Mountain” on Atlanta Antifascist Notes, see here.

National Socialist Movement and “Rock Stone Mountain” Combine Post-Rally Evening Events, Georgia April 23rd

White Supremacist Gatherings on April 23rd Combine Evening Events

Two white supremacist gatherings scheduled for April 23 in Georgia–the “Rock Stone Mountain” event at Stone Mountain Park outside Atlanta, plus the National Socialist Movement-hosted rally in Rome, Georgia–have now combined their evening events. This new arrangement has been confirmed by National Socialist Movement (NSM) statements to the press and also by Rock Stone Mountain main organizer John Michael Estes when he appeared on an NSM internet radio broadcast.

The daytime white power events in Georgia are still separate, although the Rome GA rally by the NSM, Loyal White Knights of the KKK, plus allies will begin marching slightly later to facilitate participation by white supremacists making the two-hour drive from the “Rock Stone Mountain” event which is scheduled to begin at 11AM. (The NSM rally in Rome is still billed to start at 3PM, although organizers now say that marching may begin anywhere from 3:30 to 4PM to facilitate arrivals from the Stone Mountain event.) After the NSM rally in Rome, the combined racist forces then plan to drive 45 minutes south to the Georgia Peach Oyster Bar in Draketown (near Temple) GA for an evening event of racist music plus a cross- and swastika-lighting.

NSM April 23 2016 after-event latest flyerRevised flyer for April 23 evening event

Earlier on the 23rd, the white supremacists of “Rock Stone Mountain” still plan to march to the top of Stone Mountain outside of Atlanta, although they will be confronted with a large showing of anti-racists determined to shut them down. Initially, Rock Stone Mountain had planned a separate evening event, but the Rock Stone Mountain organizers lost their first evening venue in early March.

The merger of the of the two evening events took place following negotiations between NSM and Rock Stone Mountain organizers. The result is that some musical acts planned for the Rock Stone Mountain evening event will now be performing at the Georgia Peach in Draketown/Temple GA, which the NSM had initially booked for their post-Rome after-party. (The NSM provides a location of “Temple, Georgia” for their National Meeting on Friday, April 22nd, suggesting that they will be using the Georgia Peach then as well.)

The combined evening events indicate that “Rock Stone Mountain” is no longer making even slight efforts to disguise its white supremacist agenda or its connections to neo-Nazism. Despite “Rock Stone Mountain” having referenced the white supremacist terror group The Order in earlier outreach materials, rally organizers had also asked that “participants not bring flags or banners representing any foreign nation or power, historical or current, to the rally.” In other words, while they encouraged Confederate flags they didn’t want Nazi Germany ones. It now seems that “Rock Stone Mountain” organizers have lost their last few scruples about how they are perceived, since they are openly cooperating with one of the nation’s largest neo-Nazi groups.

When Rock Stone Mountain activist John Michael Estes appeared on a recent NSM-hosted internet radio show to discuss the merged evening events, he revealed details about Rock Stone Mountain internal organizing, the band line-up for evening of the 23rd, and his own political background. The NSM broadcast began by celebrating the emerging white power coalition for the 23rd, with organizers boasting that they had “unite[d] many, many […] organizations.”

John Estes discussed support for the Rock Stone Mountain racist rally, claiming that: “We’ve even gotten support from the Sons of Confederate Veterans, which would have been unheard of just a few years ago.” An NSM show host claimed that leaders from the racist/secessionist League of the South were also expected at the Rock Stone Mountain rally.

Not all of Rock Stone Mountain’s efforts appear to have gone smoothly, however. John Michael Estes announced:

[Long-time white supremacist leader] Billy Roper will not be a part of Rock Stone Mountain. He dropped out months ago and he’s not one of the planners. He’s not contributing anymore.”

Estes downplays Roper’s significant involvement in early Rock Stone Mountain planning. Whatever conflict may have occurred between Roper and other organizers, Rock Stone Mountain is still promoted on the website for Divine Truth Ministries, the white supremacist “Christian Identity” outfit which Roper co-founded towards the end of last year.

During his interview, Estes also discussed the current band line-up for the evening of the 23rd:

“One of these bands is ‘Southern Secession.’ They’re playing under that name for this event, but they are basically going to be a Johnny Rebel tribute band […] Also Tracy Cantley will be coming to play his outlaw country. There’s another band that is supposed to be coming, but we’re having some guitarist problems right now, trying to get those sorted out.”

In the current interview, Estes does not mention the notorious racist rock group Definite Hate, who had earlier been advertised as participating in Rock Stone Mountain.

