LGB Alliance Ireland labelled ‘far right hate group’ in new extremism report
LGB Alliance Ireland has been named a “far-right hate and extremist group” by a monitoring group.
The report, released Sunday (21 August) by the Global Project Against Hate and Extremism (GPAHE), listed LGB Alliance Ireland with 11 other groups “embracing beliefs and activities that demean, harass, and inspire violence against people based on their identity traits”.
LGB Alliance Ireland is an offshoot of the UK pressure group, and like it claims that trans rights are in conflict with LGB rights while devoting the vast majority of its efforts attacking advancements to trans rights.
GPAHE, formed by two former members of the prestigious US Southern Poverty Law Center, notes that “Irish LGBTQ+ activists contend that [LGB Alliance Ireland’s] membership is mostly UK-based, though the Irish chapter insists “all our committee members are living in Ireland”.
It dedicates much of its report to the UK group, which has, among other things, campaigned against life-saving gender recognition reforms, gender-affirming healthcare for young people, and letting trans people use single-sex spaces and services.
GPAHE noted the UK’s LGB Alliance has claimed “adding the plus to LGB gives the green light to paraphilias like bestiality” and that one of its founders claimed lesbians are facing extinction because students are being taught about “trans issues in schools”.
Trans Activism UK, a grassroots protest group, welcomed GPAHE’s findings. “There have been years of mounting evidence now that the LGB Alliance only represents a fringe minority of anti-trans extremists,” co-founders Shaira Bambi and Felix Fern told PinkNews.
Irish far-right linked to white supremacy and anti-LGBTQ+ hate
Researchers made the list by examining media reports, government documents and social media to see how Irish groups stoke violence toward certain demographics of people and if they “threaten democracy”, according to an FAQ.
LGB Alliance Ireland fell onto GPAHE’s radar after its UK counterpart compared LGBTQ+ inclusion to “bestiality”, said co-founder Heidi Beirich.
“We included LGB Alliance Ireland due to their vicious attacks on the trans community,” she told PinkNews. “Their work advocating against trans rights was also a serious concern. We believe in human and civil rights protections for all people.”
The organisation’s lobbying efforts to cement trans people’s exclusion from conversion therapy bans was cause for concern, she added.
As well as LGB Alliance Ireland, the report named four groups as “white nationalist”, including the National Party.
It also listed groups it deemed anti-immigrant, antisemitic, anti-LGBTQ+, anti-woman and conspiracy theorists.
The Global Project Against Hate and Extremism said that most “hate groups” in Ireland espouse some form of white supremacist ideology, seek to spread conspiracy theories and whip up hatred towards immigrants.
Eight of the 12 groups named were labelled as anti-LGBTQ+, including the Iona Institute, the ironically named Irish Council for Human Rights and Síol na hEireann (Seed of Ireland).
Other groups listed included Official Proud Boys Ireland, the Irish counterpart to the American all-male nationalist group behind the Capitol riots of 2021, and the disparate anti-lockdown Yellow Vest Ireland movement.
The report said a rise in LGBTQ+ equality in Ireland added fuel to what was already an upwards trend in far-right rhetoric worldwide. Many of their ideas bear the marks of the American far-right and social conservatism, which GPAHE linked with Ireland’s “deep Catholic roots”.
Transphobia has become the go-to bigotry of choice for many far-right groups for a very simple reason, Beirich said.
“The trans community became the next target for far-right movements, especially social conservatives, as attacks on the lesbians and gay men became less effective and as more people accepted that community as equals.
“These movements have a long history of targeting sexual minorities as deviant and unwholesome and as the attacks on LGB communities became less acceptable, attacks on the trans community rose. That is why it is critical to stand in concert with this vulnerable population.”
Common threads among many Irish hate groups include “imported conspiracy theories about ‘cultural Marxism’ and ‘Agenda 21′”, a United Nations (UN) resolution that aims for sustainable development that theorists see as a plot to plunge humanity into an eco-totalitarian regime.
The majority of the groups were found to have embraced the “Great Replacement” conspiracy theory, the racist belief that racial diversity spells the end of majority white, Christian countries. Women not having enough children, Jewish people and globalists are to blame for this, believers say.
Irish hate groups spout this lie even though immigration in Ireland has declined year-on-year since 2018, according to European Migration Network figures.
The surge in far-right activity in Ireland began in earnest following the legalisation of marriage equality in 2015 as well as access to abortion being strengthened, the report said.
The coronavirus pandemic provided even more fodder for the groups to stir-up hatred and recruit more supporters, it continued, adding: “Since the start of the pandemic in March 2020, other movements have arisen, harnessing anxiety during the pandemic and opposing public health measures, pursuing anti-lockdown protests, and spreading COVID-related conspiracy theories.
“Some organisations are also harnessing legitimate frustration over the housing shortage in parts of Ireland to stoke racist anti-immigrant rage.”
GPAHE said that as far-right ideas gain ever-greater traction in Ireland it places more and more people in danger.
A report by the think tank Center for Strategic and International Studies found that 67 per cent of white supremacists and other like-minded groups were behind 41 of 61 “terrorist plots and attacks” in the first eight months of 2020 in the US.
“Far-right extremist movements inspire terrorism, mass killings, and rights-restricting policies around the world, and the various movements are increasingly interconnected,” said Wendy Via, GPAHE co-founder and president.
“It’s critical that people, locally and globally, understand the far-right extremist landscape, how it operates, and how the dots are connected within countries and transnationally in order to counter the threats from these groups.”
PinkNews has contacted LGB Alliance and LGB Alliance Ireland for comment.
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