Donald Trump sent a strong signal this weekend when he decided to tap Steve Bannon, the former Breitbart chairman who bragged about turning the ultraconservative outlet into “the platform for the alt-right,” to serve as his chief strategist in the White House, a move that has caused white nationalists and neo-Nazis to celebrate.
Bannon, when he was serving as CEO of Trump’s campaign, helped develop the candidate’s message about a world struggle between “nationalists” and “globalists,” and a fight between “real Americans” and the evil anti-sovereignty schemes of cosmopolitan elites, international financiers, the media, immigrants, minorities and progressives. Such views, which Bannon describes as “populist-nationalist,” have been typical of fascist movements throughout history, and Bannon has even reached out to neo-Fascist parties like France’s National Front and favorably compared himself to Nazi propagandist Leni Riefenstahl.
While providing glowing coverage of Trump’s presidential bid, Breitbart has also continued to focus on “black crime,” the supposed link between immigration and security risks, criticism of “political correctness,” and anti-Semitic hit pieces against Jewish members of the media.
Misogyny has been a driving force behind Breitbart under Bannon’s leadership. Breitbart regularly posts articles such as “Why Equality and Diversity Departments Should Only Hire Rich, Straight White Men“; “Does Feminism Make Women Ugly?“; “Birth Control Makes Women Unattractive and Crazy“; “The Solution to Online ‘Harassment’ Is Simple: Women Should Log Off“; “Teenage Boys With Tits: Here’s My Problem with Ghostbusters” and “Science Proves It: Fat-Shaming Works.”
These articles were all written by Milo Yiannopoulos, the site’s most well-known author and chief provocateur, who was recently banned from Twitter “after he incited his followers to bombard Ghostbusters star Leslie Jones with racist and demeaning tweets.”
Following a mass shooting in Oregon, Yiannopoulos said that men are behind the majority of such shootings because feminism is “creating killers by suppressing” male urges “to fight” and “shoot things.” (In the aftermath of the mass shooting at a black church in Charleston, another Breitbart writer defended the Confederate flag in an article titled “Hoist it High and Proud: The Confederate Flag Proclaims A Glorious Heritage,” touting the Confederacy as “a patriotic and idealistic cause” that had a right to secede from the union.)
Yiannopoulos also praised Trump as “the real first black president,” in part because he would side with African Americans in the “minority war brewing between blacks and Latinos.”
Now, Ryan is refusing to criticize Trump’s selection of the alt-right’s champion, Bannon, to fill one of the top roles in the White House.
Maybe it’s because Bannon isn’t the only person bringing white nationalism, misogyny and anti-Semitism to the White House.
That person, of course, would be Donald Trump.