John Michael Estes: Background and Worldview

john michael estes from FB dl 4 15 2016Rock Stone Mountain primary organizer John Michael Estes

Estes’ interview on the NSM broadcast also disclosed his own background and worldview. Estes talked about his radicalization as a white supremacist, stating that he ordered books from the Aryan Nations while he was in prison. Since that time, Estes claims:

“I’ve been involved with National Socialism, I’ve been involved with Odinism, I went through the Christian Identity phase at one time. I’m about my race–race first and the 14 Words.”

Christian Identity is a racist religion which claims that whites are God’s true chosen people, that Jews are imposters of Satanic descent, and that people of color are less than fully human. The website of Covenant People’s Ministry–a Christian Identity operation in Brooks, GA—states that it “began […] 1996 and was founded by two Christian identity believers — John Michael Estes and Jeromy John Visser.”

The “14 Words” referenced by Estes is a white power slogan authored by David Lane, a now-deceased member of The Order/Brüder Schweigen terror group. (The 14-word slogan is: “We must secure the existence of our people and a future for white children.”) The Order raised funds for the white power movement via counterfeiting and a series of armed robberies; it bombed an adult theatre and a synagogue; and the group murdered Jewish talk-show host Alan Berg. David Lane was convicted for violating Berg’s civil rights for his participation in the assassination.

rock stone mountain RJM image from Twitter Dec 8 2015“Rock Stone Mountain” promotional image featuring Robert Jay Matthews (pointing finger)

As revealed in the NSM internet radio interview, John Michael Estes showed his devotion to The Order’s legacy earlier this year, when Estes made a “pilgrimage” (his own words) to Whidbey Island in Washington State. Whidbey Island was where Order leader Robert Jay Mathews died in a firefight with federal authorities in December 1984.

Estes doubtless sees himself as leading his forces into battle on April 23rd for the same white power cause as Matthews believed in.

It is time to confront the white power alliance Estes and other white supremacists have pulled together, before this alliance grows any further. For information on anti-racist opposition at Stone Mountain on April 23rd, visit All Out ATL.

Just Don’t Call It “White Power” – “Protect the South,” Wesley Sitton, and the Mainstreaming of White Supremacy

protect the south community FB

Introduction: White Power on Display at Stone Mountain, November 14, 2015

As the “Rock Stone Mountain” white power rally at Stone Mountain Park in Georgia approaches, now is a good time to again discuss this event’s immediate precursor, the November 14, 2015 rally at the same park. The November 14 event was one of a series of pro-Confederate flag/memorial rallies organized in the wake of Dylann Roof’s June 2015 massacre at the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, South Carolina. These rallies attempted to protect symbols of the Confederacy during a time of increased outcry about their public display. While earlier 2015 Confederate flag rallies also involved white nationalists, at the November 14 rally the Atlanta Journal-Constitution noted a particularly “obvious” Ku Klux Klan presence. This Klan presence on November 14 is a consequence of who organized and promoted the event in the first place.

estes nov 14 2015Crowd at Stone Mountain on November 14, 2015 (current “Rock Stone Mountain” organizer John Michael Estes in center wearing shirt for far-Right and racist “Rock Against Communism” movement)

According to “Restoring the Honor” blog, “Southern Rebel Patriots”–AKA Georgia residents Jodi and Greg Calhoun–first made the call for the November 14th rally. Greg Calhoun was involved with an Aryan Nations faction before joining the International Keystone Knights of the Ku Klux Klan; Calhoun is presently assisting with “Rock Stone Mountain.” A second Facebook page that promoted the November 14 rally was part of the “Stand by the Flag Rally” national mobilization–this particular “Stand by the Flag”page was controlled by the Rebel Outlaw Knights of the Ku Klux Klan (whose former Imperial Cleric more recently also spread the word about “Rock Stone Mountain” online.)

protect the south community FBProtect the South Facebook community

One of the biggest promoters for November 14 was “Protect the South”–this Facebook community established its own “Defend Stone Mountain” event page for the November 14 rally. The overall “Protect the South” Facebook page was launched in June 2015, while debate on Confederate symbols heated up. This page appealed to Confederate flag supporters and even pandered to that movement’s implicit racism, but the page avoided slogans known to drive numbers down, such as open cries of “white power.” In fact, the administrator of “Protect the South” would later argue that while he had no problem with “white power” talk in principle, the reality is that such slogans could make the Southern cause look bad while providing opportunities to opponents. The “Protect the South” administrator was criticized by other November 14 promoters and participants on account of this defensive stance.

What has not been mentioned in commentary so far is that the administrator for “Protect the South”–Wesley Sitton (AKA Adam Wesley Sitton) of Pembroke, Georgia–has a history as a neo-Nazi. While in recent years Sitton described himself as the head of a “True Republican Family,” Sitton’s new self-description isn’t about renouncing white supremacy, it is only about hiding it. Sitton’s strategy seems to be a perfect example of how people can organize for the goals of white power without even using the phrase “white power.” Indeed, Sitton’s abandonment of blatant neo-Nazism has created political opportunities for him. It has allowed Sitton to rally larger numbers of neo-Confederates and anti-immigrant forces, as well as to coordinate with the Georgia Security Force III% militia which nominally opposes racism. These advantages also come with a cost: Sitton’s tactical choice has angered militant racists who are invested in being explicit about their white supremacy.

