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John Earnest, 19, had graduated from Mt. Carmel High School, where his father was a teacher and the Anti-Defamation League’s “No Place for Hate” program was in place.  He attended California State University at San Marcos and studied nursing, to help people he wrote. He was on the Dean’s List.  He played the piano and claimed that Chopin’s Scherzo No. 2 was his favorite. Earnest also had his own ideas.

He wrote an eight-page manifesto. John Earnest explained his love for white people, which he defined in an explicitly genealogical fashion.  He then declared, “I would die a thousand times over to prevent the doomed fate that the Jews have planned for my race.”  He detailed what he perceives are the Jewish crimes against the white race—which follow the usual litany from pornography to usury to “using mass immigration to displace the European race.”

John Earnest also echoed Robert Bowers, the killer of 11 Jews at the Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh last October.  “Jews are the children of Satan,” Bowers wrote at the top of his internet account with Gab, and he cited John 8:44 as his source.  Actually, according to the King James Bible, John 8:44 reads: “Ye are of your father the devil and the lusts of your father ye will do.”  It is in the context of Jesus declaring that he is of “Abraham our father” and Jews and others who were non-believers being of the devil.

John Earnest did the same thing, citing John “8:37 thru 8:45.”  He killed one and injured five Jews before his rifle jammed at the Chabad of Poway synagogue in San Diego County.  He had allegedly already set fire to a mosque in Escondido in March.

This is not a mistake.  Anti-Semites have been citing this chapter of John for almost 1,500 years as proof that they are following Jesus.  It is past time for Protestant and Catholic leaders to do more than claim they have a different interpretation of the Book of John.

John Earnest published on 8chan’s pol board, where he was an avid reader of white supremacist postings for the past year and a half, according to journalist Robert Evans.  “But no matter what else is discussed,” on the board, according to Evans, “anti-Semitism, Islamophobia, hatred of LGBT individuals and a desire to commit murder under the swastika are constant through-lines.”  This 8chan board was also read and used by, Brenton Harrison Tarrant, the shooter who killed 50 and injured another 50 at a mosque in Christchurch, New Zealand..  And Earnest cited Tarrant in his own manifesto.

Further, the symbol Tarrant left behind at the mosque was also painted on the ground at an arson site at Highlander Education and Research Center in Tennessee. And it had previously been worn by national socialist activist Matthew Heimbach.

Matthew Heimbach

Matthew Heimbach

Certainly, these white supremacist killers and burners are paying attention to each other and drawing inspiration from each other. White supremacists have been hoping for a splurge of “lone wolf” killings ever since 1989 when William Pierce wrote his Hunter novel.  It appears now that this violent splurge by seemingly unconnected killers has finally arrived.

It is time for a new strategy by anti-racists.

Leonard Zeskind

Author Leonard Zeskind

is founder of IREHR. For almost four decades, he has been a leading authority on white nationalist political and social movements. He is the author of Blood and Politics: The History of White Nationalism from the Margins to the Mainstream, published by Farrar Straus & Giroux in May 2009. [more..]

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