White power skinhead

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Neo-Nazi skinhead in Germany Neonazi-skinheads-weiss-und-stolz.jpg
Neo-Nazi skinhead in Germany

White power skinheads (derogatorily known as boneheads) are members of a neo-nazi, white supremacist and antisemitic offshoot of the skinhead subculture. [1] [2] [3] [4] Many of them are affiliated with white nationalist organizations and sometimes prison gangs.

White supremacy or white supremacism is the racist belief that white people are superior to people of other races and therefore should be dominant over them. White supremacy has roots in scientific racism, and it often relies on pseudoscientific arguments. Like most similar movements such as neo-Nazism, white supremacists typically oppose members of other races as well as Jews.

Antisemitism is hostility to, prejudice, or discrimination against Jews. A person who holds such positions is called an antisemite. Antisemitism is generally considered to be a form of racism. It has also been characterized as a political ideology which serves as an organizing principle and unites disparate groups which are opposed to liberalism.

Skinhead member of a subculture that originated among working class youths in London

Not to be confused with Black Skinhead.


In the United States, the majority of white power skinhead groups are organized at either the state, county, city or neighborhood level. The Hammerskin Nation (HSN) is one of the few exceptions, due to its international presence. [5]

United States Federal republic in North America

The United States of America (USA), commonly known as the United States or America, is a country comprising 50 states, a federal district, five major self-governing territories, and various possessions. At 3.8 million square miles, the United States is the world's third or fourth largest country by total area and is slightly smaller than the entire continent of Europe's 3.9 million square miles. With a population of over 327 million people, the U.S. is the third most populous country. The capital is Washington, D.C., and the most populous city is New York City. Forty-eight states and the capital's federal district are contiguous in North America between Canada and Mexico. The State of Alaska is in the northwest corner of North America, bordered by Canada to the east and across the Bering Strait from Russia to the west. The State of Hawaii is an archipelago in the mid-Pacific Ocean. The U.S. territories are scattered about the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean Sea, stretching across nine official time zones. The extremely diverse geography, climate, and wildlife of the United States make it one of the world's 17 megadiverse countries.

The Hammerskins are a white supremacist group formed in 1988 in Dallas, Texas. Their primary focus is the production and promotion of white power rock music, and many white power bands have been affiliated with the group. The Hammerskins were affiliated with the record label 9% Productions. The Hammerskins host several annual concerts, including Hammerfest, an annual event in both the United States and Europe in honor of deceased Hammerskin Joe Rowan, the lead singer of the band Nordic Thunder.


The original skinhead subculture started in the late 1960s and had heavy British mod and Jamaican rude boy influences — including an appreciation for the black music genres ska, soul music and early reggae. [6] [7] [8] [9] The identity of skinheads in the 1960s was neither based on white power nor neo-nazism or neo-fascism, but some skinheads (including black skinheads) had engaged in "gay-bashing", "hippie-bashing" and/or "Paki-bashing" (violence against Pakistanis and other Asian immigrants). [10] [11] This began after Enoch Powell's inflammatory Rivers of Blood speech in 1968, which unleashed "Paki-bashing" violence, often referred to as "skinhead terror" in the media, with the "Paki-bashers" often simply called "skinheads". [12]

United Kingdom Country in Europe

The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, commonly known as the United Kingdom (UK) or Britain, is a sovereign country located off the north-western coast of the European mainland. The United Kingdom includes the island of Great Britain, the north-eastern part of the island of Ireland, and many smaller islands. Northern Ireland is the only part of the United Kingdom that shares a land border with another sovereign state, the Republic of Ireland. Apart from this land border, the United Kingdom is surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean, with the North Sea to the east, the English Channel to the south and the Celtic Sea to the south-west, giving it the 12th-longest coastline in the world. The Irish Sea lies between Great Britain and Ireland. The UK's 242,500 square kilometres (93,600 sq mi) were home to an estimated 66.0 million inhabitants in 2017.

