Evan McLaren, head of Richard Spencer’s National Policy Institute, joins us tomorrow on Luke Ford’s Torah Talk. View it on Luke’s channel to join the live chat. 9 AM Pacific. Noon Eastern, to spare you the trouble of adding three.
Spencer was editing TakiMag when McLaren began blogging there, but left in 2009 to start AltRight.com, a site best known for the name that would attempt to rebrand the far right.
Spencer and McLaren never lost contact, McLaren said: “I would coordinate activity with him or meet up with him. I was definitely still affiliated with the movement, at least privately.”
As he nurtured these relationships, McLaren turned to white nationalist ideologues based in Europe for their thoughts. According to his Goodreads account, McLaren read books by Pierre Krebs, founder of the Thule-Seminar, a far-right German party whose name references the Thule Society, an organization that aided the rise of the Nazi Party, and another volume called “North American New Right,” a journal compiled by North Americans currently living in Budapest who sought to rebuke multiculturalism and push racial purity.
Then, McLaren’s online trail went cold. With his white nationalist views largely in place, McLaren pursued a different path: civil servant. The Cumberland County district attorney has recently engaged in allegedly discriminatory practices.
Activists have hinted darkly about the white nationalist “connection” established by Evan’s internship.
According to his LinkedIn profile, McLaren’s employment history shows a yearlong job as a law clerk at the Republican District Attorney David Freed’s office in Cumberland County, Pennsylvania, which ended in April. The links between McLaren and the DA’s office were first reported by Injustice Today, a publication of the Fair Punishment Project.
Freed said McLaren held no power at the office. “McLaren assisted with legal research and summary (minor) offenses in traffic court,” Freed told The Intercept. “McLaren had no discretionary role in this office, he simply performed tasks as assigned.”
McLaren responded that he didn’t think Freed knew him. “He’s a good DA, and he strikes me as a nice guy,” McLaren said.
Freed added that the district attorney’s office will improve its vetting procedures for hiring interns. “Prior to this experience, we have not looked too closely at social media backgrounds of interns (as opposed to paid clerks), as long as they are in good standing with their law school,” he said. “That has changed.”
The Cumberland County district attorney, however, has recently engaged in allegedly discriminatory practices. An American Civil Liberties Union-Pennsylvania report from 2015 found that the office “ranks as one of the most aggressive forfeiters in the state,” taking in more than $400,000 in two years from civil asset forfeiture, a process whereby law enforcement seizes property from individuals alleged — not charged or convicted — to have committed crimes. The ACLU-Pennsylvania report also found that African-Americans are 18 times more likely to be the target of forfeiture than other races.
Here’s ProPublica’s bombshell expose revealing Unite the Right organizers anticipated and prepared for violence:
Nearly a month before a car driven by an alleged neo-Nazi plowed into counter-protesters in Charlottesville, Virginia, on Aug. 12, white supremacists planning the “Unite the Right” rally joked about using vehicles to run over their opponents.
…Evan McLaren, executive director of Richard Spencer’s white supremacist National Policy Institute, argued in an interview that what he characterized as “irreverent banter” was “not relevant to what happened” and did not spur the violence in Charlottesville.
There was some noise by Av Gutman via Huffpo opposing Evan’s right to practice law in Pennsylvania:
In late July, 1,301 law school graduates took the Pennsylvania Bar Examination to get a license to practice law in the State of Pennsylvania. Of those, almost 1,000 passed and are one step closer to call themselves esquires. Each one of these lawyers has a different dream. Some took the bar exam to join the corporate world, while others to become public defenders or prosecutors.
One man, Evan McLaren, took the bar exam to become the “legal warrior” of the White Nationalist movement, and the Pennsylvania Board of Law Examiners should reject his admission. According to Board’s Admission Rules, admission to the bar is dependent on an “absence of prior conduct by the applicant which in the opinion of the Board indicates character and general qualifications (other than scholastic) incompatible with the standards expected to be observed by members of the bar of this Commonwealth.”
State bars usually reject applicants due to a criminal record, untreated mental illness and substance abuse, lack of candor, or financial irresponsibility. Almost 40 states have reciprocity with Pennsylvania, which allows other states to admit lawyers from Pennsylvania after a period of time.
The Pennsylvania Bar recently rejected Parthiv Patel, seemingly for his status as an undocumented immigrant and grantee of former Pres. Obama’s DACA program. (The ACLU of Pennsylvania is helping Patel with his case, which is currently pending.)
If the Pennsylvania Bar accepts McLaren, it sends the message that a man like Mr. Patel is somehow “worse” than him because of immigration status alone.
McLaren, who graduated this year from Penn State’s Dickinson School of Law, describes himself as being “dedicated to the preservation of white heritage and identity.” He insists that Jews do not fit the definition of “white,” claims that rap music is the “cesspool where black music has been festering for about twenty-five years now,” and recently retweeted a tweet implying that transgender people are “dogs.” When McLaren found out he passed the bar exam, he stated that “I passed the Pennsylvania bar exam. Hail victory!” ― using the English translation of the famous Nazi rallying chant, “Sieg heil!” A Twitter user congratulated him and added “we need more legal warriors,” to which McLaren responded, “yes we do.”
If that was not enough to cause alarm, McLaren spends his days as Richard Spencer’s right-hand-man. He is the executive director of Spencer’s white nationalist “think-tank.” This is the same Richard Spencer who led 200 people in chanting “hail Trump, hail our people, hail victory” while performing a Nazi salute, was described by the Southern Poverty Law Center as a “kind of professional racist in khakis,” and co-organized a white supremacists’ torch march on Charlottesville. Heather Hayer was killed in that march after a white supremacist hit her with his car, but McLaren expressed denial, insisting that Heyer was not even in the collision.
Fulcrum of the moral universe, thy name is Heather Heyer.
Apparently Richard Spencer recently embarrassed Sargon of Akkad, a popular podcaster, in debate, a blow for something called the “skeptic” community:
Akkad’s performance suggests if Shakespeare had only known, he would have written “first, we kill all the libertarians.”