Wesley Sitton’s White Supremacist History    

In 2005, someone using the handle “AryanBrother88” posted frequently on Stormfront, the world’s largest white power internet forum. (The “88” part of this pseudonym is alphanumeric code for “H.H.” or “Heil Hitler.”) By 2006, this forum user was using his own name, Wesley Sitton, and providing his actual location of Pembroke, Georgia. While the “AryanBrother88” and “Wesley Sitton” accounts on Stormfront were closed down, traces of Sitton’s writing on Stormfront remain wherever he was quoted by another user. During the time he was a Stormfront member, Sitton used his account to spread the news that Alabama white nationalist and Holocaust-denier Larry Darby had two half-Chinese children, making Darby a “race traitor” in the eyes of many Stormfront users.

wesley sittonWesley Sitton, recent photo

In addition to posting on Stormfront, Sitton was active with the National Socialist Movement, one of the larger neo-Nazi organizations in the US. A leaked membership list for the National Socialist Movement gives an address in Pembroke for Sitton, with the record dated November 2005.

(Not sure that this “Wesley Sitton” is the same Wesley Sitton who is the administrator for “Protect the South”? The birthday info for user “Wesley Sitton” on Stormfront matches Adam Wesley Sitton’s birthday. The street address provided on the NSM address list can be seen on an image in Sitton’s current Facebook timeline.)

While the National Socialist Movement is a Hitler-loving organization complete with military-style uniforms and swastika armbands, during 2006 Sitton also promoted white supremacy draped in the Red, White and Blue. Sitton’s website, “Taking a Stand,” proclaimed that it was “fighting to restore the American way” and featured American flags plus a Thomas Jefferson quote on its front page. Taking a closer look at the site, however, revealed articles such as “Jews, the Destruction of America!,” claims that the white race must “take control and power again in America” as well as calls for “the downfall of ZOG [Zionist Occupation Government, a white power term for alleged Jewish control of the US government].”

takingastandbannerTaking a Stand website banner

In 2007, Sitton launched a new website, one very different to the “Taking a Stand” website in visual terms. The “Save Our Race” website now used the swastika banner of Nazi Germany instead of the American flag. The “Save Our Race” website was for “Georgia’s [chapter of the] American National Socialist Workers Party” and declared:

On July 18, 2006, 21 former state and unit leaders of the National Socialist Movement, along with 96 comrades, declared a break from the National Socialist Movement. The result from this action was the creation of the American National Socialist Workers Party.

Sitton is listed on the site as the “Georgia Leader” for the new Party.

SaveOurRacebannerSave Our Race website banner

Sitton’s time as ANSWP leader must not have lasted long, however. “Save Our Race” disappeared from the web quickly. Chris Drake of Augusta became the new Georgia leader for the ANSWP, only for the ANSWP to collapse after its leader Bill White’s arrest by the FBI in October 2008. (If you want to know about White’s legal saga, just read his Wikipedia page.)

Let’s move forward several years. It would be nice to believe that Sitton had abandoned his extreme racism and far-Right worldview, but this does not appear to be the case. For example, in January 2015 Sitton was openly celebrating James Earl Ray, the assassin of Martin Luther King, Jr.

wesley sitton james earl rayWesley Sitton would prefer to celebrate James Earl Ray day, apparently

Starting in mid-July 2015 after the Charleston massacre, Sitton began a flurry of activity on behalf of the Confederate flag and its cause. One of the first events promoted by Sitton’s newly-launched “Protect the South” page was a rally in Statesboro, Georgia which was part of a “Stand by the Flag” day of coordinated protests at Walmart parking lots due to Walmart’s decision not to sell Confederate flags. These protests were not just promoted on Facebook, but also on white nationalist sites such as that of the Council of Conservative Citizens (the organization whose materials had helped to radicalize Dylann Roof in the first place.)

Sitton has subsequently used “Protect the South” to promote several other Confederate rallies and events, including the November 14 Klan-organized event at Stone Mountain. Indeed, Sitton seems to have played a key role in persuading members of the (nominally non-racist) Georgia Security Force III% militia that the November 14 rally had nothing to do with the Klan and that the Klan would not be present.

gsf defend stone mountain eventGeorgia Security Force III% leader Chris Hill post to “Defend Stone Mountain” page

Meanwhile, Sitton was also active on another front. Following the November 13 terror attacks in Paris, Sitton circulated a petition online calling for a Georgia Governor Deal to stop any settlement of Syrian refugees (called “potential terrorists” by Sitton) in the state. Sitton’s petition rapidly gained thousands of signatures. On November 16, Governor Deal announced that he would not accept Syrian refugees in Georgia–Deal’s decision may have been partially influenced by the same sort of public pressure mobilized by Sitton.

