White Man March Comes to Tempe Town Lake March 15, Um, Maybe (w/Update)
***Note: Please see update at bottom of post.***
Well, let's hope they don't jump in, 'cause crackers get soggy when wet, but something called the White Man March may be coming to Tempe Town Lake this Saturday, March 15, at 2 p.m.
I know what you're thinking: "White Man March? Where's the gun show this time?"
But seriously, this is supposedly some nationwide ofay hootenanny organized online by a Massachusetts fella named Kyle Hunt, whom you can read all about in a blog post by Village Voice writer Anna Merlan.
You know, they all look alike to me....
|You know, they all look alike to me....|
According to Hunt, the march is about opposing the "anti-white agenda" and showing that Caucasians are standing up against all the racial oppression that they face here in the United States of 'Merica.
"The purpose is to spread information through activism," Hunt writes on the White Man March site, "but also to make a statement that White people are united in their love for their race and in their opposition to its destruction."
Occasionally, Hunt's rhetoric resembles arguments used by some opponents of the ethnic studies program in Tucson.
Like this passage:
"...one of our big messages, which will be displayed on many large banners, is 'DIVERSITY' = WHITE GENOCIDE. These banners will spread the message to the public at large in the most effective way possible. This 'diversity' agenda is being directed at white countries (and only at white countries) with various programs to ensure that there are less white people at schools and in the work force, which is unfair and discriminatory, taking away money and opportunities from the White citizens."
In other words, Hunt's message is sure to resonate in the state that brought the world Russell Pearce, SB 1070, Sheriff Joe Arpaio, and J.T. Ready.
You wouldn't think lefty Tempe would be the first pick of white supremacists for a shindig.
Already, local anarchists and anti-fascists have organized a counter-demonstration, and since they've done so, the anarchists claim info about the Phoenix event has been removed from Hunt's site.
And, according to Google cache, this seems to be the case.
Info from Google cache no longer on the WWM site, apparently...
GoogleCache (click for larger version)
The Tempe Police Department says it is taking seriously the possibility of a clash between anarchists and white-power devotees.
"We are aware of the both events," TPD spokesman Mike Pooley told me of the march and counter-demonstration, "and we are currently planning for them."
Hunt's description of what might transpire in any given locality sounds amorphous to say the least.
If there are only a few people in a location, they can hang up a banner, hand out fliers, and strike up conversations. If there are more than a few people, they could organize a lightning march (a non-violent flash mob) to make a statement and then disperse before any anti-white protestors or police show up.
"With larger groups, the demonstrations could be akin to the torch marches of 'the Immortals' in Germany. Even if someone wants to stay inside on that day, they can help our efforts by posting about the White Man March in comment sections and message boards.
Which begs the question, what if white people gave a march and nobody came?
That would be the best outcome, natch. Otherwise, the smell of pepper spray could be wafting over Tempe Town Lake this Saturday should things get hairy.
Update March 15, 2014:
Hey, where all the ofays at?
The "White Man March" was a giant dud. Local anarchists showed up to counter-demonstrate at Mill Avenue and Rio Salado Parkway this Saturday afternoon. But white-pride types themselves were a no-show.
Apparently, there was some activity in other states associated with the effort, if you count hanging the occasional banner or sign that reads "Diversity = White Genocide."
But the fella who supposedly was organizing the Tempe event didn't even bother to do that much. Currently, the guy's Facebook page is down. And he's not returning phone calls.
(I don't feel comfortable giving his name here due to the slippery nature of identity on the Internet. Particularly, since I haven't talked to the guy.)
I reckon white supremacists/nationalists just ain't what they used to be. Which is a good thing, though the anarchists -- about 20 to 30 when I got there -- seemed disappointed they didn't get to kick some fascist ass.
One small mystery: The Tempe Police Department's PIO Mike Pooley told me that the TPD never made contact with the organizer. However, local videographer Dennis Gilman spoke to a TPD lieutenant, who told Gilman that the TPD had spoken with organizers, and the event was cancelled.
Not that it matters much, I suppose.
BTW, there were plenty of white folk -- both male and female -- lining up for the music festival that was going on at Tempe Beach Park.
But they were there to party, not to whine about minorities.
Got a tip for The Bastard? Send it to: Stephen Lemons.
Get the This Week's Top Stories Newsletter
Every week we collect the latest news, music and arts stories — along with film and food reviews and the best things to do this week — so that you'll never miss Phoenix New Times' biggest stories.