Data showed a sharp increase in hate crimes, and 2020 could prove worse

People hold crosses honoring those killed in the 2019 Walmart shooting which left 23 people dead in a racist attack targeting Latinos. Photo: Mario Tama/Getty Images

In an October interview, extremism expert Brian Levin predicted to GEN that when the Federal Bureau of Investigations released data for 2019, it would turn out to be “the worst year for far-right domestic terrorism that we’ve seen this century.” This week, his prediction proved correct.

According to data released by the agency on Monday, more people in the United States were murdered in hate-motivated killings last year than in any year since the FBI began collecting that data. Hate crimes as a whole also reached their highest level in more than a decade.

Fifty-one people died in hate crime…


Rumors of War

Hate crimes and domestic terrorism are real risks surrounding the election

Photo illustration: Anthony Gerace; source: Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Seven days after President Trump told the Proud Boys, a hate group that espouses a self-described “Western chauvinist” ideology, to “stand back and stand by” on national television, the United States Department of Homeland Security issued a warning about groups like it.

“I am particularly concerned about white supremacist violent extremists who have been exceptionally lethal in their abhorrent, targeted attacks in recent years,” wrote Chad Wolf, the interim DHS chief, in an October 6 report detailing the agency’s top security concerns. Domestic violent extremism, the agency concluded, is one of the country’s greatest national security threats. Just two days…


As demonstrators flood the streets to protest the killing of George Floyd, police have turned to a familiar — and dangerous — tactic

An officer aims a rubber bullet gun at demonstrators in Long Beach, CA. Photo: MediaNews Group/Long Beach Press-Telegram via Getty Images

The first thing to know about rubber bullets is the name is a misnomer. Among the 75 different kinds manufactured, relatively few are made of solid rubber. Some, called “bean bag rounds,” are stuffed with lead pellets; others contain metal fragments and many have steel cores. Different substances, but a similar result. Together, rubber bullets, whose velocities can match those of live ammunition, have an estimated fatality rate of 3%, higher than Covid-19.

As demonstrators flood their city streets to protest the killing of George Floyd by police officer Derek Chauvin, law enforcement officials have taken to using “nonlethal” force…


Photos: Justin T. Gellerson

The firebrand freshman congresswoman spoke to GEN about impeachment, the myth of electability, and working on Elizabeth Warren’s campaign

On a chilly afternoon in early January, Katie Porter was thinking about corporate America. In the narrow, stale maze of hallways belonging to Democrats of the House Oversight Committee, the freshman congresswoman from California was darting in and out of conference rooms, prepping with harried aides for a hearing about the upcoming census count.

Businesses in her district, she later told me in a cramped office belonging to committee chair Carolyn Maloney, didn’t want the Trump administration to add a question about citizenship to the survey — small but consequential evidence, Porter believes, that it’s possible to “reset the relationship…

Morgan Baskin

D.C.-based reporter covering politics, housing, and the social safety net.

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