The Asatru Folk Assembly and White Nationalism

Jason Pitzl-Waters —  September 19, 2011 — 485 Comments

White nationalist organization the National Policy Institute (NPI) recently held their 2011 national conference, and Brian Powell from Media Matters was there to cover it. While listening to post-apocalyptic plans for a white “ethnostate” and endorsements for recreating apartheid in American towns, Powell runs into a contingent of members from the Asatru Folk Assembly during lunch.

“I nodded reluctantly and the four well-groomed white males smiled politely and sat down. What followed was one of the more uncomfortable meals of my life, as I smiled and pretended to concur with their views on affirmative action, the depiction of white people in the media, and their plans to recruit others to the white nationalist cause by use of racist humor. [...] The four of them were excruciatingly friendly. They were relieved that they had finally found a place where they didn’t have to “feel out” the conversation before navigating it into the straits of white supremacy. [...] They revealed that seven of them had traveled a long way up the East Coast to be here, led by a heavy-set red-faced Englishman in his forties who was sitting at one of the more expensive tables in the banquet room.

Other peculiar interactions caught my attention as well. For instance, the young men grew visibly uncomfortable when people asked where they were from and referred questioners to the Englishman. They talked about runes, and were offered a place to stay by a man they didn’t seem to know. If you have a hammer, he said to them, you always have a place to stay. My curiosity got the better of me, and after some coaxing and snooping (e.g., craning my neck to watch them writing down information on their group for another young attendee), I discovered  to my surprise that they were part of something called the Asatrú Folk Assembly [...] there were at least 7-10 AFA members at this event, maybe more, and with their jewelry displayed, they could not have been unnoticed by the conference organizers. What their presence portends for the future of the white nationalist movement remains to be seen.”

In theory, the blatantly racist talk at this conference is against the stated values of the AFA, who while concerned with “the survival and welfare of the Northern European peoples as a cultural and biological group” also state:

“The belief that spirituality and ancestral heritage are related has nothing to do with notions of superiority. Asatru is not an excuse to look down on, much less to hate, members of any other race. On the contrary, we recognize the uniqueness and the value of all the different pieces that make up the human mosaic.

Despite this (mostly) “separate but equal” racial view of indigenous and Pagan religions, the AFA, and its founder Stephen McNallen, seem to keep coincidentally rubbing elbows with elements of white nationalism. For example, McNallen has contributed to two periodicals with ties to white nationalismAlternative Right (see their endorsement of the “National Anarchists”), and Tyr, which was co-founded by the “main business partner and heir apparent” of white nationalist and former Klan lawyer Sam Dickson. Dickson was guest of honor at the NPI’s national conference covered by Media Matters.

“Dickson, the elderly former lawyer to the Georgia Ku Klux Klan, espoused the most creative ethnostate scenario. First, he said, the government would need to adopt a plan to move every white person in Cuba to the state of Florida, where they would form a new city called “Havana Nueva.” Once this was accomplished, the government could begin to move all the black people in America down to Cuba. He made a point of assuring the audience that this forced resettlement would be executed “in a civilized way.” I wondered who in the room Dickson thought he might be offending.”

The open question is why were so many AFA members attending a blatantly racist conference (you can’t have discussion of forced relocation, post-collapse race-wars, and mimicking South African apartheid policies and not be considered racist), and will the AFA condemn the views displayed at NPI as against their stated values? Will these members be ejected for going against its own boundaries in matters of race? If not, what does that mean for the future of the AFA? Will the wider Pagan movement, including other Asatru organizations, have to reconsider its relationship with them?

UPDATE: Stephen McNallen of the AFA has posted a statement on the Media Matters story.

I have investigated the current controversy and have discussed it with the AFA Board of Directors. Here is my statement:

Four (not “seven to fourteen”) members of the Asatru Folk Assembly did attend a conference hosted by the National Policy Institute. They did this as private individuals, not as representatives for the Asatru Folk Assembly. The only way the original blogger, Brian Powell of the left-wing blog Media Matters, knew that they were AFA members is because, by his own admission, he craned his neck to see what one of them was writing on a piece of paper. At no time was there any attempt to speak for the AFA or to identify the ideals of the AFA with the subject matter of the conference.

The AFA will not dictate to its members which meetings they are permitted to attend as private individuals. There are suggestions that we discipline them for the crime of being present in a room where extreme statements seem to have been made. We will not do this. There will be no exposure, no witch-hunt, no apologies, and no reprimands.

A careful reading of the original post on the Media Matters blog makes it clear that Mr. Powell “cherry picked” the most extreme comments possible while ignoring the rest. He admitting that he expected “a little more anger, a little more foaming-at-the-mouth hatred of non-whites.” He further notes that “foremost on the minds of the attendees was not white dominance, it was white extinction.” His main objection, in short, was that people of European descent dared to meet to quietly discuss issues of concern to them as a group.

Let me very clearly state these two points: 1. The AFA will never advocate, condone, or excuse illegal or dishonorable acts directed at any person because of their race. 2. That said, men and women of European descent have exactly the same right to meet and to promote their collective interests as do any other group. To demonize them for doing this, when every other group is encouraged to do so, is to indulge in a vicious double standard.

I will let each of you decide whether this sufficiently answers any questions or concerns.

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Jason Pitzl-Waters

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  • Guest

    This Heathen won’t be joining the AFA.

  • Pissedoffchef

    I doubt the AFA will do anything. Their members are free to move as they will and associate with whom they will. This was not an official AFA contingent, but a few members.

    • http://www.wildhunt.org/blog/ Jason Pitzl-Waters

      So this would only be problematic for the AFA if it was an official contingent? How do we even tell if they were official or not?

      • Pissedoffchef

        Pretty much. I’ve know a few OTO members who held beliefs similar to this. I wouldn’t judge the OTO for that. In contrast the AFA has a blatantly White Nationalist charter (Even if it is hedged as “separate but equal”)

        Its not surprising to me. I ditched the Heathen scene a long time ago for this exact reason. Even if the religion is not WN intrnisicly, there’s enought of it that you will inevitably run into these people at parties or rituals.

        • Anonymous

          Yep, crap like that is why I do not associate with other Heathens, though I may worship Odinn. Hospitality is one of our virtues, but so is truthfulness, and the truth is that I would spit on their hearth and never call such ‘kin’, nor would they be welcome in my hearth.

          • http://www.facebook.com/people/David-Carron/100001353268347 David Carron

            Clearly you need to hang with a better quality of heathen, as all the folks I know would spit in their face…

            FTN

          • http://anna-bucci.myopenid.com/ Anna

            FTN!

          • Anonymous

            QFT.

        • http://www.facebook.com/people/David-Carron/100001353268347 David Carron

          And this is why articles like this are important: the vast majority of heathery are not racist dbags. We are folks who love the Aesir, Vanir and the ancestors. We are part of the world around us.

          I will be damned (to Nidthog) if I tolerate some pillow-case wearing rednecks defile nor define my religion of Asatru.

          • Tribe Gungnir

            This is what hapens when we artificially combine spirituality and politics. You may disagree with the politics of a heathen, but you MUST take into account his or her actual DEEDS before publically haranging said person. If you don’t agree with said person’s politics… very well. However, you must ask yourself “What have YOU done to further our folk?” Steve and the AFA are a integral part of our folk movement. Steve was very involved with the Kenowick Man debate and is an eloquent speaker on behalf of folkish Asatru. If you don’t care for his politics… fine. Just don’t denigrate the man, as he has worked hard and long for Asatru.

          • Guest

            Kenowick Man was a huge joke. He made the Asatru Community look like a joke. When I read what he did in one of my Anthropological text books I SUNK DOWN IN MY SEAT IN SHAME. Yes he did good when he first started, but since then, its been all down hill. Racism isn’t about politics. Its about letting fear rule you:

            “Liberal and valiant
            Men live best;
            They seldom harbor grief;
            But unwise men
            Fear everything;
            The miser always longs for gifts.”
            -Havamal

          • Aaron Bennett

            First of all, my friend Dave Carron can stand toe-to-toe with anyone I know on the topic of “What have you done to further our folk.” But that’s a red herring here.

            I’m a former AFA Folkbuilder who left the AFA when I realized that Steve has confused “the folk” with “white conservatives.” Any good work he’s done in the past is being overshadowed by his continued and repeated association with “the alternative right.”

            A person’s personal politics don’t matter to me. But Steve McNallen writes and speaks for alternative right publications with the tagline “A former journalist and teacher, Stephen McNallen is the founder and leader of the Asatru Folk Assembly.”

          • http://www.thehighwayhermit.com James Bulls

            This sounds like the same argument I’ve heard from a relative of mine who fell in love with White Pride and the KKK. I don’t think a person’s good deeds count for anything if they spend the rest of their time promoting policies that spit in the face of any noble virtue they claim to follow.

          • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=574896155 Ryan Smith

            MacNallan has also had several pieces published in WN journals and didn’t exactly cover himself in glory or do the Folk any credit with the whole Kennewick man fiasco. His deeds do not speak well for him or the organization he heads.

          • http://www.facebook.com/people/David-Carron/100001353268347 David Carron

            “This is what hapens when we artificially combine spirituality and politics.”

            They do make bad bedfellows. I’ve seen Odinists push a “Natural Law” agenda which I will very generously call conservative. McNallen has been at the forefront of pushing a moral rubric with the religion. He does make a convincing argument but the endpoint I find quite scary.

            Feel free to listen at my podcast, he is an excellent speaker:
            http://ravencast.podbean.com/2007/07/01/episode-11-national-organizations-the-afa/

            “You may disagree with the politics of a heathen, but you MUST take into account his or her actual DEEDS before publically haranging said person.”

            I agree with you. I judge folks on the basis of their actions. Members of the AFA affirmatively showed up at a racist event. The AFA needs to act on that or be judged similarly. Any other action is weaselly.

            “If you don’t agree with said person’s politics… very well. However, you must ask yourself “What have YOU done to further our folk?”

            I have neither the time nor the space for my CV here.

            “Steve and the AFA are a integral part of our folk movement.”

            I did not denigrate McNallen. He has indeed worked long and hard for the movement for a long time. Not withstanding, he might have lost his way. The AFA has been lost for sometime now and this is merely the latest issue.

            “Steve was very involved with the Kenowick Man debate and is an eloquent speaker on behalf of folkish Asatru. If you don’t care for his politics… fine. Just don’t denigrate the man, as he has worked hard and long for Asatru.”

            I am fascinated that you cite the Kenwick Man as an exemplar for the movement. It was, frankly, embarrassing and will forever link Asatru to kooky media stunts that had nothing to do with the religion.

      • Steven T Abell

        You ask Steve McNallen. That’s pretty easy to do. Remember that he has a job and isn’t always online.

        • Biteme

          Yeah, so he can do his usual evasive, tap dancing, vague bullshit and not actually answer your question. The guy’s a coward and a joke and so is the AFA.

          • An AFA member (non-clergy)

            “the guy’s a coward…” from the guy who identifies as ‘biteme’

          • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=649367665 Nicholas Farrell

            And so replied to by an anonymous AFA member. Pot calling the kettle black.

  • Ursyl

    Mind-boggling. I’m all for “to each their own” when it comes to beliefs, but holy cow they want a boring world!

    Clearly they paid no attention to the mental gymnastics the old South and South Africa’s apartheid required: where people of European ancestry could be declared “black” if they had medical conditions that darkened their skin, and other similar bovine fecal matter. I’m guessing that mandatory Anthropology courses to teach that races are artificial social constructs with precious little biological reality wouldn’t help though.

    • Pissedoffchef

      “I’m guessing that mandatory Anthropology courses to teach that races are artificial social constructs with precious little biological reality wouldn’t help though. ”

      Not a big fan of that. First, the “Social Construct” idea is controversial and more a matter of opinion than science.

      Second what you are proposing is an indoctrination of “official race policy.” That sort of thing never ends well.

      • Gallowsburden

        actually its not “controversial” at all. The America Anthropological Association has a created a document a few years ago that explains how and why race IS socially constructed. the AFA has rubbed elbows for a long time with these groups and that reflects very badly on the Heathen community at large. but from what i know, there are relatively few racists in the AFA (they tend to start their own more radical and openly racist ‘asatru’ kindreds). The top hierarchy are the only ones doing this. mostly out of vanity. but then again, the AFA has been loosing its membership anyways as our folkway comes to maturity and a localized and regional approach become the norm. and with the rise of ‘other races’ becoming more represented in the political parties coupled with the threat of “moslums” its no wonder why these yahoos are gaining adherents. its sad, but race is not a controversial topic and has been resolved by science. in fact there are more differences in phenotype amongst homo-spaiens than between ‘races’. read Franz Boaz circa 1930-45.

        • kenneth

          The entire biological basis of the “white race” is as deep and profound as …..vitamin D deficiency. Heavy melanin deposits block the efficiency of Vitamin D conversion in the skin. Not a problem under equatorial sun when you’re wearing a loincloth.

          The ancestors of Indo-Europeans who wandered into the cold northern latitudes had the sense to put clothes on in the winter and the dumb luck to have some variability in melanin production which allowed some of them to avoid rickets and deadly immune disorders. So the entire genius of the “White Race” and the basis for so-called superiority is the fact that we happened not to die because evolution and natural selection did its job.

          The problem that whiteness solved can be more reliably addressed these days with about six and a half cents worth of supplements, so joining the AFA’s cause to “maintain my biological identity” as a white guy (and thereby associating with fools and poisoning my relations with most of humanity), would be worth a grand total of about $24 a year. Times are lean, but I’ll still go with the pills….

        • munin_and_hugin

          One has to remember, like with any group of scientists, not all Anthropologists agree with each other.

          And phenotypes, of with race/ethnicity is one possible category for, is one way Forensic Anthropologists can identify bodies that are too badly damaged/decomposed to otherwise identify. (Dental records are not always the easiest answer.) So, even within Anthropology the emphasis on race/ethnicity depends on the discipline of the person involved.

          (Can you tell this is my major?)

          • Gallowsburden

            ahhh but those same anthropologist know that outside creating a mere gestalt suitable only to most likely in conjugation other data is the onlyway it should be used. forensic anthros only use it within VERY narrow conditions. and typically its only used to loosely “identify” bodies. my bioanth professor worked on serb/croat mass graves for the UN. only reason why i remember it LOL

          • Pissedoffchef

            The Serbs and Croats are phenotypically indentical aren’t they?

        • Pissedoffchef

          That’s the AMERICAN Anthropological Association. Outside of the US, the rejection of race hasn’t taken hold. It’s not even unanimous in America. As I said its an opinion, and its not based on objective criteria, its a postulate used by a particular discipline. Forensic Anthropologists are less likely to agree, since they identify the race of bodies. Race is also used in Medicine to determine predilection for certain diseases.

          • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=574896155 Ryan Smith

            Post links plz. Let’s see your evidence.

          • An AFA member (non-clergy)

            Really?

            you are the laziest internetter I have ever seen.

            Google: disease and race

            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Race_and_health

          • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=574896155 Ryan Smith

            Two items Mr. Anonymous AFA Member:

            1.) The link you provided says itself the entire theory of race being the root cause has been under question considering the multiple other factors such as socioeconomic status, nutrition, and education. Next time you post a link proving your point try using evidence that doesn’t undermine your position.

            2.) Pissedoffchef made the original assertion. The burden of proof lies on him, not on me. If he wants to claim the sky is green I’m going to be expecting him to post a picture proving it. He doesn’t get off scot-free of proving himself if he doesn’t take the time to back his stuff up.

      • http://ianphanes.livejournal.com/ Ian Phanes

        When my Irish-American grandfather was born in Chicago (at the end of the 19th century), he wasn’t “white,” he was “Irish.” Sometime during his life, he magically became “white.” My father told me stories of his father seeing help-wanted signs saying “No Irish or Catholics need apply.” If “race” was not a social construct, how did it change so radically in such a short time. (Eastern Europeans were also “non-white.” Heck, in some definitions, Swedes weren’t “white.”)

        On the physical side, it was pointed out in my physical anthropology classes (required, though my training is as a socio-cultural anthropologist) that any small population of humans (even before globalization) has enough genetic diversity to reproduce the full range of phenotypic diversity–including skin colors. The only significant genetic difference between populations is that some of the genetic diversity in African populations never made it to the rest of the world.

        • http://egregores.wordpress.com Apuleius Platonicus

          The bogus concept of “whiteness” is the key.

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=574896155 Ryan Smith

        Any historian worth their salt will tell you race is an artificial construct. The first laws regarding racial segregation, privilege, and exclusion were passed in Virginia in the late 1600s in response to a nearly successful revolt by white indentured servants and African slaves. The intent of the laws was to divide the groups from one another and prevent any kind of unity in opposition by the lower classes against the planter elite of the colony. We see similar sentiments pop up in the language and literature of the period and before. It wasn’t until at least the 18th century when people were first referred to by ethnicity in the West, up until then the main form of identification was usually religion followed by nation and region.

    • http://egregores.wordpress.com Apuleius Platonicus

      And it isn’t just a matter of Anthropology. History also shows conclusively that the concept of “race” in general and that of “white race” in particular are modern, European (and Christian, to boot) ideas.

      In essence, as Europe modernized and as European nation-states evolved away from being out-and-out theocracies, Europe’s “Christian” identity seamlessly morphed into a racial identity. This coincided with the morphing of the Great Enemy, the Jews, from the religious enemy of Christendom into the racial enemy of Europe.

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/Lamyka-L/649965363 Lamyka L.

        Sometimes Apuleius your attention to actual facts makes me smile.

        • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

          Actually, the entire idea of race/racial superiority is in fact a Monotheistic concept. First documented in the old testament. After all, the first recorded instance of race and racial superiority ideas can be found in “god’s chosen people” and “everyone else that isn’t.” XP

          • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=649367665 Nicholas Farrell

            I’m fairly certain that the pre-christian romans considered themselves to be superior to the other civilizations outside the empire, though I suppose this might be seen as more of a nationalist approach to superiority, than a biological or ethnic one.

          • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

            Fair enough, perhaps I should clarify what I mean. Racial superiority based o being Chosen By God (which is one of the fundamentals of Christo-European ie White Superiority, Jewish superiority, and Muslim superiority) is first documented with the Isrealites in the old testament.

            Now, the idea of Roman Superiority, as I understand it, came from the fact that they pretty much kicked the butts of everyone they met and managed to conquer half the “known world.” So it’s more of a “Asskicking equals Superiority” rather than “genetic/religious” superiority. But that’s my opinion. Still the what I said stands. the first recorded instance of “racial superiority” is in the Old Testament with the Israelites.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1217749426 Maria Meyer

    Sad, just sad…When are people like that going to realize that, regardless of skin color, ethnic/cultural and ancestral background, when you strip us down to just DNA we are all the same..One species, one animal, one human “race.”

  • Leea

    are there any Pagan faiths that are really post-racial? We’ve been aware for a while of the racism that seems to trickle along the underbelly of some of the northern faiths. This made me think about the Afro-centricty of many syncretic faiths, and Latino origins of faiths such as Dia de dl Muerte, the Celtic groups etc…which brought me to my question…

    • http://www.wildhunt.org/blog/ Jason Pitzl-Waters

      While there are racial elements to Vodou, Santeria, Palo, etc, all, for the most part, accept initiates of European decent.

      • Leea

        Right-I probably wasn’t clear and am a bit off topic, as the post is about deliberate racism. I was thinking that Pagan faiths seem to run along..say…lines of inheritance. Celts lean to Celtic faiths etc. I was wondering if there any Paths that have attracted a mixed following, so that while attending a ritual one would see faces of many colors. Thanks for helping me clarify, Jason!

        • Anonymous

          Here’s the deal: I’m not Greek, but I enjoy the rituals hosted by a local Greek-reconstructionist group. Sometimes I join the Druids & there are both Latinas and African Americans who identify as such. The celebrations for Kali or the Kirtan singing groups pretty much welcome everyone … it’s so much more fluid that your question would imply. And– well – after 40 years of attending and/or organizing Pagan events, assumptions about anyone’s path is likely to get one into a lot of trouble. Here in SF and vicinity, that usually means a lot of “processing” and “questioning your need to be here” by all sorts of people

        • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=574896155 Ryan Smith

          I think that’s less deliberate and more a consequence of many Pagan paths’ emphasis on ancestor veneration. When you factor that in it makes sense to start with the practices of one’s ancestors and go outward from there.

          That said considering the fun little tricks genetic diffusion pulls it’s kind of hard to untangle the whole mess of heritage when you take into account all the migrations, wars, and whatnot that have happened throughout history.

          • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=649367665 Nicholas Farrell

            Were I to follow a strictly ancestral path, I would somehow have to combine Celtic, Greek, Roman, Native American, Germanic, and Jewish theologies and pantheons. Let the headaches and internal holy wars begin!

          • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=574896155 Ryan Smith

            That’s one of the reasons I don’t give a flying fig about the issue of blood descent. The other reason is the original ancestors didn’t either. There were no laws regarding blood purity, importance of descent from certain regions or people placed over others, or laws preventing the adoption of outsiders (usually slaves) into society. The whole obsession over blood lineage is a wholly modern phenomenon.

          • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

            Yeah, well, not everyone believes like you Ryan, so stop telling people what and how to believe. Just cause you don’t care where you came from, doesn’t mean the rest of us can’t.

      • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

        And most Heathen paths (including the AFA) accept people of “non-European” decent last time i checked. Now, how many they get, with this whole “AFA/Heathenry=RACIST” bs floating about, I can’t say.

        • Pissedoffchef

          Many Heathen paths do not. I believe the AFA is one of them.

          • An AFA member (non-clergy)

            It’s not. The AFA stance is something like:

            ” We don’t see how it would make sense for you, but we won’t stop you. “

      • http://www.facebook.com/kenazfilan Kenaz Filan

        As I said in my blog, there are Vodou houses who will only accept Haitians. Note that I said “Haitians,” not “blacks.” The issue is nationality and ancestry, not “race” as we understand it. I have heard of Houngans and Mambos who will only initiate natif natal Haitians: I’ve never heard of a Haitian-run house which would initiate black non-Haitians but not white non-Haitians.

        There are also Afrocentric American groups who are practicing what I can best describe as “African Reconstructionism” and who only admit members who are visibly of African descent. Some of their leaders have actual initiations in one or more African or African Diaspora religions, while others have created their new tradition out of research and whole cloth. I don’t know much about them as I am not part of their target audience, but they definitely exist.

        The American view of “race” is a big blunt instrument: it works (for good and ill) when dealing with broad swaths of people but often proves inadequate when dealing with fine cultural distinctions.

      • http://www.facebook.com/dsalisbury David Salisbury

        Good to note, definately. I went into a Vodou botanica in DC once and the woman at the counter woudlnt unlock the door and let us in. We had to follow behind someone else to enter. Once in, she wouldnt check out our stuff till my (Columbian) boyfriend started talking to her in Spanish.

    • Anonymous

      Based upon the attendance at any of the larger Pagan events here on the West Coast- pretty much everyone is welcome. The Afro-Diasporic faiths, Native, and the various Hindu-based traditions are regarded as Pagans by all of us here!

    • http://egregores.wordpress.com Apuleius Platonicus

      Many modern scholars agree that ancient Pagans, as well as early Christians, were innocent of what we today call “racism”. Sadly, a great many modern Pagans have been duped into uncritically believing that ancient Greeks, Romans, etc, were racists.

      Therefore, at least according to one widely held view among experts, Paganism doesn’t have to be “post-racial” since we are, in fact, “pre-racial”. This is another good reason for modern Pagans to cease and desist from the stupidity of thinking of Paganism in terms of hyphenated ethnically defined enclaves. And it is also another reason for us to identify closely with our ancient spiritual ancestors.

      • Chazz

        What about ancient Judaism? The Torah condones ethnic cleansing in times of duress (or resource scarcity) and encourages apartheid (hence rules governing cleanliness, shibboleths, and intermarriage). Unlike the many “tolerant” pagan faiths contemporaneous with the Roman Empire, Judaism has an unbroken line of theological tradition stretching back to the dawn of literacy; neo-pagans can only dream of having a text as unifying and authoritative as the Pentateuch.
        If you are a Darwinist, as I assume most intelligent people are, then surely you realize that culture is an extension of biology and all that really matters is which strategy succeeds (losers go extinct, winners propagate). If the AFA adopts successful memes that have traditionally been an integral part of the long-lived religion of Judaism (and almost certainly other religions), then perhaps their faith will succeed as well as that of the ancient Hebrews. And in case anyone hasn’t noticed, it was the “universalist” religions (there’s only one big us) of Christianity and Islam that could not tolerate competition, not the ethnocentric religion of Judaism.
        Let 100 flowers blossom!

