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More Neo-Nazi Encounters On Long Island
Gather ‘round the flag-fire, kids! I’ve got some more neo-Nazi stories for ya...
When I tell people I’ve encountered people with swastika tattoos, they often tell me they haven’t seen Nazi tattoos in the flesh. In an xoJane article, I wrote about how I knew kids who did everything from dabbling in neo-Nazism to getting regrettable tattoos. The comments were largely supportive, insightful, and interesting. People from all over America reacted with surprise (“I’ve never seen that here!”), agreement, and solidarity.
Ever since I wrote that article, I’ve been asking people about their encounters with white supremacy on Long Island. The overt white supremacy is a manifestation of the covert white supremacy that fuels systematic racism. Needless to say, I’m not the only one who has encountered neo-Nazis on Long Island.
I recently saw a video about how “racist” is the closest thing white people have to the N-word. The same kind of white supremacy that shuts white people down in conversations about race. These defensive reaction are seemingly reflexive responses caused by white fragility. If you’ve spent your life swimming in cultural Kool-aid that contains “white supremacy” as a key ingredient, then you have most certainly sipped it at one point. This inability to confront internal and external racism places the comfort and feelings of white people over the lived experiences of racial minorities.
The racist attitudes of Suffolk County provide a fertile climate for people with hate-based ideologies to live in relative comfort. The Southern Poverty Law Center’s hate map shows how prevalent hate groups are on Long Island. Lone neo-Nazis are concerning enough, let alone organized ones. I practically had a neo-Nazi living next door to me in Miller Place. When my friend told me he saw an “SS” sticker on a car, I immediately believed him.
“Sundown towns” aren’t always a thing of the past. One of my friends had a confrontation with a neo-Nazi gang on a dark night. He was walking around at night with a black friend when a car suddenly pulled up on them. Once they saw three bald men got out of the car, both of them immediately knew what was happening and started running. If they had stayed, they would’ve been assaulted.
One of my other friends went upstate to a strict occupational training program. In his program, there was a neo-Nazi kid named James who happened to be his roommate. The majority of the people in the program were black, so while my friend was sitting in class, James casually said to him, “Don’t you hate all these niggers here?”
A few weeks later, while in class, James handed a swastika drawing to a person my friend described as “a God-loving black kid.” After it happened, the other kids wanted to beat James up.
“They wanna beat the shit out of me out there!” exclaimed James.
“I know,” said my friend. “I’m gonna help them.”
Jason then tried to stab my friend with his keys. After some scuffling about on the ground, my friend eventually pinned James down and told him to get a grip of himself. James was released from the program due to his racist actions, but not before getting a beatdown.
Boneheads are the scorn of the punk scene, but skinheads in particular hate neo-Nazis who call themselves “skinheads.” Punks usually make it a point to discriminate against white supremacists to get them out of scenes through marginalization or violence. I recall watching two neo-Nazis getting a beatdown at a show when I was 12. I couldn’t believe what I was seeing, but at the same time, I couldn’t blame them. Neo-Nazis are more than just eyesores - they’re inherently violent in their beliefs.
Neo-Nazis are the worst and I feel sorry for anyone who has the misfortune of encountering them.