If you remove your white supremacist-issued polo, you’re still a white supremacist, but now you’re also a coward. If you get caught on camera taking off your white power polo and claim you’re not a white supremacist, you’re still a white supremacist.
But there was bound to be someone who tried to remove his Vanguard America shirt and blend in with the crowd during Saturday’s white supremacist rally in Charlottesville. Documentary filmmaker C.J. Hunt travelled to the rally to shoot footage for the last part of his film on removing Confederate monuments. Hunt wound up capturing the exact moment a white supremacist, afraid of approaching anti-racist activists, removed his shirt and tried to claim he was just “having fun.”
From Hunt’s description in GQ:
He wore the khaki-and-white uniform of the white nationalist group Vanguard America. He had been separated from them and was being chased by at least one protester. He ripped off his shirt and begged the crowd for mercy.
The beginning of the video shows the unidentified young man backed against a barricade and scared shitless — a feeling he later admits. “I’m not really white power man; I just came for the fun,” he whined while he stripped off his shirt. “Fuck. I’m sorry.” Hunt, in the background, aptly informs him that he “can’t just take [his] costume off.”
Before the not-a-white-nationalist-white-nationalist is able to scurry away, Hunt approached him and asked whether he was a real white supremacist. The first minute of the video may be a nice dose of schadenfreude, but his answers to Hunt’s questions transform the video from “haha” to “oh shit”in under 10 seconds.
Despite attending a white supremacist rally and wearing a Vanguard America-issued shirt, the young man shrugs when asked if he’s a real white supremacist. “Barely. It’s kind of a fun idea,” he told Hunt. “Just being able to say ‘white power.’” Hilarious.
“To be quite honest, I like to be offensive, it’s fun,” the young man said as he weaved unnoticed through a crowd of demonstrators. The only people who find that type of humor funny are “ironic” white nationalist sympathizing people who post on 4chan. Unlike an anonymous shitposting forum, in reality, you can’t shake racism like you change your screen name...or clothes.