White Lives Matter, a group in the United States that claims to be “dedicated to the preservation of the white race”, will be classified as a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) and listed on the civil rights organisation’s upcoming Hate Map, it said on Tuesday. White Lives Matter was formed in response to the emergence of Black Lives Matter, a social movement that campaigns against structural racism and police brutality directed at the black communities of the US.
White Lives Matter has firm ties to white supremacist groups, according to The Independent.
“It’s clear that the leadership of the group, the ends of the group – it’s just a flat-out white supremacist group,” Heidi Beirich, director of SPLC’s Intelligence Report said, describing the movement as racist.
Black Lives Matter is not considered a hate group by SPLC as Time reported because there is “nothing at all to suggest that the bulk of the demonstrators hold supremacist or black separatist views”, said the watchdog organisation.
White Lives Matter last week gathered at the Houston chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), protesting what it deemed violent acts by black civil rights activists.
“We came out here to protest against the NAACP and their failure in speaking out against the atrocities that organisations like Black Lives Matter and other pro-black organisations have caused the attack and killing of white police officers, the burning down of cities,” White Lives Matter’s Ken Reed said at the August 21 protest.
A petition calling for the classification of Black Lives Matter as a terrorist group following the shootings of black, white, and latino police officers in Dallas and Baton Rouge was recently rejected by US President Barack Obama. Leaders of Black Lives Matter had condemned the shootings.
White Lives Matter will join 892 other hate groups on SPLC’s Hate Map in February.