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Shofar FTP Archive File: orgs/canadian/league-for-human-rights//heritage-front/youth-recruitment

Newsgroups: can.politics
Subject: [08/18] The Heritage Front: Youth Recruitment
Summary: The League for Human Rights (B'nai Brith Canada) 1994
         report on the extremist organization The Heritage

Last-Modified: 1995/11/29

                       Youth Recruitment

One of the main thrusts of the Heritage Front's recruitment campaign 
is its focus on Canadian youth. It has been observed that skinheads 
make up a large component of the Heritage Front's audience and 
supporters at rallies and meetings. Wolfgang Droege has claimed that 
80% of those attending Heritage Front meetings are under 25. He is 
not interested in recruiting older people, because, according to him, 
"parents are the ones that gave this country away, their children's 
future away." In another interview, he emphasizes that, "We're 
focusing on mainly younger people because they are the ones most 
affected by the problems in this country today. And we're having 
quite a success rate." Recruitment of high school students is a tactic 
that was developed by Droege's American mentor, David Duke, and his 
Knights of the Ku Klux Klan.  

As a response to the Black community's demonstrations protesting the 
Rodney King verdict in May 1992, the Heritage Front held numerous 
meetings targeting youth. On May 27th, a rally organized by Droege 
and 30 high school students took place at Dunbarton High School, in 
Pickering, Ontario, to protest against the punishment of a Dunbarton 
student suspended for wearing White-supremacist symbols, and of 
others who had called for a White Pride week. In mid-June, the Front 
surrounded Jackman Public School with large posters. The Heritage Front 
later boasted of the high school demonstrations on their hotline.  

The targeting of high school students by White supremacist movements 
is cause for serious concern. Youth have always been the fundamental 
target of ambitious White supremacist groups, in part as a strategy 
to ensure 'security' at gatherings, but more significantly, to build 
up future leadership. The Heritage Front sees Dunbarton High in 
Pickering as a stepping stone in its quest to organize in other 
secondary schools in Southern Ontario. Reflecting this approach, a 
number of the references on the Heritage Hotline and in Up Front 
have made references to high-school issues and recruitment.  

The Heritage Front has also been active on university campuses in 
the Toronto area. In the 1992 school year, both Ryerson 
Polytechnic Institute and the University of Toronto were the 
targets of a propaganda distribution campaign by the Heritage Front 
and another White supremacist group known as Church of the Creator. 
In April of 1992, "White and Proud" leaflets were found both in 
lockers and in library books at Ryerson. In an interview with a 
Toronto weekly, Wolfgang Droege said that the Ryerson recruitment 
drive was part of a larger recruitment effort sta*ed in December 

Droege also claimed that the Front has several members at Ryerson, 
York University, and at the Umversity of Toronto. One of the 
Heritage Front directors is purportedly a U of T student. In 
1993, Heritage Front members were invited to address a political 
science class at U of T taught by Joseph Fletcher, a respected 
researcher on racism and prejudice. Although he had invited 
them as a case study to expose the true nature of their ideology, 
and he attempted to provide some balance by making the lecture 
optional and by inviting anti-racists to a later class, many 
students and community leaders were outraged that he had allowed 
them to speak and thus augment their reputation in the name of 
academic freedom. The year before the Fletcher incident, a student 
radio host on CIUT, the U of T radio station, was forced off the 
air after she invited HF leaders on to her show. These appearances 
are all part of the Front's quest to gain mainstream credibility 
and respectability.  

The League for Human Rights of B'nai Brith Canada, 15 Hove
Street, Downsview, Ontario M3H 4Y8. 416-633-6224.

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