A look at the history of U.S. hate groups and their activities.
Charting the hatred baked into U.S. history, the text explores religious intolerance in Colonial America, slavery, Jim Crow, and anti-Semitism, among other topics. Examples of anti-immigrant bias include the over 2 million Mexican-Americans, mostly citizens, deported from the U.S. in the early 20th century. Anti-Chinese bias is mentioned but not the internment of Japanese-Americans during World War II or targeted legislation to exclude Asian immigration. Homophobia, transphobia, Islamophobia, and male supremacy movements are also described. An enlightening discussion traces the history of laws against and prosecution of hate crimes and explains why the U.S. does not define hate crimes as domestic terrorism, a choice that’s been questioned and criticized because tools and resources for prosecuting terrorism are far stronger than for hate crimes. President Donald Trump’s racial and ethnic slurs, demeaning of women, and efforts to limit Muslim and Latin American immigration are called out. Access to firearms by hate groups is not mentioned. Portraits of white supremacy hate groups and anecdotes about resistance come across as glib. The heavy focus on individuals and groups of private citizens works against depth by limiting the exploration of institutional structures and policies that support inequality and fuel hatred, a particularly glaring oversight when considering the scant treatment of Indigenous peoples in this work.
A useful, timely, if superficial, survey. (glossary, notes, bibliography, index) (Nonfiction. 12-16)