Montana Officials Condemn Plans For A White-Nationalist March

Photo: David Mcnew/AFP/Getty Images
Whitefish, Montana, the home of alt-right writer and activist Richard Spencer, has found itself in the center of controversy after the governor and legislators from both political parties have condemned plans for an upcoming white-nationalist march. The Washington Post reports that this is the next step in a series of escalating conflicts between the Spencer family and the local government, and comes after a particularly tense election season.

What began as Spencer's mother feeling pressured to denounce her sons beliefs has resulted in Gov. Steve Bullock (D), Sen. Jon Tester (D), Sen. Steve Daines (R), Rep. Ryan Zinke (R), and Attorney General Tim Fox (R) co-signing a letter that denounces any attempts to rally white nationalists in Whitefish.

“We condemn attacks on our religious freedom manifesting in a group of anti-Semites,” the letter, released Tuesday morning, reads. “We stand firmly together to send a clear message that ignorance, hatred and threats of violence are unacceptable and have no place in the town of Whitefish, or in any other community in Montana or across this nation. We say to those few who seek to publicize anti-Semitic views that they shall find no safe haven here.”

Spencer claims that after his ideologies, namely that white people should be separate from other races, gained notoriety, his mother began receiving threats. White nationalists expressed their desire to rally in response, with Daily Stormer's Andrew Anglin writing that, “Montana has extremely liberal open carry laws, so my lawyer is telling me we can easily march through the center of the town carrying high-powered rifles."

The officials strongly advise against this. “Any demonstration or threat of intimidation against any Montanan’s religious liberty will not be tolerated,” the letter continues. “It takes all Montanans working together to eradicate religious intolerance. We are encouraged that so many Montanans from a variety of religious backgrounds have joined us in condemning this extreme ideology.”

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