Conclusion

Since abandoning the more explicit cries of “white power” and use of symbols such as the swastika, Wesley Sitton achieved some organizing successes: creating a Confederate flag Facebook page followed by thousands; organizing local militiamen to do security for a Klan-organized event even while persuading them that no Klan would be present; and finally helping to push through anti-immigrant measures in Georgia.

Sitton is still a racist who has worked with the neo-Nazi groups and other organized white supremacists. Sitton’s new discourse about “heritage, not hate” and “southern pride” are tactical preferences for him. Anti-racists must fight white supremacy in its most blatant forms–such as that of neo-Nazis–but we must also oppose forms of white power organizing in which the same message has been repackaged to appeal to broader numbers.

At present, Sitton is attempting to portray himself as an opponent of the Klansmen and neo-Nazi organizers who will show up for “Rock Stone Mountain” on April 23, even claiming that he will protest these forces. Given Sitton’s own history as a neo-Nazi; his continuing racist organizing; and his spreading of misinformation around the earlier November 14 event at Stone Mountain, Sitton’s current maneuvers should not fool anyone.

Protect The South Likes Rock Stone Mountain“Protect the South” likes the explicitly white power event “Rock Stone Mountain,” image courtesy of Restoring the Honor

Initial Venue for “Rock Stone Mountain” Evening Show Cancels

This Just In…

The venue for the evening show accompanying the April 23 “Rock Stone Mountain” white power rally in Georgia has canceled, according to the event’s Facebook page. Event organizers are now scurrying to secure a replacement venue.

Rock Stone Mountain initial evening venue cancels

Interestingly, today’s Facebook post does not mention Definite Hate, a musical act linked to a 2012 racist massacre that had previously been advertised as playing the evening show. Of course, this omission does not guarantee that the act is actually no longer on the bill.

Now is an excellent time to commit to showing up and opposing the Klan/neo-Nazi organized event at Stone Mountain (just outside Atlanta) on April 23rd. Visit All Out ATL for information on the anti-racist mobilization to shut down this white supremacist event.

Will Band Linked to Racist Massacre Perform for “Rock Stone Mountain” White Power Gathering, April 23 in Georgia?

Summary: On April 23rd, racist organizers are promising an evening concert following the “Rock Stone Mountain” rally in Georgia during the day. One of the musical acts advertised as playing this evening show is Definite Hate, a longstanding racist rock group. In 2012, one of Definite Hate’s guitarists, Wade Michael Page, murdered six people (and then killed himself) in an attack on the Sikh Temple of Wisconsin in Oak Creek. Definite Hate remains affiliated with the violent Hammerskin Nation organization, and the band continues to call for bloodshed in its lyrics. The fact that “Rock Stone Mountain” planners are using this notorious act to draw a crowd to their event reveals the organizers’ violently racist political vision. It also makes clear why we must come together against such race war politics.

The Story So Far…

On April 23, 2016, two nationally-organized white supremacist gatherings are scheduled to take place in Georgia. The National Socialist Movement (NSM)–a blatantly neo-Nazi organization–has announced that it will hold a rally in Rome, GA on April 23. Also that day, another group of Ku Klux Klan and neo-Nazi militants will hold “Rock Stone Mountain,” an event which organizers have billed as a “White Power March up Stone Mountain.” (Stone Mountain Park is a short distance outside Atlanta; an earlier article discusses this site’s significance for neo-Confederates and ideological racists.) The NSM event in Rome was announced at the very beginning of this year, whereas “Rock Stone Mountain” has been promoted since November 2015–in fact, “Rock Stone Mountain” follows on from another Klan-organized rally at Stone Mountain Park that occurred mid-November.

The two separate white supremacist rallies slated for April 23–and the differing styles of the two groups of organizers–have been discussed elsewhere on this site. Both the NSM and the “Rock Stone Mountain” organizers claim to have evening entertainment lined up following their respective daytime rallies. The NSM has advertised an evening event taking place at the white power-friendly Georgia Peach Oyster Bar in Draketown (near Temple) GA. The “Rock Stone Mountain” organizers are currently being more guarded about their evening plans, stating that their “after-event party/concert venue will not be released until the day of the event.” (If you have additional information about this event, please get in contact.)

At the time of writing, the anti-racist All Out ATL mobilization is preparing to confront and shut down the white supremacist march at Stone Mountain Park on April 23. Atlanta Antifascist Notes wholeheartedly endorses this mobilization and urges you to get involved. The importance of effective, large-scale opposition to white power organizing becomes even clearer when one examines the history of one of the rock bands announced as playing the “Rock Stone Mountain” after-event.

