Saturday in Washington D.C., the alt-right movement gathered to celebrate Donald Trump’s victory as President Elect but the event was filled with racism and anti-Semitism. Richard Spencer, the President of the Alt-Right National Policy Institute was videotaped giving remarks that were racist and completely anti-Semantic.
The Atlantic magazine, which is recording footage of Spencer for a documentary they’re working on, also published a video of the same event showing audience members apparently giving the Nazi salute. “Hail Trump! Hail our people! Hail victory!” Spencer is heard and then using the Nazi salute while members mimicked the salute and shouted “Hail Trump!”
Spencer continued with comments that were degrading to minorities who supported the candidacy of Hillary Clinton. He made references to the “the black political machines” and Latino housekeepers. Spencer did not hide his racist opinions and stated about Hillary Clinton, “Her coalition was made up of mutually hostile tribes only united out of a hatred of ‘whitey’ — that is to say, out of a hatred of us.” He added that “there are no two parts of this coalition who could ever be in the same room together for any length of time.”
“America was, until this last generation, a white country, designed for ourselves and our posterity. It is our creation and our inheritance, and it belongs to us,” Spencer said. He also stated that the journalists who covered the 2016 presidential election were possibly not even human. “One wonders if these people are people at all, or instead soulless golem,” Spencer said in a reference to a Jewish fable in a portion of his speech dedicated to criticizing both the media and Jews. Continuing Spencer used a Nazi-era propaganda term which means that the press is the “lying press” to we should refer to them in the original German, lugenpresse.”
The event which was held at the Northwest Washington restaurant Maggiano’s has since offered an apology Monday and told the Washington Post that it would donate $10,000 to the D.C. office of the Anti-Defamation League.
Trump’s transition team responded in a statement Monday saying Trump has “continued to denounce racism.” “President-elect Trump has continued to denounce racism of any kind and he was elected because he will be a leader for every American,” Trump-Pence Transition spokesman Bryan Lanza said in a statement. “To think otherwise is a complete misrepresentation of the movement that united Americans from all backgrounds.”
All of this talk of anti-Semitism and racist overtures come on the heel appointing Steve Bannon, who was until recently the head of the alt-right Breitbart News, as his chief White House strategist. The position that does not require Senate approval but many are calling for the President elect to rescind that appointment. Bannon has said he rejects the racist and anti-Semitic elements of the alt-right and described himself as an “economic nationalist.”
Spencer also appealed to the supporters that they must stop Trump from becoming too friendly to minorities and Jewish people. Spencer said that Trump had been too supportive of affirmative action and opposed segregated establishments. Spencer also said to supporters that Trump had “left the door open to some kind of mass amnesty at a future date, talking about keeping the ‘good ones’ in the country.” And, he said, Trump “will be perhaps the most pro-Zionist president ever put in office,” citing his opposition to the Iran nuclear deal, “which we should admit wasn’t actually that bad.”
The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum put out a statement on the dinner saying it was “deeply alarmed” by the gathering “just blocks from the Museum.””The Holocaust did not begin with killing; it began with words. The Museum calls on all American citizens, our religious and civic leaders, and the leadership of all branches of the government to confront racist thinking and divisive hateful speech.”