America is a hateful country
The USA has known the phenomenon for a long time. A lone perpetrator, sometimes more, sometimes less confused, but always white-skinned and full of racist anger at supposedly strangers or strangers, heavily armed and unrestrained. Just last August, such a man mowed down 22 people in El Paso, Texas. In a manifesto published on the Internet, he raved about an "invasion" of America by immigrants, which should be stopped. In fact, the USA knows another phenomenon: The man likes what is known as a so-called one lone wolfto be a loner. But he's not alone. Because deeds like this become more. Much more.
In the United States, since the Islamist attacks of September 11, 2001, more people have been victims of right-wing extremist killings than any other type of politically motivated violence. In 2018 alone (the last year for which there are currently reliable studies) 50 people were killed in right-wing extremist assassinations. Most of them were perpetrated by right-wing extremist, xenophobic offenders, writes the Anti-Defamation League, a civil rights organization. In the previous year there were even 65 deaths, most of them also victims of the same group of perpetrators.
In fact, the number of armed attacks by right-wing extremists has risen steadily in the United States over the past decade. Between 2007 and 2011, researchers at the Washington Center for Strategic and International Studies counted a maximum of five such attacks per year. After that, the number increased to 13 or 14 attacks a year. In 2017, it doubled to 31. In the vast majority of cases, according to the study, the perpetrators involved were individual perpetrators or groups of perpetrators who were only loosely agreed. And most of them were, at least outwardly, not conspicuous until the act. They wore neither combat boots nor bald heads and held back from making statements that were clearly xenophobic or right-wing extremists.
Poll: Right-wing extremists feel encouraged by Trump
The increase in right-wing violence corresponds to two events that fundamentally changed the country. It was April 2009 when the Department of Homeland Security first warned of a rise in violent right-wing extremism. It had always existed in the USA. But now it had gained new impetus after the election of Barack Obama, the first black US president. The number of acts of violence by right-wing extremist white loners increased noticeably, barely noticed by the public.
But they skyrocketed after Donald Trump moved into the White House. The number so-called hate crimes, i.e. crimes with racist, anti-Semitic, xenophobic or sexist motives, increased by 17 percent in 2017, in Trump's first year in office. After an incident in Charlottesville, Virginia, in which a neo-Nazi killed a counter-demonstrator that year, the president said succinctly that violence ultimately came from both sides.
According to a survey by the prestigious Public Religion Research Institute, a majority of Americans believe that right-wing extremists feel encouraged by Trump. In fact, the government has slashed money on programs to combat political violence in America.
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