        • http://www.wildhunt.org/blog/ Jason Pitzl-Waters

          You do know that the concepts of classical social evolutionism have been largely rejected by modern scholarship, right?

          • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

            You do know that much of modern scholarship is directed by politics and has very little to do with actual science and traditional forms of scholarship, right?

          • http://www.wildhunt.org/blog/ Jason Pitzl-Waters

            Pre-modern scholarship was directed by politics too, in fact, all scholarship has been, to various extents driven by politics. Do you have a point? Or are you just sniping at me because you feel I’m being unfair to the AFA?

          • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

            Maybe scholarship is not a valid argument when it comes to debating politics?

          • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=574896155 Ryan Smith

            Show me any one thing in human history that was not influenced by the prevailing beliefs and politics of the time and place in which it emerged.

          • Anonymous

            NA wrote:
            Maybe scholarship is not a valid argument when it comes to debating politics?

            /facepalm

            By saying that, I think you just lost the internet.

        • Lonespark

          “Culture is an extension of biology?!?!?!”

          Really? How then do you propose cultures change over time without accompanying genetic mutation? W.T.F?

          • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/2RNWVAVXOQKAQI52V5ZV74QTV4 Mike

            The guys been caught up in the 19th century social Darwinism movement.

        • http://profiles.yahoo.com/u/2RNWVAVXOQKAQI52V5ZV74QTV4 Mike

          That’s a good argument. Lets emulate people who are into ethnic cleansing. Oh wait someone already did that. It’s called Fascism. If you want to emulate something, why not the works of Hinduism and Buddhism? They’re older and seem to be more positive.

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=574896155 Ryan Smith

        I think the confusion springs from the cultural chauvinism the Greeks and Romans (and to be fair every single other culture on the planet) practiced in period. What this assumption misses is that one could become a Roman, a Greek, a Saxon, or what have you by a variety of methods depending on the specific culture. The Romans were VERY fond of spreading Roman-ness to every corner of the Med regardless of the color of one’s skin.

        • Anonymous

          Ryan wrote:
          The Romans were VERY fond of spreading Roman-ness to every corner of the Med regardless of the color of one’s skin.

          I think that ought to read, “…to every corner of the known world…”

          • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=574896155 Ryan Smith

            It depends on who was in charge at the time in the Empire. Roman policy was always consistent on encouraging Roman-ness in the population throughout its history, the actual every corner of the known world part depended on how bellicose the particular Emperor or Consul (if you’re talking the Republic) was feeling.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=649367665 Nicholas Farrell

      I daresay, at the risk of making every druid, hellenismo, and asatruar here vomit, that Wicca seems to have a pretty diverse following. To all those who will undoubtedly say,” There’s nothing advanced in Wicca.” I will just say this: you haven’t searched for it yet.

  • Devin Quince

    I am no fan of the AFA, but other than the 7-10 AFA members this person talked with, do we have any real idea of the true number of AFA members were there? The article IMO was off the bat setup to portray a negative viewpoint.

    • http://www.wildhunt.org/blog/ Jason Pitzl-Waters

      Even if it was only 7-10, isn’t that enough? If 7-10 members of any Pagan organization attended a racist conference, I would report on it, and expect that org to have a response.

      • Pissedoffchef

        Thing is, I see no substantive difference between the sort of opinions advanced by the IPA and those that you will find on the AFA website. The IPA is of the same “racialist, but not racist” mindset that the AFA presents.

        White Nationalist Heathens show up at White Nationalist event! Film at eleven.

        • An AFA member (non-clergy)

          Pagan hypocritically judges entire religious organization without knowing a thing about them. Film at eleven.

      • Anonymous

        Thank you ! Please do! IHMO – there is no room for this kind of thing in our collective community and I find no reason to rationalize or to tolerate even one blatant racist among us.

      • kenneth

        I don’t think it’s unreasonable at all to put the question to the organization. Seven to 10 people is a pretty sizable delegation, especially when we’re talking about a religion which is still a tiny minority itself. If these people truly represent an anomaly to the group’s values, all they need to do is to say so in no uncertain terms and that will be the end of it. Then we can judge a few individuals for what they are.

        If, on the other hand, they decide to waffle the question or don’t respond, that ought to be made known too. I’m willing to give AFA the benefit of the doubt, but one that is tinged with some concerns based on this incident and what seems to be to be conveniently ambiguous language in its own literature about their view on race and racial identity.

        • An AFA member (non-clergy)

          It’s not the responsibility of the AFA to answer to every part-time blogger’s acusations though.

          The AFA has done it’s part. The answers you’re looking for are on thier website.

          At a certain point, the AFA just has to rise above such baseless accusations, and ignore them.

          • http://www.facebook.com/people/David-Carron/100001353268347 David Carron

            *Applause*

            I admire your naked and baldfaced attempts to manage this situation without substantively dealing with the issue.

      • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

        Well, that depends. 7-10 members of of 20? Means a lot. 7-10 out of a Thousand or more? Not so much. Sure, let’s condemn the entire organization. While we’re at it, let’s call All Germans are Nazis. Or All Whites Are Racist. All Heathens are Racist? Or just All Heathen Organizations are Racist?

        You know Jason, it’s a little bit funny. We have 7-10 members of the AFA (an organization to which I do not belong, but to which I do acknowledge as a decent enough organization) and suddenly you’re ready to join in on condemning the entire organization. Yet how many times have I complained about the threats of radical Islam, and you gotten onto me for “condemning the entire group/organization/religion?”

        So…what’s the difference here? What’s the lesson? It’s okay to pick on “racists” of one color, but not “racists” of another? Where are you articles about “Black Supremacist Pagans” or Hispanic Supremacist Pagans (who actually exist). See, I’m getting something of a double standard here.

        • http://www.wildhunt.org/blog/ Jason Pitzl-Waters

          “suddenly you’re ready to join in on condemning the entire organization”

          I’m treating the AFA as I would any Pagan organization were it in similar situations.

          As for “condemning” the AFA, I welcome their no-doubt forthcoming condemnation of this racist conference.

          • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

            Ah, but have you talked to them directly?

            And when was the last time you posted an article about other Pagan organizations in similar situations, Jason? I’ve read of some (which have been mentioned by others) that call for the cleansing of Non-hispanics from the south-west that are Pagan religious organizations.

            Can we expect an article on them soon?

          • http://www.wildhunt.org/blog/ Jason Pitzl-Waters

            Are you referring to La Raza? Last I checked they aren’t an explicitly Pagan (or “pagan”) organization.

            Have I spoken to AFA directly? No. I haven’t. But I also haven’t made any assertions that aren’t documented elsewhere. You keep saying that I call the AFA racist, but I haven’t (I even quote their statement on racism). I said they need to respond to this, and I anticipate they will.

          • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

            Soooo because they are not “Explicitly” Pagan they don’t count? I’d be interested to know where that line is.

            As for the fact that you haven’t made any assertions that aren’t documented elsewhere…well, we Pagans have run into that time and time again, haven’t we? How many times have the media, the Dominionists, or other groups said something negative about Pagans, never talked to the Pagans in question, but put forth information that was “documented elsewhere” about us to prove their points?

            As for quoting them on their statement, yes, you did that. However, I haven’t really seen you taking them at their word for it in either the article or your comments.

          • An AFA member (non-clergy)

            “I’m treating the AFA as I would any Pagan organization were it in similar situations.”

            That’s beside the point. You are pointing the finger at an entire group based on the actions of a few.

            Norse Alchemist is correct. You are behaving in a predjudicial manner.

            If a WN said to you, “I’m treating the blacks as I would any race with high crime rates”, would you think that was okay? No, you wouldn’t.

            You’re being hypocritical with the way you’re treating the AFA.

          • http://www.wildhunt.org/blog/ Jason Pitzl-Waters

            “That’s beside the point.”

            No it isn’t. It’s exactly the point. I’m treating the AFA as I would any other Pagan org.

            “You are pointing the finger at an entire group based on the actions of a few.”

            No. I haven’t. Maybe you should read my closing paragraph again.

            “The open question is why were so many AFA members attending a blatantly racist conference (you can’t have discussion of forced relocation, post-collapse race-wars, and mimicking South African apartheid policies and not be considered racist), and will the AFA condemn the views displayed at NPI as against their stated values? Will these members be ejected for going against its own boundaries in matters of race? If not, what does that mean for the future of the AFA? Will the wider Pagan movement, including other Asatru organizations, have to reconsider its relationship with them?”

            I hope the AFA condemns these members and this conference. I will gladly print that condemnation here.

          • Siegfried Goodfellow

            NO, we are assessing the honor of a group by the integrity of its members, period. A very heathen practice.

        • Baruch Dreamstalker

          Alchemist, can you slip us links to those Black and Hispanic supremacist Pagans?

          • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

            You know, I’d be happy too, Baruch. but I can’t. Not because they don’t exist, but for the same reason I tend not to provide links when I talk about Islam, because someone will invariably “discredit” said sources by saying the come from “racists websites.”

            So, you’re welcome to do your own research, because I know mine is not going to be trusted, so I don’t see the need to supply it.

            In other words, don’t take my word for it, find out for yourself. I just hope you can read Spanish, cause that’s about the only way you’ll get it without going to “racist” sources.

          • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=574896155 Ryan Smith

            So you’re admitting your sources are bunk then?

          • Merofled Ing

            … because someone will invariably “discredit” said sources by saying the come from “racists websites.”

            Yes, I can actually see this might happen.

          • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

            Ryan, it is not that my sources are bunk. It’s that these days, “Racism” is in the eye of the beholder (or the anti-facist/anti-racist) rather than in the eye of the person making the post. Therefore, a man with no racism in his heart may say something, and used evidence to prove it, and yet have it “discredited” by others because they feel it to be “Racist.”

            Even if it is, in fact, not racist.

            For instance, I learned about the Hispanic supremacist religion that’s growing in the south west that states publicly that it wishes to drive out or kill all the non-hispanics in the area and take back the land. I first read about this on the AFA’s website. Now, I have read some of their stuff and never found anything racist there. Others, however, have looked at that site and declared it nothing but racist.

            And I’ve face enough bs instances of people calling other people racists, or calling sources i’ve sited as “racist” that I frankly am fed up with it. The facts are not argued. They are attacked and demonized and ignored.

          • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=574896155 Ryan Smith

            That’s a whole lot of spin in there NA and very little in the way of actual links, facts, or proof.

            If you have the alleged proof then spit it out. Sitting over there moaning about how people might “think it is racist” is nothing more than another one of your dodges at actually backing up your BS. Intelligent people can assess a source’s worth on their own, thankyouverymuch. Your refusal to actually post your sources says to me that you do not believe they are credible.

            So back it up or pack it up buddy. You talk a lot but say very little, let’s see if you have anything of real substance and value to add to this conversation or not.

          • Baruch Dreamstalker

            Ryan, Norse Alchemist had a very unfortunate experience on this board. He answered a question with a referral to a particular European website and was, in essence, called a racist because of the site he cited. I can understand him being a tad leery of fulfilling my request.

            I am satisfied that I have put my interest in this topic out to the universe in my request to NA, and the information will in time flow to me as a matter of course — it’s happened often enough!

          • http://www.facebook.com/kenazfilan Kenaz Filan

            If I were relying on material from discredited racist websites, I’d be leery of posting my sources lest I be called a racist. So I can’t really blame Norse Alchemist for that one.

            Speaking of “discredited sources,” here’s one of the first posts from “Deconstructor” – check his profile for further details

            on Will Europe Put its Foot Down? – by Hege Storhaug last year

            Gamal, that is only part of the solution. The real solution is to deport all non-Europeans and to restore the natural ethnic folk of the Europe as the rightful posessor of its land. Non-Europeans may visit and even live there for a while as guests. However, only people of European descent may be citizens. If that’s racist, so be it.

            ****

            Yep, it’s racist – and so is the guy who is spouting it. I do hope the AFA has someone better than this standing up for their defense.

          • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=574896155 Ryan Smith

            He’s still making an unsupported assertion. He wants to claim that’s true he’s the one who needs to support it. The onus is on him to prove his claims, not on us to play nice with someone citing BS evidence. If his evidence is crap then it needs to be called what it is and shredded to bits, not excused because the presenter received a “hostile reception.” That’s a dodge on his part and NA is smart enough to know that considering how often he’s done that here and on P+P.

            TL;DR version:

            Back it up or pack it up.

          • Baruch Dreamstalker

            So he’s damned if he does provide links and damned if he doesn’t. Are you sure this is a Pagan thread?

          • Anonymous

            I have to reply to Kenaz Filan but I can’t find a Reply button, so I’ll do it here, if you don’t mind.

            You really did some serious digging there, because this is the first time I used ‘deconstructor’ as a handle.

            As for my comments about Europe being for Europeans; I stand by that 100%. Just as I 100&% support the Tibetan homeland for the Tibetan people, the Basque country for the Basque people, the Aleut lands for the Aleut peoples, the Mongolian lands for the Mongolian peoples etc. etc

            Are you implying that the Tibetan people are racist for wanting their own homeland?

          • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=574896155 Ryan Smith

            “So he’s damned if he does provide links and damned if he doesn’t. Are you sure this is a Pagan thread?”

            If he wants to make claims and refuse to back them up then he is asking for people to call BS. You can’t run around making outlandish statements and then cry foul when people ask you to back it up with verified facts. If his sources are genuinely credible then they’ll stand or fall on their own merits, if they aren’t then he deserves to be called out for posting BS then supporting it with junk.

            Freedom of speech and opinion doesn’t mean freedom from criticism, logic, or facts.

        • Biteme

          The issue is not whether the percentage of members at the event is significant enough to warrant suspicion of whether the org is racist or not. The issue is that this is yet ANOTHER indicator that the AFA has a racist element, that they repeatedly are too chickenshit to own up to.

          • An AFA member (non-clergy)

            The issue is that people like you won’t stop being busybodies and just let the AFA practice thier religion as they see fit.

            Since they’re ancestors are white, you want to call them racist for honoring them.

            And you look for every reason you can to do so.

            Every little piece of ‘evidence’ in your mind.

            Just like racists look for every piece of ‘evidence’ that it’s okay to look down on someone else. You’re acting the very same way, and it’s shameful.

          • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=574896155 Ryan Smith

            There’s a huge difference between honoring your ancestors and calling for the reinstatement of apartheid.

          • http://www.facebook.com/people/David-Carron/100001353268347 David Carron

            “The issue is that people like you won’t stop being busybodies and just let the AFA practice thier religion as they see fit.”

            So your ok with your other AFA members rubbing up with organizations labeled as “White Power Think Tanks”?

            “Since they’re ancestors are white, you want to call them racist for honoring them.”

            Now, you’re attacking the messager and obfuscating the issue. It’s not about the Ancestors. It’s about WP.

            “And you look for every reason you can to do so. Every little piece of ‘evidence’ in your mind.”

            Hardly. If they paid money to show up a WP event, isn’t that supporting a WP organization?

            “Just like racists look for every piece of ‘evidence’ that it’s okay to look down on someone else. You’re acting the very same way, and it’s shameful.”

            Actually, making excuses and tolerating WP and racism is pretty shameful in my book. Are we not a moral and world-accepting religion? The offenders should be disciplined and the AFA needs to take a stand against racism or be branded as accepting racists.

          • Siegfried Goodfellow

            HA! For you to speak of “shame”! That is hilarious! Tie a goat to your balls, why don’t you?

            What’s shameful is when people are called out on the dishonor of their associates and can’t summon the coherence to demonstrate any basic responsibility in the world. I certainly will not be sharing my meals with any racists, and moreover, I, and many others, will NEVER allow nidings to encroach upon and attempt to monopolize the spiritual territory of such wide-exploring ancestors.

        • Siegfried Goodfellow

          Norse Alchemist, bogus argument. Niding acts are niding acts, and bring shame upon an organization. Are you suggesting that the honor of its members has no bearing upon the honor of a group? Who you associate with says an awful lot about yourself, and majority/minority is of little matter. I’m not going to blot with one single niding, period. This disgusting racism is a problem on the fringes of the heathen “community”, whether one wants to acknowledge it or not, and I applaud Jason for making of this exactly the big deal that it is. A fucking embarassment is what it is. Really. A fucking embarassment.

          • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

            And where I come from in my Heathen path, A Man is judge by what he does. He is not judged by what someone else does in his name when he doesn’t know about it. And if you wanna talk about organizations being discredited by what just a few members do, well then, that’s a big topic and I’m sure I can find some organizations you might think all fine and honorable who have had members do far worse than this.

          • Siegfried Goodfellow

            Well, apparently hanging out at White Power events is not that much of a problem for you, but for many of the rest of us, it definitely is.

      • AnonGuest

        I think it makes a big difference whether such a small group of people are hanging out on their own time or working officially as representatives right then for their Pagan organization

        • Siegfried Goodfellow

          YOU. ARE. YOUR. DEEDS. The deeds in question reflect poorly upon the associates. The exposure is, in fact, very useful to others seeking to keep their worship free from the taint of dishonor, that the Gods might notice their group as a gathering of integrity. It’s useful to know whom never to invite, to whom one ought never pass the horn.

          • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

            you’re right, we are our deeds, but we are not the deeds of other men.

          • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

            Or maybe you’re right. In which case, what does that make President Obama in the instance where His Justice Department dropped all the charges of that Voter Intimidation in that case against the Black Panther Party (Which was caught on tape and posted on youtube?)

            Hmm, clear act of intimidation by a known Black Supremacist party, and instead of being brought to trial, they are let go without charges by the Justice Department under the President’s Administration. If you’re willing to go after the AFA for the actions of four members, I wonder what you will do in the instance of the actions of an entire branch of the government?

      • An AFA member (non-clergy)

        Don’t you mean ‘alleged’ AFA members, and ‘allegedly’ attended? I know sensationalism pays the bills Jason, but try and at least have as much respect for accuracy as the mainstream media. For decency’s sake.

        • http://www.wildhunt.org/blog/ Jason Pitzl-Waters

          It’s only “alleged” if Media Matters is lying. Do you believe they fabricated their membership to take down the AFA? Why would they lie about something like that?

          • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

            Why indeed, Jason, why indeed?

          • http://www.wildhunt.org/blog/ Jason Pitzl-Waters

            Well, the official AFA statement confirms that there were at least 4 members in attendance. So there is nothing “alleged” about it any more.

        • http://www.facebook.com/people/David-Carron/100001353268347 David Carron

          “Don’t you mean ‘alleged’ AFA members, and ‘allegedly’ attended?”

          If charged, in a court of law, sure. Or folks are evading responsibility.

          • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

            or people not wanting to make false claims that they have yet to back up with their own proof.

          • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=574896155 Ryan Smith

            The AFA admitted four members attended the event. Trying to pretend it didn’t happen is pretty willfully blind.

    • http://egregores.wordpress.com Apuleius Platonicus

      Well, we have the publicly available writings of Stephen Mcnallen. Such as his “Wotan vs. Tezcatlipoca”, and his “Metagenetics.”

      Of course McNallen claims not be racist. But so do the Minutemen, and the Council of Conservative Citizens, etc. Hell, David Duke insists he’s not a racist.

      Being a politically conservative, white, Heathen does not make a person a racist. But saying “I’m not a racist” doesn’t make a person not a racist, either.

      Most people who define Paganism in terms of ethnicity, race, “blood”, or European-ness are not racists. They are just stupid people who haven’t thought this through. Stephen McNallen is not stupid and he has thought it through.

      • http://www.lippsisters.com/ Deborah Lipp

        I find it enormously useful to ban, from my own thinking and speech, “racist” as a noun. If we use “racist” exclusively as an adjective, it becomes much easier to assess situations without worrying about stepping on delicate toes or hurting delicate feelings.

        I don’t know if Stephen Mcnallen or anyone else is “a” racist, because I can’t see into his heart. But I can fairly assess a behavior or statement as racist (adjectival form).

        Someone can do or say something that is racist for a stupid or thoughtless reason, and have no intention to be racist. That person will clean up his act when he realizes the problem. In fact, any of us is capable of a racist (or sexist or homophobic or…) behavior, because we are all the products of a culture that has institutional racism in its very structure.

        So, we can stop worrying if so-and-so is “a” racist and just look at behaviors and how to fix them.

      • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

        Oh no. We can’t take anyone at their word. After all, Apul, you say you’re a pagan, but hey, saying you’re something doesn’t make it true, apparently.

        In fact, we all say things. I say I’m heterosexual. I say I’m a Heathen. You say you are a man of learning. Jason says he is an impartial reporter of Pagan based news. McNallen says he isn’t a racist.

        So we are face with choices here. Either we believe a man when he says a thing. Or we do not believe a man when he says a thing. Now, I don’t know McNallen personally, but I’ve read his stuff, seen his vids, and I don’t get much of a vib about being a lair or a racist.

        So I say we take the man at his word, for now.

        • http://www.facebook.com/kenazfilan Kenaz Filan

          So we are face with choices here. Either we believe a man when he says a thing. Or we do not believe a man when he says a thing. Now, I don’t know McNallen personally, but I’ve read his stuff, seen his vids, and I don’t get much of a vib about being a lair or a racist.

          Fallacy of the excluded middle on Line 1.

          It is entirely possible to believe a man is sincere but mistaken. There are plenty of people who regularly make racist statements and espouse racist ideals, but who do not believe they are “racists” because i.e. they don’t use the “N-word” or other racist epithets.

          I remember arguing with one spiritual leader (who will remain unnamed for now, since we’ve not crossed swords for over a decade at this point) about his promotion of the “Leuchter Report” and other Holocaust revisionist material. He apparently believed (and believes) that he is not an anti-Semite just because he finds a great deal of Revisionist material convincing.

          From where I stood (and stand), a scholarly movement which believes the Holocaust was a Zionist hoax designed to promote the State of Israel is quintessentially anti-Semitic: thus, the question is not whether he was not an anti-Semite but whether he believed the anti-Semites were actually onto something. I don’t question his sincerity: neither do I question the ability of the human species to engage in cognitive dissonance.

          • http://nicdhana.blogspot.com/ Kathryn NicDhàna

            “It is entirely possible to believe a man is sincere but mistaken. There are plenty of people who regularly make racist statements and espouse racist ideals, but who do not believe they are “racists” because i.e. they don’t use the “N-word” or other racist epithets.”

            Similarly, there are plenty of people who believe they are not racists because they “appreciate” the spiritual ways of oppressed, usually Indigenous, cultures. Then you look a bit deeper and find out these “appreciators” are actually *appropriators*.

            They are not “appreciating” the Elders and traditional leaders of those communities who ask them to respectfully back off. Instead the “appreciator” ignores Indigenous voices in their quest to get an “exotic” spiritual fix, all the while touting their bohemian, “universal” approach. It is incredibly racist for a cultural outsider to decide their sense of “it feels good to me so I do it” is more important than the stated wishes of the Indigenous peoples who do not want their traditions mimicked, consumed, or misrepresented.

            As a Gaelic Polytheist, I am also particularly concerned when people present their outsider fantasies of Native American ways, but try to pass them off as Celtic. As if none of us would notice. That does violence to all of our traditions. And it makes our efforts to work together with Indigenous friends and organizations as respectful allies all the more difficult as we then have to counter misinformation and clean up the messes made by the appropriators.

            It’s gotten to the point where I want to ask some of these appropriators whom I’ve seen say and do horribly disrespectful things, “Would you say or do that if the spiritual leaders of the traditions you are emulating were watching?” Because the truth is, they are watching. They do have the Internet. They know all about what is going on and who is doing it.

        • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=574896155 Ryan Smith

          Actually we can verify many of those things. All you’re doing here is deliberately muddying the waters of discussion to occlude the truth.

          Very neat attempt. Shame its so obvious.

    • Cara

      Now that you raised the question…how many members does AFA have? Anyone know?

    • An AFA member (non-clergy)

      I don’t think the actual number is public knowledge, but it’s very large. Enough so that 7-10 members is 1-2% of the people at most.

      Many members are ‘lurkers’ if you will, and I can say that internally, we don’t know at this point who the attendees were, or whether in fact they existed at all.

      The article was a hit-piece. There was never any intention to treat to good people of the AFA with fairness or respect, or journalistic integrity.

