Saturday, February 11, 2017

Whte Nationalism And Its Relationship To Racism and Populism

White nationalism is distinct from racism but they overlap.  Most racists are also white nationalists but not all white nationalists are racists.  On the other hand, white nationalism has altered the boundary of polite discussion.  It has become socially more acceptable for populists and white nationalists to make racist comments that would have been previously unacceptable.  A college Republican club even created a fascist valentine that it believed to be humorous.  A Republican club at Berkeley invited a white nationalist to speak on campus.  Protests forced the president to cancel the speech.  The cancellation was criticized by supporters as a violation of free speech and an example of "political correctness" which is viewed as a set of liberal boundaries on polite discussion. Donald Trump had a 21% margin over Clinton among white voters.  The populists in Europe have also used white nationalism as a way to build political momentum.  The quote below provides a good summary of this article.

Several studies of other countries have found that a desire to protect traditional values and culture is the strongest predictor of support for the sort of populism that propelled Mr. Trump to power in the United States.
Many of those voters would not think of themselves as white nationalists, and the cultural values and traditions they seek to protect are not necessarily explicitly racial. However, those traditions formed when national identity and culture were essentially synonymous with whiteness. So the impulse to protect them from social and demographic change is essentially an attempt to turn back the clock to a less-diverse time.

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