The Jewish Bar Association in San Francisco has created an “Adopt-a-Nazi” campaign to fight back against white supremacists.
Obviously, the organization isn’t actually advocating that anyone adopt a Nazi or white supremacist. Instead, the “Adopt-a-Nazi (Not Really)” GoFundMe campaign is raising funds for the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC), which monitors hate groups and litigates on behalf of minorities.
The idea behind the campaign is that anyone can donate money for each of the expected 300 participants at a “free speech” rally by the right-wing Patriot Prayer group at Crissy Field on August 26.
The organizer, Cody Harris, said that he was inspired by the German town of Wunsiedel, which in 2014 had a “Nazis against Nazis” walk in which donors pledged to give €10 for every meter neo-Nazi marchers walked on a pilgrimage to where Hitler’s deputy führer, Rudolf Hess, had been buried.
“The townspeople [in Wunsiedel] turned a Nazi march into a charity walk to combat Naziism,” Harris wrote on the campaign’s GoFundMe page. “We can do the same right here in our city.”
The public has responded in a big way to the campaign. In fact, on the first day, the total had to be raised, and they are now at $92,000, well over the original $10,000 mark.
“The overall response has exceeded our wildest expectations,” Harris told ThinkProgress in an email. “Many donors leave comments along with their donations. Some express defiance, others make jokes, still others tell personal stories about why they’ve chosen to donate. But they all express thanks for having a non-violent, productive way to combat extremism. We’ve had a few trollish comments on our social media accounts, but that comes with the territory. The positive response has far outweighed any negativity.”