“Robert Spencer looks like an anti-Semitic parody cartoon.” — Richard Spencer
White supremacist Richard Spencer is in the news again, as the Governor of Florida has hysterically declared a state of emergency in advance of Spencer’s speech in Gainesville. Whenever Richard Spencer is in the news, my Twitter feed and email box fill up with people thinking I am he, or calling him “Robert Spencer” in connection with what he is doing. Yesterday I got an email from a friend asking me if I could get him a ticket to my event Thursday in Gainesville. I wrote him back saying I hoped I hadn’t scheduled two different events at the same time, because I was set to speak in California on Thursday. He wrote back saying that he saw now that it was Richard and not Robert who was going to be in Gainesville.
So anyway, contrary to frequent claims, I am not now and have never been Richard Spencer. Confronted with this, many who have confused us respond, “Well, you’re just as bad, because you’re a racist, bigoted ‘Islamophobe.'” So consider this: Richard Spencer supports racial separation and white nationalism. I support the freedom of speech, the freedom of conscience, and equality of rights of all people before the law. Is the one thing the same as the other? Only if you have bought into the “Islamophobia” myth that conflates opposition to jihad terror and Sharia oppression with racism.
In reality, I want a society in which women, Jews, Christians, gays, secular liberals, and secular Muslims can live freely and without fear of being brutalized, victimized, or denied basic rights. If this is “Islamophobia,” so be it. In my new book Confessions of an Islamophobe (pre-order here), I make the case that all those groups and others have abundant reason to be concerned about the spread of Islam in the West, and to be concerned about it as a threat to free society as much or more than the threat Richard Spencer’s race-based hocus pocus poses. This is the book to give to your friends who wonder if all this concern about jihad terrorism really is just another manifestation of the same racial polarizing that Richard stands for.
Have you pre-ordered your copy of Confessions of an Islamophobe yet? Get yours now.