      That’s why it’s a shame that a bunch of heathens are jumping on board with mob-style behavior. As if the AFA is guilty until proven innocent because some guy spouts completely unverified agenda-based misinformation.

      • Baruch Dreamstalker

        “The article was a hit-piece.”

        Let’s stipulate that. Race is nonetheless such a touchy subject that a measured, convinving *official* response by AFA leadership would be appropriate.

        It would be in good company. During President Obama’s 2008 election campaign he had to devote an entire speech to the topic of his minister, who’d made race-based comments. It was completely unfair that Obama had to do it, but that’s life.

        The media rated the speech as the best public exposition on race in a long time. Good things can come of such unfair circumstances.

        Obama did not lash out at the media for running the story. An AFA response has a better chance of being well received if it does not lash out at Jason for covering the article.

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/David-Carron/100001353268347 David Carron

        “That’s why it’s a shame that a bunch of heathens are jumping on board with mob-style behavior. As if the AFA is guilty until proven innocent because some guy spouts completely unverified agenda-based misinformation. ”

        Will you be making a statement about this? Do you have specific information or are you speculating? With all due respect, spin doctoring should not be the purview of religious organizations.

      • Siegfried Goodfellow

        People who continually associate with fools ought not be surprised when people laugh at their protests over “integrity”. The mirror points backwards.

        And as far as heathens “jumping on board with mob-style behavior”, some of us are sick and tired of having the name of our religion sullied by wolves in sheep’s clothing who have no desire for spirituality, but rather to apotheosize their obnoxious, narrow nationalism. McNallen refused to even consider censuring them, based on a bogus “freedom of association” clause. What do they have to be doing — lynching people in the streets in order to receive censure?

        Are we quick to condemn? “I see the ears of a wolf…”.

  • Baruch Dreamstalker

    The diversity statement from the AFA website:

    “Difference is the very spice of our existence. The melting pot, carried to its natural conclusion, results in a sludgy soup of sameness. The AFA supports the efforts of all cultural and biological groups to maintain their identity, and opposes the plans of the world-managers to reduce all of humanity to a lowest common denominator. People of all cultures and races must stand united against the forces that would transform us into perfectly interchangeable economic units dominated by a financial or governmental elite.”

    That could raise echoes from both the left and the right.

    • kenneth

      “maintain their identity,” especially in the absurd context of “biological groups” is pretty thin code for Keeping the Race Pure. This is pure and simple White Power doctrine.

      • Leah

        “maintain their identity,” like La Raza?

        • http://www.wildhunt.org/blog/ Jason Pitzl-Waters
        • http://egregores.wordpress.com Apuleius Platonicus

          Most people who identify with a group like “La Raza” are of mixed race, and either proud of it or at the very least aware of it and not in any way ashamed. “Latino” is just another word for “mestizo”, which in turn is just a Spanish word for “mixed”.

          • kenneth

            There’s a big difference in my mind between a desire to preserve culture and “racial purity.” Culture is real and valuable. Lots of our ancestors who happened to be white (vs “The Race), created some wonderful cultures and philosophies and religions worth preserving and learning from. I have no problem with the AFA or any other recon group saying “our ancestors had something powerful which still speaks to us today.” Where I get off the bus is where they start to intimate about the need to save their “biological group” from being “muddied” by other races.

          • Jaxman

            The key here is that you said “in my mind”, which makes it your opinion. I have heard members of La Raza call for the reclaiming of the Southwestern portion of the United States – and “the removal or elimination of all non-Hispanics” in this region by any means necessary. How is that any different than a White Power group calling for the “removal or elimination” of all non-Whites form a region? It isn’t.
            The problem that is going to be faced in an issue like this is ANYBODY can join the AFA, just print out the membership form, send in your money, and BAM – you are a member of the AFA. I have talked with Steve McNallen before and I used to subscribe to their periodical “THE RUNESTONE”, and I never got anything “racist” out of it. Sure, they want to protect their own group, after all, they believe that they are descended from The Norse Gods, while most Asatruar that I have met do not even believe that the Gods actually exist. I equate what the AFA believes with things like the old Japanese religion that believed that they were descended from their Gods of antiquity. Is it “racist”? I guess that depends on how you define “racist”. To me – obviously my opinion – Racism implies a hate for other people, and I do not believe that McNallen, nor the leaders of the AFA are Haters.

          • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

            @Jaxman, thank you! Well said. :)

          • Lonespark

            I agree with this. I wouldn’t necessarily agree with preserving “cultural purity” either… Preserving/reviving/celebrating your heritage and culture is different from “purifying” or “defending” it.

          • Anonymous

            Jaxman posted “Sure, they want to protect their own group, after all, they believe that they are descended from The Norse Gods.”

            I find that statement troubling because it implies a second clause in the statement: “and others are not.” I don’t know if “racist” is the right word. How about “exclusionary”? If there is an “in-group,” the “out-group” must also exist.

          • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

            @Auntie_Maria

            The idea that the Norse/Germanic people are descended of their gods is not a statement of of superiority, nor racism. I believe that many paths say they are descended of their gods. And it’s in the literature for the Scandinavian paths.

            As for the whole “And others are not born of our gods.” this is not a racist statement either. I was born of my grandfather. I’m probably going to guess that you’re not. This is not a racist statement. You have your own grandfather, who I was not born to either. I fail to see how it is racist to say that we each have a family tree all our own, and you have a family tree all your own, regardless of any Divinities in said family tree. Superiority doesn’t come from genetics. Identity might, but not superiority.

          • Pissedoffchef

            “The old Japanese religion that believed that they were descended from their Gods of antiquity” was racist as heck! It was the Spiritual foundation for Japanese Fascism. Now it is cleaning up its act, but racism is still prevalent in it.

          • http://egregores.wordpress.com Apuleius Platonicus

            Pissedofchef: >> “The old Japanese religion that believed that they were descended from their Gods of antiquity” was racist as heck! It was the Spiritual foundation for Japanese Fascism. <<

            Uh, no. Fascism was a foreign import to Japan from Europe. It was part of the modernization/westernization mania of the Meiji Restoration. And the form of hypernationalistic Shinto, purified of "foreign" Buddhist influences, envisioned by the Meiji clique was a new invention of theirs.

          • Stilicho

            But if you are not of that same mixed-race and/or cultural heritage then you are an outsider. If you are mixed German-Norwegian, and an English speaker, then you are very definitely an outsider to them, and not of La Raza. They do maintain their ethnocultural identity. Only people of your heritage have scales on their eyes, and are afraid to recognize the obvious.

      • Baruch Dreamstalker

        But it’s seductive because it resonates both with efforts at, eg, keeping Celtic languages alive and with resistance to corporate attempts to make the planet one big market for their wares. Racism is not only abhorrent, it’s also sneaky.

        • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

          But how is that racism? To preserve a culture and way of life is racist? To respect the individuality of different ways of life and insist that they have value is racist?

          There’s a shop I go to, and they have a poster up on the wall that says, roughly: “Other cultures are not failed attempts at being you, they are unique expressions of the human spirit.”

          There is something I see every time I look at that poster, and there is the fact that the culture of the “viewer” is never explicitly stated to be part of those unique cultures. Too often it seems that certain cultures are left out, and under valued. Perhaps one of these is “European” cultures. I go places and I see it called, “vanilla,” “white bread,” “Bland,” and similar, especially in relation to African or Latin culture. Now, those cultures are valuable, but I can see why some people might feel like “European” culture is being diminished and dismissed.

          So I can also understand, as a historian, why some people would want to preserve that culture. I however, often fail to understand why so many people call said actions racist, while at the same time insisting that other world cultures be preserved and respected.

          • Baruch Dreamstalker

            To preserve a culture and a way of life is not racist. But add to that the goal of preserving group biological identity and you’re pretty close.

          • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

            Why though? I mean, is this the rule for everyone? The Japanese insist culturally on preserving both their way of life and their biological identity. So do pretty much every other “racial” or “ethnic” group out there. Are they all being racist then? Because I really don’t see people calling them on it.

            And what is a culture without it’s people? What are a people without their culture? A culture with no one to follow it is dead and gone. A people without a culture cannot be considered part of any group (assuming of course that it is possible for a group of people to exist without creating a culture).

            Now Baruch, you are older than I am, and have lived longer, and have no doubt read more than I am. So perhaps you can explain to this simple heathen why it is borderline racist of him and people like him to feel that the preservation of both a culture and genetic group (without the denigration of any other cultures or genetic groups)?

          • deconstructor

            Tell that to the Tibetans

          • Baruch Dreamstalker

            Alchemist and deconstructor, I do not accuse the Japanese or Tibetans of racism. The Tibetans are being colonized and have every reason to resist. Japan is only a few generations away from some stunning acts of racism, and have been on their good behavior after their total defeat in WWII.

          • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

            Fine, you’re not accusing the Japanese and the Tibetians of being racist for doing the very thing you’re suggesting is racist by the AFA? In that case the only real differences is that A) the AFA is primarily European and that B) Europeans haven’t been decimated by war and colonization?

            At what point then, would preservation be acceptable then?

          • Baruch Dreamstalker

            Alchemist, I never suggested AFA is racist. I said concern for biological group preservation is getting close to it — that is, makes those thus concerned, vulnerable to racist ideation.

            I decline to engage in alternative realities. The real world is confusing enough.

          • Lonespark

            As a person of German heritage, and a Heathen I’m not in favor of preserving “European” culture. That sounds like downplaying the unique and meaningful aspects of German vs. Swedish vs. Irish vs. French etc. etc. culture in favor of finding some commonality based on skin color and defining ourselves by what we’re not.

          • An AFA member (non-clergy)

            But if you are 1/4 German, 1/4 Swedish, 1/4 Irish and 1/4 French, then it might make perfect sense to you to celebrate “European” culture.

          • http://kauko-niskala.blogspot.com Kauko

            Replying to AFA member:

            Then what is ‘European’ culture? The entire idea of Europe is a construct of Christianity. There’s nothing inherently pagan about the idea of Europe. There is a geographical place that is generally called Europe, that is the home of a huge number of cultures, many of which are quite different. Historically, many of these cultures had far more interaction and influence to and from north Africa, the near east or Siberia and northern Asia (depending on what culture we’re looking at). It’s only the coming of Christianity that separates these places and creates this entity known as Europe. I don’t view my Finnish heritage, and that fact that modern day Finland happens to be a part of Europe, as making me any closer to the Romans or Irish then it does with the Samoyedic or Chukchee people (both of the later arguably having more in common with pre-Christian Finnish religion than ancient Greek, Roman or, say, Celtic do).

          • Stilicho

            Hispanics can celebrate being Mexican, Chilean, Nicaraguan, Puerto Rican, etc. AND can celebrate their common Hispanicness. Europeans and those of European descent cannot celebrate their common Europeanness, not in the USA anyway, without being classified as racist.

            You’re not defining yourselves by what you’re not, but by what everyone else in the whole world but your ethnicity knows you are: light skinned humans who have been in Europe for about 40,000 years. Not a mystery.

          • Lonespark

            I also think that what gets characterized as “whitebread” and “vanilla” tends to be mainstream white American culture that had all the ethnic identifiers filed off. I have spoken with people of European descent who feel like that’s the only culture they’re connected to, and they’re disappointed that it’s bland, that their forbears were so dedicated to assimilation. But for those ancestors, it was often a matter of survival…

            I don’t think European roots are that impossible to connect with, though, (leaving aside cases of physical or cultural genocide, and in those cases I still don’t see how white supremecism or separatism helps) and I don’t see the value in replacing that attempt with finding value in whiteness.

          • Harper

            The dominant group in power will, having the privilege to be exposed to only its own culture in daily life if a person so wishes, think that its own culture is completely normal. Normal can be interpreted as bland. Anything different is exotic and interesting, because it is seen not as a different expression of culture, but as something that the dominant group doesn’t even have! To them, they are culture-less and normal, even when they in fact have just as much a culture with special ethics, art, social roles, music etc.

          • Guest

            The main difference I see between “La Raza” and Americans of European descent in terms of racism is the power differential. “White” folks in the US have more accessible power, mostly expressed as power over others, and therefore can force others into boxes.

    • http://egregores.wordpress.com Apuleius Platonicus

      “Biological groups” of humans who want to “maintain their identity”? Such an agenda has no place in modern Paganism. Period. Our inclusivity should not include that.

      • Baruch Dreamstalker

        I’m in sympathy with your sentiment here but neither you nor I have the standing to declare, “this shall not be.” We are each one opinionator.

      • Cara

        Serious question – how is this different from First Nation tribes who who use blood and ancestry to limit tribe membership? First Nations tribes are not Pagan (neo-Pagan, anyway) but we do have a ‘cousin’ relationship with tribe members who are reviving their ancestral religion.

        I’m just trying to think this through about why I don’t have an automatic reaction to First Nations preserving their biological and cultural groups based on race, yet I have a negative reaction to most any other group doing the same.

        • http://www.patheos.com Star Foster

          I have been pondering the same thing. i don’t have an answer yet.

          • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=574896155 Ryan Smith

            The blood requirements did not exist in those tribes until it was imposed by the Bureau of Indian Affairs. Up until the BIA came up with the blood quotient as a way of determining which tribe one belonged to many tribes had no problem with adopting members of other tribes or from European cultures. The Seminole nation, which was a composite tribe of the Creeks, escaped slaves, and other smaller tribes decimated by war with Spain, is a perfect example of this process as was the Iroquois Confederation or Tecumseh’s attempt at a similar organization on a grander scale. The issue of blood wasn’t one that came up until the federal government made it one.

        • Jaxman

          I tend to view the AFA’s stance as similar to the Native American’s stance regarding Tribal religions. These guys may not have even been AFA members, or they could have been AFA members who felt they needed to “talk the talk” while at this conference, or they could have just been garden-variety racists who joined the AFA. I have known people who were racists who were “Wotanists” of the David Lane/Ron McVan variety and those types wouldn’t have a thing to do with the AFA, because they viewed them as “Odin-Lite”.

          And I still don’t grasp how people can claim to be Odinists oir Asatru, yet not actually believe that the Gods are living spiritual entities. Isn’t that is like calling yourself a Christian, but not actually believing that Christ was/is a living Entity? Or being Wiccan and calling on the Lord & and the Lady, but not believing they are alive either? I mean, isn’t it just Atheism with rituals if there are no actual Gods involved?

          • Baruch Dreamstalker

            “I still don’t grasp how people can claim to be Odinists oir Asatru, yet not actually believe that the Gods are living spiritual entities. Isn’t that is like calling yourself a Christian, but not actually believing that Christ was/is a living Entity? Or being Wiccan and calling on the Lord & and the Lady, but not believing they are alive either? I mean, isn’t it just Atheism with rituals if there are no actual Gods involved?”

            It is entirely consistent to regard the Gods as inhabitants of one’s own copy of the Collective Unconscious, and still find them compelling and awesome enough to worship in ritual. That’s not atheism when it doesn’t work unless you believe in the literal Gods whilst in Circle.

            And you can have two Pagans of the same trad next to each other in ritual, one putting it together this way and the other your way. They share a religion and worship together.

          • Mia

            That’s assuming that rituals are all that’s required of being non-Christian. Atheism basically means, in the common use of the word, “not believing in gods or similarly supernatural beings”, and it’s quite easy to be a heathen and yet still have those qualities.

            Many rituals and traditions focused on the family and community, not the gods and other spirits. A lot of us do that today; one doesn’t have to actually believe in God and Jesus to participate in Christmas traditions, like the presents and food, with the family. Ancestor worship is not a belief in the supernatural, as your great-grandmothers were tangible, physical, proven-to-have-existed beings beyond the scope of your own mind and beliefs.

            Besides, “supernatural” as it is used today wasn’t a concept that was widespread before Mediterranean and Christian influences spread to Central and Northern Europe. Everything was physically within nature, including the gods, the distinctions instead were focused on the “in crowd” vs the “out crowd”. As in, my family is with my “in crowd”, and a stranger down the street is the “out crowd”.

            Not to be confused with that old Sesame Street song :P

          • Siegfried Goodfellow

            I suppose it depends on what you mean by “supernatural”. If you mean that which is beyond the birth-realm, ie., of this physiological life, then indigenous religions of Europe were rife with supernatural ideas.

        • http://egregores.wordpress.com Apuleius Platonicus

          I would have to see for myself which tribes have said what, and under what circumstances. “Blood” definitions are often imposed on tribes by the US Government. Traditionally I think most (probably all) Tribes have been free to admit (“adopt”) people of any race whatsoever, but the US government has insisted on a purely “racial” definition of Tribes.

          That being said, I think we have to admit that talk about “preserving” one’s “biological group” is obviously a very different matter when the biological group in question has been explicitly targeted for literal genocide, and when that genocide has been very nearly successful.

          • Cara

            http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/44516027/ns/us_news-life/#.TnDvd81cS1l

            The dispute stems from the fact that some wealthy Cherokee owned black slaves who worked on their plantations in the South. By the 1830s, most of the tribe was forced to relocate to present-day Oklahoma, and many took their slaves with them. The so-called Freedmen are descendants of those slaves.

            After the Civil War, in which the Cherokee fought for the South, a treaty was signed in 1866 guaranteeing tribal citizenship for the freed slaves.

            The U.S. government said that the 1866 treaty between the Cherokee tribe and the U.S. government guaranteed that the slaves were tribal citizens, whether or not they had a Cherokee blood relation.

            The African Americans lost their citizenship last month when the Cherokee Supreme Court voted to support the right of tribal members to change the tribe’s constitution on citizenship matters.

            The change meant that Cherokee Freedmen who could not prove they have a Cherokee blood relation were no longer citizens, making them ineligible to vote in tribal elections or receive benefits.

          • http://www.patheos.com Star Foster

            There are more who were never listed on the rolls, and not all affected were slaves but were adopted by Cherokee. I know the Eastern Band has had it’s council fighting over who is “too white” and demanding DNA tests to prove citizenship. It’s an ugly thing to watch.

          • http://egregores.wordpress.com Apuleius Platonicus

            This is just people squabbling over property, money, contractual rights, etc. It has everything to do with lawyers and greed and nothing to do with anything else.

          • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

            So, it’s okay to be racialist and preserve the purity of the blood as long as you’ve been near exterminated, but until then shame on you? I wonder how you deal with the Japanese then? Or the Chinese? Or the Muslims? All of whom are large groups with very racialist/tribalist ideas, my dear Apul

          • Pissedoffchef

            Hmm…there’s one group that’s conspicuously absent from your list.

          • Siegfried Goodfellow

            Are you capable of even understanding the arguments presented here? Do you understand the dialectics of the position of near-genocided groups, relative to racist Federal requirements? We can distinguish survival tactics as resistance to imperialism from obnoxious chauvinism. It’s true that many groups retain backwards concepts of racialism and nationalism, which the forward march of progress will wash over and seamlessly merge into a far more humanist approach in time, and culture will simply be local creativity in interaction with other local creativities.

          • http://nicdhana.blogspot.com/ Kathryn NicDhàna

            ‘That being said, I think we have to admit that talk about “preserving” one’s “biological group” is obviously a very different matter when the biological group in question has been explicitly targeted for literal genocide, and when that genocide has been very nearly successful.’

            Important point.

        • kenneth

          The distinction I draw goes back to what I said about culture. In addition, tribal membership is a legal concept. These groups are considered semi-autonomous sovereign nations under a very old body of law. There’s nothing inherently racist about a membership requirement based on ancestry. It’s a straightforward standard that asks if you have substantial ancestral ties to this tribe, and if so, you are entitled to certain rights, participation in tribal governance, a share of whatever collective wealth they may have etc. There’s all sorts of controversy that can happen within that and how its applied, but there’s a rational basis for it, and its not about racial superiority (although some people no doubt turn it that way).

          Tribal identity that is based on “white power” in contrast has nothing to do with any organic culture. They are not, for the most part, people with demonstrable and deep ancestral ties to say, Iceland, who happen to love the ancient culture and religion. They tend to be angry morons who invent a tribal identity based on nothing deeper than pale skin. Most of the characters I have come across in these movements have no discernible ties to the Nordic countries at all. They’re a mishmash of Scotch-Irish, central, eastern and even southern European. They’re mutts, like so many of us in this country.

          They naturally love the masculine and militant imagery associated with Nordic traditions, the hammers, the oaths etc., but it’s all just ornamentation for their own mythology. This leads into a whole side discussion about cultural appropriation and whether one needs to have blood ties to authentically practice a religion. I don’t happen to believe that’s the case, but I think one needs to show a certain amount of sensitivity and humility if you’re coming to another indigenuous tradition as an outsider. Are you there to learn what the culture and language and gods have to teach you or are you there to rip off the imagery you want for your own agenda? With white power Asatru/Odinists, it is invariable the latter.

          There’s nothing wrong with celebrating an identity which is truly rooted in ancestry and culture. It’s fundamentally different than trying to forge a tribal identity around absurd notions of “biological groups” aka the “White Race.”

          • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

            But what if the white tribalism is not based on “white power” ken? ’cause thats how it is with most of the AFA and heathens i’ve dealt with. There’s not real emphasis on the whole “White Power thing. In fact most tend to shy away from that. Many heathens can trace themselves back to the old countries and tribes.

            So what’s the real issue here?

          • kenneth

            To the extent a tribal identity based on real cultures and ancestry is celebrated (in a healthy and reasonable way), that’s great. It’s never been my experience that white power ideology is a major force in heathenry, but there is a distinct minority who follow that path. The central question raised by this story is whether or not a major organization supports this kind of thinking.

            I’d love to get a statement from their group clarifying this matter. The material discussed in this thread which is attributed to the group’s statement on diversity is rather ambiguous on this point. It can easily be read as a tacit endorsement of racial identity (vs ancestral or cultural).

            Ten guys do not in any way represent heathenry or Asatru as a whole, but it’s a high enough number that it may say something important about the organization they purport to belong to. IF in fact these guys were AFA members and not plants/agitators/infiltrators with some other agenda, that raises some real questions about what the group stands for or at the very least, it’s communication skills.

          • Lonespark

            The blood quantum and related requirements are racist as all hell. But they were imposed on the tribes, in abrogation of traditional concepts of clan and culture, and that is the legal situation that is being dealt with (and exploited by some) today.

        • Stilicho

          Everybody in the world, pagan or other, is permitted to assert their ethnocultural identity, and pride therein, except you poor European descended peoples. That you’re the only group in the world that allows this is proof that you’re no master race. Unwillingness to defend yourselves and your identities is profoundly maladaptive. I truly pity you.

          • Cara

            I have no clue what you are saying. Could you expand on that?

          • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

            I think he means that everyone in the world is allowed to have racial pride except for white people, who actively assert that we are less than others to prove we are not superior, and that we need to stop and stand up for ourselves?

            I think that’s what he meant?

          • Stilicho

            Norse Alchemist got it. You say “I’m just trying to think this through about why I don’t have an automatic reaction to First Nations preserving their biological and cultural groups based on race, yet I have a negative reaction to most any other group doing the same.”

            I’m thinking is because people of your heritage (European) are trained to dislike their heritage and history. And somehow, many of you fell for it and don’t see it.

            No other ethnicity would fall for that. I can’t figure out why yours did.

          • Nunya

            One rational comment that almost made wading through the rest of the tripe worthwhile. There are still a few of us willing to defend our identity; if we won’t who will?

          • Siegfried Goodfellow

            My identity is HUMAN. My orientation is towards the EARTH. The language I speak stems from tribes with an awesome orientation towards the Earth, so as a human being, I have found it worthwhile to study their spiritual traditions. I do not have to identify as anything other than human. Defending identity is irrelevant unless you’re in danger of being genocided.

          • Pagan Puff Pieces

            Every day is European heritage day. In fact, tons of people are proud of being varying types of European all the time, taking great pride in it without any fear. A huge part of our cultural knowledge and educational curriculum is Europe-centric by default, even if it’s increasingly in the past. European-inspired fashions, businesses, government, everything, can be found all over the world.

            But hearing “Happy Holidays” is such an attack!

          • Pagan Puff Pieces

            Uhmmm.. “…even if it’s increasingly in the past.” Got bizarrely misplaced. I meant for that to be attached to the previous sentence (as in, one’s heritage has moved quite a bit into the past that it’s hazy and less important compared to the current identity).

