League of the South
|Type||Non-governmental organization, Separatist group|
|Purpose||Creation of a neo-Confederate white Southern nation, based on Protestant Christianity.|
|Southern United States|
|Thomas Fleming, Michael Peroutka, Brad "Hunter Wallace" Griffin, Clyde N. Wilson, Isaac Baker, Michael Tubbs, Michael "Palmetto Patriot" Cushman Thomas Woods|
|Subsidiaries||Southern Patriot (magazine)|
The League of the South (LS) is an American white nationalist, neo-Confederate, white supremacist organization, headquartered in Killen, Alabama, which states that its ultimate goal is "a free and independent Southern republic".
The group defines the Southern United States as the states that made up the former Confederacy (Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Texas, Tennessee and Virginia). It claims to also be a religious and social movement, advocating a return to a more traditionally conservative, Christian-oriented Southern culture.
The movement and its members are allied with the alt-right. The group was part of the neo-Nazi Nationalist Front formerly alongside the National Socialist Movement (NSM), the now defunct Traditionalist Workers Party (TWP) and Vanguard America (VA) since rebranded as Patriot Front. The group participated in the Pikeville rally in Pikeville, Kentucky, the Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville, Virginia and the White Lives Matter rally in Shelbyville, Tennessee as key organizers in all three events. The Southern Poverty Law Center has designated it as a hate group.
The organization was formed in 1994 by Michael Hill and others, including attorney Jack Kershaw and Libertarian historian Thomas Woods. The League of the South was named in reference to the League of United Southerners, a group organized in 1858 to shape Southern public opinion and the Lega Nord (Northern League), a very successful populist movement in Northern Italy from which the group took inspiration.
The League's first meeting was represented with a group of 40 men, 28 of whom formed an organization then known as The Southern League. The name was changed to The League of the South in 1996 in order to avoid confusion with the Southern League of Minor League Baseball. Among the early members were Southern professors, including president Michael Hill. Hill was a British history professor and specialist in Celtic history at Stillman College, a historically black school in Tuscaloosa. However, Hill has since left his teaching position.
Since 2007, The League's main publication has been The Free Magnolia, a quarterly tabloid.
In 2001 they asked US congress to pay $5 billion in reparations for "property" (which at the time included human beings) which was taken or destroyed by Union forces during the Civil War. The group's legal counsel Jack Kershaw said their proposal included paying reparations to African-Americans due to the supposed negative effect the end of slavery had on their ancestors: "Blacks were better off in antebellum times in the South than they were anywhere else. [...] They lost a lot too when that lifestyle was destroyed."
The League defines Southern culture as profoundly Christian and anti-abortion. The League describes Southern Culture as being inherently Anglo-Celtic in nature (originating in the British Isles), and they believe the South's core Anglo-Celtic culture should be preserved.
According to the League, the South has had a Marxist and egalitarian society "impressed upon it". The League's Core Beliefs Statement advocates the stigmatization of "perversity and all that seeks to undermine marriage and the family."
The League believes that what it calls "the Southern people" have the right to secede from the United States, and that they "must throw off the yoke of imperial [federal, or central government] oppression". The League promotes a Southern Confederation of sovereign, independent States. The League favors strictly limited immigration, opposes standing armies and any regulation whatsoever of firearms. This proposed independent nation is described by League publications as part of a process to convince "the Southern people" that they have a unique identity.
The League focuses on recruiting and encouraging "cultural secession". In November 2006 its representatives attended the First North American Secessionist Convention of secessionists from different parts of the country. In October 2007 it co-hosted the Second North American Secessionist Convention in Chattanooga, Tennessee.
In 2015, the group announced it would be holding an event celebrating the assassination of Abraham Lincoln, while honoring John Wilkes Booth as a hero. On April 11, 2015, it was organized by the vice chairman of the Maryland-Virginia chapter of the League, Shane Long. The LOS's main Facebook page put it bluntly: "Join us in April to celebrate the great accomplishment of John Wilkes Booth. He knew a man who needed killing when he saw him!"
The League has attempted to form paramilitary groups on more than one occasion.
