True white supremacists associate democracy with diversity, and they don’t like diversity. They don’t like mixing with Blacks, Latinos, or Jews. They especially hate LGBTQ people and feminists. Some of them don’t like women, period. So, these folk want to get rid of diversity and democracy.
Hitler is a big hero for some of them, and Vladimir Putin has become another idol. After all, Putin is an anti-democratic autocrat and a crusader against LGBTQ rights. He’s also an admirer and supporter of the Russian Orthodox Church, which traditionally considers Moscow a “third Rome”—belief that neatly coincides with Putin’s imperial ambitions.
So, if you admire Putin, you might want to join his church, and—in fact—significant numbers of white supremacists are infiltrating the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia even though ROCOR does not recognize the authority of Moscow. Like many other denominations, ROCOR has been declining in absolute numbers; but the number of its parishes has been increasing, largely through the efforts of white nationalists who have founded new churches with themselves in control. So, we have the interesting phenomenon of white evangelicals and Catholics joining together to protect “family values” by establishing a ROCOR congregation in West Virginia. The details of this phenomenon are best understood by reading or listening to a recent NPR report.
Coming closer to home, many right-wing Trump supporters are members of the two local Roman Catholic churches where I used to worship. Well, I didn’t convert from Catholicism to Quakerism because of this (anecdotal) fact, but it’s certainly true that I can’t imagine coffee after Mass with people on the far right of the political spectrum. I hope there aren’t many Catholics in my area who are also unequivocal white supremacists; but this is Texas, and I’d be afraid to investigate the matter. I’m happy to stick with New York Quakers.
~ Richard Russell
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