Right-wing Mormons yearn for a return to the cult’s racist past
Back in December last year, Mormon Ayla ‘Purpose’, above, announced on her Nordic Sunrise blog – (motto: “In Search of the Christian Culture That Made Our Countries Great”) – that she had created a free ‘pro-white children’s book’.
Then, on March 19, she reinforced her racist, anti-immigration sentiments on Red Ice TV, a far-right channel, which said in its introduction to an interview with the imbecile:
Ayla, known as Wife With a Purpose on Twitter, issued a White baby challenge in response to Steve King’s statement, ‘We can’t restore civilization with other people’s babies‘. She talks about her tweet, the hate she received from anti-White bigots and why Steve King is right.
Ayla has “made six” white babies, and Republican King is an Ohio congressman who is only slightly to the left of Adolf Hitler.
Yesterday, under the headline “Meet The (Alt-Right) Mormons: Inside The Church’s Vocal White Nationalist Wing”, Buzzfeed News took a closer look at Ayla and the resurgence of racism within the cult. It quoted her as saying on her blog:
Mormonism and Utah are the next target for cultural destruction,
The culprit, she asserted, is:
Black, ghetto culture.
Writing for Buzzfeed, Jim Dalrymple II, said:
Her comment came in a post titled ‘Mormon “Rap” and the Destruction of White, Western, Mormon Culture’. It was jarring; Mormons are known for their moderate positions on issues like immigration and diversity, famously putting them at odds with now-President Trump. Extreme movements such as the alt-right – which catapulted into the public consciousness on a wave of support for Trump, Pepe memes, and white nationalism – are anathema to many members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS).
And while Mormons have rejected Trump’s brand of conservatism, thanks in large part to the president’s more controversial positions, Ayla’s comments represent a growing Mormon subculture that embraces the alt-right, at times openly cheering white nationalism, and intertwining ultra-conservative ideology with Mormon history, culture, and scripture.
Much of Ayla’s content fuses Mormon concepts with alt-right themes. On Twitter, she retweets David Duke, the former Ku Klux Klan leader, and uses the #whiteculture hashtag. On her blog, she describes herself as ‘a white-majority nationalist for America’.
She cites Mormon scripture as evidence that races should be separate, recently issued a ‘white baby challenge’, and has argued that long-dead Mormon leader Brigham Young ‘predicted Cultural Marxism’.
Ayla did not respond to BuzzFeed News requests for comment for this story.
Ayla isn’t alone in her appreciation of David Duke’s racist remarks. Members of the Mormon alt-right have Twitter timelines peppered with tweets about “white genocide,” nationalism, and white supremacist slogans.
Members of this community aren’t joining the alt-right in spite of their Mormonism, they’re doing so because of their Mormonism.
Crystal Young-Otterstrom, a national co-chair of LDS Democrats, was “shocked” when she recently read one of Ayla’s blog posts circulating on the web. Racism has “no place in Mormonism,” she said, and the church needs to do more to clarify and disavow racist elements of its past.
It’s going to take more than one talk to get it out of our culture. It’s going to take more examples of leadership embracing differences and talking about how differences make us great. We need leadership saying things like, ‘this is racist talk and that is not okay’.
But not every Mormon sees the alt-right as fundamentally racist, or necessarily wrong.
One man, who identified himself by his twitter handle @JRuebenClark (the name of a now-dead Mormon leader, and the namesake of Brigham Young University’s law school), said in an email that he is an active Mormon and “simpatico” with the alt-right. He described the “unifying principle of the alt-right” as being against political correctness, adding that his:
Mormon beliefs are certainly a huge reason why I find Leftist sexual politics so horrifying. I wholeheartedly believe that the trans movement is literally diabolical. By ‘literally diabolical’, I don’t mean ‘really bad,’ I mean Satanic.
Clark said Mormonism is “not compatible with the ‘Hitler Did Nothing Wrong’ contingent of the alt-right.” But when people like Ayla:
Cite The Book of Mormon or the Bible to support nationalist ideas, they aren’t wrong.
Clark added that in his view the biggest gulf between Mormonism and the alt-right was merely one of style.
Mormons are nice people, and the alt-right largely isn’t nice, and so it seems antithetical to Mormonism.
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has condemned racism, but it’s not entirely clear where it stands on nationalist comments made by its members.
The church declined to comment on individual members’ online activity. Spokesman Eric Hawkins instead pointed BuzzFeed News to a series of essays the church has published condemning racism, taking a moderate stance on immigration, and embracing political neutrality, among other things. He said in an email:
We believe we are all children of God.
For now, the Mormon alt-right looks like it’s here to stay, along with the larger movement that continues to influence American politics via media outlets like Breitbart.
Ayla, the de facto queen of alt-right Mormons, has more than 20,000 followers on Twitter, and her blog continues to generate discussion in Mormon circles. On her YouTube channel, she touches on her conversion to both Mormonism and conservatism, gardening, and making “more white babies.”
Ayla’s most-watched video — published in September 2015 and praised on a white nationalist forum — has been viewed more than 100,000 times. In it, Ayla blasts the ‘Muslim invasion of Europe’ and blames feminism for the refugee crisis.