Mod (subculture) Subculture in England

Mod is a subculture that began in London in 1958 and spread throughout Great Britain and elsewhere, eventually influencing fashions and trends in other countries. The mods spread throughout Great Britain and elsewhere, eventually influencing fashions and trends in other countries, and continues today on a smaller scale. Focused on music and fashion, the subculture has its roots in a small group of stylish London-based young men in the late 1950s who were termed modernists because they listened to modern jazz. Elements of the mod subculture include fashion ; music ; and motor scooters. The original mod scene was associated with amphetamine-fuelled all-night dancing at clubs.

Jamaica Country in the Caribbean

Jamaica is an island country situated in the Caribbean Sea. Spanning 10,990 square kilometres (4,240 sq mi) in area, it is the third-largest island of the Greater Antilles and the fourth-largest island country in the Caribbean. Jamaica lies about 145 kilometres (90 mi) south of Cuba, and 191 kilometres (119 mi) west of Hispaniola.

The original skinhead scene had mostly died out by 1972, but a late-1970s revival emerged partly as a backlash against the commercialization of punk rock. This revival coincided with the development of the Oi! music genre. [8] [13] [14] [15] The late-1970s skinhead revival in Britain included a sizable white nationalist faction, involving organizations such as the National Front, British Movement, Rock Against Communism and — in the late 1980s — Blood and Honour. Because of this, the mainstream media began to label the whole skinhead identity as neo-Nazi.

Punk rock is a rock music genre that emerged in the mid-1970s in the United States, United Kingdom, and Australia. Rooted in 1960s garage rock and other forms of what is now known as "proto-punk" music, punk rock bands rejected perceived excesses of mainstream 1970s rock. They typically produced short, fast-paced songs with hard-edged melodies and singing styles, stripped-down instrumentation, and often political, anti-establishment lyrics. Punk embraces a DIY ethic; many bands self-produce recordings and distribute them through independent record labels.

Oi! is a subgenre of punk rock that originated in the United Kingdom in the late 1970s. The music and its associated subculture had the goal of bringing together punks, skinheads, and other working-class youth. The movement was partly a response to the perception that many participants in the early punk rock scene were, in the words of The Business guitarist Steve Kent, "trendy university people using long words, trying to be artistic...and losing touch."

A music genre is a conventional category that identifies some pieces of music as belonging to a shared tradition or set of conventions. It is to be distinguished from musical form and musical style, although in practice these terms are sometimes used interchangeably. Recently, academics have argued that categorizing music by genre is inaccurate and outdated.

The racist faction of the skinhead subculture eventually spread to North America, Europe and other areas of the world. White power skinhead groups such as the Hammerskins emerged, and racist skinheads gained acceptance among other organized white power organizations such as the Church of the Creator, White Aryan Resistance and the Ku Klux Klan. [16] [17] [18] In 1988, there were approximately 2,000 neo-Nazi skinheads in the United States. [19]

North America Continent entirely within the Northern Hemisphere and almost all within the Western Hemisphere

North America is a continent entirely within the Northern Hemisphere and almost all within the Western Hemisphere. It is also considered by some to be a northern subcontinent of the Americas. It is bordered to the north by the Arctic Ocean, to the east by the Atlantic Ocean, to the west and south by the Pacific Ocean, and to the southeast by South America and the Caribbean Sea.

Europe Continent in the Northern Hemisphere and mostly in the Eastern Hemisphere

Europe is a continent located entirely in the Northern Hemisphere and mostly in the Eastern Hemisphere. It is bordered by the Arctic Ocean to the north, the Atlantic Ocean to the west, Asia to the east, and the Mediterranean Sea to the south. It comprises the westernmost part of Eurasia.

White Aryan Resistance

White Aryan Resistance (WAR) is a white supremacist neo-Nazi organization in the United States founded and led by former Ku Klux Klan Grand Dragon Tom Metzger. It is based in Warsaw, Indiana, and is incorporated as a business.

