“Bridge the Gap” by iainmerchant is licensed with CC BY 2.0.

Leading up to the 2020 election, with so much at stake, most people in my life have wondered aloud how anyone could be an undecided voter after the last few years. The question reveals a lack of imagined possibility as well as a lack of connection that terrifies me.

I am a straight, white, cis-gendered woman invested in anti-racism who lives in a liberal bubble. Twin fears grip me as I consider what lies ahead.

The first fear is the potential for a continuing slide toward anti-democratic authoritarianism that rides a wave of emboldened, overt racism. The second is the…


“To fully understand how hate groups influence today’s kids and teens, it is important that parents, teachers, coaches, counselors, and others understand the scope of the threat, recognize the warning signs, and interrupt the indoctrination. This series builds on the existing reporting about hate groups and their online recruitment tactics and makes important connections to empower adults to support the young people in their care.”

This paragraph introduces a series of videos I posted recently to YouTube that connects the dots between white nationalism, white supremacy, the alt-right and the alt-light.

The videos are not fancy. The production value is…


I recently spoke with a “former,” a man named Graham Finochio, who broke away from a white supremacist gang with the help of a program called Success Stories. We talked while waiting for an event to begin wherein we would be two of five panelists. The panel was to include myself, Graham, Monica Lomeli (a Senior Intergroup Relations Specialist for Los Angeles County), Thandiwe Abdullah (founder Black Lives Matter-Los Angeles Youth Vanguard), and Rabbi Susan Goldberg of Nefesh.

Graham and I talked about what he had learned about privilege, intersectionality, and toxic masculinity through the Success Stories program. Prompted by…


Everything I have learned about the alt-right has made me fearful and worried. I have also been horrified, witnessing the expanding reach of their rhetoric and attempts to convince people that we live in a world I don’t recognize. But until recently, I thought this movement lived at something of a distance, outside my community.

Imagine my reaction, then, the moment I saw a flyer promoting a far-right conference that was to be held at the mainstream, Lutheran church I attended as a 6-year-old child until I went away to college. My mind raced. Who was this group? And, what…


Resources curated and synthesized by Shelly Tochluk and Christine Saxman

Purpose: This post attempts to make sense of how hate groups are infiltrating the U.S. (and global) mainstream, the connected and varied ideologies, recruitment tactics, and what we can do about them. It is not meant to be inflammatory. However, if taken seriously, it should provoke significant concern.

Structure: This is not an academic paper, an essay, or journalistic reporting. Instead, it is a curated set of resources (articles, podcasts, books, documentaries). Live links are paired with highlights, quotes, synthesized statements, or paraphrases that connect resources to ideas that, hopefully…


Not long ago, I was asked to be part of a panel. My role was to talk about white anti-racism. When it was my turn to speak, I used an analogy of “on-ramps” to racial justice, and I suggested that what we have is akin to a racial justice freeway. Part of the message was how much I appreciate that although many of us are moving in different lanes, we are headed in a similar direction. The point I tried to make is that we need as many people as possible on this path, doing whatever we can within our…

shelly tochluk

author, educator, advocate

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