The League of the South is opposed to fiat currency, personal income taxation, central banking, property taxes and most state regulation of business. The League supports sales taxes and user fees.
Designation as hate group
In the summer of 2000, the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) designated the League of the South as a hate group, citing the group's "academic veneer" of revisionist history and calls for secession. Hill dismissed the designation as politically motivated.
According to the Anti-Defamation League (ADL), the League of the South is a white supremacist group which promotes racism and anti-Semitism through events held with other white supremacist groups. The League of the South joined the Nationalist Front, a loose coalition of neo-Nazis and other white supremacists, in 2017.
The League's board of directors is composed of Michael Hill, Mark Thomey, Mike Crane, Sam Nelson, and John Cook. Among the founding members were Thomas Fleming, Thomas Woods, Grady McWhiney, Clyde Wilson, and Forrest McDonald.
- Antisemitism in the United States
- List of active separatist movements in North America
- List of organizations designated by the Southern Poverty Law Center as hate groups
- Nationalist Front (United States)
- White nationalism
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- http://www.legacy.com/obituaries/tennessean/obituary.aspx?n=jack-kershaw&pid=145402616&fhid=4485 Archived January 21, 2012, at the Wayback Machine Jack Kershaw Obituary
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Patrick J. Buchanan's presidential bid has turned the once- centrist Reform Party into a magnet attracting leaders and activists of such extreme right organizations as the National Alliance, the Liberty Lobby, the Council of Conservative Citizens and the League of the South. [...] * Alabama League of the South, a pro-secession organization, recently published an article in its newsletter declaring that "conservatives do have a place to go. The Reform Party is America First on nation-defining issues. . . . It is essential that Buchananism lives on after the 2000 election."
- Whitmore Jones, Suzanne; Monteith, Sharon (2002). South to a new place: region, literature, culture. LSU Pres`. p. 341. ISBN 978-0-8071-2840-4. Retrieved January 5, 2011.
- Walkowitz, Daniel J.; Lisa Maya Knauer (2005). Memory and the impact of political transformation in public space. Duke University Press. p. 39. ISBN 978-0-8223-3364-7. Archived from the original on September 10, 2017. Retrieved November 5, 2016.
- Atkins, Stephen E. (2002). Encyclopedia of modern American extremists and extremist groups. Greenwood Press. p. 183. ISBN 978-0-313-31502-2.
- "White nationalist group linked to violent street brawls descends on Florida". Newsweek. January 27, 2018. Archived from the original on April 20, 2018. Retrieved April 20, 2018.
- Ahmed, Saeed (April 13, 2001). "Group seeks reparations for Civil War 'atrocities'". The Atlanta Constitution.
- The Grand Strategy Archived September 26, 2007, at the Wayback Machine
- Gary Shapiro, "Modern-Day Secessionists Will Hold a Conference on Leaving the Union," The New York Sun, September 27, 2006, 6; Paul Nussbaum, "Coming together to ponder pulling apart, Latter-day secessionists of all stripes convene in Vermont, The Philadelphia Inquirer, November 6, 2006.
- Bill Poovey, Secessionists Meeting in Tennessee, Associated Press, reprinted in The Guardian, October 3, 2007; Leonard Doyle, Anger over Iraq and Bush prompts calls for secession from the US Archived January 17, 2008, at the Wayback Machine, Independent, UK, October 4, 2007; WDEF News 12 Video report on Secessionist Convention Archived October 11, 2007, at the Wayback Machine, October 3, 2007. The Third North American Secessionist Convention will be held in Manchester, New Hampshire, on November 14–16, 2008.
- Throckmorton, Warren. "League of the South Plans April Celebration of Lincoln's Assassination". Archived from the original on February 25, 2015. Retrieved February 25, 2015.
- "League of the South Announces Formation of 'Southern Defense Force'". Southern Poverty Law Center. Archived from the original on May 15, 2017. Retrieved June 11, 2017.
- John DeSantis, Civil War revisionism all cited by watchdog group Archived December 15, 2013, at the Wayback Machine, from The Sun Herald, September 7, 2000, reproduced at Ross Institute.
- The League's website
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