In 1995, neo-Nazi skinheads Malcolm Wright Jr. and James N. Burmeister were charged with the murder of an African American couple in North Carolina. [20] [21] Wright and Burmeister were in the United States Army, and part of Fort Bragg's 82nd Airborne Division. Wright and Burmeister were both arrested at a trailer park where police found a 9-mm semiautomatic pistol, a Nazi flag, white supremacist pamphlets, and other gang paraphernalia. Both men were sentenced to life in prison.

United States Army Land warfare branch of the United States Armed Forces

The United States Army (USA) is the land warfare service branch of the United States Armed Forces. It is one of the seven uniformed services of the United States, and is designated as the Army of the United States in the United States Constitution. As the oldest and most senior branch of the U.S. military in order of precedence, the modern U.S. Army has its roots in the Continental Army, which was formed to fight the American Revolutionary War (1775–1783)—before the United States of America was established as a country. After the Revolutionary War, the Congress of the Confederation created the United States Army on 3 June 1784 to replace the disbanded Continental Army. The United States Army considers itself descended from the Continental Army, and dates its institutional inception from the origin of that armed force in 1775.

82nd Airborne Division Active duty airborne infantry division of the US Army

The 82nd Airborne Division is an airborne infantry division of the United States Army, specializing in parachute assault operations into denied areas with a U.S. Department of Defense requirement to "respond to crisis contingencies anywhere in the world within 18 hours." Based at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, the 82nd Airborne Division is part of the XVIII Airborne Corps. The 82nd Airborne Division is the U.S. Army's most strategically mobile division. Some journalists have reported that the 82nd Airborne is the best trained light infantry division in the world. More recently, the 82nd Airborne has been conducting operations in Iraq, advising and assisting Iraqi Security Forces.

A neo-Nazi skinhead from Germany in front of a Imperial-era Reichskriegsflagge, a popular symbol for German neo-Nazis as a substitute for banned Nazi symbols Neo-Nazi Skinhead.jpg
A neo-Nazi skinhead from Germany in front of a Imperial-era Reichskriegsflagge, a popular symbol for German neo-Nazis as a substitute for banned Nazi symbols

According to a 2007 report by the Anti-Defamation League, groups such as white power skinheads, neo-Nazis, and the Ku Klux Klan have been growing more active in the United States, with a particular focus on opposition to illegal immigration. [2]

Style and clothing

Skinheads of all types are known for wearing Dr. Martens or combat-style boots, flight jackets, jeans and suspenders (also known as braces). Some white power skinheads wear badges, chains or rings featuring Nazi or white power emblems. [22] [23] Many punk-influenced Oi! skinheads dress similarly to white power skinheads, without the racist or neo-Nazi symbols.

In contrast to the 1960s-style mod-influenced Trojan skinheads, white power skinheads have typically worn higher boots, T-shirts, flight jackets and army trousers or jeans instead of Sta-Prest trousers or suits. Some white power or moderately right-wing/nationalist skinheads may dress quasi-traditional with Fred Perry or button down shirts and Harrington or denim jackets. They usually crop their hair shorter than the 1960s-style skinheads — often to grade 0 length — or they shave their heads completely with a razor. White power skinheads tend to have more tattoos than the skinheads of the 1960s, many of whom had no tattoos at all. These tattoos often feature Nazi, racist, or nationalistic imagery. Rune symbols as well as Nordic, Celtic and Germanic artwork are also common themes.

In Germany, Spain and the Netherlands, the Lonsdale clothing brand has been popular among some neo-Nazi skinheads. This was partly because the four middle letters of Lonsdale, NSDA, are almost the same as the abbreviation for the name of Adolf Hitler's political party, the Nationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei (NSDAP). [24] The Lonsdale brand has been popular with non-racist skinheads for decades, and the company has sponsored anti-racist events and campaigns, and has refused to deliver products to known neo-Nazi retailers. [25]

Skinhead 88 graffiti in Turin, Italy. The "88" stands for "HH" or "Heil Hitler", "H" being the 8th letter of the alphabet Skinhead88 graffiti in Turin.jpg
Skinhead 88 graffiti in Turin, Italy. The "88" stands for "HH" or "Heil Hitler", "H" being the 8th letter of the alphabet

Notable organizations with white power skinhead members