Days after bananas scrawled with racist messages appeared hanging from nooses on the American University campus, more racist trouble started brewing.
According to a memo university spokesperson Terry Flannery sent to BuzzFeed, the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) had learned that neo-Nazi Andrew Anglin, the founder of a website “dedicated to spreading anti-Semitism, neo-Nazism, and white nationalism,” had authored communication encouraging his readers and followers to “troll the President of American University’s Student Government (AUSG), Taylor Dumpson.”
Dumpson, the first black woman elected to serve as the university's student government president, just recently started her tenure. To racist trolls, her personal achievement is worth making little of, adding a bigoted tone to the baseless attacks just so that she feels threatened — at least that's what it looks like.
Immediately after the ADL learned about Anglin's call for “action,” campus police started monitoring the situation. The university also sent “law enforcement to [Dumpson's] home to provide her and her family with additional security and technology protections,” Flannery noted.
According to The Root, the fact Dumpson was now under the protection of law enforcement didn't sit well with the bigots, as users of the neo-Nazi website became infuriated.
A few days after the school dispatched law enforcement to her side, another post targeting Dumpson — using the n-word and anti-Semitic terms to attack the university for protecting the young woman and the ADL for intervening — popped up online.
ADL Center on Extremism Director Oren Segal told reporters that Anglin “made a career encouraging people to target anybody he can get fame for harassing,” and that “this is not even close to being the first time he’s done this.”
Unfortunately, organizations like ADL encounter this type of activity online weekly.
These trolls, Segal said, identify their victims and then call on others to target them in hopes of making them “feel uncomfortable and threatened.”
Online, people took to Twitter to show Dumpson how much they appreciate and support her.
Hopefully, Dumpson, who's also a member of Howard University's Alpha Kappa Alpha, the oldest black sorority, won't feel intimidated by these sickening threats.
She sure has enough support from the university and online users to know she's not alone.
Banner/thumbnail credit: Reuters