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Far right groups on Trump win

Far right extremist groups in Australia have claimed the election of Donald Trump as US President as a victory for white pride. Is it all just hype, or do we need to start listening? The Point Magazine hears from the experts.

A nationwide poll conducted by Ipsos in the days following Trump’s election win found that two-thirds of Australians were against Trump running the United States. But while many Australians have expressed outrage at Trump’s rhetoric on Mexican and Muslim immigration, far right extremist groups are celebrating.

Priscilla Brice, director of anti-racism charity All Together Now, told The Point Magazine that Australian far right groups are claiming Trump’s win as a victory for their cause in the hope of boosting their numbers.

“We’ve seen that far right groups in Australia have grown their Facebook membership since the Trump election. However, we don’t want to get too concerned about this yet. We don’t know if they genuinely want to join these groups because they agree with what they’re hearing and with Trump but there’s a possibility that there is a link.”

Brice said it was important to not give too much credibility to far right groups when it comes to their influence.

“There was a pro-Trump rally in Melbourne earlier this month and that was organised by far right groups and online they said 1000 people were going to turn up but only 40 people turned up. That’s why we’re taking the growth with a pinch of salt. They’re good at making themselves more powerful than they are. They want to whip the rest of us in a frenzy, particularly (those) in the far left.”

In Australia, the United Patriot’s Front in Perth wrote a post on Facebook, declaring Trump’s election was a win for the world.

“This is a victory for the world not just America, a world which was dying under the weight of left-wing globalism, and now the entire world will heal while the leftist elites and media organs scramble and wonder how this could have ever happened.

No longer will Islam be appeased by the west and patriotism will spread. Mosques will fall, borders will be enforced and illegal immigrants sent packing. Turnbull, Merkel, Hollande are finished. They represent the same elitist, globalist agenda as Obama and Clinton and their days are numbered as the nationalist parties of Europe and here rise, emboldened by the Trump phenomenon,” it read.

Richard Spencer, the leader of a new generation of white nationalists called the ‘alt right”, announced that Trump “loves white people”. 

“This is a victory for the world not just America, a World which was dying under the weight of left-wing globalism, and now the entire world will heal while the leftist elites and media organs scramble and wonder how this could have ever happened."

– United Patriots Front

He told media, "The success of the Trump campaign just proves that our views resonate with millions. They may not be ready for the Ku Klux Klan yet, but as anti-white hatred escalates, they will."

The vocal rise of far right rhetoric in the US also comes as FBI statistics for 2015 – from before Trump’s win - showed a 67% increase in hate crimes against Muslim Americans and increasing rates of hate crime against Jews, African Americans and LGBTQI people.

Brice told The Point Magazine that Trump’s win influences Australia in terms of what rhetoric is publicly acceptable.

“Trump has emboldened people with really racist views and allowed them to think that what they have to say is acceptable and that free speech is the ability to say whatever you want. That’s not the case, all freedoms come with responsibility and freedom of speech applies to this. That’s what I think it means, it has affected us here. We saw earlier this month in Adelaide there was another racist rant on a bus I hope this isn’t going to get worse. We have a lot of work to do.”

She said despite the current divisive rhetoric, it is important to listen to the concerns some far right groups might have and cautions against shutting down debate.

 “It’s a difficult situation, they have legitimate concerns and when the critics are dismissed it turns into a fight rather than a constructive conversation. We don’t create a space where people can have safe discussions without abusing each other. You can create a space to listen even if you don’t agree with what the other side has to say. They have a right to say it in a respectful way.”

The Point

Far right extremist groups in Australia have celebrated the election of Donald Trump as US President as a victory for white pride.

References

Image credit Gage Skidmore

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