          • Stilicho

            You can say you’re proud to be English/German/Irish, etc., but you’re not allowed to form an identity as peoples of European origin, which identity you would share with peoples from America to Russia and everywhere in between, and you know darn well that you can’t. As someone who is not of European descent, I can tell you I have definitely experienced racism. The way you are forbidden to recognize your own identities is a sick, manipulative form of racism too.

          • Pagan Puff Pieces

            Is European heritage really so negotiable that it covers America, Europe, and Russia?

          • Merofled Ing

            “… but you’re not allowed to form an identity as peoples of European origin, …”

            Forgive a poor foreigner here, but – there are no German restaurants in the US? There’s no celebration of Irishness? No Scandinavian festivities or customs?

            (Neither any non-orthodox Russian Christianity, churches, holidays – speaking of ‘European’ culture?)

            Where did that pilot fly me to last time I visited the USA?

          • deconstructor

            Stilicho: you are wrong We whites are SO SUPERIOR that we are sacrificing ourselves, our identity, our homelands, our history, our traditions, everything for the noble purpose of deconstructing race. We are doing it for our little black, brown and yellow brothers and sisters!
            We happily wear the hairshirt of self-denial because it makes us feel so…..righteous! ANd we white people love nothing more than to feel righteous! We are deconstructing race! And we are doing it to ourselves first because we lead by example. That’s how wonderful we white people are!
            Personally, I shall be very disappointed if the other human races don’t follow our noble example….coz then I’d be feeling pretty stupid….. :-)

          • Stilicho

            Exactly. Someone gets it. By the way, for some reason, I can’t reply to some comments above.

            Pagan Puff Pieces says: Is European heritage really so negotiable that it covers America, Europe, and Russia?

            Is Hispanic heritage really so negotiable that it covers everywhere from California to Terra del Fuego? Is Arab heritage so negotiable that it covers everywhere from Morocco to Iraq? Is African heritage so negotiable that it covers everywhere from Africa to the US to Brazil to the Caribbean?

            Yes, yes, and yes.

          • Pissedoffchef

            I have a problem with “Heritage” when it is “White”, but not when it is Irish, German, Scandinavian, or Italian. Any of those are actual cultures. Whether or not there is white race, there is no white religion.

          • An AFA member (non-clergy)

            You are not alone here. The problem is, what if your heritage is split among many modern cultures. You might have to go back into history, and find a common ancestor to those cultures, and identify that as your ‘least common denominator’ among all of your heritages. That is what germanic/celtic neopaganism represents for many of us.

            I certainly hope you’re not arguing that once your heritage isn’t ‘pure’, that you’re not entitled to celebrate it, even if it means you have to celebrate the commonalities of your mixed heritage. That would be pretty racist of you.

          • Kathryn NicDhàna

            Yes. There is no “white” culture.

            There are the individual ethnic cultures of people who happen to be at the pale end of the melanin spectrum. Sometimes the cultures that are (or were) neighbors share elements, other times they don’t. To try to lump the ways of all pale ethnicities into one, homogenized “white culture” is disrespectful to our ancestors.

            “White race” as a social construct was invented to give one group of (pale) people an excuse to behave abhorrently towards their darker-pigmented relatives.

          • Lonespark

            I wanted to reply to AFA member, below, but couldn’t see how, so I’m posting here. AFA member is articulating a vast disconnect between hir way of looking at religious and cultural identity and way I look at it, and my family, and most of the other Heathens I personally know.

            I am Heathen because that’s the religious identity that fits my heart and soul. It isn’t especially linked with any centuries-old connections to Europe.

        • Mia

          The difference is the oppressor vs the oppressed. The AFA members spotlighted above show no indication of losing anything, while First Nations are trying to preserve what little they have left after centuries of turmoil.

          • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

            I think that would depend on your definitions of oppressor and oppressed, as well as the whole idea that “European Americans” are not losing parts of their culture and such.

          • Mia

            What on earth is a “European American” culture, and how is it losing parts of itself?

          • Nick Ritter

            @ Mia, here’s an example that occurred to me: If you see an American of European descent, can you, without speaking to him or her, guess his or her native language? I’ll bet you can.

            Sure, English is a European language, but Americans of English descent are only a majority in certain small parts of the country, primarily along the Eastern Seaboard. My family is primarily German, and yet I had to learn German in school rather than at home due to the fact that we stopped speaking the language of our people through political and social pressure around the first World War. My wife’s father, whose family is Polish, does not speak Polish for similar reasons.

            European immigrants and their descendants, along with all other immigrants and their descendants (as well as the descendants of Natives) are losing parts of their cultures (note the plural) through assimilation and homogenization.

            Furthermore, people around the world are subject to forces of assimilation and homogenization from the Western, English speaking world. For instance, note that Deutsche Bank, a German financial entity, conducts its business meetings at its home offices in *English*. Hell, even English people’s varied regional identities and cultures (and dialects of English) are being eroded.

            So, yes, Europeans and American of European descent are also victims of the same forces of assimilation and homogenization that ruin everyone else’s cultures.

          • Mia

            To Nick,

            I see what you mean, but I disagree in that it’s the same as what the Natives experienced. Pressure to speak English is a far kinder fate than genocide.

          • Siegfried Goodfellow

            No, idiot, the definition of oppressor and oppressed is completely clear to anyone who has the equivalent of 4th grade education, and the idea that European-Americans are losing parts of their culture is just of no concern whatsoever to my lacrymal glands. Who are they losing it to? This is weeping over the gradual, all-too-slow loss of privilege, and damn is that loss a progressive thing!

          • Nick Ritter

            @ Mia: “I see what you mean, but I disagree in that it’s the same as what the Natives experienced. Pressure to speak English is a far kinder fate than genocide.”

            The difference is not in kind, but in degree and, perhaps, in the rate of loss. In any case, I was using the loss of language as an example of a broader cultural loss; this is an appropriate example because language is both a part of culture and the vehicle of culture. For instance, I did not, in my formative childhood years, hear the proverbs, stories, or songs of my people in our language, nor did I get to participate in the customs and observances linked to and adorned with those proverbs, stories, and songs. This is cultural loss.

            Once I learned German as a teenager (although, sadly, not the dialect of Low Saxon my family spoke when we emigrated), I was able to see what I’d missed out on, and I now try my best to incorporate all of that (along with the very important element of our ancestral religion) into my children’s experience of the world. Such cultural loss is therefore not final, but it does take a lot of work to recover from.

        • http://nicdhana.blogspot.com/ Kathryn NicDhàna

          I would say we need to use a different lens here. First Nations or Native American tribes are not chosen spiritual paths; they are sovereign nations. The analogy is not to, say, a person of Germanic heritage choosing to follow a Germanic spiritual path, but to whether an American of German heritage qualifies for German citizenship.

          It’s about Sovereignty: Individual tribes or nations have their own ways of deciding who is a citizen. Many consider that it is based on culture, and whether your Native family claims you, more than on blood quantum. Some tribal members consider blood quantum an inappropriate criteria for determining tribal membership and have discussed abolishing that criteria; others think blood quantum it is relevant because someone raised in a non-Native family, or with predominantly non-Native relatives and heritage is simply not going to have the cultural immersion required to be part of the Nation.

          As for religious revival… for the most part this is only an issue for the Indigenous nations that had early contact with European invaders, and hence a longer period of colonization, assimilation and genocide (both physical and cultural). There are other tribes, who had later contact, who never lost their ceremonies, and who at most had to hold them away from the prying eyes of the missionaries.

          Right now the newage and, yes, NeoPagan attempts to colonize and acquire Native ceremonies are again placing the spiritual traditions of many nations at risk. In general, Native people who are working on protecting what has survived have chosen to limit contact with non-Natives. This is because so many non-Natives who were initially trusted betrayed that trust. I support their efforts to keep their ways from being diluted, ripped off and mimicked by those who are not part of their cultures. It is their right to say who does and doesn’t get access, who does and doesn’t belong.

          • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

            yet each First Nation Tribe (which honestly sounds kinda racist to me, going around stating that one is of the First Nations and everyone else isn’t, but hey I guess it’s okay ’cause they’ve been killed off by diseases and colonization, let’s ignore the deaths they’ve caused too) Has it’s Own Spiritual Path defined by It’s People.

            In other words, The Cherokee people wouldn’t be who they are without the Cherokee Spiritual Path and Culture. Same for all the other First Nations.

            So why is it hard to believe the same of European descended people?

        • Siegfried Goodfellow

          Kinship identity and race are not equal, because of the fact of marriage and adoption. If certain groups, pressured by racist blood quantum requirements of the Feds, and after centuries of racism, utilize such to preserve their group identity from encroachment by others, being in a minoritarian status, that is a strategy that we can understand strategically without affirming as an absolute of progress. Resistance to imperialism is resistance to imperialism. Those who throw themselves headlong into imperialism, are members of groups intent on imperializing for the past five hundred years, and who fall lock, stock, and barrel for imperialism’s racist concepts, are not in any danger of extinction. It’s simply ridiculous. It’s classic Nazi reversal of true victim and persecutor. If members of the “white” working class are feeling swallowed up by alienation, they ought to organize as a class, not a race (the latter strategy many times leading to class defeat), and in solidarity with other members of the class. This is ass-backwardness.

      • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

        Wow, Apuleius. Never thought I’d see you go the route of telling people what they can or cannot believe.

        We must be Tolerant, except to the things we think are Intolerant. Those we will not Tolerate.

        Thanks for proving yet again that the most intolerant people in the world are the ones yelling that we must be Tolerant.

        • deconstructor

          I wish the Tibetan people would quit separating themselves from the Chinese ‘visitors’ to their beautiful mountain country. Why do the Tibetans keep insisting that they belong to a distinct group of people? Isn’t ‘Tibetan’ just a construct? WHat’s the difference if the Chinese occupiers, er, ‘visitors’ to their country re-construct the native indigenous Tibetan tradition with their own preferred unique and special of Han Chinese culture / construct?

          Why are the Tibetans fighting for dear life for the existence of themselves as a people? Haven’t they heard the good news that we are all the same, we are all equal, we are all individuals first and foremost? Why don’t the Tibetans get over this elitist ‘I’m sitting on top of the Himalayas’ trip and deconstruct themselves into a more pliable, more open, more malleable bunch of individuals? I mean, sheeeesh, get over this quaint “we are a people” notion ! That’d make life a heck of a lot easier for the Chinese colonizers, er, invaders, er, I mean new planetary neighbors.

          I think the Tibetans need some -reconstructing in a Boasian re-education camp. er, I mean school, because they really seem fixated on being ‘ a people’. Come to think about it, all of the native American Indians I’ve met suffer from the same delusion. Hhhhmmm, so do most, if not all indigenous peoples. Looks like there’s a lot of de-constructing to be done!

          Thank God that white people are so much more morally superior in our race-blindness. Yes, we will construct our race-blind Brave New World, no matter what the cost. Only white people could come up with such a brilliant ‘construct’ that race is a construct! It’s truly the white man’s burden to reveal all other human races as not being unique and distinct, but just white people with a different paint job…… :-)

          But where are we going to find the time to do all this de-constructing if we have to deal with invasive (plant and animal) species that have arrived in our neighborhood courtesy of global travel? We have to draw the line in the sand somewhere. NO invasive (plant & animal) species in my backyard! No siree, Got to maintain that ecological purity at all costs!

          PS tongue-in-cheek

        • Siegfried Goodfellow

          Oh, please. Get a brain and come back to discuss when you are ready. Tolerance has ALWAYS included intolerance of intolerance. The negation of a negation is an affirmation. An affirmation of tolerance is a negation of intolerance.

          • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

            Well, that’s not very tolerant is it? That actually sound rather hypocritical.

          • Siegfried Goodfellow

            Your bullshit style of argumentation, if one may even call it that, is not going to wash here. It’s not hypocritical in the least. Stop your silly semantic games. To create atmospheres of tolerance, intolerance must cease to be tolerated. This is how it has worked historically, and if that seems too “politically correct” for you (a term which I happen to love, against the right-wing lambasting of it, because it implies correction of terrible political-social mistakes), boo-hoo, go cry your eyes out.

          • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

            Yet the very act of being intolerant to intolerance is being intolerant. It’s not semantics, it’s logic. If you are going to be tolerant, you must be tolerant, not just intolerant of the things you don’t like, because that makes you no different than the intolerant people that came before, except that you’re not tolerating them. In which case all you’ve done is reverse the flow of things.

            It’s not a bullshit style of argumentation. You may not like it, because it shows you to be just as intolerant as the intolerant sobs you’re fighting. If you truly wished to be tolerant, you would tolerate the rights and views of people you don’t like. You might stand in their way should they seek to implement those views over you or those with you, but you cannot intolerantly wipe those points of view out from the face of the earth simply because you do not find them tolerable! That’s like saying “Let’s get rid of the Fascists by killing all the Fascists!” And how is that any different from the Fascists killing those they won’t tolerate.

            It isn’t.

            So fine, you don’t kill the people, just just ostracize anyone with those ideas. You don’t tolerate them. You take away their jobs, or their social standing, or their lands, or their freedoms. You push and push and push. And then where are you? You’ve created a bunch of laws to regulate behavior or ideologies and you’ve segregated and oppressed the people because of what they believe. How are you now different from the Church which hunted down and oppressed the Pagans of old? Or the Nazis when they hunted down homosexuals, Jews, and anyone else they didn’t like.

            You wish to speak of logic, then here is the logical truth: One Cannot, repeat, CANNOT walk the path of tolerance by being intolerant.

      • Stilicho

        Paganism has no pope. Go find another job.

        • Siegfried Goodfellow

          No, but it does have leaders. Real, authentic leaders whose leadership stems out of their courage, their outspokenness, their integrity, their accuracy and truth, and their prophetic power. By such criteria, I readily recognize Apuleius as a leader amongst others, and the direction he is championing has worth.

          • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

            And McNallen is one of those leaders.

            And many of us are Solitary Practitioners who are our own leaders.

            I am my own leader. I make my own choices, do my own research, and come to my own conclusions.

            So stop telling me and everyone else we have to believe like you do.

          • Siegfried Goodfellow

            Terrible being “oppressed” by powerful reasoning, isn’t it?

            McNallen is a “leader” who is tolerating the dishonor of white power to taint his ranks, by refusing to repudiate these folks.

          • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

            Better a tolerant man who lets evil live, than a “tolerant” man who cannot tolerate what he finds intolerable.

            Truly is better to rule in Hel, than to serve in the kingdom of there righteous, were freedoms of religion and life are lost in the names of “Morality and Righteousness.”

      • Justin Robson

        *Your* inclusiveness should not include that. For my group, and just about every other one that we associate with, we are not very open with people and inviting to our rituals as they are special to us – it takes time and commitment to stand next to other people that have put the time and commitment forward to be able to stand there. Every person added to a group changes the dynamic of the group and without sufficient time to allow a balance to be struck after bringing another person in – this and concepts of Asatru like qyrd, orlog and luck are why many groups do not have an open door policy. It may be different from the policy that your worldview creates, but that is because you have a different worldview.

        That being said – I, my kindred or my organization does not support the idea of racial superiority.

        • Siegfried Goodfellow

          I don’t have an open door policy because I don’t want to pollute my worship with nidings stuck in some bastard offshoot of 19th century Volkism.

      • Siegfried Goodfellow

        Here, here!

    • Siegfried Goodfellow

      As far as biological groups maintaining their identity, I fully support humans resisting being hybridized with other animal species.

      Any other sense of the term is an unholy encroachment upon Sex and Reproduction and therefore an affront to Frey and Freya.

      See http://wyrdmeginthew.blogspot.com/2009/05/anti-miscegenation-is-betrayal-of-freya.html

      • http://egregores.wordpress.com Apuleius Platonicus

        That’s a good way to put it: “an encroachment upon Sex”. Obviously one of the most basic of all freedoms is the freedom to love whom we will, and to share our lives with whom we will.

  • Pissedoffchef

    Jason, thanks for this. I’d really like to see you blog the Right Wing Heathen thing more. I used to live in Portland, where that scene is very present. Its got big implications for the future of Paganism.

    • http://www.wildhunt.org/blog/ Jason Pitzl-Waters

      I would write about it more often, but these groups aren’t very open to media, or broadcasting their views.

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/Martin-Fike-II/100000052959940 Martin Fike II

        could it be that it is because you take a rather bigoted stand against them? You make it pretty clear with this article that you equate Asatru with racism.

        • http://www.wildhunt.org/blog/ Jason Pitzl-Waters

          Where do I make it “pretty clear” that I “equate Asatru with racism.” Last I checked, AFA isn’t the end-all, be-all of Asatru.

          • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

            No, but the AFA is one of the largest and most respected organizations in the Heathen Community, Jason. You also didn’t get any representatives for the AFA to speak in this article. You took an article by someone, didn’t do any more research on it that I can tell. Didn’t try to talk to any of these members of the AFA’s organizational staff, and just reposted it with a whole “Oh look at the 7-10 ‘racists’ the entire organization must be roasted!”

          • An AFA member (non-clergy)

            [Repeated personal attacks will only get you banned from commenting. Especially if you do so anonymously.]

          • Siegfried Goodfellow

            It’s not going to be “respected” much longer with this kind of bullshit. And let them stand or fall on their deeds and stances. If you understood that you are your deeds and that a group’s wyrd is INDEED affected by the unwyrd of its members, you’d understand that their inability to censure their members for what amounts to a slanderous embarassment upon the heathen community shows what stuff they’re made of. To paraphrase Tolkien, some of us have “burning grudges” against “little ignoramuses” who attempt to “ruin, pervert, misapply, and make forever accursed that noble, northern spirit” which we “have ever loved and tried to present in its true light”.

          • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=574896155 Ryan Smith

            I’d love to see where you pulled the claims of “largest” and “most respected” out of. Sounds like the same place the rest of your facts came from.

          • Thelettuceman

            The AFA being the “largest and most respected” of the Heathen community is a pretty frigging sad state of affairs, sorry to say. This kind of permissive allowance of racist philosophy is what taints the American Heathen communities and twists them from their purpose of providing community to the gods into something far more sinister. Folkish groups that claim you can’t worship the Northern gods because you’re not Germanic sound familiar?

            Racism and race supremacy is a cultural poison. Allowing it through inaction is comparable to having a hand in it yourself.

          • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

            Yes Ryan, it is. A nice, safe place, kept away from intolerant people who like to bash people that don’t believe as they do. Maybe someday you’ll find it.

            Rather doubt it though

        • kenneth

          Or it could be that the dudes flying a neo-Nazi flag as Asatruars are making their co-religionists look bad…..

        • http://twitter.com/ouranophobe Áine

          I didn’t get that at all from Jason’s report here. What did he write that implied or otherwise indicated to you that he’s bigoted against Asatruar?

        • AQ

          I’m a heathen, and I didn’t get that from Jason’s post at all.

          I did get the idea that the AFA is a racist org because a handful of their members are given to douchebaggery, but that’s about it.

          • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

            Right, a handful of members out of a quickly growing organization that has a history of being attacked as racist, often without cause from several of the stories i’ve seen elsewhere, and from whom Jason failed to get any statement or response to this.

          • http://sarenth.wordpress.com/ Sarenth

            If you want the AFA to have a voice, offer to interview high-ranking members, or provide links or some other way to provide a counterbalance. Jason has limited time and resources. This place is more-or-less a clearinghouse for the Pagan community; what information gets put into it is what Jason can actually put out.

            Jason, as far as I know, is not a journalist for the Wild Hunt, nor the Pagan Newswire Collective. He maintains these areas, and that is a big job all on its own without having to track down every single person to interview or story to write. This is why there are affiliates to The Wild Hunt such as PNC Minnesota, whose valuable time, energy, and talent is spent tracking down and/or writing the stories he posts on.

          • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

            @Sarenth, then why is the wild hunt regarded as one of the primary news sources of Pagan news? I’ve heard it called the CNN of the Pagan news networks.

            The simple fact is that the wild hunt is not stated to be an opinion blog. It is represented as a news outlet. Now, forgive me for thinking that a man (Jason) who appears to present himself like a reporter, actually do reporting. And we’re not talking about tracking down every single person. We’re talking about getting in touch with one person, at a rather decently size organization, to get a rebuttal or comment on this situation.

            And if he doesn’t have the time, certainly he knows people he could ask which would be happy to donate the time and effort for him to do so.

            Now, I haven’t had the chance to get in touch with the AFA. I may just do that, seeing as it doesn’t look like it’s being done. But last time I checked, I didn’t work for the Wild Hunt, nor volunteer for it. I come here to read articles, learn things, and discuss with people.

          • AQ

            Stories that you have seen…where? Please give me evidence to back up your claims.

            And don’t fall back on the lazy “google is your friend”-type response, because you know that I refuse to accept that.

          • An AFA member (non-clergy)

            Right. See. You got the wrong idea. And you’re happy with it.

            “I did get the idea that the AFA is a racist org because a handful”

            read: I did judge the group by the (alleged) actions of a few…

            What is going on here?

          • AQ

            Actually, I got the idea from your comment that you’re fond of putting words in other persons’ mouths–also that you’re in need of Remedial Reading Comprehension.

            Please tell me again where I said that the AFA was a racist org, because of the actions of a handful of morons? Put your answer right here:________

          • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

            Oh look, it’s AQ, who calls everyone they don’t agree with a racist and refuses to do any homework for themselves, when they can believe what they are spoon fed and call racist and ignorant what they don’t like the taste of.

            I was wondering where you’d gone.

    • Gallowsburden

      if it helps, im a heathen IN Portland lol and i wrote about this on my blog: http://gallowsburden.wordpress.com/2010/05/29/asatru-and-the-right/
      it got me booted from the AFA LOL McNasty loves to boot people via email, if they even remotely disagree with him. childish and silly IMO. and definately NOT reflective of the wider Heathen community. which are actually a very accepting group of people. they just tend not the be the most vocal….

  • Caliban

    Thing is, official or not, this is exactly the sort of thing that AFA should want to avoid, if it is serious about not being a racist organization. “Oh, it’s only a few members.” Well, it’s only a few Catholic priests that molest children. The question becomes, is the organization taking measures to adequately address this, or does their silence and inaction effectively condone it?

    Asatru attracts the white power crowd. And let me tell you, that has tarnished its image with the rest of Paganism, because you don’t see sizeable AFA contingents at conferences on multiculturalism or racial tolerance. It is easy to say “we aren’t racist”, but if it walks like a duck and it quacks like a duck…

    • Siegfried Goodfellow

      “Asatru attracts the white power crowd. And let me tell you, that has tarnished its image with the rest of Paganism…”. Here, here. What is important about forums and exposes like this is it allows us to clean shop and differentiate apotheosized racism from authentic spirituality. Voices are speaking up, and we can make ourselves heard. We should. We must. We will.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/David-Carron/100001353268347 David Carron

    One bad apple doesn’t spoil the bunch.

    There are Heathen national organizations that do not discriminate, do not tolerate racists in their organizations and (I believe) find these actions deplorable.

    • http://www.wildhunt.org/blog/ Jason Pitzl-Waters

      Indeed. I’m sure most Asatruar would reject the views on display at the NPI.

      • Leah

        Agreed!

    • http://www.wildhunt.org/blog/ Jason Pitzl-Waters

      I also want to be clear that I’m speaking specifically about members of one organization in this article, and not Asatru as a whole.

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/David-Carron/100001353268347 David Carron

        I already assumed that. But the confirmation is appreciated.

    • Courerdubois

      No, one bad apple doesn’t spoil the bunch, but it sure makes the bunch look bad doesn’t it? There always seems to be a small but vocal bunch of jerks in the asatruar community who engage in this stupidity.

      Unfortunately I don’t think there is much AFA can do, can you screen for racism?

      • http://www.wildhunt.org/blog/ Jason Pitzl-Waters

        “I don’t think there is much AFA can do”

        They could publicly repudiate the views expressed at this conference, that would be a good start.

        • Courerdubois

          Of course they have to repudiate them.
          I mean what can they do proactively, before more BS like this happens?
          I can’t think think of anyway to keep them out, if a person or persons infiltrate an organization with the goal of subverting it from it’s stated agenda, what can you do?

          • http://www.lippsisters.com/ Deborah Lipp

            We got this type in ADF when the organization first started: People who thought that ADF was about Celtic Purity.

