‘Nazis Against Nazis:’ UNF professor helps raise money for anti-racist organizations at No Nazis at UNF protest

Alexandra Torres-Perez

Members of the Concerned Citizens of Jacksonville group raised signs at the No Nazis at UNF protest to let the white supremacists know how much money they’ve raised in opposition for Nazism and white supremacy. Photo by Andy Castro

You can protest and yell, and even physically fight against Nazis, but one group of Jacksonville citizens are putting Nazis against each other. The Concerned Citizens of Jacksonville group created a fundraiser through YouCaring where they pledged $5 for each white supremacist at the rally in support of Ken Parker, a UNF student and former KKK member who was appealing his suspension from the university after posting a picture of himself with a rifle on Facebook.

In three days, the Involuntary Charity Walk! raised over $1,200 for several organizations against racism.

“I think that responding [to] hate with hate is not an effective strategy,” Jennifer Lieberman, UNF English professor and fundraiser organizer, said. “What this fundraiser is trying to do is draw attention to the powerful and good forces that are already here that uphold our values as individuals, and try to take away some of the acid out of the hateful rhetoric that’s been going around.”  

The fundraiser has raised nearly $1,500 as of Tuesday Nov. 21.

The fundraiser was created after the group heard about the white supremacist party that was going to UNF to support Parker at his student conduct hearing Monday.

“They really thrive on anger,” Lieberman said. “Instead of yelling at them or getting angry at them, we wanted to support causes that affirmatively help people that are right here.”

The money collected will be split evenly between different organizations in Jacksonville. Some of the organizations that will benefit from the fundraiser are within UNF; The Black Student Union, Students for a Democratic Society and UNF’s LGBT Resource Center. The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) and the Jacksonville Committee Action Fund will also benefit from the fundraiser.

“This is actually a tried and true method,” Lieberman said. “When we decided to have this be our response, we were looking at German towns that had done the same thing sponsoring Nazis and hanging up signs that said ‘Nazis Against Nazis’ march to sort of make fun of how ridiculous their hate is while raising money for anti-racist causes.”

The original goal for the fundraiser was $1,000, but was later bumped to $1,250. Both these goals were achieved and surpassed in a few days, which Lieberman described as “heartwarming.”

“We have every right to be angry at Nazis,” Liberman said. “I understand the anger at somebody who hates you for being who you are, but I think that it’s much more effective instead of yelling at them and creating more anger and hate, which they can use as a recruitment tool. I think it’s important to draw attention to the great people and organizations that we have here.”

Link to fundraiser:   https://www.youcaring.com/unfblackstudentunionsdsjcacandmore-1014699


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