This is what I found when I read the Hate Trackers article Mystical Illusions (no author credited) Their articles make a lot of assumptions and amount to little more than propaganda, despite the positive intentions behind the movement. The Bias starts with the title. As someone who hates and is hated by Nazis I do agree with most of what they’re saying. As someone who studied journalism though, its a biased piece without sources or any specific direction to it other than to make people dislike the individuals mentioned. “Records indicate Benner met her in Colorado Springs, Colorado, where she was attending ” What records? Who provided them? I realize I’m playing devil’s advocate here but a fair and unbiased media is necessary for democracy to survive. We shouldn’t lower our standards of media just because we agree with what the author is saying. There are no direct sources to speak of and I found the following to be problematic “However, the outlaw biker clubs are considered criminal gangs. They’re always attached to violence, drug sales, and ex-cons…future ones too.” Making sweeping negative generalizations about groups of people is exactly what Nazis do. I know several bikers, and have seen many “outlaw bikers” who wear anti-swaztika patches and tattoos. Yes there are white supremacist bikers, no question. But if I’m getting into a fight I’d want the anti-Nazi outlaw bikers on my side. All this is gonna do is piss them off. Why do they not have any quotes from the Wiccans or even a staff member? How did they get all this inside info on this particular group’s recruitment methods? Who provided it? “Lyanna could’ve been underage during the time of the nuptials.” Okay she could have been many things, but was she or was she not underage? Thats fairly important. If you’re a journalist and don’t know its better not to mention what might have occurred and focus on what can be verified. I understand I’ll probably be disliked for this viewpoint but people deserve to know the full truth, not scraps and hints from unnamed people. “outlaw bikers are never without their guns, knives, and clubs. They tend to be under the influence of drugs and alcohol, while carrying those weapons, and ready for a fight.” This is just stereotyping potential allies and alienating drug addicts or alcoholics, including recovering ones. I was an addict, that line tells me that no matter what I do to stand up to injustices I will still be viewed as a filthy junkie. “He’s also a graduate of drug court, which is a program used to try to keep people out of prison after their addictions turned to criminality.” -pretty much another middle finger at addicts and other disadvantaged people. No relevance to the preceding paragraph but tacked on to show that nazis are bad because they go to 12 step meetings? Not because they support ethnic cleansing and genocide? “Ackerman hails from Austin, Texas where his criminal record includes the manufacturing, delivery, sell, and possession of narcotics.” -Spelling error and yet another dig at the addicts. They finish with a random fact about Timothy Mcveigh, the OKC Bomber who was not a nazi, though still a horrible person that was executed years ago. Why is he relevant to a nazi tattoo shop? And to round it off “Note: After Hate Trackers did its intelligence report on the Proud Boys of Oklahoma a number of people associated with them threatened to send Ackerman to hurt us.” Why didn’t they publish the threats in full or even an excerpt? They don’t have anything to lose. For years its been the drunks, the punks and the junkies actually fighting these people while polite society sat on its ass and let this happen. Its a shame that a website claiming to be against hate is using the media ingrained disgust of drug users, bikers and alcoholics as a recruiting tool. It is poorly written, devoid of first hand sources and includes irrelevant material. This would not have made it on to a college paper, I doubt it would even be accepted by a professor as a practice piece. From a personal standpoint: screw nazis, nazi sympathizers and people who believe themselves better than others and judge what they do not understand. Its a very fascist mindset for people who claim to be against hate. Try the Associated Press or your local paper, or even give it a shot yourselves. Verify facts, call phone numbers, publish everything they send you and get direct quotes with first and last names as well as age and why their opinion is significant to the article. Those things are what separate factual journalism from propaganda and advertisement. Don’t tell me bikers are dangerous, reference an event that supports the conclusion and above all try not to alienate massive swaths of the population while asking for money at the same time. I would like to remind the staff of Hate trackers that bikers, alcoholics and drug addicts both former and current are all people that you just insulted. I would like to remind them that drug use and alcoholism is very co-morbid with mental illness. I want to know if anyone at Hate Trackers has ever heard of Aktion T4. I would not be surprised if they hadn’t.
–Jack Blare, 2018