            Here is what AFA or any other organization can do:
            * Leadership can make regular, clear, overt statements, not just that the organization isn’t racist, but that racism isn’t tolerated or tolerable. These statements are visible in obvious places to members and potential members.
            * Every racist statement from within the organization that is visible on a public forum (newsletters, websites) is answered by leadership in an unequivocal manner.
            * People who make racist statements or advocate racist behaviors as part of their membership activities are kicked out.
            * People who attempt to join the organization for the stated purpose of racist behavior are not allowed to join and have their money refunded (if it’s a paid organization).

            This works rather well.

            And if an organization is NOT doing this, the membership should ask WHY NOT.

          • http://erynn999.livejournal.com/ Erynn

            Infiltration is part of the agenda. It just means we have to keep our eyes open and call it out the instant we see it. We have to be clear about our commitment to equality and to openness. We have to be transparent about our associations. We have to talk to one another about people who have been found to be actively doing this kind of infiltration so that their cover is blown and they can’t do it again in another group.

            This, of course, can be difficult because people’s tendency is to brush things off with “well, they’ve never done anything to me” or “it’s just a personality conflict.” Yes, sometimes false accusations are made, but there are times when there really is a reason for caution and a reason to warn others.

          • Thelettuceman

            There are always legal recourses. Also, depending on the level of involvement persona non grata issuances can be made and authorities can be brought in to prevent their involvement. Simply because these are pagan groups doesn’t mean that booting people out for being disruptive or fostering uncomfortable feelings is wrong.

          • Siegfried Goodfellow

            “Subverting”? Have you read McNallen’s articles? If you put syrup out, it may attract flies. “Oh, but we don’t approve of flies.” Then why don’t you clean up the syrup? It’s ridiculous. The rest of the world needs to repudiate the lie of “racialism” and the anti-miscegenist nonsense of nationalism with the philosophical force of a hammer.

        • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

          They do! It’s in the bloody statements on the sight about how the AFA recognizes the validity and worth of other cultures. The problem is that people like to insist that denying racism means you’re still racist if you’re an organization like the AFA

          • deconstructor

            Norse Alchemist: you are just a kill-joy! You’re taking the fun out of my uber-righteous non-racism! I’m looking forward to the day when the Chicoms and Tibetans, together at the Pothala Palace, renamed the Palace of Equality, can perform a communal ritual Santeria goat slaughter followed by a SOmali-style cliterectomy of a young Tibetan virgin as a sure sign that we are all truly one! No more prejudice! It will not be tolerated! You will love our new Oneness or else….! Of course this will need to be preceded by an ancient Aztec-style human sacrifice of certified white racists who will have their demon hearts ripped out to loud public acclaim!

          • kenneth

            Now we know what happened to Hunter Thompson’s fabled med suitcase!

          • AQ

            Two questions:

            1) Where did you get the happy fun drugs that you are clearly all full of?

            2) Why are you not sharing with the rest of us?

          • Anonymous

            my only drug is the one thing that threatens all rigid orthodoxy; a sense of humor! I did wax a bit poetic, but I swear it was just my sense of humor going into overdrive at all the heavy anti-racism righteousness here.

            I know people of most races. I respect all peoples. I’ll break bread with any person of good will.

            I’m also white, and I like it. Anti-racism is just a a fancy word for anti-white. I don’t like that.

      • An AFA member (non-clergy)

        we try.

    • http://www.aswynn.com Freya Aswynn

      Yes, The Troth to name but one. One cannot discriminate on basis for rage gender and sex against people One can only ‘discriminate’ against ‘gods’. Usually Loki but also so I’ve heard;Odin Himlself.

      • Aaron Bennett

        “One can only ‘discriminate’ against ‘gods’. Usually Loki but also so I’ve heard;Odin Himlself.”

        what are you talking about?

        • An AFA member (non-clergy)

          it confused me too at first, see the above post for explanation.

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/David-Carron/100001353268347 David Carron

        I don’t think that judging people (or Gods) on the basis of their actions is called discrimination, last I checked.

        But thanks for railroading this discussion.

        • An AFA member (non-clergy)

          Well, technically, any judgement is discriminating. To ‘discriminate’ is simply to see a difference between two things. It’s like ‘to differentiate’.

          however in political terms ‘discrimination’ means to differentiate *based on* race,gender,religion,etc…

          What the poster meant was that in the Troth, you are not allowed to ‘discriminate’ (political terms) against any person. But that you may choose (differentiate) between which Gods you honor, as you wish.

          • http://www.facebook.com/people/David-Carron/100001353268347 David Carron

            “What the poster meant was that in the Troth, you are not allowed to ‘discriminate’ (political terms) against any person. But that you may choose (differentiate) between which Gods you honor, as you wish. ”

            Please tell me more about this Troth you speak off, since clearly you, Mr. Anonymous, are so knowledgeable about it as a “member of the AFA”. My words stand on their own.

            And please tell me more about this “Honor” concept, from an account created specifically to spin for the AFA.

  • http://vermillionrush.wordpress.com Vermillion

    I don’t get how people are assuming that Jason is saying all the AFA are full of rootin-tootin racists. He reported that a group of folks from the organization were at a white power rally. If I was a member I’d kind of want to know that.

  • Don

    The young men Powell spoke to sound like they are part of some Asatru-like cult. Eating a paleolithic diet and avoiding social networking sites are not requirement of any Asatru tradition I’m familiar with, and I don’t think such things are a part of the AFA either. The way they followed that English guy around, referred questions to him, and spoke sparingly about where they’re from also hints at something suspicious going on.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=562316634 Lisa Cowley Morgenstern

      There are some who do choose to eat an all natural diet. I have met such Odinists in the prison where I do prison ministry here in CA. It sounds weird but if they believe in it as a sincere part of their faith, under RLUIPA they have a right to it should it not interfere with prison safety and security.

      • Don

        The difference, however, is that these young men said they were required to do so as part of their religion. As far as I know neither the AFA nor its tradition of Asatru require such dietary restrictions. Or avoiding social networking sites, for that matter.

      • Lonespark

        That’s pretty interesting. Thank you for sharing the information.

    • An AFA member (non-clergy)

      You’re right, such things are not part of the AFA at all.

  • Anonymous

    Good Goddess!

  • http://erynn999.livejournal.com/ Erynn

    This sort of thing can be a problem in many kinds of ethnically focused Pagan paths. We saw the same kind of crap in the Celtic community with Steve Akins and his virulently anti-Semitic, homophobic crap, and continued Hitler fanboying as he attempts to promote a partly-plagiarized “druid bible”. I’m not Godwining here, his MySpace still lists Hitler as one of his heroes as of last week when I looked.

    Here’s the link and text as of right this moment: http://www.myspace.com/steven_akins

    “Heroes
    King Arthur, Sir William Wallace, The Marquis De Sade, Prince Charles Edward Stuart, Rob Roy MacGregor, William Blake, Charles Darwin, Lewis Carroll, Mark Twain, Robert Owen, William Morris, Aleister Crowley, Maxfield Parrish, Adolph Hitler and Edward Duke of Windsor.”

    What can we do about it? We can call it out every time we see it, as Jason has done here. We can make it clear as day that we don’t accept this crap in our communities. We can note that people are perfectly capable of saying one thing and doing another, particularly if it advances their agenda to lie about racism in order to recruit folks who aren’t necessarily watching out for it when they’re looking for a spiritual home. I’ve accidentally bumped into it myself without intending to, and very recently. Trying to sort out the threads is complicated and the trails are deliberately obscured, so public discussion makes these things harder to hide, and that could only be good for us.

    So much of this is underground and spoken of in code recognizable to others on the inside. “Racialist” is just racist with a slightly different pronunciation. “Separate but equal” is never equal. The implications for our communities are profound.

    The mixing of cultures and peoples doesn’t result in sludge. It results in some of the most brilliant and vibrant cultural and artistic developments the species has known. Without differences that we see every day, without knowing people of different backgrounds, different languages, different cultures, we are never challenged to learn and grow.

    Looking at Celtic history, for instance, even the most “Scottish” instrument out there, the bagpipe, originated elsewhere. The first known portrayal of a bagpipe instrument was found at Eyuk, a Hittite site in the middle east. There has never been a known culture that arose in pure isolation and people learn from one another where cultures and languages meet. It’s a necessary part of human development and social evolution.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=562316634 Lisa Cowley Morgenstern

    It is deplorable that these people identified themselves as AFA. I do know a number of AFA members who are not racists, and I would like to believe that they are a majority (non racists) However, since I also practice Wicca, I am a member of The Troth who doesn’t mind that I have mutliple practices, unlike the AFA.

    • Lonespark

      It is strange… If they identified themselves by the name of their small group, they wouldn’t get to cause such a media uproar…

  • Thelettuceman

    It is a group like this that really makes me avoid declaring myself a heathen. I understand that the number of true folkish groups in the mainstream are a minority compared to the whole, but they certainly havent done any favors to public heathenry.

    Jason, thank you for reporting this. While a group isn’t defined solely by its members, there is some accountability that needs to be maintained. Taking a very public stand against activity in this regard isn’t a bad thing. If more groups did this maybe we would not need Heathens Against Hate.

  • http://twitter.com/PaganPrincesses Pagan Princesses

    Ack! I call myself Heathen instead of Ásatruar, but I think of them as the same thing. I follow a Paleo style diet. I’m meh on Facebook (although I do have an account). NPI here I come? *more gnashing of teeth and pulling of hair*

    This had me crawling in my chair in disgust at these *$#*@ who are giving me a bad name by association. Jason, thanks for bringing this in the open. Those of us who wear these labels need to know what others in our community are doing so we can speak up against it.

    I almost hope the AFA doesn’t repudiate them, and then can we start calling a spade a spade? I’m tired of a chunk of my community trying to straddle the racism fence while I’m for some reason supposed to be PC and act like a soupcon of racism isn’t so bad. I get that folkish and racist are not precisely the same thing, and I’m sure there are Heathens in the AFA who are not racists. But I am really tired of meeting people who claim to be folkish as they talk about a white ethnostate. No. As somebody else stated here, claiming to not be racist does not make you not racist. Not doing, saying, or believing racist things makes you not racist. Not joining an organization run by people who rub elbows with racists and print articles in racist magazines is another not racist thing you can do.

    Not getting journalists to print articles about how racist YOUR ENTIRE COMMUNITY is based on 7-10 f***tards who forgot their sheets at home is another wonderfully not racist thing you can do that we will all appreciate. I’m going to go scream now.

    • Jaxman

      The problem is that virtually every non-Folkish Pagan that I have met equated “Folkish” with “Racist”. For me, there is nothing wrong with wanting to preserve your heritage and your own group as a biological entity, and that includes wanting to have your own area/homeland. Where I would view it is a “racist” situation is if said group tried to forced everyone else to live under this scenario. If people do it of their own free will, is it really racism? Are the Cherokee racist for kicking out the descendents of Cherokee slaves who have very little ancestry? After all, to be a member of the Tribe, you have to have a certain percentage of proven bloodline-relation to them? I can’t just walk up and say,”You have to let me be a Cherokee!” when I am not of a Cherokee heritage. For me Folkish Asatru is exactly the same thing – they want what the Native Americans want – Complete Autonomy – and I have no problem with that. I have never seen McNallen or any of the other “Elders” of the AFA promoting racial hatred, violence, or superiority. I’m not really n AFA kind of guy, because I tend to be more a of a “Left Hand Path” Magick kind of guy, but I can see their viewpoint as completely legitimate and not hateful in any way, shape, or form.
      The problem that Folkish groups are going to face is that Racists are going to Join them because it is easier than trying to start their own “Racist Asatru” Organization. It is just like those who are Asatru who don’t accept/embrace Wiccan Pagans and won’t join the groups who do embrace them… many of them feel that “Wiccans” are watering down Asatru, or if I were to join a Folkish group – while I am fin with their Folkish stance, they would not be fine with the fact that I embrace Odin, the Sumerian Deity Enki, and UFO’s.

      • kenneth

        So if the AFA is really about preserving ancestral culture and not simple racism with that “biological entity” business, exactly what part of the Nordic countries does the “McNallen” clan hail from?

        • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

          Judging by the name, Ireland or Scotland, which had a fair amount of cross breeding with the Nordic peoples. Or he’s connect to the larger Teutonic groups like the Angles or the Saxons or the Goths. I mean, the Celts and Teutonic tribes were vary similar and tended to mix at times.

      • Aspen

        There is an important distinction to be made between the Cherokee, other Native American tribes and the AFA and other re-constructionist groups– the fact that the latter are *reconstructionist*. The lineages of the AFA and similar groups do not stretch back several millenia with a distinct, unbroken culture, language or even genotype. Three generations ago, the ancestors of the AFA’s current membership were most likely white, European Christians with several hundred generations of “interbreeding,” “race mixing” and probable prominent positions in the Roman Catholic Church separating them from whatever “genetic memory” they think they have*. Three generations ago, the Cherokee, Sioux, Navajo, Hopi, Mescalero and Akimel O’odham were… Cherokee, Sioux, Navajo, Hopi, Mescalero and Akimel O’odham.

        Furthermore, there is much more that goes into what constitutes a “tribe” than the concepts of “race” or “religion.” If that were the case, are not all white, European Christians part of their own “tribe” already? What’s the point of forming a new “tribe” then?

        I understand what you’re saying, but I don’t think your example was a good one. Or maybe it was, since it prompted me to comment…

        (*as an aside, I wonder about the irony of a reconstructionist heathen who buys into that racialist BS becoming a member of a racialist heathen group to “get in touch with their ancestral roots” only to discover that they’re a descendant of some horrible anti-pagan tyrant like St. Olaf of Norway.)

        • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

          Wow, really? That’s your argument? “Reconstuctionists can’t be tribes because they don’t have an unbroken line?”

          Right….

          Not like we can all trace our families back. Not like the old stories are told on in folk tails and little daily activities. Oh no, we interbred. This means what, exactly? If a man has an English father and a French mother, is he then not english or french? Has the line been broken so he can never return to a “Tribe?”

          I’m sorry, but I find your argument to be rather flawed.

          • An AFA member (non-clergy)

            It is so flawed in fact, that he has unwittingly made an argument in favor of ‘racial purity’. He is saying that Cherokee can advocate based on ancestral lines because their ancestral lines are pure. What a load of BS.

            Anyone who wants to incorporate ancestor worship into their spiritual practice is free to do so. And it doesn’t make them racist either.

            For a heathen site, I think this article, and some of the comments in support of it, are very irresponsible. Heathens should stick together.

            Don’t we have enough problems trying to achieve legitimacy without in-fighting?

            This is just a heathen version of a witch-hunt.

            No one here is advocating White Nationalism. Those who have come out in support of the AFA here, aren’t WN. The AFA site openly denies WN ideas. I personally am a member of the AFA, and have never met a single WN AFA member. People *have* been kicked out of the AFA for being WN. The AFA doesn’t use prison outreach, for fear of exactly this type of association.

            And yet articles like this just insist of keeping this fictional witch hunt alive.

            Shame on those who read McNallen’s public denunciation of racist behavior/ideas on the AFA website, and then cry ‘witch’ all the same.

            It’s truly unfortunate that the AFA has to keep re-addressing issues like this simply because they feel a spiritual connection to their ancestors. Ancestors who happen to be European. Ancestors who deserve to be honored like any of your own deserve to be honored by you.

            Someday I hope heathenry is accepted enough in the mainstream that we all, *even Europeans*, don’t have to deal with cries of racism when we want to connect with our ancestors.

            But many here are only fuelling the false-fires that keep that day off.

          • Lonespark

            Heathens shouldn’t stick together any more than Christians or Muslims or Hindus or Americans or Europeans…we should associate as our consciences dictate, and call out what we see as wrong or dishonorable behavior by those who name-check our folkways or our Gods.

          • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

            Thank you for your comment, it is well spoken.

          • http://www.facebook.com/people/David-Carron/100001353268347 David Carron

            Glad to hear.

            So has the AFA made a public statement repudiating this?

            Because so far all I’ve heard is that the topic and discussion was crushed internally at the Facebook page.

          • Siegfried Goodfellow

            Heathens should not stick together. They should unite on the basis of shared values, and should be as differentiating as possible from Niding stances. Refusing to repudiate the dishonor of members? Disgusting. And a “witchhunt”? Oh, please. No gold of Mardoll for thee.

        • Lonespark

          This is a good point, but just a point, not a resounding winning argument. People can change religions, or be forcibly converted, without loosing every scrap of tribal identity.

        • Olaf

          Sorry to say, but the AFA are not reconstructionist. I used to give credit to McNallen for getting the ball rolling in the US in regards to Asatru, not so much anymore. Heathen reconstructioninist generally understand the idea of and value worth over something like skin color. Respect for ones ancestors can be done using a reconstructionist heathen worldview, regardless of what your outward appearance is. I know worthy men and women that would make great Heathens, but will likely never become such because of racist idiots that seem to forget we’ve been interbreeding with each other since the dawn of Homo Sapiens.

          • Siegfried Goodfellow

            Thank you!

    • http://twitter.com/PaganPrincesses Pagan Princesses

      Realized my last para might be interpreted as being a statement against The Wild Hunt posting this, and that was not what I intended (note to self: never post angry). I meant I’d appreciate people not doing idiotic things worthy of print and then dragging Ásatrú into it. Just wanted to be clear. :)

    • Siegfried Goodfellow

      Keep screaming. We need such screams. What we need are the type of roars the Aesir directed at Loki to chase him out of Aegir’s Hall.

  • anne johnson

    I would hate to be part of a path that was judged by the actions of 7-10 members, who would then need to be repudiated by the larger governing body. If there’s a strain of racism in the AFA, they should deal with it inside their ranks. It’s none of our business if we aren’t following that path.

    • Siegfried Goodfellow

      It is COMPLETELY our business. It is 100 % our business. They have the word “Asatru” in their name, and they are in the public eye. What they and their members do reflects upon the public’s perception of that strange word “Asatru”, and the amount of pride, embarassment, or quick explaining each of us has to engage in to claim the name ourselves. It AFFECTS us ; it is therefore our business ; we shall repudiate it, and we shall scold, and we shall shame, and we shall make clear such persons are NOT within our law.

  • Cara

    This is what Hellenion does:
    http://hellenion.org/About.html

  • Anonymous

    I had no idea the paleo diet was considered to be an Asatru thing. Because that’s the diet our species ate during the two million or so years we evolved. . . IN AFRICA. Laughing my butt off.

    Carry on.

    • kenneth

      I don’t know about Asatru specifically, but there IS a historical link between natural foods and an emphasis on physical fitness and racist folk ideology. The Nazis, who rooted some of their ideology on the ideals of a long-past racial and tribal identity of the “Aryan” race, were very big on healthy eating and fitness. They had some of the very first state campaigns against smoking and booze and expressed concerned about over-processed foods/artificial dyes etc. Hitler and I think Himmler were vegetarians.

      I don’t know that anyone then was thinking of the “paleo diet” as such, but they would have heartily approved of the concept. Of course, their ideological reasoning for these things revolved around trying to promote a physically healthy “race” which they thought had been sapped by centuries of modern and decadent/foreign influences. Of course, there is nothing inherently sinister about liking natural foods and physical health. It is in no way definitive of racists and/or pagan movements generally, although it’s not surprising that pagans of a variety of traditions would embrace natural eating for a variety of reasons related to their religious and world views.

      • Jaxman

        Most people who are “Mystics” tend to be Vegetarians, there is a long history of that.

        • Lonespark

          There do seem to be many practices on which mystics of many religions from far-flung places agree….Humans are nifty. Gods too.

      • Highcraft

        I bet it’s that all those linked ideas come from intellectuals – thinking people. Thinking people can think up evil things as well as good – They can be a deluded as anyone. This is not a slam to intellectuals, only that one can apply one’s mind to any topic for weal or woe.

    • Lonespark

      That is a lovely laugh to start the day.

    • Highcraft

      The Paleo Diet is independent of Asatru. I imagine there is an association since that’s what the NW European ancestors were mostly eating during the formative times way back when – much like everyone else on the planet. Want to be like the ancestors or understand them better? Live/eat like them! I find the idea – and the diet – appealing. :)

      • Anonymous

        I’ve been eating paleo for about a year and a half now. Feel great, keeps my weight down, get to eat as much yummy food as I want. Meat, fish, fruits and vegetables.

        • Lonespark

          That’s cool…do you still get to have milk?

          • Anonymous

            Not strict Paleo. You can get calcium and such from cooking bones, among other sources.

        • Anonymous

          I’ve found it interesting how a low-carb diet is pretty close to paleo.

  • Mia

    The ignorance of human history! It burns!!

    My own ancestors did the bunny hop with travelers from all over the place, let alone with so-called “Germanics”, and these AFA idiots’ ancestors no exception. Go back far enough, we all end up in Ethiopia anyway (or something like that).

  • Mountaindwellinchick

    I’ve got Icelandic ancestry on my mom’s side, and have Siberian ancestry on my dad’s side, so I’m a bona fide mutt of epic proportions – and Þórr accepts my offerings just fine. Gee, guess Þórr doesn’t give a good gosh darn what my family tree looks like. So there ya go.

    This sort of crap really disgusts me beyond the capacity to express myself.

    • Just curious

      How do you know he accepts them, does he give you a receipt?

      • Guest

        a good question, Justin….do YOU feel her offerings are accepted? and on what basis to you feel Thor does or does not? For myself, the increase of Luck, Might, and Maegen are receipt enough.

      • Mia

        In my experience, if everything goes well afterwards, then they’re accepting the offering. If something goes wrong, then it wasn’t accepted.

  • Winterwolf

    What you don’t seem to understand is that being Asatru doesn’t make you that much different from the rest of the world and their spiritual beleifs. Just like any other spiritual path some are racist some are not, some drive drunk some do not, some go “oogily boogily” and dance around fires spouting gibberish and others do not. The actions of one Heathen or 10 does not reflect upon us as a whole. That’s supposed to be one of the many freedoms of cutting from the path that was chosen for us and following our own. That goes with all Pagan and Heathen followers. I personally hate the idea of white supremacy, but those in this article have nothing to do with me and it is not my business, nor do I see myself in the position of a god to judge them. I may not befriend them, but “oh woe is the world if they beleive something conflicting with my own moral beleifs” it has nothing to do with the spiritual path of Asatru, or probably even the Folk Assembly itself.

  • Pagan Puff Pieces

    Is a meeting in which people discuss better types of skulls, IQ comparisons, and totally relocating nations of people really the only game in town for feeling a kinship for one’s heritage and culture? This isn’t about mere cultural pride.

  • Pagan Puff Pieces

    Is a meeting in which people discuss better types of skulls, IQ comparisons, and totally relocating nations of people really the only game in town for feeling a kinship for one’s heritage and culture? This isn’t about mere cultural pride.

    • An AFA member (non-clergy)

      Don’t confuse the WN organization with the AFA. That was the offence that the original author made that started all this.

      I believe you’re right, WN isn’t about mere cultural pride.

      However, the AFA’s stance on the folk IS about cultural pride and religious connection to our ancestors. Nothing more.

      • Pagan Puff Pieces

        I wasn’t at all.
        The thing that gets me is that instances of of connection got into this whole thread-wide debate about the legitimacy of cultural pride when it’s not even the issue in this article.
        However, although you shouldn’t have to tell The Wild Hunt twice that this connection isn’t common or mandatory (as we are quite used to the news story that goes “Well, here’s another example of that non-PR-friendly connection showing up in non-Pagan media again. Not another…”), it has brought up quite a bit of defensiveness, including a great big debate over the nature of popular attitudes about racism, cultural pride and accusations of being ashamed of what is called European heritage, and, thus perhaps I should reword my thoughts:

        Really? Is THAT what this was about? Because I thought it was about a noticeable enough representation of the AFA showing up at a very troubling-sounding event for the kind of movement that has a very negative track record, and pondering the implications of that.

  • Olaf

    My question is this. Should those Heathens that find this connection reprehensible write to the author of this piece informing him of the mainstream heathen’s disgust with racist shit?

    • AQ

      I have already done so.

    • deerwoman

      It looks like if you sign up for an account on the Media Matters website, you should be able to comment directly on the article itself. At the moment there are no Heathen voices there to counter the author’s connection between Heathenism and racism.

  • Cat

    Tbh, this doesn’t surprise me, I’m just surprised at how long it’s taken for members of the AFA to ‘slip up’ and do something so publicly…or maybe they just don’t care anymore?

