Esc Alt Right

“I’d spent months reporting on Anglin, trying to understand who he was and how he’d built such a following, as well as how serious a threat he and the rest of the alt-right actually posed. Anglin’s path to white nationalism was disturbing, and more circuitous than I could have imagined. But it fit a pattern that scholars have identified, in that he seems to have been driven, at least initially, more by a desire for status and belonging than by deeply held beliefs. Anglin wanted to be somebody, and the internet gave him a way.” The Atlantic’s Luke O’Brien with a detailed and disturbing look at the making of an American Nazi. Part of the story is about timing: “Anglin and his ilk like to talk about the Overton Window, a term that describes the range of acceptable discourse in society. They’d been tugging at that window for years only to watch, with surprise and delight, as it flew wide open during Donald Trump’s candidacy. Suddenly it was okay to talk about banning Muslims or to cast Mexican immigrants as criminals and parasites—which meant Anglin’s even-more-extreme views weren’t as far outside the mainstream as they once had been.”

Copied to Clipboard