Definite Hate

On August 5, 2012 white supremacist Wade Michael Page entered the Sikh Temple of Wisconsin in Oak Creek, fatally shooting six people and wounding others before turning his gun on himself. At the time of this massacre, Page was a full member of the Hammerskin Nation, a long-running and violent bonehead (racist “skinhead”) organization which presently exists on several continents. It also was revealed that Page had a long history in the white power music scene, having played with such racist rock bands as Intimidation One, 13 Knots, Page’s own project named End Apathy, and finally Definite Hate.

wade michael pageWade Michael Page

Page was not a founding member of Definite Hate, a Hammerskin-affiliated act that is based in North Carolina. Page was not mentioned, for example, when Definite Hate’s early days were discussed in a 2001 article for GQ. However Page is credited (as “Wade”) on the second full album by Definite Hate, 2011’s “Madder Than Hell – Meaner Than Shit.” Prior to moving to Wisconsin, Page lived for half a year in North Carolina with Edward Brent Rackley, a Hammerskin and long-serving member of Definite Hate. (Rackley also played music with Page in the groups 13 Knots and End Apathy.)

As a group, Definite Hate has never attempted to put real distance between itself and the massacre by its former guitarist. Contacted in the immediate aftermath of Page’s murder rampage, the most Rackley could come up with was: “I’m not interested. This is him. I don’t care to be bothered anymore.” This attitude is hardly surprising from a member of an act whose lyrics include such endorsements of racist murder as: “riding through the city projects / creeping real slow in the dead of the night / a group of monkeys on the corner / with no idea that death’s in sight” (the song “Lock and Load” from the 2005 full-length “Welcome to the South.”)

edward brent rackleyDefinite Hate member and Hammerskin Edward Brent Rackley of North Carolina

The Hammerskin Nation as a whole was defiant following Page’s killing. For example, the Hammerskin-linked record label Antipathy Records offered a celebratory “WADEPAGE” sale soon after the Wisconsin murders.

The latest line-up for Definite Hate has in no way toned down its message or loyalties. In 2015, for example, Definite Hate played a show in California paying tribute to David Lane. Lane (1938-2007) was a participant in The Order/Brüder Schweigen white supremacist terror group during the 1980s. It has been alleged that Lane was the getaway driver when The Order assassinated Jewish talk radio host Alan Berg in 1984. While imprisoned for violating Berg’s civil rights and other charges, David Lane became something of a cult figure within the white supremacist movement, coining the “14 words” slogan–“We must secure the existence of our people and a future for white children”–now ubiquitous in white racist circles. (“Rock Stone Mountain” promotional materials also reference David Lane’s “14 words.”)

definite hate david lane tribute 2015 californiaDefinite Hate playing David Lane memorial show, California 2015. Rackley playing guitar in background.

 Is Definite Hate on the Evening Bill for “Rock Stone Mountain”?

It is no secret that the organizers for Rock Stone Mountain love the music of Definite Hate. An Atlanta Journal-Constitution investigative report has already highlighted Rock Stone Mountain organizers circulated a Definite Hate song as part of their event outreach on Facebook.

There have also been other hints that Definite Hate will play the April 23rd event. A now-deleted fan page for Definite Hate on Facebook listed “Rock Stone Mountain” as one of the group’s “Upcoming events.”

google cache of definite hate FB deleted rock stone mountain upcoming dl 2 15 2016“Rock Stone Mountain” as an “Upcoming Event” on (now-deleted) Definite Hate fan page.

 On their own, the above two facts would simply lead to conjecture. However, one of the “Rock Stone Mountain” organizers is himself spreading the word that Definite Hate will provide evening entertainment on April 23rd. In December, “Liam O’Aghairle” (a pseudonym) announced on Facebook that Definite Hate would be “starting the rock lineup” for the Rock Stone Mountain evening concert. The same post identifies Tracy Cantley, a neo-Nazi who plays “rebel country music” as another act on the Rock Stone Mountain evening bill.

 Liam O'Aghairle FB image Dec 19 2015 dl 2 11 2016“Liam O‘Aghairle” discusses the Rock Stone Mountain show line-up.

“Liam O’Aghairle” is the same person as “Johnny Rebel” or “John E. Rebel” (also fake names) who was the Imperial Cleric of the Rebel Outlaw Knights of the Ku Klux Klan in Arizona. (The Rebel Outlaw Knights of the KKK seem to have disbanded, although their website may still be found online–that site’s main image is the same as the profile picture for “Liam O’Aghairle” on Facebook.)  The Rebel Outlaw Knights were involved in promoting the November 14, 2015 rally at Stone Mountain that set the stage for Rock Stone Mountain. “O’Aghairle” is in contact with other key organizers for Rock Stone Mountain and would presumably not circulate information about the evening show without their consent. (The Atlanta Journal-Constitution also quoted a “John E. Rebel” in its coverage of the upcoming Stone Mountain rally, although that may be someone else using the same pseudonym.)

