'Alt-Right' Hashtag Spurs Racism, Rebukes During Speech | NBC Bay Area
Decision 2016

Decision 2016

Full coverage of the race for the White House

'Alt-Right' Hashtag Spurs Racism, Rebukes During Speech

The hashtag became one of Twitter's most popular topics Thursday as Hillary Clinton used a Nevada speech to link Donald Trump's rise to the "alt-right" movement

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    Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton speaks during a campaign event at Truckee Meadows Community College, in Reno, Nev., on Aug. 25, 2016. Clinton used the term "alt-right" during her speech to describe the movement backing Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump during her speech. The term has become a trending hashtag on social media.

    Wondering what "alt-right" means? There's a hashtag for that — but the results might not be pretty. 

    People in the niche conservative movement are using the hashtag #AltRightMeans not only to define the philosophy, but also to slam Muslims, immigrants in the U.S. illegally and others they see as a threat to their vision of America. 

    "#AltRightMeans knowing you cannot have a 1st World country with a 3rd world population," read a tweet under the username @Writeonright

    "#altrightmeans White people don't need to apologize for who they are or accept the smear that they have unearned 'privilege,'" said @ReactionaryIan

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    It wasn't clear who was tweeting under those names. 

    Critics are using the #AltRightMeans hashtag too, to expose what they see as bigotry.

    "Have blood pressure medicine standing by if you decide to read the #AltRightMeans thread," Hillary Clinton supporter Jeffrey Jon Smith tweeted. "It's the Olympics of racist filth." 

    The hashtag became one of Twitter's most popular topics Thursday as Clinton, the Democratic presidential nominee, used a Nevada speech to link Donald Trump's rise to the "alt-right" movement.

    Trump, the Republican nominee, is "taking hate groups mainstream and helping a radical fringe" take over his party, Clinton said. 

    Trump's campaign said he's never used the term "alt-right" and disavows "any groups or individuals associated with a message of hate." 

    "Hillary Clinton's short speech is pandering to the worst instincts in our society. She should be ashamed of herself!" Trump tweeted. 

    The "alt-right" or "alternative right," to distinguish it from mainstream conservatism, is often associated with efforts to preserve "white identity," oppose multiculturalism and defend "Western values." 

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    Some in the movement refer to themselves as "Europeanists" or "white nationalists." Liberals invoking the #AltRightMeans hashtag Thursday offered their own definitions: racist and xenophobic. 

    "#AltRightMeans Because 'Nazi' and 'KKK' was already taken," read a tweet under the username @SixPenniesDoom

    "#AltRightMeans the confederacy pre-surrender in a different form. You will lose again. ... and again ... and again," said @GalvarinoChilly.