    I’ve been watching this stuff grow in the AFA for at least a couple of years now, obviously from the outsider’s POV. That of a non-AFA Heathen. During the past couple of years, I’ve heard friends complain about and leave over the increasing racist bent of the organisation, other friends have forwarded AFA member e-mails to me basically telling the membership that they have to be 100% with the org or they can get out and then I’ve heard about people being booted from the org because of differences of opinions.

    I’m also not surprised that this issue has become so divisive either, especially not after seeing what happened when the International Asatru Summer Camp was being organised for its inaugural event in 2009 in Denmark, the decision by some members in the org to invite representatives of the AFA caused one HELL of a division within the Danish Heathen community. Not to mention within the other participating European Heathen orgs too, who were mostly of the opinion that the AFA was a racist org and not to be associated with. There’s a lot more stuff that went on there, which I’m not entirely qualified to talk about that I heard about during my time as a member of the Eldaring (German org), however I just wonder why American Heathens are so reticent to distance themselves from the AFA when Euro Heathens are not.

    • Highcraft

      Maybe American Heathens are reticent to distance themselves from the AFA because they value it and work to keep it a positive organization. It’s easy to run away, if you have the choice. It’s hard to stay and work for the good of the group. Organizations change as membership and leadership shifts. They can change for the worse, they can change for the better. Some consider the AFA extended family. You don’t abandon family – You work to make it strong.

      • Guest

        How the hell is the AFA’s leadership “shifting”? It always has been (and always will be) the ten commandments according to Ayatollah McNallan. History has proven that anyone who even disagrees with him even remotely gets the boot. It’s hardly a democratic organization. Even if you got too “mean” to the racist dickwads on their yahoo group they’d kick you out. They’re a joke and it’s high time they called called out on their bullshit.

        • Anonymous

          I guess I’ll find out for myself over time.

        • An AFA member (non-clergy)

          This is a false characterization. I’ve been a member for a while now, and have personally disagreed with Steve on several issues, sometimes publicly, and have only ever been treated with kindness and respect.

        • Anonymous

          Now that’s a clear example of an ‘ad hominem’ attack. In plain English that’s a scurrilous insult directed at the man ( ad hominem ) because the attacker lacks a clear and convincing argument, never mind proof.

      • Cat

        The people I was referring to that left over the increasingly racist bent of the org had been very well respected members of the AFA for years. They’re American Heathens too, very respected in their own communities. They didn’t ‘run away’, the org changed on them and it’s hard to work to change an org when those that disagree with how things are going are arbitrarily kicked out!

        No offense, but in your first post, you said you’re a recent member of the AFA. I trust the words of people of excellent quality and reputation with years of experience with something over the words of someone I don’t know that is admittedly new to something.

        • Anonymous

          I don’t naysay what you have said nor do I put down the people that you speak of. I applaud their courage and bravery to speak up and object to a direction they didn’t agree to.

          Even so, though a new member, I am obligated to stand by the AFA. I offered reasons for standing with the AFA rather than become distant from it.

          • Cat

            Well that’s fair enough, I wish you luck.

          • Anonymous

            Thanks! :)

      • Siegfried Goodfellow

        You call family out when they’re engaged in idiocy. You repudiate members who hang out with nidings. What is so fucking difficult about that?

        • Anonymous

          Not difficult at all – I agree. A strong family is one that argues to work out its problems. Arguments are communication and negotiation. Fights are fights, whether they are with words or fists. Silence is a slow killer.

  • Anonymous

    May I wake up one day to find I am no longer anything other human…

    • Anonymous

      Let’s see here; we have the CAT family; there are lions, tigers, pumas, black panthers, ocelots, etc……they all differ…..they all keep their distance from each other, naturally….are they all going to wake up one morning and find that they are no longer anything than ‘CAT’….?

      Multiplicity is the wisdom of Nature. Real diversity is part of the natural world. Can’t you accept the uniqueness of the different parts of the human family? What’s wrong with the, say, Tibetan peoples to ‘be’ Tibetans; to feel ‘different’ from other human tribes? Same for all the other groups of indigenous peoples, including ‘white peoples’…..Race is about as much as a construct as an ocelot is a lion.

  • http://shibuya-109.in Faith

    Not all Heathens are like this, and I’m tired of the White Power idiots making the rest of us look racist and extremist. You can be an Odinist without being a psycho.

  • Soliwo

    Seriously, the term ‘European culture’ should be defined more. Did you know that actual Europeans use the term mostly to distinguish themselves from America, and not to connect our continents by means of shared identity. Since Obama is in power things have changed in discourse, but when Bush was in power, European usually meant ‘at least were not Americans’. In Dutch discourse European used to mean politically liberal, diplomacy instead of war, tolerant, gay marriage, social-democracy, secular etc. At the moment it has gotten new meanings again.

    We only have a clearly shared European identity when we compare this with other continents, i.e. Asian culture or American culture.

    And just like Asia or America isn’t a homogeneous place, so is Europe. While the world is globalising and Europe is integrating more and more, nationalist feelings also sill linger and actually are reinforced by political populists. A lot of Dutch people really do not identify with the Greeks a whole lot at the moment.

    I guess what annoys me is that Americans (and with that I mean people from the USA more than for example Canada), talk about European culture in a way as if it is theirs. Yes, we share a history, but really, as a Dutch person I have more in common with Italians and Greeks, that with Americans that may claim Dutch or in another sense Germanic ancestry.

    You might read the Edda’s, be a heathen, have a great knowledge of the ancients, that just makes you heathen/northern tradition practitioner and/ or American pagan. It really doesn’t make you a European.

    I wish Europeans would be more active and visible in this discussions. Much of the debates here on the Wild Hunt really aren’t relevant to Europe. I wish we had a European Wild Hunt, but we do not all share a language and well … the internet is America-focussed anyhow.

    • Lonespark

      Right, this is where I get confused, too. Because it’s trying to be a reference to folks of European heritage (but often only specific parts of Europe) and some kind of pan-Germano-Celtic-ish, cultural commonality that, if it existed in some form, wouldn’t really be relevant to the modern world…

      I feel like it does a major disservice to hisoty, and to significant preservation efforts by specific ethnic communities in the US…

      • An AFA member (non-clergy)

        Why do you keep persisting that people of mixed european heritage deserve no culture?

        If you don’t like the term ‘european’ then do you have a better one? Otherwise, it’s reallly very insensitive of you to demand that those of mixed heritage simply cannot celebrate the commonalities between them.

        There are many in America at least, who are fully ‘melted’ in the pot, but nearly all of their ancestory comes from various European countries.

        You think they should celebrate 15 different cultures individually, but not ever mix them? It doesn’t work that way.

        Many people of mixed European ancestry, like myself, at some point in thier lives want to search back and find a spiritual connection to thier roots. What do you suggest we do? What do you suggest we call it?

        • http://www.facebook.com/people/Marcus-Tullius/100002552904716 Marcus Tullius

          PRECISELY!

          AFA member, what you are confronting is the urge of anti-Whites to engage in White Genocide.

          The first step in this direction is demoralization in the form of claiming “there’s no such thing as White European culture”. This atomizes the diverse White European peoples in America (and worldwide) into mere individual units with no cultural-spiritual “binding” that enables them to look out for their group interests.

          At this stage in the game, it’s considered “evil” and “hateful” for White people to express group interests. In fact, the author of this article is doing precisely that by engaging in hate-caricatures of White AFA folk who share an ethnic interest in looking out for their interests.

          The preparatory demoralization is still underway, and has cleared the way for the next stage: Multi-racialism. Anyone with the slightest understanding of human nature and history knows that Multi-racialism is a recipe for conflict.

          The term “racism” is used as a shield to deflect understanding of the destructive effects of multi-racialism. Multi-racialism, IN PRACTICE, is not “diverse” or “liberal”: it’s a recipe that guarantees conflict between groups.

          But not just any conflict. In the current situation that conflict is being brewed in a special flavor: anti-White.

          Multi-culturalism has now morphed into multi-racialism in one space. This has been promulgated in the key of anti-White. Multi-racialism is just a code word for LESS WHITE PEOPLE. It’s a call for Genocide.

          Nobody is calling the Tibetans “racist” for wanting to prevent their gene pool and culture being blended out of existence by Chinese immigration.

          Nobody is calling the Mexicans “racist” for having laws on the books that prevent their culture and heritage being blended into oblivion by non-Mexican immigration.

          No, it’s only WHITE PEOPLE who are called “racists” and “supremacists” when they object to having their genetic heritage and culture blended out of existence by a massive onslaught of non-White immigration.

          And that is why “anti-racism” is just a code word for anti-White.

    • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

      I think the reason “European Culture” is used is to A) be more inclusive to people of Scandinavian, Germanic, Celtic, Romanic, Greek, Slavic, and other ethnicities in Europe and to B) show that there is no connection to Nazism or White Power with the use of Teutonic or Germanic Culture, terms which sadly have been tainted by those foul ideologies and to which it is yet too soon to try and repair.

      • Lonespark

        That’s a good point. Here in the US I often forget how different the historical backdrop is, especially in and around Germany.

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Marcus-Tullius/100002552904716 Marcus Tullius

      I have been an American for 60 years. My people have been in America more than 300 years. We came here from Mother Europa.

      I have been part of the European Folk for 10,000 years.

    • Anonda

      solimo…

      you have expressed my boyfriend’s exact sentiments.

      he is also from europe but that doesnt mean he wants to be part of or even considers himself as being a member of this all-generic white/european identity group.
      to him, it doesnt even make sense..it is not who he is…

      sure, his skin is very light and he was born and raised in a continent called europe
      but, he is also from a village located in a specific geographical area, he has distinct ethnic features that identify him with people of his area, certain beliefs, traditions, ideas, language, accent and outlook that even other europeans dont share/care

      he is beyond “white”
      he is beyond “european”

  • Jeremy

    Every organization has its share of loonies and charlatans.

    But what strikes me as peculiar as that only those organizations who have right-wing loonies and charlatans carry a stigma and are forced to apologize. I have been some type of polytheist for a decade now, and in that time came to know a vast array of individuals who used their polytheist faith as a cover for their politics – which in paganism, usually means a considerably left of center persuasion.

    I have been a member of AFA for only a short time, but have seen no signs of racism. However, when I was a neo-pagan and a Greco-Roman pagan I saw many individuals cynically practicing a “paganism” that seemed little more than eco-feminism or alternative lifestyle activism.

    Personally I find people on the far left as obnoxious as people on the far right. If people who are more or less Bolshevik in politics have infiltrated pagan organizations, should those organizations be forced to carry a stigma and subsequently apologize for harboring loonies and charlatans? If so, vast stretches of paganism have a lot of apologizing to do.

    Good day.

    • Lonespark

      Mixing religious practice and politics is probably something each group has to sort out. Sometimes it seems obvious. Political threats to religious freedom should unite us. Aside from that, though, there’s not necessarily a clear path, and any political activism can lead to mingling one’s luck with something unfortunate.

    • Baruch Dreamstalker

      Jeremy, I daresay it’s history. The United States had both slavery and Jim Crow, the latter in living memory. It never had a Communist dictatorship. Had it suffered the latter, Pagan lefties would have just as much explaining to do.

      • An AFA member (non-clergy)

        good point

    • Siegfried Goodfellow

      You really ought to actually study Bolshevism before you make ridiculous statements.

      • Jeremy

        You really ought to know what I have studied before you make condescending pronouncements. :-)

        • Siegfried Goodfellow

          I’ll continue to condescend when someone’s demonstrated level of scholarship is clearly beneath mine, sorry.

  • Dave Curtis

    Cultures (plural) are by definition distinct. They’re what distinguish one folk from another. Religions (not the new world order / one world / one god / one set of universal rules of law, order, virtue and morality but the plethora of organic religions before Christianity) encapsulate, preserve and in many ways define culture through the combination of ritual and formalized versions of popular folk beliefs about their gods and goddesses and ancestral heroes. Cultures that do not remain distinct and allow foreign influences to overwhelm, change and/or rule over them, die.

    Race is another story. But before I speak of race I’m going to give each of you something to think about regarding the natures of various peoples’ souls. I say peoples’ souls because there is a distinct difference between the soul complex of a Jew and an Asatruar. The Jewish soul (and thus the Christian and Muslim soul as well, since they are derived from the belief in the Jewish godhead) is a one piece unit, known as the ghost. It departs whole and as one.

    The Asatru tribal religious soul is comprised of many parts, like organs of the body: the Hamingja (or honor, which also is embodied in the sword) aka the Ahr (honor) which is the base of the soul complex upon which all other parts are supported, the Lych (physical body), thought, memory, fetch, luck, etc. Not all leave at once upon death. Now either we actually have a spirit or we do not.

    If we do not then these are merely cultural beliefs which, should we choose to change adherence from one religious belief to another also change, and we accept that these are all only symbolic or imaginary “aids” or mnemonic devises so to speak in helping our focus in understanding the religious culture we’re latching on to at the moment.

    If, however, we are true believers then we also believe that our soul complex is not imaginary but real, and that our ancestors through thousands of years of spiritual investigation have discovered during a time when the world was less complex and there were fewer distractions in the way of making such discoveries. In that case the truth would be that our soul structures are distinct and do not change. People from other cultures wouldn’t have the same soul structures. And even if they wanted to become Asatru they wouldn’t suddenly grow haminjas and fetches.

    Those who do not believe in the gods and goddesses also do not believe in the haminja, luck, lych, fetch, etc but merely know what the words represent, and to them anyone can become Asatru if they want, since to them it’s a cultural study group which also dresses up for events.

    That said (now that I have a lot of you out there firmly pissed off and some of you thinking you know what I’m going to say next regarding the “dangers” of race) there is within our lore an established belief in reincarnation. So who is to say that Leroy Schwartz, Midori Gelb, or Francisco Braun haven’t got Asatru souls? Furthermore, if the soul complex’ of the ancient forefathers of Leroy Schwartz, Midori Gelb, or Francisco Braun were also multi-part soul complexes, and our gods and goddesses, wights and land spirits accept them as “close enough” who are we to reject them?

    Finally though it shouldn’t matter whether someone is different. That means gay, lesbian, bi, tranny, black or yellow or brown. We like individuals or we don’t, and nobody gets crossed off the list with me because of appearance.

    That said there is also the Jungian hypothesis of metagenetics and racial memory to consider. Our own racial memory includes the relentless attack upon our religion by the Catholic church out to destroy us as a distinct culture. Our lore is already rife with mixed influence due to the efforts of their church and the Jesuit order still exists. There is a very real fear that these efforts continue through infiltration to this day. I think of this as healthy paranoia, just as many black Americans today have the racial memory of years of enslavement, ongoing discrimination and abuse. In our case the attacks to destroy us started in the year 9 when Caesar sent Varus to conquer Germania, and officially, after the Catholicism became the official religion of Rome in the third century. From there it began in earnest after Charlemagne crossed the Rhine and conquered Saxony in 772, and proceeded north and into Iceland, finally conquering the Great Hoff in Uppsala Sweden in the 12th century. We have a much longer period of racial memory of the treachery to destroy us as a folk than do the blacks dealing with a few hundred years (albeit much more recently) of slavery in America.

    Peoples who do not learn to be extremely wary of foreign influences and learn from their own histories are, as the saying goes, doomed to repeat their histories. Separate but equal though is hogwash. If someone has a black, brown or yellow spouse, significant other, child(ren), loves them and they’re not preaching their own thing entirely – or if someone of another race feels that Asatru is the answer to the yearning in their soul – then I’m sure it will make the world a better place having more folk like us then unlike us.

    • http://egregores.wordpress.com Apuleius Platonicus

      Cultures are not distinct. The history of Northern Europe demonstrates that quite clearly. Take the “English” for example. Genetically, culturally and linguistically the English are a hodge-podge if ever there was one.

      • Soliwo

        You are right in so fa there really our no rigid boundaries between the foreign and the familiar.

        If I speak about the Dutch … we speak a Germanic language, but the Celts and Romans lived here too. We have been part of France and of Spain. As we were a world power, we have citizens originally from Indonesia and the West-Indies, Turks and Moroccans. We really do not see ourselves as victims of Charlemagne. We really do not now what would have happened if we weren’t conquered by the Romans. And yes, we were a colonial power, we made money in slavery. So … I think that to behave as if we are victims of history is crap. I think saying that we only colonized because we were colonised before by others is crap. Every bit of history has left a mark, not just the Germanic one.

        We are no homogeneous country and we were never that. Before that there were the Frisias, Saxons, Franks. Before that Neaderthales. Ever heard of the Migration period? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Migration_Period

        Some people I think make a Utopia of European regions. We are not really idealistic Germanic communities, we are as diverse as America really. This does not exist. I am not saying we shouldn’t revalue our roots and remaining traditions. But though I am Dutch, I am really not a Celt or Germanic or Roman, whatever my religious allegiance.

        When we reconstruct, we reconstruct a culture from a very specific time, a snap-shot really. And even if cultures are distinct, they overlap and change constantly.

    • http://egregores.wordpress.com Apuleius Platonicus

      Cultures are not distinct. The history of Northern Europe demonstrates that quite clearly. Take the “English” for example. Genetically, culturally and linguistically the English are a hodge-podge if ever there was one.

    • Merofled Ing

      Your last four to five lines are fine by me (which probably isn’t important), but they don’t soothe me when it comes to identity based on ethnicity, or on sth like “racial memory”. It’s a naturalization of a historical fiction. I’m glad Soliwo pointed out the Migration period, because that really puts paid to ideas of clear cut ethnicities, at least around here – everybody and their grandmother was walking around continental Europe between 375 and 568 (official dates of that period), and no disrespect intended, especially not to the grandmothers…
      Those 200 years certainly wiped out any felt memories of Varus and his legions, and the year 9 and Hermann/Arminius the Cherusker Prince or whatever he is called in English – well, yes, there was this battle, it was huge, but “Germania” or “Germanen” as a place or as a group was constructed by Julius Caesar when he gave reasons for his new Eastern border in his De bello Gallico. It’s a Roman term meaning anybody east of Limes. (Again, so what, I like these guys, but then I do not particularly feel oppressed by Romans…). A lot of the Norse / Asatru virtues can be found in Tacitus’ Germania – a least a Pagan source as it were, but a highly politicized one. Tacitus often cast the Germanic tribes in the roles of “noble savages” as part of his criticism of what he saw as “decadent”, “overcivilised” Rome.
      This does not render him invalid as a source, but once you really look into history you realize that there never was a period of less complexity, or religion or culture free from politics, or of maintained racial or biological purity.
      Arminius as an iconic figure (as in “attacks to destroy us” (who “us”?) and as in heroic fight back stems from German humanists and intellectuals in the 16th century after Tacitus (and others) had been rediscovered here. The fact that an important (not an oppressive) Roman had written about the Germans (who were now a different lot from before the Migration) made Germans important, gave them ‘history’. Later ‘Roman Empire’ and ‘Roman Church’ was conveniently confused (as it had been before by the Catholic Church) and Martin Luther and his struggle against the Roman Catholic Church was placed in the context of Arminius fighting Caesar Augustus and his legions. Not to go into Arminius and the French-German war 1870/71. Which is when we got the statues.
      I’m a historian, and I love this stuff.
      But it certainly doesn’t make me understand why I suddenly heard Thor and Tyr calling. Nor does it give me “racial” identity. I can deal with not understanding it. I certainly won’t assign it a reason if that means twisting history or embracing exclusive ideas based on race. Racial memory? Look, I’m German, and if ancestry and race mean anything automatic in terms of culture or behavior I don’t want what that means – you don’t, if you’re German. Sorry, but to cast myself as stemming from people who were colonized or oppressed is ridiculous.

    • Anonymous

      Yes, if different peoples have different ‘souls’ then that makes the case for valuing differences, including race. If that’s true then race is not a construct. I’d bet money that a -soulful’ Tibetan, a soulful Eskimo and a soulful Jewish ‘Mensch’ would agree that their soulfulness is different from that of the others….not better or worse, just different.
      Maybe this uniques sense of soul is the source of deep human emotions, inspirations, insights, intuition….and all are uniquely customized to that particular ‘soul type’.
      This type of view opposes the rigid, scientific, materialist conception of man as a construct.

      • Siegfried Goodfellow

        Your ridiculous separatism discludes those who have Tibetan, Eskimo, and Jewish ancestry. We mutts — ie., most of us — are sick of this idiotic slander and disclusion of humanity’s hybridity.

    • Siegfried Goodfellow

      A DIFFERENCE between a Jewish soul and other souls? Now we are descending into the absolutely ridiculous. Are you suggesting some difference in substantiality based upon a difference in conception? I don’t want to hear this bullshit. This is nonsense. Perhaps we ought to institute a minimum level of education and culture in order to speak. This is Volkish racism.

      • Anonymous

        Well, it appears that the traditional ‘jewish’ identity is based upon difference from others. In fact, that is the essence of the concept of the ‘Chosen People’.

        Personally I don’t agree with that, but I believe that every group of people has a right to its own ‘thing’, for lack of a better word. People are very different. Not all peoples mix well. Good fences make good neighbors. especially close to home.

        • Siegfried Goodfellow

          I smell the makings of good fertilizer here. People mix quite well. It’s racists that have a hard time with each other.

  • http://www.facebook.com/chris.lemke1 Christopher Lemke

    Sadly, in my (and I’m only speaking for MY experience), ever member of the Asatr ú faith in my area is at least partially involved in the white supremacist/nationalist movement. Very sad. It’s good to hear for others of that faith condemning this viewpoint.

    • http://egregores.wordpress.com Apuleius Platonicus

      I love this video of Ville Sorvali of Moonsorrow and Heri Joensen of Týr responding to accusations of racism (and nazism and fascism) against them and also against Heathens in general, and also against anyone into certain kinds of music. These are two proud Heathen artists who speak plainly and clearly and without apology or weasel words: http://www.youtube.com/watch?gl=GB&hl=en-GB&v=3Xr1iWvL4A0 .

      • http://anna-bucci.myopenid.com/ Anna

        Heri of Tyr is not a heathen, he is an atheist. He looks down upon people who believe in germanic mythology. He finds them to be as silly as christians.

  • http://www.facebook.com/kenazfilan Kenaz Filan

    Great and well-balanced article on an eternal bugbear for those who follow the Nordic/Germanic Gods. I have written a bit more on my blog. Since I have greater expertise in African Diaspora religions than in contemporary Heathenry, I have focused on those traditions. Hopefully the practie

    • Anonymous

      OK, let me try to understand …..you have greater expertise in African Diaspora religions…..that means you are an African? Or does that mean that you study/practice African religions? You’re a white person immersing herself in African religion?

      Reminds me of the times I spent with Minnesota Cree and Taos Pueblo Indians. A lot of Native Americans do not like white people who want to ‘walk the red road’… They see it as another form of encroachment upon their own sacred grounds.

      It’s THEIR native American identity…Identity is not a commodity… For many it’s all they have left…

      paganism is one way for white people to awaken their own roots…..but you’re not going to find your roots in African religion unless you’re African.

      You want to develop a folkish/ancestral practice by going to African religions? Surely you jest?

      • Siegfried Goodfellow

        Racists are experts at identifying the racists in other traditions as spokespeople for those traditions, while the rest of us, in all our traditions, just hold our nose and hope the reek will soon stop.

        • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

          So..if a man can be spotted as a racist because he can spot racists in other races…what does that make you, Siegfried, who apparently can spot so many racists in those you do not agree with?

          • Siegfried Goodfellow

            A little attention to English grammar may help your comprehension of arguments. Note that I used the term “as”, in “Racists are experts at identifying the racists in other traditions AS spokespeople for those traditions.” I do not identify the racists in ANY tradition as its spokespeople. Logically, therefore, the argument doesn’t apply to me at all.

        • Anonymous

          Siegfried, that’s put so righteously……. :-)

  • Anonymous

    I joined the AFA very recently. My sense is that Steve McNallen has stepped up publicly and striven to thread the needle of supporting and promoting Asatru without any attendant fear or hatred. It’s been a long, rocky road with many set-backs and it took courage and sacrifice. Anyone who thinks that was easy has no idea how anything of importance between people works. Those fools who went to that NPI conferance and opened their mouths have not done him or the AFA any favors.

    That Medea Matters article is suspect, as the writer is clearly no friend of Asatru. If the article is based on truth, then it was irresponsible of those supposed AFA members to mention their affiliation. They can do what they like as individuals and even say they are pagan or heathen or whatever, but in declaring group affiliation, they become responsible for representing that group’s values. They clearly were not representing the AFA’s values, and were thus irresponsible to the AFA. They should have at least said “yeah, we’re in the AFA but don’t represent the organization.” Or, “yeah, we’re heathens but don’t represent anyone else but us.” That would have been more responsible. Perhaps they did say such things but the article’s writer failed to mention such details in its efforts to libel the AFA.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=574896155 Ryan Smith

      Prove the author is suspect, the research is shoddy, and the author is biased in intent. Back it up or pack it up.

      • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

        Actually, having read the article, the author’s bias is rather clear. He went in there looking for racists. And the parts on his meeting with these AFA have the tone of a man halfway laughing behind his hand at the “silly pagans” and their feelings of being persecuted by the government because of their “race.” All the while blatantly associating the entire thing with white racism, Nazism, and prison violence.

        So yeah, he either did not do the research when it comes to the Heathen paths or he is deliberately misrepresenting them. (i see no disclaimers about how there are non-racist heathen Asatru or Odinists, etc. In fact, reading the article you’d think anyone who was a member of these paths was automatically a racist).

        • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=574896155 Ryan Smith

          I’m not seeing anything resembling proof here, just lots of your unsupported opinion.

          Back it up or pack it up NA.

      • Anonymous

        I’ll take the Pepsi challenge!

        Alas, I must reverse my statement as I did not read the Media Matters article adequately and made a hasty conclusion. I laugh at myself accordingly.

        It appears that a few AFA members did attend the meeting (see Steve McNallen’s response) along with some other heathens. Those AFA members that did attend didn’t advertise their presence (they and others were uncomfortable with revealing information about themselves). The article’s writer learned of their affiliation through spying after lulling them by lying about being with the NPI:

        “Are you with NPI?” they asked. My mouth full, I nodded reluctantly and the four well-groomed white males smiled politely and sat down.

        and

        “My curiosity got the better of me, and after some coaxing and snooping (e.g., craning my neck to watch them writing down information on their group for another young attendee), I discovered to my surprise that they were part of something called the Asatrú Folk Assembly”

        The writer later looks up the AFA on the biased SLPC website (anti hate groups) and spends three paragraphs reiterating SLPC discussion on links between Asatru/Odinism, racism, white nationalism, neo nazis and crime. Later the writer gives a paragraph to the AFA’s website statements. There is a kind of balance, but skewed against Asatru since there is nothing apart from the AFA reference for non-racist Asatru. I agree with Norse Alchemist statement, “…I see no disclaimers about how there are non-racist heathen Asatru or Odinists, etc. In fact, reading the article you’d think anyone who was a member of these paths was automatically a racist.”

        The issue to me, now, is not whether or not AFA members were present at the NPI event and acting responsibly, but whether or not one agrees its okay to rub elbows with WN activists or sympathizers under any conditions.

        Is one judged with guilt or suspicion by assocation? That’s called an “Association Fallacy,” but it’s also how most people think. Heck, it’s how everyone thinks unless they make an effort to see other perspectives.

        Fine examples of guilt-by-association thinking are the two Aesop fables “The Farmer and the Stork” and “The Ass and His Purchaser” with their respective morals “Birds of a feather flock together” and “A man is known by the company he keeps.” They are also consistent with the idea of judging someone by their deeds. They work fine – until they don’t. They are potentially fallacies for a reason – they are not always true.

        How does one reconcile such instinctual guilt by association with personal freedom? How do you learn about and understand sensitive things without being stigmatized by them? I think that’s the fundamental problem: by discussing such things we get stigmatized. We are cowards if we avoid the issues, but are condemned if we have the courage to engage with them. Catch 22. I prefer courage.

  • http://www.facebook.com/dsalisbury David Salisbury

    Woops, I meant to “Santeria” botanica, not Vodou.

  • Anonymous

    I’m not a Heathen, but I _am_ good friends (IRL) with a member of the AFA Board of Directors. I’ve known him for years, and don’t believe I’ve ever heard anything WN out of his mouth, and I think anyone who has read my posts can attest that I wouldn’t be hanging out with him if he did. He’s also on FaceBook, and his page is always full of other AFA members’ posts, so I don’t really understand this idea that the AFA is against social-networking.

    Sure, I’ve run into Asatruars on the Interwebz that seem racist or Neo-Nazi. It’s easy to be racist in cyberspace. I think it’s more to do with racists being drawn to Asatru, largely because of the Nazi/Germanic connection…than Asatruars being drawn to White Nationalism. I sincerely doubt that many of these WN Asatruars are actually pious in their daily lives to their Gods and Goddesses. Just wearing a Mjollnir does not make one a pious person. Asatru, like any Reconstructionist religion, is not something easily practiced by a person who is just “half-assing it.”

    In my experience, usually the Neo-Nazi types get tired of organizations like the AFA and form their own tiny, explicitly racist groups, and then get bored soon and stop bothering. It’s sad that the AFA has to put up with this crap, but I don’t see it stopping any time soon. It is a growing pain that all religions have to deal with…

  • Mike

    We need to remember that just because these folks are supposedly members of the AFA doesn’t mean they speak for the entire organization. Don’t let a few folks with radical views spoil something for you without doing some research on the AFA, then you can make an intelligent decision for yourself.

    • Siegfried Goodfellow

      NO, let the AFA make an INTELLIGENT decision and REPUDIATE. There are no “innocent associations” with white power nonsense. Purge and move on, or be held accountable for your acceptance of dishonor within your own circles.

      • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

        They have Siegfried. Time and Time again. But apparently that’s not good enough for you.

        • Siegfried Goodfellow

          Daftness has no floor-boards! “The AFA will not dictate to its members which meetings they are permitted to attend as private individuals. There are suggestions that we discipline them for the crime of being present in a room where extreme statements seem to have been made. We will not do this. There will be no exposure, no witch-hunt, no apologies, and no reprimands.” That’s not a repudiation in any way, shape, or manner. In FACT, it’s a DEFENSE. And a disgusting one at that. So um, NO … that would NOT be good enough for me.

  • http://egregores.wordpress.com Apuleius Platonicus

    Because Joshua Buckley is co-editor of the journal Tyr, the claim of a close relationship between him and a racist scumbag like Sam Dickson is potentially a Big Deal.

    I say “potentially” because I know of only one corroborating source for the claim, made in the five year old SPLC article Jason linked to, that there is such a connection between Buckley and Dickson. That other source is an even older article from 2004 by John Tyndall (a now deceased infamous racist from the UK) in which Tyndall makes a vague, passing reference to Buckley as “a friend” of Dickson’s. In contrast, the SPLC article asserts that Buckley is Dickson’s “main business partner and heir apparent” and also his “protégé”.

    The SPLC does not have a good track record in these matters, and an unsubstantiated allegation like this in a dated article published by them cannot be taken very seriously as a primary source.

    • http://www.wildhunt.org/blog/ Jason Pitzl-Waters
      • http://egregores.wordpress.com Apuleius Platonicus

        These links to documents indicate business dealings between the two men, but nothing more. Buckley and Dickson may not have ever even met face to face.

        Over the last decade Dickson and Buckley have had some sort of joint dealings concerning six different properties with a current total value of about $470K (I found four more in addition to the three you list above). Meanwhile each man has been separately involved with many other pieces of property that the other man had nothing to do with (at least as far as paper trails go).

        Even as circumstantial evidence goes, this is rather weak, especially when it is put beside the SPLC’s extravagant claims about the relationship between them, and even more especially when we take into account SPLC’s track record of making wild accusations about “Nazi Pagans”.

        Considering the fact that the SPLC has been trying for years to prove that there is a “connection” between the racist right and Paganism, if they had any real evidence demonstrating that Joshua Buckley is Sam Dickson’s “protege” and “heir apparent”, wouldn’t they have published it?

        Here are the four other properties I found:
        http://www.city-data.com/fulton-county/S/SE-Wylie-Street-8.html
        http://www.city-data.comwww.city-data.com/fulton-county/N/NE-East-Avenue-1.html
        http://www.city-data.com/fulton-county/S/SW-Holderness-Street-10.html
        http://www.city-data.com/fulton-county/S/SE-Ormond-Street-3.html

        • http://www.wildhunt.org/blog/ Jason Pitzl-Waters

          Considering the number of 0-dollar turnovers between the two, not to mention the various names and LLC’s they operate under (TEUTOBERG COLLECTIONS LLC, SAM G & JOSHUA R DICKSON, etc) I think there’s more here than mere “business dealings” between acquaintances. It speaks to a formal partnership.

          • Anonymous

            A formal partnership is still merely a business dealing. What is implied in the article and then in turn by you is that Buckley is somehow politically and ideologically Dickson’s heir and protege, and then that Tyr is somehow or another an organ of the nefarious ideology that the evil Mr. Buckley allegedly is being mentored in by the sinister Mr. Dickson. If Tyr is meant as an organ of some kind of KKK inspired racist ideology, I think it is a very ineffective organ, since in its actual contents I see nothing that is particularly consistent with that ideology and some things that are diametrically opposed to that ideology.

          • http://egregores.wordpress.com Apuleius Platonicus

            From the SPLC article:

            “Komicheal Johnson runs the black-owned Atlanta development firm, J.L.W. Homes and Communities. Over the years he’s bought numerous properties from Dickson, and has only recently become aware of his views on race. While he would prefer not to deal with Dickson at all, he says it’s not so simple. If he doesn’t buy Dickson’s property, another developer will, one that builds poor quality or unaffordable homes, and who does not have strong community backing.”

            In other words, having “numerous” business dealings with Sam Dickson proves nothing.

            At this point I consider the issue resolved. There is no evidence to support the allegation against Buckley. And an unsubstantiated allegation of this sort is not a green light for manufacturing yet more unsubstantiated allegations and insinuations.

            It’s too bad that Jason feels the need to double down on this. Oh well, no one is right all the time.

      • http://egregores.wordpress.com Apuleius Platonicus

        And the really sad part is this: the fact that Stephen McNallen has published in Tyr is being presented here as evidence that McNallen has “ties to white nationalism”! And that serves as the pretext for Jason to dig up a five-year old article that makes “vituperative attacks” against the co-editor of Tyr, Joshua Buckley. And this is an accusation that no one had ever heard of before, that no one (except now, all of a sudden, Jason Pitzl-Waters) has bothered to mention since, and that has absolutely no evidence to support it.

    • Don

      Whether Buckley is racist or not, Tyr is still one of the best pagan publications out there.

      • http://egregores.wordpress.com Apuleius Platonicus

        I agree about Tyr.

        That’s why I think this accusation is significant. And the issue is not who Buckley does business with, or anything else other than whether or not there is any evidence that Buckley is a racist and that, therefore, Tyr is arguably a very sophisticated and convincing “front”.

  • Greyman

    I was born and bred in England and I have Jamaican parents who are raving christians. Luckily for me the land called me and I fully enjoy learning about the Way of Odin as it has enriched my life. Hearing about this current state of affairs saddens me because I know that racist doctrine does not belong in Asatru and Paganism because that thought process is for the un-enlightened. Its how we think that divides us not our race.

    • Merofled Ing

      Welcome. I’m very glad and grateful you are here.

    • Anonymous

      Hello Greyman; that’s very interesting. The Land has a powerful call and we are all affected by the land of our birth. How does your Odinic faith affect your dealings with local Brits, white or black? Do you belong to an Asatru group? How do you view the immigration situation? Is it all good, all bad, some good/bad?

      • Greyman

        I belong to a pagan group who encompass all paths and we meet up once a month. The only problem comes from fundamentalist christians (black and white) who try to convert us to their way of thinking. As for immigration I strongly dispise the ‘open-door’ policy our government has adopted. I believe in a limited number of migrants; a majority of which must suit certain criteria (job skills) so that they are not a burden on the tax-payer.

        • Anonymous

          I grew up in Germany. I’ve gone back and seen the damage wrought by immigration, especially from muslims. Let me be frank with you; I would have opposed the immigration of your parents from Jamaica to England.

          Now, having said that, I am a realist and always open to learning from new situations and people. How did you find your way to Asatru? Is it the bond with the land? The bond with the people? How did the call of the Aesir come to you?

  • Kilmrnock

    I personaly know a few Asatru and they are not racist. But w/ the racist veiws of many that call themselves Asatru , this is a big problem . My mind comes to some of the Goth/ Norse musicians that have those type of views . Creeping racism is something any ethnicly centered Pagan group needs to be aware of and careful to avoid .Mine included , I’m Celtic ……….we tend to attract only white western/northern european decent people as well . Altho i havn’t heard of racism problems within Celt groups as of yet . We need the be aware of creeping racism and avoid it , as do pagans in general. Kilm

    • Anonda

      i swear….

      the united states of america…. the only country where i hear about christians, whites (usually white men) and even straight people claiming they are being oppressed and/or persecuted….

      *scratches head*

      • kenneth

        We’re the center of that nonsense these days, but that song and dance also topped the charts in Germany in the late 30s and Serbia in the early 90s… Politicians love it because fear and anger work 100% of the time. Billionaires in this country have the nation’s poorest rednecks voting their interests because the persecution narrative works THAT well. It’s like a master override switch deep in the amygdala that bypasses all of the reasoning centers of the brain. You can own an operate a human being as readily as a robot if you can keep them in fear and convince them that you have a plan to deliver them to safety….

        • Anonda

          need to add…dont want to be too mean to americans…:)
          so i admit, ive heard it coming from some europeans too…

          it is hilarious, i must say
          meh, some people sure like to play victims….

        • Anonymous

          Judging by the content of the media these days the ruling paradigm is multi-culturalism, multi-racialism and political correctness. This is glaringly obvious in the media, education and political discourse. The ruling status quo and financial power structure supports this completely. If you oppose it then you run into flak, just like any politically incorrect statements on this site.

          Have you ever considered the possibility that the mass immigration into Europe and North AMerica by non-Europeans serves a hidden interest? Social engineering always has a motive. Divide and conquer is the oldest strategy in the book…… That, and getting cheap labor, thus breaking the established progress of the indigenous workingman. I speak as one from experience.

          Because if you asked any of the ‘people’, i.e. the indigenous people, the Germans, Brits, French, Italians etc they did not ask for this immigration and they did not approve it. If it was put to an honest vote it would have never been approved. It was all done surreptitiously.

          But of what concern is the will of the people in comparison to the compelling vision of a socially re-engineered humanity? You have to break eggs to make an omelette, right?

          It’s a giant mess and we have to figure it out now.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Marcus-Tullius/100002552904716 Marcus Tullius

    In Pitzi-Waters OPINION, these Asatru folk are “racist”.

    He just says that because they are White.

    Any White person who shows an interest in group identity and seeks to stand up for White group interests is ALWAYS called a “White Supremacist”, or worse.

    People like Pitzi-Waters say they are “anti-racist”, but what they really are is anti-White.

    “Anti-racism” is just a code word for anti-White.

    • kenneth

      No, he says that because these white guys have demonstrated themselves to be racist idiots. People who define a tribal identity based on nothing more than the color of their skin and propose that there is some monolithic “white” group interests which need defending (and perhaps enforced loyalty) are racist.

      • Strawman1776

        Race is a red herring, a straw-man issue. What I’m trying to preserve is the 300 years of my family’s heritage, history, failings and triumphs in America. If loving my family makes me a racist, then so be it.

        • kenneth

          Race is not a straw-man issue when guys start gathering to hatch conceptual plans for forced relocations based on race. Nor is celebrating one’s ancestral heritage which happens to be white folks, a problem in any reasonable person’s eyes.

          My own family tree, minus some branches of Ojibwe and Gypsy ,is all white European. I’m not ashamed of that. Nor am I proud of that fact in particular. It is what it is. It’s not a mark of shame nor virtue. It’s sole biological significance is enhanced Vitamin D utilization in high-latitude conditions (and a vulnerability to skin cancer in high sun climates). If you want to get real technical, there’s a few other bits of biology related to malarial resistance and and the tolerance of drugs for that condition.

          Having pale skin didn’t make me or my ancestors any smarter or more virtuous (or more sinister) than anyone else. At certain times in our history, it probably got us better real estate and school options and gentler handling by the cops, but that’s the extent of it. Love your big white European family all you want. That’s not the issue among anyone here. It is seen as a problem only in the rare corners of militant black nationalism or some really sad specimens of liberals. The issue here is people who are representing Asatru as a campaign to save the “White Race.”

          • Strawman1776

            Understand the representation thing. My point is that to posit race from a biological perspective misses the point. Those on both sides of the argument should understand that.

        • http://vermillionrush.wordpress.com Vermillion

          Look I’m all for you celebrating your heritage, your ancestors, and all of the good and bad they may have done. Go to town.

          It’s the folks who call themselves the master race or you know, think the only good I can do as a non-Caucasian is shine your bloody boots is where we’re gonna have a problem. Why is this so hard to understand?

          Edited to add: I’m not saying all Heathens are racist because I don’t think they are not by a long shot. And I get that a lot of the belief comes across as racist to ignorant folks who don’t do their research. All I’m saying is that if I was a member of the AFA and I found out a group of folks were going to White Power rallies, knowing that already my religion gets a bad rap as being only for “White” folks, then I would probably shake them in person while screeching “LOOK AT YOUR LIFE! LOOK AT YOUR CHOICES!”

          But that’s just how I roll :)

          • Strawman1776

            Is there a Heathen screech? :) And what would that sound like? :)

          • http://vermillionrush.wordpress.com Vermillion

            LOL I don’t know if there’s a particular Heathen screech, maybe more of a roar? I sincerely hope that every time some fool tried to make it so your religion was automatically associated with White Power, somewhere there is a Heathen roaring at them lol.

        • http://twitter.com/BobGreganIII Bob Gregan III

          If race is not real, then GeNOcide is IMPOSSIBLE.

          Anti-racist is a code word for anti-white.

  • Anonymous

    Another despicable attack on white people just because they oppose white geNOcide.

    How is forcing us whites to “Celebrate Diversity” which obviously leads to fewer whites NOT “acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group”?

    Anti-racist is a code word for anti-white.

  • Anonymous

    Hey,let`s flood all black countries and ONLY black countries with millions of non-blacks and order the blacks to “assimilate” with those non-blacks.Resistors can be demonized as “evil racist black assembly members”

    Who could ever accuse us of advocating black genocide?

    Because Anti-racist is a code word for anti-white.

    • kenneth

      Flooding a black country with outsiders. I think that bit has been done already ie Rhodesia and South Africa. Of course the white guys didn’t try to “dilute down” blackness through some assimilation program, they simply enslaved them in their own countries….

      • Anonda

        to the guy that wrote about “the white genocide” and that being “anti-racist is being anti-white”….

        what?
        there is a white genocide?
        like the armenians, bosniaks, jews, african ethnic tribes and other groups that have been systematically tortured and murdered? bc…genocide is a very serious and very defined term internationally, btw…
        how come the news hasnt filled me on this white genocide?

        ps i hope you are joking…and you re just a troll…
        if not, then…phew…thank the Gods that you peeps way of thinking is a minority…and will always remain so…

        • Fiery-monkey-balls

          Everybody says there is this RACE problem. Everybody says this RACE problem will be solved when the third world pours into EVERY white country and ONLY into white countries.

          The Netherlands and Belgium are just as crowded as Japan or Taiwan, but nobody says Japan or Taiwan will solve this RACE problem by bringing in millions of third worlders and quote assimilating unquote with them.

          Everybody says the final solution to this RACE problem is for EVERY white country and ONLY white countries to “assimilate,” i.e., intermarry, with all those non-whites.

          What if I said there was this RACE problem and this RACE problem would be solved only if hundreds of millions of non-blacks were brought into EVERY black country and ONLY into black countries?

          How long would it take anyone to realize I’m not talking about a RACE problem. I am talking about the final solution to the BLACK problem?

          And how long would it take any sane black man to notice this and what kind of psycho black man wouldn’t object to this?

          But if I tell that obvious truth about the ongoing program of genocide against my race, the white race, Liberals and respectable conservatives agree that I am a naziwhowantstokillsixmillionjews.

          They say they are anti-racist. What they are is anti-white.

          Anti-racist is a code word for anti-white.

      • kenneth

        Apparently the posts I just responded to “went away.” Just as well. The unfortunate side of “European pride” was starting to show with all sorts of ugly concerns about “interbreeding.” This thread is starting to draw the dudes with “Rahowa” tattoos…..

        • Anonda

          i think jas removed the comments…should have left them there..
          exposure is knowledge…and reminds us that this racist garbage is not a joke nor a thing of the past…

          • Fiery-monkey-balls

            Everybody says there is this RACE problem. Everybody says this RACE problem will be solved when the third world pours into EVERY white country and ONLY into white countries.

            The Netherlands and Belgium are just as crowded as Japan or Taiwan, but nobody says Japan or Taiwan will solve this RACE problem by bringing in millions of third worlders and quote assimilating unquote with them.

            Everybody says the final solution to this RACE problem is for EVERY white country and ONLY white countries to “assimilate,” i.e., intermarry, with all those non-whites.

            What if I said there was this RACE problem and this RACE problem would be solved only if hundreds of millions of non-blacks were brought into EVERY black country and ONLY into black countries?

            How long would it take anyone to realize I’m not talking about a RACE problem. I am talking about the final solution to the BLACK problem?

            And how long would it take any sane black man to notice this and what kind of psycho black man wouldn’t object to this?

            But if I tell that obvious truth about the ongoing program of genocide against my race, the white race, Liberals and respectable conservatives agree that I am a naziwhowantstokillsixmillionjews.

            They say they are anti-racist. What they are is anti-white.

            Anti-racist is a code word for anti-white.

      • Anonda

        apparently, i’ve missed the news article about
        whites being placed in concentration camps, incinerated, tortured, beaten, enslaved, thrown into holes in the desert, forced into death marches…and so on…

        • Anonymous

          Open up your history book and start reading about the Islamic invasions of Europe and associated ‘white slavery’, the Ukrainian ‘Holdomor’, the Allied prison camps on the Rhine where thousands of German POWs were starved to death after the war had ended, the ethnic cleansing of Germans after WW2 had ended resulting in millions of deaths, the systematic murder of every white person in Haiti when they had their revolution back in….179? …the Death March of Bataan when white US soldiers were marched from Corregidor under brutal conditions, the air raid on Dresden in 1945 when the city was filled with refugees who were incinerated by the thousands, etc etc etc sorry, no white privilege there.

        • Fiery-monkey-balls

          Genocide is defined as “the deliberate and systematic destruction, in whole or in part, of an ethnic, racial, religious, or national group”.(Wiki)
          Anti-racist is code for anti-white.

  • Godhi

    As probably mentioned before, a few White Supremacists do NOT represent the AFA or Asatruar in general. If you had done your research, you would have learned that White Supremacists make up a very small percentage of Asatruar, let alone the membership of the AFA. Sad to say, as with any organization the racists and extremists get the media attention while the mainstream members are largely ignored. In fact, had you bothered to learn about the core beliefs of Asatru, you would have learned that the majority of Norse Heathens are among the most tolerant people you will ever meet, as our ancestors suffered from centuries of intolerance and persecution because of their religious beliefs. As the old saying goes, a few bad apples don’t spoil the whole barrel.
    As far as someone being proud of their Teutonic or Scandinavian ancestry: What’s wrong with that? I see no problem with it so long as you don’t feel that you’re better than anyone else, and this applies to anyone regardless of race, creed, or religion. Political correctness had turned White Anglo-Saxons into the villains of world culture, and although we have more than our share of criminals, no race or religion is 100% innocent. I personally believe in the dream of Martin Luther King, jr. in which one day we will have a colorblind society where no one will be judged based on the color of their skin; as far as religion is concerned, I’d like to see a society where all religions are equal. Can’t we make this dream a reality?

    • Anonymous

      White supremacists are a joke. If there was such a thing as white supremacism we wouldn’t have a black president, affirmative action, illegals from Mexico streaming across an unprotected border, nor would the President side with Mexico against Arizona for passing a law that mirrors the exact federal immigration law. White supremacism is a joke. It’s the boogey man who is invoked to get white people to shut up and not question the demographic changes that are going on. Because if a white person questions the demographic transformation of the USA, Europe etc then he will be quickly labeled a ‘racist’ and shunned as a moral leper. Racism is the new heresy. That might be credible if it were applied to all races, but it’s not. The primary target for the charge of racism is white people. Yes, white people are racist. Guess what? So are most people if they’re honest about it. Take the Chinese. They don’t call their country the ‘Middle Kingdom’ for nothing. It’s the middle/center of the Universe with the Chinese on the inside and the ‘Barbarians’ on the outside.

