There are more than 900 hate groups in the U.S. — a number that’s doubled since 1999.
Map via Southern Poverty Law Center, used with permission.
People are around the world were shocked last weekend after the events in Charlottesville, Virginia. It began on Friday night with a never-ending parade of white supremacists carrying torches and chanting hate-filled slogans. While white supremacists are often stereotyped as aggressive-looking, tattoo-covered social outcasts, this group of khaki-clad polo-shirt-wearing preppies appeared to be indistinguishable from the mainstream.
According to Pret-a-Reporter, “It was jarring to see their young faces, twisted with hate, and their outfits, more Verizon customer service agent than redneck.” On a deeper level, the image seemed to suggest “we’re everywhere.” White supremacists don’t want the public to think they’re lurking in a shady dive bar anymore; they’re saying, “We do your taxes. We bag your groceries. We’re hiding in plain sight.”
To notify the public about the hate groups in their area, the Southern Poverty Law Center created an interactive map that shows exactly where they’re located across the country. The center defines a hate organization as a group with “beliefs or practices that attack or malign an entire class of people, typically for their immutable characteristics.” Currently, according to the SPLC, there are 917 hate groups operating in the U.S.
Chart showing the number of hate groups per year via Southern Poverty Law Center, used with permission.
The SPLC has noticed a rise in hate groups since the turn of the century. These groups have proliferated due to anger over Latino immigration, the election of Barack Obama, and Donald Trump’s political ascendance. The SPLC is currently tracking the following groups: The Ku Klux Klan, anti-Muslim organizations, general hate groups, Christian identity groups, black separatists, anti-LGBTQ groups, white nationalists, neo-Nazis, racist skinheads, and neo-Confederates.