Extremism experts across the country spent much of the week revealing the extremist far-right beliefs of the man QAnon online who opened fire in an Allen, Texas mall last Saturday. The shooter identified as Hispanic, which may seem incongruous, but we explain how racism and the allure of violence can cut across racial and ethnic lines. Meanwhile, a study from watchdog group Media Matters reveals a new online fundraising source for QAnon online influencers, and a GOP Senator says of white nationalists in the military “I call them Americans.”
Gunman Allen’s Apparent Neo-Nazi Past
In the wake of the tragic mass shooting at an Allen, Texas, mall on Saturday, extremism researchers across the country have been looking into the perpetrator’s past, trying to understand what led him to open fire, killing 8 people and wounding 10 others. Researchers found a profile on the Russian social media site Odnoklassniki QAnon online(which means “classmates”) that they believe belonged to the shooter, who police identified as 33-year-old Mauricio Garcia.
The profile contains hundreds of photos that appear to be diary entries, revealing neo-Nazi views and a misogynistic ideology in which followers refer to themselves as “involuntary celibates” or “incels.”
A photo of herself that Garcia apparently posted shows neo-Nazi tattoos, QAnon including a swastika on her chest and the letters “SS” on one of her arms.
An analysis of the posts by the Anti-Defamation League’s Center on Extremism found that the profile contained dozens of references to white supremacy and other far-right views, but the definitive motive for Saturday’s attack was I concluded that it was not.
“His writings, voluminous and disturbing as they are, show clear signs that he committed mass shootings for ideological reasons, whether by white supremacists, incels, or something else in nature. “No. Only his personal demons may have driven him to commit the crime,” the ADL report states.
García’s racial and ethnic background is not detailed, but as the story elaborates, the white supremacist class exists throughout Latin America, and is simply a result of the brutality of the old regime and its leaders. Therefore, some people are attracted to Nazism. Having strong racial beliefs.
The owner of the Odnokrasniki profile “shows signs of spiritual demons as much as white supremacy or right-wing extremism,” Mark Pitcavage, a senior fellow at the Anti-Defamation League’s Center on Extremism, told USA TODAY. Told.
Study: QAnon online influencers raised nearly $200k on ‘Buy Me a Coffee’
Insurrection fundraiser: Capitol rioting extremists and Trump supporters raise money for legal fees online
A new investigation by watchdog group Media Matters for America, shared exclusively with USA TODAY, shows that several influencers associated with the QAnon online conspiracy theory used the online fundraising platform Buy Me a Coffee to raise about 20 people. It turned out that he had raised $1,000. This is despite the fact that the platform’s terms of service prohibit users from sharing “information that is known to be false, misleading or inaccurate.”
The study found that at least 27 QAnon online figures using the platform raised a total of more than $195,000 before paying a 5% Buy Me a Coffee transaction fee.
The study also found that more than 240 posts from donors were found containing variations of the QAnon online slogan “where we go one, we go all” or “WWG1WGA.”
Buy Me a Coffee has remained under the radar as a source of income for numerous QAnon online and far-right figures. “This is yet another example of extremist actors taking advantage of a platform that doesn’t always follow its rules,” wrote Alex Kaplan, senior researcher at Media Matters. in a statement to USA TODAY. “In this case, supporters of a dangerous conspiracy theory appear to be violating the Buy Me a Coffee policy, and both benefit financially as it becomes one of the largest crowdsourcing platforms for QAnon influencers, many of whom have been banned from more popular platforms. “
GOP Senator on white nationalists: ‘I call them Americans’
Extremism in the military13 investigations, no court-martials: Here’s how the US Navy and Marine Corps quietly discharged white supremacists
Republican Senator Tommy Tuberville from Alabama caused a stir this week when he was asked in a radio interview whether white nationalists should be allowed to serve in the U.S. military. Tuberville responded: “Well, they call them that. I call them Americans,” responded during the interview on WBHM, an Alabama public radio station.
Tuberville’s comments drew outrage from his opponents in Congress, with Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., calling them “revolting.”
Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin announced a one-day stand-down across the military to address extremism in the ranks in the wake of the Jan. 6 insurrection. Dozens of military veterans have been charged for their actions on Jan. 6, including some who were found guilty of seditious conspiracy.
Tuberville attempted to clarify his comments on Wednesday, sending Al.com a statement: “Sen. Tuberville’s quote that is cited shows that he was being skeptical of the notion that there are white nationalists in the military, not that he believes they should be in the military.”
Austin made stamping extremism out of the military a top priority back in 2021.
Statistic of the week: $216,000
Extremists’ fundraising monopoly: Extremists raise $6.2 million on crowdfunding site during fundraising ‘heyday’
That’s the amount every donor gave to extremist and hate groups from September 2021 to April 2022, according to an analysis by the Southern Poverty Law Center’s Data Lab.
The donations were made in virtual currency, a currency long favored by far-right extremists. According to the SPLC, the donors used a currency called Ethereum and used “mixing” services licensed for money laundering to hide their transactions. Supporters included anti-immigrant and white supremacist groups.
“This donation continues the practice of anonymous deep-pocket donors using cryptocurrencies to hide their identities and avoid responsibility for funding extremists,” the center’s report said.