Thursday, January 09, 2020

After More Than 12 Years, Allow Me to Introduce Myself

My name is Kurt Phillips

For over 12 years I have been anonymously tracking neo-Nazis and hate groups and sharing that information on this blog. I am proud of my work and stand by its accuracy. When we write about individuals and groups we use their own words and actions to describe what they’ve done. We don’t make things up. If they’re on the blog, there’s a very good reason.

I knew that one day my identity would become public. We know who is responsible and what they’re capable of so they should just be left alone. I hope they find peace one day. Right now I am just so grateful to have the support of family, friends, and an entire community of people who have joined me in this project over the years

The reasons why I did the work anonymously should now be self evident. I have been subject to a barrage of threats and a campaign of lies by people online. On that note I would like to set the record straight.
  1. I am not a terrorist or a leader or member of any extremist groups. These claims are defamatory and I'm talking to lawyers. I am in fact a human rights activist whose political views are mainstream. I believe, by default, that every good Canadian is anti-racist. Threats have been made and my friends have been collecting evidence and filing criminal complaints.
  2. I have never, nor would I ever, promote acts of violence. Throughout my life I have rejected violence as a means of enacting change and have always promoted legal and democratic methods to make the world a better place. Those who know me know this. I believe exposing hate is one of the best ways to stop it.
  3. I have always encouraged critical thinking and free discussion in my class regardless of student's political beliefs. My only consistent demand is that students (as well as myself) treat each other with respect - and when disagreeing, do so in a manner that doesn’t vilify the other person. In nearly 20 years I have never had a complaint about my teaching, and I believe my past students would confirm this, many of whom have reached out to support me. Like any good teacher, I did my best to teach the values of tolerance and diversity within the curriculum. I never brought the blog into the classroom or encouraged students to join activist groups.
  4. I do not target conservatives. Being opposed to racism isn’t confined to any side of the political spectrum. Over the years I have focused on bigotry notwithstanding other political views. I know conservatives who are an ally in the struggle against hatred, and they're just as welcome in this fight as progressives.
  5. I am meticulous in my research. I strive to avoid mistakes and fix them when they are made. As a result I am considered an expert in this field of research and have been consulted for news stories, contacted by police to aid in investigations, and have been cited in mainstream academic studies. Again, if somebody is on this blog, there's a good reason. And if they’re attacking me right now, there’s a good reason for that too.
As of now I’m leaving the blog which will continue under new management. It is being left in very good hands. I am going to continue my work as a new board member of the non-profit Canadian Anti-Hate Network. Stay tuned.

Hate groups are more active today than I’ve ever seen. However, I am very hopeful about the future, especially seeing the critical and courageous young people growing up today.

We will win, together.

Cheers,

Kurt

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