  • Anonymous

    Is there any way white people can be protected as a racial group from policies that lead to the extinction of our racial group without being a “racist” or “white supremacist”?

    Or is racial extinction the only permissible outcome for our racial group according to the dictates of the anti-white PC State Religion?

    Article II: In the present Convention, genocide means any of the following acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group, as such:

    “racial ….group”

    Anti-racist is a codeword for anti-white.

    • Anonda

      nonsense…
      genocide is a very specific word with a particular definition and relating to specific actions in the national and international world……you are just twisting it to support your racist rhetoric…

      it is a shame and an insult to those who were/are victims of genocide and persecution…

      • Anonymous

        “Genocide involves the attempt to achieve the disappearance of a group by whatever means. It does not have to be violent, it could be a combination of policies that would lead to a certain group dying out.”

        Malcolm Fraser (Prime Minister of Australia 1975-1983)

        “Diversity” means demographic elimination(geNOcide) for white children.

        Therefore,those that advocate for “diversity” support the geNOcide of white children.

        Anti-racist is a codeword for anti-white

      • Anonymous

        So you`d be Ok with flooding ALL black countries and ONLY black countries with millions of non-blacks and ordering the blacks to “assimilate” with those non-blacks until blacks have become an extinct life-form?

        You`d be OK with demonizing Resistors as “evil racists” and suffer loss of livelihood and/or imprisonment?

        You claim that would not be advocating black genocide?

        Anti-racist is a code word for anti-white.

        • http://shibuya-109.in Faith

          If your theory is correct, European/White people have no business being in America, Canada – anywhere where the indigenous people were another skin color or race. Which means we still don’t.

          While we’re on the topic, why is diversity an automatic case of genocide against white children? That’s really low, hiding behind children to promote hate bigotry.

          My family are German, Russian and Dutch on one side, French Jewish, Mexican and Japanese on the other. Because of my diverse ethnic background I have been told, point blank, that I shouldn’t be *allowed* to worship Odin by people who’s biggest issue seems to be with the Jewish part of my family.

          I’ve heard all the hate speech, I’ve heard all the daft double speak and fake back peddling. I’ve had to deal with this all of my life, and let me tell you – people who don’t like Jews can be very violent and hostile. So forgive me for not being able to empathize with this kind of ‘white genocide’ thinking considering everyone in America who isn’t white is still in a tiny minority.

          • Fiery-monkey-balls

            Genocide is defined as “the deliberate and systematic destruction, in whole or in part, of an ethnic, racial, religious, or national group”(Wiki). Anti-racist is code for anti-white.

      • Fiery-monkey-balls

        Genocide is defined as “the deliberate and systematic destruction, in whole or in part, of an ethnic, racial, religious, or national group”
        Anti-racist is code for anti-white.

    • kenneth

      “Is there any way white people can be protected as a racial group from policies that lead to the extinction of our racial group without being a “racist” or “white supremacist”?”…………..

      No. Because the paradigm which holds that “white people” are, as a collective, a national or distinct ethnic group (or a separate quasi-species) is, at its heart, racist. If you’re not a white supremecist, what, exactly, is your concern with preserving the genotype for pale skin? It has no particular adaptive value biologically. It’s only inherent value is that assigned to it by racial ideology.

      • Fiery-monkey-balls

        Anti-racist is code for anti-white.

        • http://www.wildhunt.org/blog/ Jason Pitzl-Waters

          I think this is the third or fourth time you’ve made this statement. You can switch records now.

          • Fiery-monkey-balls

            You are anti-white.

          • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

            -facepalm-

      • Anonymous

        “The paradigm which holds that the “Japanese/Tibetan?Chinese/Maori etc People” as a collective, a national, or distinct ethnic group is at its heart racist.”

        Right?

  • Siegfried Goodfellow

    Behaviors like showing up to a racist convention? The thing is, when a behavior persistently recurs, it becomes a “character trait”. That reflects upon one’s character.

  • Anonymous

    A study of the Islamic invasions of Europe will provide a treasure trove of such stories…….

    • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

      Careful there deconstructor, or you’ll be called a Racist like I was for standing up for human rights, gay rights, women’s rights, and religious freedom.

  • Siegfried Goodfellow
    • Siegfried Goodfellow
      • Fiery-monkey-balls

        Indeed Fred Anti-Racist is code for anti-white. The AFA is a European (ie white) religious group and people are against them because of that. If you claim to be anti-racist you are anti-white.

        • kenneth

          If Mr. McNallen and someone who calls themselves “fiery monkey balls” are to be the representatives of the “White Race” then perhaps we’re well due for extinction…..

          • Anonda

            oh my Gods…laughed my arse off….

            *just pictured a bunch of monkey balls on fire and with legs running and running…*

          • Fiery-monkey-balls

            Everybody says there is this RACE problem. Everybody says this RACE problem will be solved when the third world pours into EVERY white country and ONLY into white countries.

            The Netherlands and Belgium are just as crowded as Japan or Taiwan, but nobody says Japan or Taiwan will solve this RACE problem by bringing in millions of third worlders and quote assimilating unquote with them.

            Everybody says the final solution to this RACE problem is for EVERY white country and ONLY white countries to “assimilate,” i.e., intermarry, with all those non-whites.

            What if I said there was this RACE problem and this RACE problem would be solved only if hundreds of millions of non-blacks were brought into EVERY black country and ONLY into black countries?

            How long would it take anyone to realize I’m not talking about a RACE problem. I am talking about the final solution to the BLACK problem?

            And how long would it take any sane black man to notice this and what kind of psycho black man wouldn’t object to this?

            But if I tell that obvious truth about the ongoing program of genocide against my race, the white race, Liberals and respectable conservatives agree that I am a naziwhowantstokillsixmillionjews.

            They say they are anti-racist. What they are is anti-white.

            Anti-racist is a code word for anti-white.

          • kenneth

            You’re giving him far too much credit with such imagery!

          • Anonda

            Ye Gods…

            the weatherman forgot to predict ‘stormfront’ in the vicinity…

          • Anonda

            kenneth says:

            “You’re giving him far too much credit with such imagery! ”

            you re right. movement requires way too much thinking and other biological, physical and mental elements…
            let’s just keep it as monkey balls

          • Fiery-monkey-balls

            You are pro white geNOcide just like your comrades.

          • Fiery-monkey-balls

            Justify genocede, go ahead….

    • Anonymous

      WOW, you really are ONE, BIG GIANT…..Hybrid! Awesome! There is no one else but you in all of your hybrid oneness. Good luck on your voyage……

      but what happens if any part of your giant hybrid oneness has a disagreement with another part of your giant hybrid oneness? How do you deal with that.? Which part of your hybrid oneness will dominate the other, lesser parts of your hybrid oneness? Or will your hybrid oneness simply preclude any disagreements or conflicts. There will only be a groovy hybrid oneness with no problems? Who is in charge? I’d like to know.

  • Siegfried Goodfellow

    AWESOME, and THANK YOU.

  • http://twitter.com/BobGreganIII Bob Gregan III

    If race is not real, a social construct, as the anti-whites keep saying, then they are saying Genocide is IMPOSSIBLE.

    If race is not real, then Genocide is IMPOSSIBLE.

    Anti-racist is a code word for anti-white.

  • kenneth

    McNallen’s statement answers my “questions and concerns” very well. It brings a wonderful clarity to his position, even as carefully parsed as it is. He has no problem whatsoever with the nature or tenor of the event itself, and has no problem with racial identity being a central pillar of Asatru. Nor does he have any quibble with what is clearly a White Power agenda, so long as White Power is couched in terms of self-preservation rather than naked aggression or overt claims of superiority.

    • Fiery-monkey-balls

      In your opinion it is a white power agenda. Anti-white preservation is anti-white. Anti-white is pro white geNOcide. You must be pro white geNOcide. Tisk tisk.

      • Crystal Blanton

        I really do hope that this type of justification of racist statements are seen for what they are. And I do hope that you are not a reflection of what the masses think it means to be of European decent. I think it is sad to see this type of statements and hide behind spirituality as if it makes them ok. It does not. And it never will.

    • Pissedoffchef

      McNallen made a statement? Do you have a link?

      • Pissedoffchef

        Found it. Will post the content.

    • Anonymous

      Sort of like the Tibetans having their identity as a people being the central pillar of their life as a community……as long as Tibetan claims are crouched in terms of self-preservation rather than naked aggression or overt claims of superiority…….

      Naw, they can’t have that. No such thing as the tibetan people. Sheeeesh, if yhey ever decoded to consider themselves as a people they would generate the strength to resist the colonization by the Chinese….oh, that’s what they’ve been doing for all these years….

      you have a double standard

  • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

    Yes, because Ryan it is clear that the Truth is what you believe, and screw the rest. -_-

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=574896155 Ryan Smith

      You’re the one who is sitting here saying we can’t take other people at their word when there are many means for verifying what you claim is purely subjective.

      I’m not the one who is trying to disprove logic here.

    • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

      I was being sarcastic, oh wise and insightful one of the fair handed judgement.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_UQLNBVRZMSNTKZ2BJY4OFA6MC4 … ..

    Everybody says there is this RACE problem. Everybody says this RACE problem will be solved when the third world pours into EVERY white country and ONLY into white countries.
    The Netherlands and Belgium are more crowded than Japan or Taiwan, but nobody says Japan or Taiwan will solve this RACE problem by bringing in millions of third worlders and “assimilating” with them.
    Everybody says the final solution to this RACE problem is for EVERY white country and ONLY white countries to “assimilate,” i.e., intermarry, with all those non-whites.
    What if I said there was this RACE problem and this RACE problem would be solved only if hundreds of millions of non-blacks were brought into EVERY black country and ONLY into black countries?
    How long would it take anyone to realize I’m not talking about a RACE problem. I am talking about the final solution to the BLACK problem?
    And how long would it take any sane black man to notice this and what kind of psycho black man wouldn’t object to this?
    But if I tell that obvious truth about the ongoing program of genocide against my race, the white race, Liberals and respectable conservatives agree that I am a naziwhowantstokillsixmillionjews.
    They say they are anti-racist. What they are is anti-white.
    Anti-racist is a code word for anti-white.

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/David-Carron/100001353268347 David Carron

      Thank you for showing that you have a political agenda and not a religious one.

      You can leave now.

  • Pissedoffchef

    Here’s McNallen’s statement on the matter:

    A Response to Recent Defamation

    Many of you will know of the recent attack against the AFA by, first of all, the liberal blog Media Matters, and subsequently by the pagan blog The Wild Hunt. Their respective URLs are

    http://tinyurl.com/6jmcz95 and http://tinyurl.com/5uaz5rs

    Also referenced is the National Policy Institute, at http://www.thenationalpolicyinstitute.org .

    My response is below. I have nothing else to say on the matter.

    Steve McNallen

    Asatru Folk Assembly

    [Statement follows]

    I have investigated the current controversy and have discussed it with the AFA Board of Directors. Here is my statement:

    Four (not “seven to fourteen”) members of the Asatru Folk Assembly did attend a conference hosted by the National Policy Institute. They did this as private individuals, not as representatives for the Asatru Folk Assembly. The only way the original blogger, Brian Powell of the left-wing blog Media Matters, knew that they were AFA members is because, by his own admission, he craned his neck to see what one of them was writing on a piece of paper. At no time was there any attempt to speak for the AFA or to identify the ideals of the AFA with the subject matter of the conference.

    The AFA will not dictate to its members which meetings they are permitted to attend as private individuals. There are suggestions that we discipline them for the crime of being present in a room where extreme statements seem to have been made. We will not do this. There will be no exposure, no witch-hunt, no apologies, and no reprimands.

    A careful reading of the original post on the Media Matters blog makes it clear that Mr. Powell “cherry picked” the most extreme comments possible while ignoring the rest. He admitting that he expected “a little more anger, a little more foaming-at-the-mouth hatred of non-whites.” He further notes that “foremost on the minds of the attendees was not white dominance, it was white extinction.” His main objection, in short, was that people of European descent dared to meet to quietly discuss issues of concern to them as a group.

    Let me very clearly state these two points: 1. The AFA will never advocate, condone, or excuse illegal or dishonorable acts directed at any person because of their race. 2. That said, men and women of European descent have exactly the same right to meet and to promote their collective interests as do any other group. To demonize them for doing this, when every other group is encouraged to do so, is to indulge in a vicious double standard.

    • Siegfried Goodfellow

      “The AFA will not dictate to its members which meetings they are permitted to attend as private individuals.”

      Cowardly. Totally cowardly. So they can attend Nazi rallies, lynch mobs, etc., and the AFA’s totally cool with that.

      But we appreciate the unveiling of the true colors.

      • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

        Yes, because it is the act of a Coward to respect a man’s freedom do do and think as he will.

        How many commentators told stories of being kicked out by McNallen as proof that he was a terrible man? Now you state he is a terrible man because he refuses to witch-hunt and kick people out.

        Yes, true colors have been revealed. McNallen is showing that he respects individual freedoms, regardless of how abhorrent you may find it and them.

        • http://www.facebook.com/people/David-Carron/100001353268347 David Carron

          “Yes, because it is the act of a Coward to respect a man’s freedom do do and think as he will.”

          This is not a question of freedom but accountability. If the AFA is merely tolerating racists (let alone this statement), please then explain to me what distinguishes them from a racist organization?

          “Yes, true colors have been revealed. McNallen is showing that he respects individual freedoms, regardless of how abhorrent you may find it and them.”

          Ok, let’s say instead of a White Power group this was NAMBLA would your respect of those “individual freedoms” still hold?

          • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

            So let me get this straight, your asking if i would support this freedom if they were pedophiles instead of “racists?”

            The answer to that is that people are free to be who they want to be. Now, before you go ranting about me condoning pedophilia, I don’t. however, I do have to wonder at what point we will see pedophobic being passed about like we do homophobic. After all, we currently label pedophilia as a psychological disorder, just as we once labeled homosexuality a psychological disorder. And were this a Hellenistic organization rather than an Scandinavian organization in question and its members were visiting NAMBLA, what would your reaction be, after all, the ancient Greeks practiced such actions.

            My point is this, it is not the place of an organization or a person who leads that organization to curtail the freedoms of its members. They can state (as the AFA does) that such attitudes are not welcome, and they can ask such people to leave, but they are not, in my opinion, allowed to act as Thought Policed towards their members.

            So yes, I suppose i would respect those “Individual Freedoms” even though I don’t agree with their stance on the subject.

        • Siegfried Goodfellow

          The beautiful individual freedom to associate with White Power. Wow. What a beautiful individual freedom. The freedom to be dishonorable. It’s not a “witch hunt” to tell people that their deeds REFLECT BADLY on the organization and to REGULATE. The Gods are attuned to the worth of the participants at a gathering. If you’re now having to pull out “respect for individual freedom” as a way to cover over racism, geez, we have hit the bottom of intellectual bankruptcy.

          • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

            Siegfried, now you’re just pushing it. Do you let every organization that you are a part of dictate the aspects of your life or beliefs?

            I would presume you have a job. You are part of that organization. Do you let your job dictate your religious or political beliefs? Would you? Should you? People scream oppression when Jobs try to dictate what we Pagans believe, or take actions against us for what we believe. Yet here you are, proclaiming that the AFA is dishonorable because it refuses to do the very thing that so many of us protest against: i.e. a third party that we associate with dictating our lives for us. The AFA is not a church. It is a collection of somewhat like minded Heathens (if Heathens can ever be of like mind) that get together out of a need to be with other Heathens. McNallen is not the Heathen pope. Last I checked, he wasn’t even really running the organization as much, but has been growing the admin staff to handle the rapid growth of the AFA.

            So if you feel that an Organizations should dictate what its believe and do, I suggest you start by submitting yourself to the organizations in your life and letting them police you, before you start yelling at other people to police others.

        • Thelettuceman

          Individual freedoms are representative of expectations of the whole. When one joins a group one has to be conscious of the outward appearance that they make. An employee that frequents the area that they work at in plain-clothes needs to be mindful of how their actions reflect on their company, even if they’re not currently on the clock.

          McNallen is not respecting individual freedoms. He’s respecting his choice not to get involved and pandering to people who claim that their civil rights are being trampled by being restrained. We have codes of conduct, and organizations are well within their rights to dictate what kind of appearance or public behavior is acceptable by their members, whether or not they are at official gatherings or not. EVERY member of every organization is a representative of that group. A card-holding member of the NRA needs be just as mindful of their actions and their words as a member of the AFA.

          • Anonymous

            Except that those AFA members at that conference were outed by a reporter. They were there as private individuals and didn’t advertise their affiliation with the AFA.

      • Anonymous

        Nazi rallies? lynch mobs? used in the same sentence with Steve McNallen. Sounds like a nice piece of character assassination.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1183329613 Joseph Max

    When I hear about “Europeans not being able to celebrate their culture without being called racist” I offer this in response:

    Ever been to a St. Patrick’s Day parade? In the USA, it’s damn near a national holiday, and has been as long as I’ve been alive. Last time I checked, the Irish are White Europeans.

    In San Francisco, the Italians make much of Columbus Day as their version of the same thing, a celebration of Italian culture. (Notwithstanding the denouncement of the Native American genocide that Columbus has come to represent. The Italian folk just look at the day as their “St. Patrick’s Day”, notwithstanding some Pagans I know that denounce the historical St. Patrick for similar crimes.)

    Isn’t an Oktoberfest a celebration of German culture? I’ve been to many Oktoberfest beergartens in my time. Just about every major city in the US has some kind of version of it (at least in the taverns!) Again, in San Francisco, the City closes off a block by City Hall for it, and the place is filled with lederhosen and polka music. You don’t get much more European White than that!

    So, can anyone here claiming Europeans can’t celebrate their culture without being labeled as “racists” point out examples of Oktoberfest being labeled by ANYONE as racist? Of course not. I see plenty of Black, Hispanic and Asian folks at Oktoberfests too, wearing feathered caps and slamming down Beck’s.

    Now, can you spot the signifying factor here? Ethnic Germans celebrating Oktoberfest – which is a kind of “secular pagan” harvest festival anyway – are celebrating their CULTURE, not their “whiteness”. They are expressing PRIDE in their culture, not ethnic VANITY. (There is a difference between pride and vanity.) And being properly proud of it, they want to share their culture, not only with their peers, but with anybody and everybody.

    Show me a Heathen group that would put on a public festival to celebrate their ancestral traditions and share them with others, Oktoberfest style, or at least be WILLING to do such a thing, and I’ll accept that they are a group not afflicted with racism. In fact, I know of such Heathens personally. But I think that’s a pretty revealing test.

    • Siegfried Goodfellow

      Excellent test! I love it!

    • Entdinglichung

      Oktoberfest is a Bavarian festival, for someone especially from the North but also for many from the West, the South-West or the East of Germany, it is a pretty weird thing :-)

    • http://vermillionrush.wordpress.com Vermillion

      NYC just had the German American Stuben parade last weekend which is the largest of its kind. LOTS of folks in Lederhosen and waving German flags. No one batted an eyelash (my only remark was that I was sad I had missed it, was hoping maybe to see if they had beer lol)

    • kenneth

      That’s an excellent distinction. The guys at that conference were not celebrating European culture primarily. They were spinning paranoid fantasies about “White Extinction” as a pretext for race war. They’re careful to say that it would all be “self defense” on their part and to disavow anything illegal, so it’s a “soft” white power movement, but a white power movement all the same.

      They’re trying to hide their real agenda behind the skirts of the legitimate cultural pride and Asatru traditions. It’s a sleazy, but effective tactic. Keep the race war stuff on the DL as much as possible, and if anyone calls you on it, turn the racism charge back on them. “What, you got something against European people?” Either McNallen can’t see through this ruse (which I very much doubt), OR, he has no problem with these people using AFA as a base of operations.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1183329613 Joseph Max

    Oh, I forgot to mention Ren Faires. And the festivals like the one Jason’s been covering, Fairieworlds. Sure looks like a celebration of White European culture to me! Any Ren Faire organizers you know of getting accused of being racists for celebrating a white ancestral culture?

  • Vargsig

    It’s like saying ‘I know some American’s are racist, therefore all American’s are racist’. The last thing Asatru needs is a bunch of people tearing it apart because of a tiny number of people’s unusual beliefs.

  • Laurel

    Ugh. I fully support folks celebrating and preserving their cultural heritage. What I find disgusting is if these AFA members are supposedly abiding by a code where everyone is “equal but different” why the fuck are they hob-nobbing with people making racists comments and jokes?

    Seeing the response from Stephen McNallen, as one of the main public faces of the AFA, clearly he is trying to dodge the elephant in the room. Careful sir. because one day that elephant is going to sit its big arse on you and all that will remain is a flattened pile of apologetics. That will be the day where you will no longer be able to save face, and by the looks of it, that is not too far off.

    • Anonymous

      I think he already did with the disintegration of the prior Asatru Free Assembly.

  • http://egregores.wordpress.com Apuleius Platonicus

    A little background on the relationship between the National Policy Institute and Christianity:

    1. The first “principle” of the NPI is: “The West is a cultural compound of our Classical, Christian, and Germanic past.”

    2. The first author of the NPI’s “Statement of Principles” is William H. Regnery II, president of the Charles Martel Society. Martel was the grandfather of Charlemagne, and is an unambiguous symbol of Christian theocracy and of the violent eradication of Germanic Heathenism by the Christians (and by the Frankish Carolingians in particular).

    3. Regnery is also the publisher of The Occidental Quarterly (TOQ). When TOQ ran an interview with Alan de Benoiste in 2005, all of Benoiste’s criticisms of Christianity were edited out (here they are).

    4. The second author of NPI’s “Statement of Principles” is Samuel T. Francis, a founding editor of TOQ. Francis is also the author of the “Statement of Principles” of the Council of Conservative Citizens, which describes the United States as “a Christian country” with a “Christian heritage”.

    5. A featured speaker at the 2011 NPI conference was James Edwards who once (2007) described David Duke as a “Christian man above reproach”.

    6. There are definitely people in the NPI crowd who are interested in “reaching out” to Pagans and Heathens. However, they are only interested in this to the extent that they can simultaneously avoid alienating right-wing Christians. NPI and their ilk will only associate with Heathens who are willing to accept the coercive Christianization of Europe as a positive part of the “heritage” of “the West”.

    7. One of the defining features of Radical Traditionalism is it’s uncompromising hatred for Christianity and Islam. This is what distinguishes it from the false Traditionalism of those who embrace Christianity and Islam as Traditional religions, when in fact they are the greatest enemies of Tradition.

  • http://www.magickal-media.com Alice C. “A.C.” Fisher Aldag

    Wow, four hundred sixty-odd comments. This issue really yanked some chains.

    Pagan Pride, and St. Patrick’s Day, and Octoberfest, and Columbus Day, and Cinco de Mayo, and the Scottish festival, and Ren Faires, and Pow Wows, and other celebrations of culture are wonderful, especially when there is food.

    Com’on, folkses, do you really think that one small group of crackpots advocating the notion of tossing a group of American citizens out of this country is gonna actually cause any serious damage?

    Further, do you actually think anyone of aforementioned crackpots are actually gonna put down their Pabst Blue Ribbon and mayonaisse sandwiches, turn off NASCAR and actually DO that? (Okay, THAT was racist. But admit it, that was also funny!)

    Maybe this happened in Germany in the 1930s, and in the Balkans in the 70s and 80s, and in Pol Pot’s Cambodia… but do you actually think it’s gonna happen here?

    I don’t. First of all, most Americans are pretty nice people. They stop to help you when your car is broken down. They give to charities. They (we) rescue people of different ethnicities and religions during emergencies. Second of all, most Americans are armed. Should the three or four hundred actual practicing racists try to send some nice taxpaying African Americans to Cuba, said racists are gonna get shot.

  • Strawman1776

    From a political standpoint – that’s my angle in this, mainly – religion should never be a part of the equation, I think. If you want to help folks head to Valhalla/Heaven/Paradise/Moksha/Nirvana then do it. Politics is the art of the possible and religion should stay separate.

    BTW I was at the NPI conference and those four people NEVER made any representation that they were officially representing anything (at least not that I heard in the 10 or so hours I was around them). Reading the Media Matters story, it sound to me that the biggest mistake they made was trusting someone.

  • http://www.wildhunt.org/blog/ Jason Pitzl-Waters

    I think this discussion has gone about as far as it could go. So I’m closing this thread down.