“Rock Stone Mountain”: Image and Reality

While the Definite Hate performance could potentially get canceled, it is clear that the Rock Stone Mountain organizers are trying to build attendance with the promise that this group will play. (“O’Aghairle” shared his note about the event line-up to the white nationalist American Freedom Party group on Facebook, a place where other Rock Stone Mountain promotional materials are posted almost daily.) The use of Definite Hate’s name and the promise that they will play the evening event points to a tension in the “Rock Stone Mountain” organizing. While Rock Stone Mountain is partly being organizing by Billy Roper, who has a long history as a neo-Nazi, the organizers are also encouraging Nazi flags not to be brought to Stone Mountain. Similarly, the event is being pulled together by Klansmen, many of whom will leave their Klan robes at home on the day of the 23rd. Finally, Rock Stone Mountain planners consistently claim that their cause is opposition to “white genocide” which they believe is underway as the demographics of the US change (this theory has some support on racist far-Right.) However the event organizers are also trying to draw a crowd with a musical act that sings about racist killings, and whose old guitarist enacted those same murderous politics just a few years ago.

The politics of the Rock Stone Mountain organizers must be seen clearly: they are the politics of race war and mass murder. Anyone who takes this as an exaggeration should pay attention when Greg Calhoun, a Georgia Klansman assisting with Rock Stone Mountain (and a key organizer for the November 14 rally of last year), writes about what white people should do.

Greg Calhoun on Liam O'Aghairle FB posted Jan 3 2016 dl 2 11 2016Discussion by Greg Calhoun on the Facebook page of “Liam O’Aghairle.”

Conclusion
The announcement that Definite Hate will play Rock Stone Mountain makes it clear that rally organizers are building bridges between those who celebrate racist violence, and those building capacity to enact it. It is crucial that those who call for violence against people of color, Jewish people, sexual minorities, and leftists be prevented from having their way. They must not be allowed to plot and recruit without any opposition. This is why a mass show of strength against the Klan and Nazis on April 23rd is so important. Read about the All Out ATL anti-racist mobilization on its website, tell your friends, and consider getting involved.

UPDATES: Anti-Racists Mobilize Against “Rock Stone Mountain” White Power Event, April 23rd /// Neo-Nazi Rally in Rome, GA Same Day

Everyone Out Against the “Rock Stone Mountain” White Power Rally in Georgia, April 23rd!

An anti-racist mass mobilization against “Rock Stone Mountain”–the explicitly “white power” event planned for April 23rd at Stone Mountain, Georgia–is taking shape. As discussed elsewhere on this site, the Rock Stone Mountain rally is being organized by Klansmen, former members of the Aryan Nations, plus Billy Roper, the Arkansas white nationalist who used to chair White Revolution. Rock Stone Mountain is being promoted on major white supremacist websites such as Stormfront, as well as on blogs and Facebook. The racists plan “an openly White Power March up Stone Mountain that climaxes in a rally at the top. It is to be followed by a Pro White concert at a seperate [sic] location that evening.”

The white supremacist gathering will be resisted. Anti-racists are organizing a mass presence at Stone Mountain to shut down the white power rally and disrupt the racists’ plans. Following a series of discussions between anti-racists, a website has now been established for the anti-Klan mobilization. Check out All Out Atlanta’s website here for more information and to see the principles guiding our organizing. The site will be regularly updated with news and outreach materials. If you’re on Twitter, be sure to also follow us here.

all out atl siteThe website for All Out Atlanta is now online, see here.

It is time to commit to making the anti-racist mobilization a success. All Out Atlanta is not organized as a handful of leaders telling a mass of followers what to do. We want a strong and multifaceted response to the Klan and neo-Nazis. This cannot be done unless large numbers make this effort their own. Get in contact and get involved!

Some initial things you can do:

  • Spread the word! Outreach is essential at this time. Please share information about the anti-racist organizing that is underway with your friends, co-workers, community group, and so on.
  • If you are a member of an organization, consider endorsing this mobilization by contacting All Out Atlanta.
  • Host an educational event or a fundraiser in your community.
  • If you’re out-of-state, now is the time to make travel plans! If you are too far away to travel to Stone Mountain/the greater Atlanta area, consider an event in your own community to challenge white supremacy and racist organizing.

(Note: All Out Atlanta is distinct from the neo-Confederate protest against “Rock Stone Mountain” that has been covered by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. The broader neo-Confederate movement played a key role in setting the stage for the April 23rd white power event at Stone Mountain. Atlanta Antifascist Notes believes that it is disingenuous for the neo-Confederates to now oppose the blatantly white power event, claiming that it makes their cause look bad.)

