*The white nationalist whose speech in D.C. went viral this week visited Roland Martin’s “NewsOne Now” program where he was challenged on his Hitleresque theories about white people and discussed the rise of alt-right politics following President-Elect Donald Trump’s victory.
Richard Spencer, president of the National Policy Institute, touted the resurgence of his community, European identity, cultural Christianity, and complained about what he called “explicit discrimination against white people” in the workforce.
“I do think that the alt-right – we’ve gone from being a movement that was not connected to the political mainstream; not connected to the political fray,” said Spencer on Tuesday’s broadcast. “We now are. People are paying attention to us and people are looking at us. …We need to think of ourselves as a mainstream movement that’s going to reach people because we do have that power.”
Last Saturday, the National Policy Institute (an independent research organization “dedicated to the heritage, identity and future of people of European descent in the United States,” according to its website) held its annual conference in Washington. The Atlantic, currently shooting a documentary on Spencer, released footage of his closing remarks at the gathering, which ended with the room of about 200 attendees yelling “Hail Trump” and throwing Nazi salutes.
Martin played the viral video for Spencer, who characterized the Hitler move as folks getting carried away and trying to be provocative.
“There’s a lot of exuberance at events like this. There’s also a lot of irony. When it’s done in the context of the alt-right, it’s done in a spirit of fun,” Spencer told Martin.
Martin countered with the argument that white supremacists who claim to be proud Americans should denounce anything having to do with Hitler and Nazi propaganda because of this country’s involvement in WWII.
“That’s offensive to Americans. That’s offensive to American soldiers,” Martin said of the Nazi salutes. “That’s offensive to World War II veterans.”
The conversation moved on to Spencer’s claim that whites are facing job discrimination.
“If whites are dominating jobs in banking; if whites are dominating on Wall Street; if whites are dominating hedge funds; if whites are dominating NFL owners and NBA owners; if whites are dominating major sectors; how in the world can you somehow say, ‘Oh, my god. It’s rough for us white people out here?’” said Martin. “It’s not.”
Spencer said he’s more worried about white Millennials being shut out of jobs that he feels are earmarked for minorities: “These institutions are actively explicitly trying to discriminate against them in terms of hiring. It’s unfair, I don’t like it, but even worse this is moving towards a country that is not going to be the country that we want.”
Martin goes on to destroy Spencer’s claim that America was built by white Europeans. He reminds Spencer of the free labor that blacks provided during slavery, and the cheap labor after slavery; and how it fueled the economic engine that built this country.
Spencer uttered the words “affirmative action” and Martin was ready. He schooled Spencer on the Homestead Act and the G.I. Bill, two government programs that helped homesteaders in 1862 and WWII vets in 1944 purchase homes.
In closing, Spencer issued a warning: “You’ve dealt with a bunch of guilt-ridden silly whites all your life and we are waking up. We are recognizing who we are and we see an amazing future, so you better get ready.”
Watch the interview in its entirety below, courtesy of TV One/NewsOne Now