The “alternative right” is undeniably damaging and toxic to American politics. Anytime intolerance presents itself in a culture it creates a fear and disturbs the constructive political conversation that is otherwise likely held. Unfortunately, because the alt-right makes use of the word “right”, many people group this small sect of people with actual Republicans and conservatives. That is not the case. The definition of the “alt-right” doesn’t fall close to what a Republican is or stands for.
The term alternative-right, or “alt-right,” was coined by Richard Spencer by his webzine in 2010. Spencer is a well known white supremacist who used his platform to advocate for an America free of minorities.
The Southern Poverty Law Center defined the alt-right as:
"A set of far-right ideologies, groups and individuals whose core belief is that 'white identity' is under attack by multicultural forces using 'political correctness' and 'social justice' to undermine white people and 'their' civilization."
“Alternative right” stands to give hateful and racist people a means to organize. They believe in small government and limiting taxes, but that is where the similarities with the actual right end. That’s why they use the word alternative; they can’t be a part of the real right.
In his farewell address to America, Senator John McCain discussed the issues that the alt-right and racist extremist groups pose to our country:
“We weaken our greatness when we confuse our patriotism with tribal rivalries that have sown resentment and hatred and violence in all the corners of the globe. We weaken it when we hide behind walls, rather than tear them down, when we doubt the power of our ideals, rather than trust them to be the great force for change they have always been,” he wrote.
The majority of Republicans despise and denounce the alt-right. They don’t have real political ideologies or opinions. They’re just racist populists who pretend that they care about political issues other than race to try and legitimize themselves.
Aligning the alt-right with the actual right not only hurts the right, but it legitimizes white supremacy. It is up to not only Republicans, but every ideology of the political spectrum to denounce the alt-right as not a part of the Republican party.
Mikayla Rochelle is a junior studying strategic communication at Ohio University. Please note that the views and opinions of the columnists do not reflect those ofThe Post. What are your thoughts? Tell Mikayla by tweeting her at @mikayla_roch.