America is getting angrier, according to one watchdog.
For the first time in five years, the number of hate groups in the United States rose in 2015, according to a new report from the Southern Poverty Law Center, a legal and advocacy organization known among other things for monitoring extremist activity.
The number of such groups spiked 14 percent in 2015, a year characterized by levels of polarization and anger perhaps unmatched since the political turmoil of 1968, the center said in the report on hate and extremism released exclusively to The Washington Post on Wednesday.
Swelling numbers of Ku Klux Klan chapters and black separatist groups drove last year’s surge, though organizations classified as anti-gay, anti-immigrant and anti-Muslim saw small increases, too.
“It was a year marked by very high levels of political violence, enormous rage in the electorate and a real significant growth in hate groups,” said Mark Potok, author of the report.
By Niraj Chokshi