Russell Contreras and Astrid Galvan, Axios, March 10, 2022
Nick Fuentes, identified as a “white supremacist” in Justice Department filings, made headlines last week for hosting a white nationalist conference in Florida. His father is also half Mexican American.
The big picture: Fuentes is part of a small but increasingly visible number of far-right provocateurs with Hispanic backgrounds who spread racist, antisemitic messages.
Driving the news: Cuban American Enrique Tarrio, the former leader of the Proud Boys, a group the Anti-Defamation League calls an extremist group with a violent agenda, was arrested Tuesday and charged with conspiracy in connection to the Jan. 6 Capitol riot.
What they’re saying: Experts tell Axios far-right extremism within the Latino community stems from three sources: Hispanic Americans who identify as white; the spread of online misinformation; and lingering anti-Black, antisemitic views among U.S. Latinos that are rarely openly discussed.
- Brian Levin, director of the Center for the Study of Hate and Extremism at Cal State University, said in an interview that the trend is “part of the mutation that takes place as the racist fringe tries to become more mainstream.”
- Racism is deeply rooted in Latin American and Caribbean nations, where slavery was common, Tanya K. Hernández, a Fordham University law professor and author of the upcoming book, “Racial Innocence: Unmasking Latino Anti-Black Bias,” told Axios. “In Latin America, white supremacy is alive and well.”
- Even families who have been in the U.S. for generations can often bring those biases with them.
Between the lines: The U.S. trend, fueled over the course of Donald Trump’s presidency and the pandemic, extends beyond movement leaders to a broader network of participants, some of whom have faced hate crimes charges.