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(en) Us, Chico CA. Media, Hate literature draws outrage, protest in Chico ARA* vs. Neo-Nazi groups

From Worker <a-infos-en@ainfos.ca>
Date Sun, 18 Jul 2004 07:30:48 +0200 (CEST)

A - I N F O S N E W S S E R V I C E
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People meet in a city plaza as police look into a purported 'white pride rally.'
CHICO - Some of the area residents who awoke earlier this week to
find their driveways and doorsteps littered with racist literature have
decided to speak out in protest.
While the Chico Peace and Justice Center organized a community
meeting for next week, another unnamed grass-roots group staged
a rally Friday afternoon in the city plaza.
The group at city plaza protested Wednesday's distribution of white
supremacist propaganda contained in fliers and in newspapers
called W.A.R. (White Aryan Resistance), published in Fallbrook,
near San Diego. It was similar to material thrown onto lawns of
more than 150 residences in the Shasta County city of Anderson a
month ago, officials said.

While the hate message contained in the newspaper is protected by
the First Amendment, officials are scrutinizing a flier that touts the
success of a "white pride rally," Chico Police Lt. John Carillo said.

The flier states that rally participants attended specialized classes
that included training in infiltration and sabotage, kidnapping,
interrogation, torture, assassination, explosives training and suicide

"We're trying to determine if this rally really happened," Carillo

Local law enforcement officials, along with Chico FBI agents, are
investigating the veracity of the claims, and whether there are issues
related to homeland security, Carillo said.

Officials don't know who distributed the material fomenting hatred
for Jews, African Americans and Latinos onto private property early
Wednesday morning. But they do know the identity of one Butte
County man they suspect is responsible for white supremacist
literature distributed in other areas of the county in the past few
years, said Butte County Sheriff's Sgt. Andy Duch.

"He basically targets a middle-class white readership and is trying to
find like-minded people," the officer said, adding that his right to
disseminate his hate message is protected by the First Amendment.

"He wants people to be afraid and shocked ... but the best thing we
can do is turn those papers into compost."

Some members of the community want to do more. The Chico
Peace and Justice Center has invited the organizers of Friday's
anti-racism rally, leaders of local churches and other community
groups to a "brainstorming" session Wednesday, said center
volunteer coordinator Bill Petrillo.

"We have to do something, because if we're silent that sends out a
message, too," he said.

The center wants to demonstrate that the majority of people aren't
hateful or racist.

"We need to make our message equally loud, if not louder," he said.

As the anti-hate march was going on Friday, Chico police cordoned
off two downtown blocks and the Butte County interagency bomb
squad investigated items discovered in an apartment that could be
used to make explosive devices.

A landlord conducting an inventory Friday afternoon called police
after finding black powder, mercury, timing switches and shrapnel
inside the apartment. A police spokesman said hate literature was
also found. Police said they are seeking two people for questioning.
Copied from infoshop.org
* [Ed. note: ARA = Anti Racist Action is an antiauthoritarian
anticapitalist network of North America.]

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