| 21 October 2009
Racial Hatred: Made in America
Blood and Politics: The History of the White Nationalist Movement from the Margins to the Mainstream
By Leonard Zeskind
Farrar, Straus & Giroux
2009, $37.50, pp. 645
When, in April, the Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security, Janet Napolitano, issued a clumsily worded news release about the threat of right-wing extremism, it ignited a firestorm of indignation from talk radio and other Republican precincts. How dare she insinuate, they fumed, that flag-waving patriots, who might include military veterans or voters attracted to quixotic candidates and esoteric political theories, could pose a threat to civil tranquility?
Then, on May 31, Kansas state troopers arrested a man with prior involvement in the so-called “freeman” movement—which asserts the unique principle of individual sovereignty apart from any government—in connection with the assassination that morning of abortion provider Dr. George Tiller as he greeted people in the foyer of his Wichita church.
To anyone who had, by that point, read Leonard Zeskind’s Blood and Politics: The History of the White Nationalist Movement from the Margins to the Mainstream, the incident was eerily familiar. The vigilantism associated with the anti-abortion movement is just one of many threads Zeskind weaves
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