National Socialist Movement to Rally in Rome, Georgia April 23rd

Another white power event is also now on our radar.

The National Socialist Movement (NSM), one of the nation’s largest neo-Nazi organizations, has announced that it will hold a rally in Rome, Georgia on April 23rd–the same day as “Rock Stone Mountain.” The NSM rally is being endorsed by the Loyal White Knights of the Ku Klux Klan, Aryan Nations activists, Aryan Strikeforce, and a handful other organizations. Rome, GA is approximately two hours away from Stone Mountain (slightly less from Atlanta).

The NSM’s initial release for the rally in Rome stated that the event would coincide with the organization’s “annual National Meeting in Georgia this year.” NSM members from across the country are expected to congregate in Rome. NSM leader Jeff Schoep initially gave the dates of “April 22nd and 23rd” for the NSM event on Twitter, which suggests that some NSM members may be arriving in the city before the 23rd.

schoep on Rome rally

Some readers may be confused why Klan members and Aryan Nations militants are involved in two different white power events in the same state on the same day. A full explanation cannot be provided here, since we do not yet have all the facts. However it is important to note that different Klan groups seem to be endorsing different white power events–the Loyal White Knights are attending the NSM rally in Rome, while members of the International Keystone Knights are involved with planning “Rock Stone Mountain.” Further, while past affiliates of the Aryan Nations are involved with both events, this illustrates the highly fragmented nature of the Aryan Nations right now, in particular after Morris Gullet–one of the more prominent Aryan Nations leaders of recent years–completely shut down his operation last year. Aryan Nations holdouts had a “World Congress” on December 13, 2015 at the Georgia Peach Oyster Bar in Draketown (near Temple) GA that was attended by both NSM and Loyal White Knights representatives. The Aryan Nations/NSM coordination in December seems to have fed into the broader NSM plans for Rome.

It is also worth noting the differences in style between the two events. “Rock Stone Mountain” invites neo-Nazi rock bands to play in the evening; it uses an image of white supremacist terrorist Robert J. Matthews in promotional materials; and it involves notorious neo-Nazi Billy Roper in its organizing. However, the Rock Stone Mountain organizers for some reason do not want their attendees to bring Nazi flags on April 23rd, writing on the Rock Stone Mountain community page on Facebook: “Those who wish to bring ANY version of the Confederate battle flag or any of the Confederate national flags to this event are encouraged to do so. However, we respectfully ask that participants not bring flags or banners representing any foreign nation or power, historical or current, to the rally.”

By contrast, the National Socialist Movement fetishizes Third Reich imagery and the swastika. It is not a coincidence that their rally in Rome will take place on the weekend after Hitler’s birthday (April 20). It is likely that the different events on the same day do not reflect some sort of neo-Nazi grand strategy as much as they are the consequence of tensions between white power organizations and individuals, who have different ideas about how to organize and what’s important.

The National Socialist Movement has already released a flier for their post-rally evening event–they will be travelling to Draketown (near Temple) GA for an “after party” featuring a cross lighting and a live band. The NSM are giving the location for this event as the Georgia Peach Oyster Bar, a business which openly advertises itself as a “Klan bar” and frequently hosts neo-Nazi events (such as the Aryan Nations “congress” of December 13, 2015, and major gatherings of the neo-Nazi “Hammerskin Nation” in the past).

NSM rome flier

NSM event: rally in Rome, GA and evening event in Draketown/Temple, GA

It is presently unknown whether the “Rock Stone Mountain” organizers will attempt to combine their evening event with the NSM one, or whether there will be a separate white power concert for “Rock Stone Mountain” attendees.

Information Wanted

With all this going on, it is more important than ever for anti-racists and anti-fascists to be watchful about local far-Right organizing. If you have information on white supremacist organizing in Georgia (especially but certainly not limited to Metro Atlanta) please contact Atlanta Antifascist Notes. Leads about the April 23rd white power events can also be sent to All Out Atlanta. Information will be double-checked and then put to good use.

White Power Rally and Racist Rock Show Planned for April 23 2016: Stone Mountain, GA and Atlanta Region

Summary: Neo-Nazis and Klansmen are planning a rally on April 23, 2016 at Stone Mountain, Georgia, as well as a racist rock show at a venue elsewhere that evening. Anti-racists will organize against these white power events. Please spread the word. We must resist this show of force by militant white supremacists.

