The Racists on Ridgeland Way: Ground Zero for “Alt-Right” Organizing in Atlanta

Introduction

The house, located on a quiet, affluent street in the Peachtree Hills neighborhood of Buckhead, Atlanta, does not stand out. The comings and goings at 121 Ridgeland Way NE may not attract much neighborhood attention. However, this house is a hub for racist organizing not just for Atlanta, but for the South and arguably the country. It is owned by Sam Glasgow Dickson, a key player in the white nationalist movement. From this building, Dickson and his associates try to build the white power movement, especially its middle-class face. They also make moves in the Atlanta property market, both enriching themselves and building resources for their cause.

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121 Ridgeland Way NE. (Can you see a subtle algiz rune on the exterior too, or are we trippin’?)

Our prior coverage of long-time white nationalist leader Sam Dickson includes a detailed article from last year on “Right-Wing Gentrification Gangs.” Apart from some background information and setting out Dickson’s importance within the broader white nationalist movement, we will not duplicate that earlier material here. This article has two purposes. First, we are updating our earlier coverage of Dickson and his white power associates. Second, by setting out five names associated with the Ridgeland Way property in Buckhead, we aim to provide a more complete picture of what goes on at the space, and how this activity fits within the white nationalist movement regionally and nationally. Continue reading “The Racists on Ridgeland Way: Ground Zero for “Alt-Right” Organizing in Atlanta”

Breakfast-Cereal Bigots: The “Proud Boys” Have Arrived in Atlanta

White supremacist and far-Right nationalist movements are nothing new, especially in the American South. Since Trump’s induction into the oval office, however, the US has seen these movements evolve into something younger and more contemporary.

Far from the stereotype of old, cantankerous Klanners, the “Alt-Right” and its organizations such as Identity Evropa advance their cause with approaches that are modern, polished, and deceptive. They use memes and retro aesthetics to make their hateful message more palatable. Prioritizing anonymity and information security, until recently the “Alt-Right” has relied on its internet presence combined with occasional public speaking events by white-collar “leaders” such as Richard Spencer to advance its cause. (The movement was also helped by the existence of the watered-down “Alt-Lite” and figures such as Milo Yiannopoulos, which helped popularize Alt-Right themes without explicitly signing off on white nationalism.) For most of its existence, what the Alt-Right’s internet trolls and “Identitarian” white nationalists had in terms of propaganda reach, they lacked in street presence and physical interaction. This is where one of the Alt-Right/Alt-Lite’s strangest offshoots comes in–Cue the “Proud Boys.”

proud boys georgia twitter
Proud Boys Georgia Twitter page

Continue reading “Breakfast-Cereal Bigots: The “Proud Boys” Have Arrived in Atlanta”

Alert: Far-Right Militant at Georgia State University Seeks Information on Leftists and Anti-Racists

A Georgia State University (GSU) student who has been requesting information about leftist and anti-racist organizing may not be who he appears. In many conversations, especially as he hangs around the Library Courtyard, GSU student Spencer Madison provides the name “Lukas.” When talking with people who he thinks may be left-leaning, “Lukas” has attempted to steer the conversation towards leftist organizing projects and especially anti-fascist work. According to one source, “Lukas” was “probing for information” particularly intensely during late February of this year [1]. We suspect that “Lukas” is not motivated by genuine curiosity, but is trying to gather intelligence for use against political opponents.

Madison Feb 2017
Spencer Madison wearing hoodie with German eagle insignia, February 2017

On his Facebook page, Spencer Madison is upfront about his far-Right, anti-immigrant and Islamophobic beliefs. There have been no public posts on the page since mid-2016, but it is unlikely Madison’s political commitments have shifted radically since that time. Madison’s Facebook “likes” include three for the Nationaldemokratische Partei Deutschlands / National Democratic Party of Germany (NPD), which is generally considered a neo-Nazi political party. Spencer Madison also follows “This is Europa,” a white nationalist project. He “likes” a couple of pages for Alternative für Deutschland / Alternative for Germany (AfD), a Right-wing political party which stresses hostility towards immigrants and Muslims. Madison also circulated AfD materials on his page. According to Facebook, Madison appreciates Identitäre Bewegung – Deutschland, the German branch of the “Identitarian” movement, a far-Right movement which couches its racism in language of “difference.” Finally, Madison “likes” the Right-wing “Anti-communist” page and reposted anti-socialist materials on multiple occasions. (Madison’s “likes” for the state-friendly anti-extremist Southern Poverty Law Center and deceased Cuban leader Fidel Castro are incongruous with the overall politics promoted on his Facebook page.)

In the aftermath of a July 2016 terror attack in Germany, Madison commented: “Just wondering how long it will take to domesticate these people [presumably Muslims and/or immigrants] into German civilization.” Not exactly subtle stuff.

