Yesterday's assassination of the husband and mother of Federal Judge Joan Lefkow had me doing a bit of reading into the dark side. Lefkow served as judge at a trial where white supremacist Matthew Hale's group lost the right to use the name World Church of the Creator. Hale was soon to be sentenced for plotting against Judge Lefkow's life. Today I visited the web sites of the National Alliance, their magazine the National Vanguard, and a few other places where the sun don't shine.

What strikes me about these people is how goddamned normal they seem. So much of their propaganda is about pride, and they really seem to feel they're under threat. They act as if people think being white, male and Christian is a bad thing. Which is really funny because white, Christian males dominate world politics and world business. We rule the world, so it seems utterly silly that these people should find reason to complain.

The problem for them is that while white male Christians are powerful and accepted, white male racists are not. They have a point in pointing out we often excuse a bit of bigotry from the members of persecuted minorities. Hatred is wrong no matter who is doing it. But anger does make a lot more sense coming from those who had to fight tooth and nail for basic dignity-- just maybe something pissed them off along the road to equality. No point in condemning an idea just because the messenger is flawed.

The question is what pissed the "white power" set off? Did they expect that being white would guarantee them a $60K job, and SUV, a place in the suburbs and blowjobs from strippers? Did they think black people would happily remain maids and busboys? Not enough lawn jockeys for them? How can they actually think that being Jewish automatically makes a person anti-Gentile? Granted, if someone had killed off six-million Irish/english mutts like myself I might hold a bit of a grudge. As ye sow . . . .

I once knew a man named Claude Budd, a retired minister in the United Church of Christ. During World War II Claude served as a pyschologist under General George S. Patton. Late in the war, when Germany's defeat was certain Third Army turned east into Czechoslovakia. There Third Army troops were the first to overrun some of the concentration camps where Jews were sent to labor and die. When the soldiers discoveries were reported, Claude was sent forward to help out both the victims of the holocaust, incuding American soldiers who had seen something more vicious than their wildest nightmares.

More than fifty years after the end of World War II Claude Budd would not talk about those days. He told me that if he talked about those days, thought about them, or saw a film about it he'd have nightmares for weeks. It was a part of his life he could not bear, even though his role in it had been as a giver of comfort.

And so these latter day Nazis work so hard to pretend normality, to appear calm and reasonable people, who are merely persecuted by a world dead set against them. To them it isn't about hatred but pride.

But I've looked into the eyes of Claude Budd. I know better. And I know why they try so hard to deny their ultimate crime ever occured. For Auschwitz is not the black sheep of hatred, but its logical extension. The Nazis really didn't do anything that dozens of KKK lynch mobs, or medieval rioters had not except to systematize the process, to massacre in cold rather than hot blood. Todays right wing bigots can protest all they want but what they really want is blood.