The Upcoming “Rock Stone Mountain” Event

White supremacists are busy organizing an “openly White Power March up Stone Mountain” plus a “White Power concert at a separate location that evening” in Georgia. The march and concert are scheduled for April 23, 2016. It is being promoted on Facebook, Twitter, and on white supremacist websites such as Stormfront. Figures such as former White Revolution chairman Billy Roper in Arkansas are assisting with publicity. The event’s Facebook attendee list includes ex-members of the Aryan Nations and current Ku Klux Klan activists. The post-rally concert will feature rock acts catering to a bonehead (racist “skinhead”) audience. The “Rock Stone Mountain” Facebook page mentions that one or more bands could be supplied by the international Blood & Honour neo-Nazi network.

FB event headerRock Stone Mountain event page on Facebook

discussion of bands for showDiscussion of bands for the white power concert

Background

The upcoming April 2016 event follows in the wake of a “Defend Stone Mountain” rally held on November 14, 2015. The November rally billed itself as a Southern “heritage” protest against a proposal to add a monument in honor of Martin Luther King, Jr. to the Stone Mountain site. (The debate regarding Stone Mountain has since shifted, see this story for details.)

Confederate displays on public property have increasingly been criticized and opposed after Dylann Storm Roof’s massacre of nine people at Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, SC earlier this year. In response to the outcry about symbols of the Confederacy on public property, Confederate flag/monument supporters have stepped up their own organizing, including an August 1st Confederate flag rally at Stone Mountain that attracted hundreds.

Explicit white supremacists and Klansmen organized and promoted the later November 14 Stone Mountain protest, which was also backed by neo-Confederate organizations. Whereas Atlanta Magazine misleadingly claimed that “No KKK members or white supremacists made their attendance known” at the November 14 protest, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution has fully documented the Klan and white supremacist presence on that day. The AJC also notes that Stone Mountain officials knew that members of the International Keystone Knights of the KKK were involved in organizing the event.

klan ring on display nov 14 2015 stone mountain eventNovember 14 2015 Stone Mountain rally: a protester displays his Klan “blood drop” ring

The November 14 protest emboldened Klan and neo-Nazi activists–the circles who are now putting together an openly white supremacist show of force at Stone Mountain. As the April 23 event page states: “It is time to stop apologizing […] If it were not for Our Race, that Flag [the Confederate flag] would not exist! They are going to call us ‘racist’ anyway, so wear it as a Badge of Honor […] Better to be called a Racist than a traitor!”

Stone Mountain is inexorably linked to Klan history—it is where the modern KKK was born one hundred years ago. The giant carving on the mountainside was begun by Klan member Gutzon Borglum, but the project ran out of funding before completion. (Only General Lee’s head was carved by Borglum.) Work on the monument was restarted by others decades later, once the State of Georgia purchased the site. Resumed work on the monument coincided with the State’s fierce efforts against the Civil Rights movement. The monument is a symbol of racial subjugation—it is no wonder why racists love the site, and why they are determined to fight for it.

While current Klan and neo-Nazi activists are tapping into an earlier white supremacist history, the plans for April 2016 also represent a more virulent form of racist politics than other recent events at Stone Mountain. Previously, Klansmen and their comrades still made concessions to fit in with the broader flag/monument protest crowd (which tried to portray itself in more moderate terms.) Now, flagrant white supremacists are confident enough to go it alone. Neo-Nazis and the Klan are completely controlling the agenda for the April 23rd events.

rock stone mountain following on twitterWho “Rock Stone Mountain” is following on Twitter. Note: “88” is alphanumeric code for “H.H.” or “Heil Hitler.”

Anti-Racists: Start Getting Ready…

The white supremacists who are organizing the April event will not go away if we ignore them. They are a real threat. Allowing blatant neo-Nazis to rally without opposition would pose at least two serious dangers. First, if allowed an easy victory white supremacists will further gain confidence, and this in turn will make violence against their perceived racial or political enemies more likely. Second, successful neo-Nazi and Klan organizing will allow others on the racist Right to portray themselves as “moderate” by comparison, which could help these other racist forces to progress towards the political mainstream. It is for these reasons and more that the April 23rd march and gathering must be resisted. Doing work against the far-Right is especially important at a time when militant racists harass and shoot protesters against police killings in Minneapolis, and when xenophobic and anti-Muslim incidents have spiked in the US.

On behalf of some anti-racists in Atlanta who have been discussing the upcoming white power event: organizing against the April 23rd rally and concert will begin in the not-too-distant future. We aim for a large and multifaceted response to white supremacist organizing. We are committed to doing our part in local anti-racist mobilizations.

First steps to be taken: most importantly, please circulate this news far and wide. Get in contact if you have information that may be useful in combating the Klan/neo-Nazi mobilization. Please be on the lookout for further updates, and start to talk with your circles about responses you would like to see happen. We urge anti-racists and anti-fascists to mark their calendars for the weekend of April 23-24, 2016. If you are an anti-racist living in the South—or even further afield—consider making a trip to Atlanta during this time. We promise you will not be bored.