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This former neo-Nazi has an urgent message for Donald Trump about terrorism

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Former American neo-Nazi and Life After Hate co-founder Christian Picciolini was deeply disturbed by President Trump’s decision to stop a U.S. government program that fought violent extremism in all forms from targeting white supremacists.

“I think that’s a mistake,” Picciolini said, acknowledging that prior administrations have “recognized the threat within our own borders.” In Trump’s America, “we have a domestic terrorism issue that we hardly talk about because we’re so focused on the threat coming from overseas.”

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Neo-Nazi leader Clark Martell recruited Picciolini to the Chicago Area Skinheads in 1987 when he was just 14 years old. At 18, Picciolini was leading the group, with Martell in prison. By the mid-’90s he was through, but his memories haunt him to this day.

Picciolini co-founded Life After Hate in 2009, a non-profit geared toward helping people leave hate groups.

“The imagery of white supremacy has changed over the last three decades,” he explained. “We knew that we were turning more people away than we could eventually have on our side.”

Picciolini understands why these hate groups are so hard to abandon.

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“White nationalists, just like any other extremist group, promise paradise,” Picciolini told Vox. “They promise that the problems of crime and the problems of ‘white genocide’ are going to go away.”

“The problem,” he explained “is that nobody is trying to take [anything] away from you.”

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Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. Like you, we here at Raw Story believe in the power of progressive journalism — and we’re investing in investigative reporting as other publications give it the ax. Raw Story readers power David Cay Johnston’s DCReport, which we've expanded to keep watch in Washington. We’ve exposed billionaire tax evasion and uncovered White House efforts to poison our water. We’ve revealed financial scams that prey on veterans, and efforts to harm workers exploited by abusive bosses. We’ve launched a weekly podcast, “We’ve Got Issues,” focused on issues, not tweets. Unlike other news sites, we’ve decided to make our original content free. But we need your support to do what we do.

Raw Story is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. We’re not part of a conglomerate, or a project of venture capital bros. From unflinching coverage of racism, to revealing efforts to erode our rights, Raw Story will continue to expose hypocrisy and harm. Unhinged from corporate overlords, we fight to ensure no one is forgotten.

We need your support to keep producing quality journalism and deepen our investigative reporting. Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Invest with us in the future. Make a one-time contribution to Raw Story Investigates, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you.



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‘That is ridiculous’: Andrew Gillum obliterates Santorum for claiming guns aren’t ‘problem’ in mass shootings

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CNN contributor Andrew Gillum called conservative pundit Rick Santorum "ridiculous" on Sunday for suggesting that guns are not the problem in mass shootings.

During a CNN discussion on gun control, Santorum criticized calls from Democratic candidates for the government to buy back assault-style weapons in addition to banning them.

"The truth is something has to give," Gillum said. "The stranglehold that the NRA seems to have over Congress, over Washington, D.C., in my opinion, is insane. How can we put the priorities of one interest group above the safety, the security of the American people?"

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CNN’s Jake Tapper confronts Trump adviser Navarro with long list of experts calling him a disaster

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In a highly contentious interview on CNN's "State of the Union", host Jake Tapper confronted Donald Trump's top economic adviser, Peter Navarro, with a seemingly endless list of economists, analysts and business publications who believe he and his economic advice have both been a disaster and that he is not being straight with the public.

After refusing multiple times to concede that President Donald Trump's trade war -- and accompanying tariffs -- are having any effect on an economy that many financial prognosticators believe is headed towards a recession, Tapper confronted the White House adviser with the list of his critics -- including the Wall Street Journal.

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Internet goes wild over ‘obviously drunk’ Larry Kudlow on Fox News: ‘He’s lying while slurring his words’

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Speculation was rampant on Sunday that White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow was drunk on Fox News.

"There is no economic recession in sight," Kudlow insisted to Fox News Sunday host Dana Perino.

Twitter, however, was buzzing about Kudlow's speech patterns instead of his questionable economic optimism.

"Pretty sure Larry Kudlow is drunk on my TV right now... And he is lying while slurring his words," one Twitter user noted.

"Kudlow is on fox news Sunday right now and from my 30 yrs of tending bar, I gotta say this guy appears drunk," another user observed.

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