Am I afraid?

I speak out a lot about extremism, using my past to enable me to dissect and break apart the ideology and methodologies of extremists. One question I get asked often is “Aren’t you afraid of speaking out?” I worked alongside some of the biggest names in white nationalism and national socialism, I even became the Chief of Staff of the NSM, the largest Nazi organization in the U.S.A., yet my answer is a resounding “no.” So how is it that I am not afraid after my history?

One, I spent a long time in fear, the entire ideology of extremist groups is based around fear, so once I left, I also left my fear behind and set about to never live a life of fear again. I’ve seen what fear can manifest, in the mind, in the body, it is certainly not a pretty thing, and benefits no one ever. A life of fear is a half-life, a life unfitting to live for any sentient being, and I will not subject my wife, my kids, or myself to that…period!

Little can be been done to me physically, that hasn’t already been done, I live a life of love and acceptance today, so much so that fear has no room to grow or thrive. I would not stop trying to fix the world from my past, even in the face of an army built upon hatred of who and what I am today. I owe it to the world, to the people I demonized and dehumanized, and I owe it to myself to push onward always to end extremism and division. 

Two, I have a sincere desire to help those indoctrinated by extremist ideologies break free from it and find true freedom and love in the world. This desire to free the minds and spirits from that fear, from division, and hate, far outweighs any and all fear I might have had. Anyone can change and become a beacon of hope, everyone has the potential to become a new and better version of themselves, I am a testament to that! 

I therefore never give up hope on those within extremism, regardless of anything, hope keeps me pushing forward to help those in the grip of an extremist ideology. As of 2021 I have been out of the movement and began working on my understanding of everything extremist, through an outsider’s point of view and it’s armed me with enough tools and know-how, to genuinely combat extremism. 

Armed with my newfound knowledge, I began writing, then writing some more, then giving the occasional interview. Today I am the Associate Director of Beyond Barriers USA, together with my old Commander from the NSM who is the founder of BB, Jeff Schoep, we work day and night to fight against sometimes even violent extremism. 

It took a lot of work, introspection, seeing things through other perspectives, and stepping outside of my comfort zone to break free from my past, but the work was worth every moment. I do not fear trivial things, conspiracies, or my neighbors and their intentions, I’ve come to see the world as far more harmonious than most realize. So… what do I fear today if anything?

I have come to have several rational fears in my life, motivating me, rather than acting as a weight around my waist. I am afraid of not doing enough to combat extremism, of slacking or not giving my all. I am afraid of not being able to get our message and lessons out to enough people in the world. I am afraid of people not listening, further dividing and breeding further extremist ideologies based on superficialities and fear. I am afraid of my children’s future being one of division and strife, whereas no one trusts one another and everyone is suspicious of each other based on some form of indoctrination. 

Those are my fears today, but I am working diligently to combat them, to see to it that they do not become reality. Through my many interviews, this website, my work with Beyond Barriers, my community outreach, and soon through my YouTube channel I am bringing the fight to and against my fears. I don’t live in fear anymore, nor am I afraid of the life I led or left behind, I am on the side of truth and righteousness today, and there is no room for fear or apprehension. This is why I do what I do now, this is what motivates me and pushes me forward…