TROLLS OR THREATS? CHALLENGES OF ALT-RIGHT EXTREMISM TO LOCAL LAW ENFORCEMENT
Bobin, Jonathan M.
Mabry, Tristan J.
Brown, Shannon A.
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The alt-right subculture is a relatively new component of online right-wing extremism. Because it is dissimilar from older white nationalist movements and has a perplexing style of communication, the media and public discourse incoherently and inconsistently frame the movement. Due to a lack of consistent background information on the movement, local law enforcement executives have found themselves underprepared for alt-right gatherings in their jurisdictions. This thesis provides agencies with guidance on the alt-right, including a discussion of existing theories of recruitment, self-recruitment, and the acerbic culture. The thesis also provides a comparative case study of mass casualty incidents perpetrated by individuals who openly espoused ideologies linked to the alt-right and movements with significant overlap, such as the manosphere. Finally, based on the theoretical and case study comparative analyses, this thesis concludes that although the movement's popularity is declining, the alt-right remains a threat to homeland security and the ideologies behind it are likely to subsist under another name.
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