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16 Things To Help You Understand What Happened In Charlottesville

These stories provide some crucial context.

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Police Stood By As Mayhem Mounted in Charlottesville by A.C. Thompson, Robert Faturechi, and Karim Hajj — ProPublica

State police and National Guardsmen watched passively for hours as self-proclaimed Nazis engaged in street battles with counterprotesters. ProPublica reporter A.C. Thompson was on the scene and reports the authorities turned the streets of the city over to groups of militia armed with assault rifles.

Charlottesville and The Effort To Downplay Racism In America by Jia Tolentino — The New Yorker

"Charlottesville, Virginia, feels enough like Eden that it’s always been easy to hide a certain amount of blood."


Dylann Roof Is An American Problem by Bim Adewunmi — BuzzFeed News

BuzzFeed News

"Dylann Roof is not a Dylann Roof problem — he’s an American problem. And to constantly reject this, to isolate him as a one-off — until the next one-off, of course — does us all a disservice."

White Terrorism Is As Old As America by Brit Bennett — New York Times Magazine

"This is the privilege of whiteness: While a terrorist may be white, his violence is never based in his whiteness."

The Downfall Of YouTube’s Biggest Star Is A Symptom Of A Bigger Illness by Jacob Clifton — BuzzFeed News

The schadenfreude over YouTube star Felix Kjellberg’s sudden fall from grace overlooks a much bigger, more insidious pattern of young men testing boundaries in the angriest corners of the internet.


The Moneyman Behind The Alt-Right by Aram Roston and Joel Anderson — BuzzFeed News

Regnery: Will Vragovic for BuzzFeed News

William Regnery II, a man who inherited millions but struggled in business, tried for 15 years to ignite a racist political movement — and failed. Then an unforeseen phenomenon named Donald Trump gave legitimacy to what Regnery had seeded long before: the alt-right. Now, the press-shy white separatist breaks his silence.

How 2015 Fueled The Rise Of The Freewheeling, White Nationalist Alt-Right Movement by Rosie Gray — BuzzFeed News

In a year dominated by Trump, the alt-right — a loosely connected movement related to obscure political theories and a great feel for how the internet actually works — has hit it big.

For The Far Right, YouTube Has Become The New Talk Radio by John Herrman — New York Times

If talk radio primed listeners for Trump’s style and anticipated the US right’s current obsessions, the YouTube right is acquainting viewers with a more international message, attuned to a global revival of explicitly race-and-religion-based, blood-and-soil nationalism.


Love Lives in Whitefish But So Do Neo-Nazis by Anne Helen Petersen — BuzzFeed News

Tim Goessman for BuzzFeed News

When neo-Nazis started trolling Whitefish, Montana, the town had to make a definitive stand against hate. But the the most deeply rooted intolerance in places like Whitefish isn't the kind that makes headlines.

Take The Statues Down by Yoni Appelbaum — The Atlantic

A multiethnic democracy requires grappling honestly with the past — and recognizing the symbols of the Confederacy for what they are.