Recruitment fliers for “Identity Evropa,” which were recently posted across the University of Massachusetts, Boston campus (screenshot)

Well, maybe this will explain why we’ve seen a seeming uptick in racist incidents at college campuses across the nation. According to analysis by the Anti-Defamation League, groups that the organization identifies as white supremacist are really pushing their agenda on college campuses, aiming to recruit students at the institutions and plaster their messages across campus grounds.

The ADL calls it “an unprecedented outreach effort to attract and recruit students on American college campuses.”

Advertisement

According to the Washington Post, the group, which tasks itself with fighting anti-Semitism and other forms of bigotry, has tracked some 104 incidents since the beginning of the school year in September, with an apparent surge in 2017, with more than half the reported incidents occurring since January.

Since the election, racist graffiti, students wearing blackface and using slurs and throwing up the Nazi salute, and the appearance of racist fliers and posters on college campuses have overwhelmed the news cycle. The ADL says that some of this surge is due to a calculated effort by hate groups.

“White supremacists have consciously made the decision to focus their recruitment efforts on students and have in some cases openly boasted of efforts to establish a physical presence on campus,” ADL Chief Executive Jonathan Greenblatt said in a statement. “While there have been recruitment efforts in the past, never have we seen anti-Semites and white supremacists so focused on outreach to students on campus.”

Advertisement

Advertisement

These methods of recruitments it lists include flooding campus fax machines with racist flier; hanging anti-Muslim, anti-immigrant and/or anti-Semitic posters on campus; visiting campuses to talk to students; and giving public speeches and holding rallies. The group has recorded incidents at schools in some 28 states.

The ADL attributes most of the incidents nationwide to three white supremacist organizations: Identity Evropa, American Vanguard and American Resistance.

Reinhard Wolff, the director of administration for Identity Evropa, told the Post that the group is not about white supremacy.

“The ADL needs ‘white supremacist’ boogeymen to stay in business,” Wolff wrote in an email. “We’re not supremacists by any means, but we’re not really concerned with such childish labels. Our adversaries have to resort to name-calling and buzzwords because that’s all they have left at this point.”

Read more at the Washington Post.