When Doug Hanks abandoned his bid for city council in August, he claimed he wasn't a racist. The reason he was posting stuff to stormfront.org, the Web site founded by a one-time Ku Klux Klan grand dragon, Hanks said, is because he was researching a book.
Four months have passed and Hanks is still posting almost daily to stormfront.org, which the Southern Poverty Law Center has dubbed "the most influential hate site on the net." Hanks explains his continued investigation thusly: "When I got there and initially did my research I found that there were a lot of good points that people were making and that there was reason to stay."
It turns out Hanks hasn't abandoned political aspirations, nor has he disavowed the views he says wrongly labeled him a racist. "It is just as wrong to force people to be together as it is to force people to be apart," he said last week. "We all have the right to maintain our separate identities. That is not hatred. That is love for your heritage and your own kind and not wanting to see that destroyed."
• Here's Doug Hanks, media strategist:
"I learned that it is never a good idea to be caught with your pants around your ankles in regard to your personal life/beliefs ... Be ready to explain the difference between White supremacy vs. White separatism, and racialism vs. racism." (Nov. 19)
• Here's Doug Hanks putting free trade in terms everyone can understand:
"Juanita's food stamps are paid for with our dollars, while Pedro's pesos head south for parts unknown, never to be seen by American eyes again, except in the form of his cousin, because our dollars funded his border jump." (Nov. 19)
• Here's Doug Hanks, sociologist:
"You cannot compare apples to oranges ... Blacks do not, and never will, think like Whites ... Call the cops because he's harrassing you, and you are a racist. Shoot him because he is raping you, and you are a racist." (Oct. 6)
• Here's Doug Hanks, Hurricane Katrina preparedness expert:
"Apparently, there are 200 [evacuees] arriving here in Charlotte today ... Look for riots to spring up across the country and be prepared." (Sept. 3)
When Hanks decided to run for city council as a Republican, he was best known for protesting the removal of a Confederate flag from Elmwood Cemetery. Then the Rhinoceros Times revealed his stormfront.com postings, and the Republican Party asked him to drop out of the race.
Last week Hanks told CL he has no plans to run for office but also hasn't ruled out the idea. He isn't likely to get on the Republican ticket. "He didn't have our support to begin with, so I don't think so," said John Anerella, chairman of the Mecklenburg County GOP.
Here's the scary thing: Hanks said he has more support than he knew existed. "There are a lot of people out there that have a lot of frustrations with a lot of things in this country. And they are ready for a change, and they are looking for somebody to represent them in those changes."
Oh, and just so you know, Hanks reminds us he's NOT a racist. He's a racialist.