A dangerous shift toward desensitisation

If you’ve been following Shermon and his team for the past few months, you’ve likely noticed the anomaly that I have – the shift toward desensitisation of xenophobic issues.  

Before I get into the issue of why this is dangerous, let me explain why I have come to this realisation.

Let’s wind back to March 2015. Shermon actually asked some of the Islamic faith if they wished to join in on Reclaim Australia to protest Sharia Law. Although this post stayed up for less than a few hours, it gave across a distinct impression that the movement wasn’t about white nationalism or protesting Islam as whole. It was a load of crap, but for the average ‘mums and dads’ type following, it was an easy message to swallow, as it bolstered their feeling about the rally being not-so-bigoted, after all, it seemed that he was only targeting radicals.

This continued with the entirety of the Reclaim Australia image, albeit the many times they slipped up and unveiled their true colours. Yet, they pressed on with the media. 

“We’re not against any particular race or any particular religion,” he said.

“We’re against the extremists of one particular religion.

“I know in Sydney and Melbourne they’ve got Muslims already signed on to attend because they can see what’s happening and they don’t like what’s happening.” John Oliver, RAR organiser told ABC. 

Of course, this was a load of shit. Even Scott Moerland tried to pass that one off. Not only was the issue of them pretending to be tolerant being undone, but their following didn’t seem to quite catch the memo.

 

I have screenshotted so many of these types of comments over the past few months that my phone is almost full. To collate them all would take days, but the feeling you would have about humanity after reading them would be less than pleasing.

Anyway, after April 4, there were clear issues with the image of Reclaim Australia. There were shed loads of White Nationalist and Neo Nazi attendees, and hypocritically, John Oliver stated “there isn’t much we can do about them [attending]” – mate, if you can’t control the extremist attendees to your rally, who are you and your following to tell the Islamic community to handle their small extremist following, worldwide, all the time?

There was also the issue with the idiots attending getting on film saying not-so-savoury things about “Muzzies”, many genocidal and outright xenophobic. 

Wind forward a few weeks, to the infamous Reclaim v Shermon split. Shermon’s new group, The UPF, had clearly stated its intention as the more extreme side who were attempting to ‘remove’ (interpret as you will) lefties. Oh, and Islam. The word ‘radical’ disappeared off their commonly used vocabulary. Not only did his new group bring over with it the more violent splitters (no thanks to his charming ‘unification’ technique), but it also allowed Neil Erikson and Blair Cottrell, who previously stayed under wraps, a free pass to the split light. The issue here was that they both have a history of online staunchly white nationalist racism.

Over the first few weeks, Shermon deflected his less rabid following from questioning the new team’s past. By deflect, I mean delete, ban, or tell them to “take it up personally” with the person they had issue with. 

Over the coming weeks, they propped up the “biggest rally ever” against the left. It garnered about 30-50 attendees at its peak. It also attracted more Neo Nazis.

Afte this failure, Blair clearly had to do something to street their sinking ship to safety. Their following was in tatters, the “biggest rally ever” had less attendees than a post office queue on a Wednesday lunch break. What did he do? Pretended it was a win. Pretended it was intentional. 

The next few weeks, up until recently, had been a mess, random videos exploiting women as sexual objects, a 10 second video of Neil being sexist, videos of Shermon getting red-faced and aggravated on camera whilst clearly under the influence. But there was something different this time. There was no denials of nationalism, no (or few) denials of their racist views, their racist past. In fact, it actually got worse. 

Last week Blair released a video about how people should be proud of their ancestral heritage, and also spoke about how he was “attacked by brown people” who didn’t “look like [him]”. 

We had late night postings from the elusive rat Thomas Sewell, such as the one below.

   

These messages were quickly becoming so much more essentialist in tone, with less crappy attempts at covering it up. We suspected at this point that they were testing the waters of how white nationalistic (racist and stupid) their following were without saying anything. That only got worse when Blair released a video the following day, telling people that the words racist, sexist, homophobe and Islamophobe held no value, as they were considerably new in contrast to the age of the English language. This was his attempt at desensitising the following to what these words actually mean – an attempt to excuse the behaviour they describe as tolerable. 

 

Pushing Blair to actually expose his true colours took little effort. In a question posed to him about his feelings on the LGBTQI communtiy, women, and the disabled, he gave this response:

 

 

Essentialism and “natural law” in its purest form. Basically, the whitewashed attempt at legitimising homophobia, racism, sexism and ableism in one single reply. 

The most alarming bit was the amount of likes this achieved. Granted, 99% of his following don’t understand what he writes, but the fact they’re willing to indicate they support his rambling is a grave concern.

The icing on the cake came last night, when Thomas Sewell released a video stating that “Islam is but the tip of the iceberg. The real issue is multiculturalism.” 

  

Now, we always saw this turning into full blown, protectionist white nationalism, but the one thing that amazes us is that nobody says a damn thing. Maybe that’s because they delete and ban anyone in their following who says anything about it, but there was a litany of support in what he was saying. How can people support that? 

One thing we’ve also noticed is how their following has thinned out to a select few consistent commenters. These people are almost always white. 

This confirms to us that the entirety of the UPF’s agenda is sailing toward white nationalism. I believe it was the agenda from the beginning. 

Now, I do believe they’ve somewhat peaked, I don’t think they’re going to experience any new rush of a following, however, considering a lot of people don’t actually listen to what is being said and understand the message, Cottrell and Sewell (absolutely not Neil or Shermon) have the ability to confuse bigots into agreement through the use of a wider vocabulary. That has the potential for further abuse. 

What’s happens next, I’m not yet too sure. I suspect that the next set of rallies will be rather fractured, and I’m willing to bet money on the fact that they will again be outnumbered on July 18. However, this is dangerous, as the desensitisation to not just racism, but sexism and homophobia is well under way.

Just remember – these people vote.

ReclaimWhat.

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