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White nationalist groups hit Tacoma colleges with hate speech and other propaganda

A photo from the Twitter account of Identity Europa shows a sticker for the group on a pole outside The Swiss, across from the University of Washington Tacoma. The photo was tweeted March 2, 2018.
A photo from the Twitter account of Identity Europa shows a sticker for the group on a pole outside The Swiss, across from the University of Washington Tacoma. The photo was tweeted March 2, 2018.

White nationalist propaganda was found at two Tacoma colleges Monday morning and immediately removed by campus staff.

Posters and business cards for Patriot Front were found on the Tacoma Community College campus while stickers for Identity Evropa were found on the University of Washington Tacoma grounds.

“We took them all down immediately,” said TCC spokeswoman Tamyra Howser. The stickers found at UWT were removed around 9 a.m., said spokesman Mike Wark.

In both cases, the fliers, stickers and business cards violated the schools’ posting policies. All such material must be approved in advance, both schools said.

Identity Evropa, which states membership is for people of European heritage, pushes anti-immigration and anti-Muslim messaging. Members attended the recent Conservative Political Action Conference that was also attended by President Donald Trump.

“Trump has given us an opportunity to transform the GOP from a vehicle for Conservatism Inc. to one for Nationalism, and it’s up to us to seize the opportunity,” the group’s executive director, Patrick Casey, wrote after the conference.

The posters for Patriot Front had white supremacist messaging. According to the Anti-Defamation League, Patriot Front asserts that their ancestors conquered America and bequeathed it solely to them. It also espouses racism, anti-Semitism and intolerance.

“It certainly does not align with our ideals of diversity, equality and inclusiveness,” Howser said.

Similar material was found in Gig Harbor in November, according to news reports.

Evropa tweeted a photo of the stickers found on the UWT campus. The account shows stickers purporting to be on several other campuses.

Other than a blog post from the university about the incident, no other action is being taken at UWT, Wark said. Faculty members, aware of Identity Evropa’s ideology, notified the school of the postings, he said.

“When people make the connection, it raises concerns,” Wark said.

TCC is also not taking further action, Howser said.

Similar propaganda was found on the Eastern Washington University campus in Cheney in February. Students there held a “unity rally” in response, according to the Spokesman Review.

Craig Sailor: 253-597-8541, @crsailor

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