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Madison in GSU Library Courtyard, November 2016

Such words and endorsements would be enough to make us question the motives behind “Lukas’” newfound interest in anti-racist and leftist organizing. But there’s more.

While white nationalist organizer Patrick Sharp was completing his final semester at GSU (Fall 2016), Sharp met regularly with Spencer Madison in the Library Courtyard. (Sharp is best known for trying to form a “White Student Union” at GSU in 2013; Sharp’s more recent racist organizing has been extensively documented on this site.) In one conversation with Sharp, Madison claimed that European culture is especially advanced, and that this justifies conquest of Native American peoples. [2]

madison sharp oct 2016
Spencer Madison (left, back turned) and white nationalist leader Patrick Sharp meeting for a discussion in the Library Courtyard, October 2016, during Sharp’s last semester at GSU

And there’s even more. White nationalist propaganda has appeared several times at Georgia State University (and other campuses) in 2017 despite Patrick Sharp’s graduation.

Here’s an account from someone who was approached by “Lukas”/Spencer Madison this February:

On the night of Monday, February 6th, I was out with some friends by GSU’s campus in Downtown Atlanta off Hurt Park. We were putting up some flyers for a club night we were promoting when a young man […] with blond hair approached us. He asked us “Hey, are you all from I.E.?” Not knowing what that group was, I responded “Sorry, don’t know what that is” and then he said, “Oh, never mind.” Five seconds later it dawned on me that he may have meant “Identity Evropa,” a fascist organization whose stickers have been springing up on campuses around the country over the past few years. [3]

We confirmed with the author of this statement that the person they talked with was Spencer Madison/“Lukas.” (Madison’s hair had a blond tint at the time – see February 2017 photo above.) The exchange does not prove that Madison has placed white nationalist materials at GSU. However, it seems likely that Madison was referring to Identity Evropa. On the same week as the brief conversation occurred, materials from Identity Evropa appeared at Georgia Tech campus plus GSU.

In a further development, on Wednesday March 8, “Lukas” showed up to GSU campus on crutches. When speaking with some students, he stated that he had been viciously attacked by knife-wielding antifascists. To others, he told the much more plausible story that he was simply attacked for his property [4]. We believe that “Lukas’” reason for spreading the first unlikely story was to harm the reputation of anti-racists.

Since Spencer Madison has been linked to far-Right organizations and bigoted politics, we do not think that “Lukas” should be provided any information about leftist or anti-racist organizing. Rather, students should know about Spencer Madison’s identity, actual commitments, and the far-Right agenda he serves on campus. We live in a time of heightened racist and far-Right militancy; students should organize to keep each other safe, especially because campus authorities have proven unreliable at best.

While students organize to resist the far-Right locally, Atlanta Antifascists will help with research, analysis, and other practical measures. If you have information on racist or fascist organizing on Atlanta campuses, please get in contact.

NOTES

[1] Report from GSU student, records of Atlanta Antifascists.

[2] Report from GSU student — early November 2016 conversation. (Different source than Note 1.)

[3] Eyewitness report with minor stylistic/copy edits. Original statement erroneously describes person as “in his early 20s” (phrase cut above). Spencer Madison is in fact slightly younger, although this matches his appearance.

[4] Documentation from multiple GSU students.

 

Fascist Twitter Personality is Onetime Organizer of Georgia State University “White Student Union”

Introduction

In November 2016, white nationalists gathered in Washington, DC for their movement’s first major US conference following Trump’s election victory. The National Policy Institute (NPI) event attracted “almost 275” participants according to The Washington Post, and would make further headlines once footage surfaced of conference participants giving Nazi salutes after a “Hail Trump” speech. One defender of NPI leader Richard Spencer–whose racist and anti-Semitic speech provoked the salutes–was Twitter personality “Fascist Fitness”/@FashyFit, who wrote with the authority of someone who was there.

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Nazi Salutes at the NPI Conference, November 2016
FashyFit NPI salute
FashyFit comment on Monday after 2016 NPI Conference

This article exposes Twitter user FashyFit as Patrick Nelson Sharp, one of the attendees of the November 2016 “Become Who We Are” NPI conference in Washington, DC. Patrick Sharp is best known for his attempt, in mid-2013, to form a White Student Union at Georgia State University (GSU) in Atlanta, where Sharp was starting his bachelor’s degree. We also drew attention to Sharp in our article about the white power propaganda campaign during Fall Semester 2015 at GSU. (Our article noted that Sharp traveled to DC for the NPI conference that year also.)

patrick sharp
Patrick Sharp

Continue reading “Fascist Twitter Personality is Onetime Organizer of Georgia State University “White Student Union””