Anytime they [the Left] talk about the alt-right, they make it sound like it’s just about a bunch of guys in basements. They don’t mention that these guys have wives — supportive wives, who go to these meet-ups and these conferences — who are there — so I think it’s great for right-wing women to show themselves. We are here. You’re wrong.
— Lana Lokteff, co-host of Red Ice TV
When we imagine the alt-right insurgency, we likely envision an army of Richard Spencers: angry white men with fashy haircuts marching under the banner of Pepe the Frog. But this image leaves out a sizable and increasingly vocal segment of extremist right politics: women.
Like their male counterparts, these white-nationalist and neofascist women reject what they call the “domination of cultural Marxism,” portraying leftists as the children of Karl Marx and Lena Dunham, trying to turn the United States into an anti-white cesspool run by Jewish interests that promote race-mixing, feminism, and hedonism.
These alt-right women put a feminine spin on the movement’s patriarchal and xenophobic rhetoric by emphasizing traditional gender roles and old-fashioned ideals of beauty. They promote the mid-century nuclear family, dreaming of emulating Obergruppenführer John Smith’s all-white, American Nazi family on the science-fiction show The Man in the High Castle.
In this, the alt-right seeks to naturalize what is not only oppressive but also conventional, reminding us that, as shocking as its recent explosion onto the political landscape has been, their ideology is largely recycled.
Make Patriarchy Great Again
Lana Lokteff is the most prominent woman on the alt-right. Of Russian-American ancestry, she claims that her family fled “Bolshevism” in Eastern Europe and moved to China where her father was born. Raised in the American Northwest, she adopted libertarian and anarchist positions before converting to white nationalism.
Lokteff co-hosts a white nationalist talk show with her husband Henrik Palmgren. Hailed as the “CNN of the alt-right,” Red Ice happens to be headquartered in Sweden, where a fair number of alt-right leaders come from. The couple devotes their program to exposing the “cultural Marxist” agenda, which they define as a “meta-political struggle” of academic and cultural elites meant to subvert white civilization in favor of multiculturalism.
The alt-right woman reduces feminism to the “crazy radical left-wing stuff that we see coming out of Hollywood.” She believes that feminist women trample over men to feel important. She thinks that feminism has permeated culture from television to academia, turning all the material taught in schools into crypto-Marxist propaganda. This explains why the most vehement right-wing women support homeschooling and oppose public education.
Lokteff finds feminism to be ultimately self-centered because it focuses on a woman’s autonomy instead of the family. The suffrage movement started this trend by transferring the “one vote per family” model to “one vote per woman.” Husbands and wives were supposed to vote together, and giving each woman the right to vote stripped the nuclear family of its important function in society, she says. It created divisions from the start, paving the way for single-parent households run by “trashy, drug-abusing” women. The days when the man of the house was the breadwinner and the mother the dutiful wife, pumping out football fields of children, disappeared. Women on the alt-right emphasize the need to rebuild tight-knit, heteronormative white families with traditional values and gender roles.
This kind of family structure entails a natural hierarchy: though, as Lokteff admits, women ultimately decide if the race will continue, they are in fact auxiliary and must accept their inferiority to men. Once you believe that men are born as the dominant sex, then patriarchy becomes natural, normalized, even necessary: inferior women should be “taken care of” by men — a euphemism for subordination.
European men are portrayed as naturally intelligent and strong protectors who build civilizations and provide for their families. Lokteff believes that all women are attracted to masculine strength and valor and should accept their role as the bearer and supporter of children. Indeed, having children is a must. If they want their right-wing legacy to live on, white women must get married early and have a big family.
Daniel Friberg — CEO of altright.com and one of Lokteff’s and Palmgren’s political collaborators — echoes this advice in his handbook for fascist activists, The Real Right Returns. Friberg agrees that the myth of equality between the sexes harms both men and women — especially those men forced to compete with women on the job market.
He argues that there are “fundamental differences” between men and women that cannot be eradicated by “cultural Marxist” propaganda, one of which is women’s essentially apolitical stance. Feminism represents the only exception but, for Friberg, “that is the exception that proves the rule.” It therefore makes sense that women on the Right are underrepresented, because they belong in the home. Women should never make the mistake of trying to act like men, or appropriate their masculine characteristics.
But Lokteff adds something to Friberg’s strict demarcation between the sexes. She believes that alt-right women, while internalizing their subordination, can use their femininity to subvert the Left. On one episode of Virtue of the West, Lokteff argues that because a female speaker “doesn’t want to dominate anyone physically,” she can get away with “a lot more verbally.”
Immigration as “White Genocide”
Charges of racism no longer hurt Lokteff. Instead, she says, “I’ve been called so many names that it actually energizes me now, because I can just treat [critics] like my footstool, step on them and laugh.” Her segments on Red Ice are filled with invectives against multiculturalism, immigrants, and especially Muslims, who she demagogically scapegoats. She falsely claims that refugees are responsible for a rise in crime across Europe, depicting them as “lazy bums, packing the welfare offices, who flock in for the incentives.”
She calls Muslim immigrants “incoming invaders” with no respect for white women. Against this alleged threat, Lokteff tells women to prepare for a race war: “These people risk their lives trying to come to the countries that men built for us. We must be ready to go to battle.” She asks:
Has mass immigration by non-Europeans made Sweden a better place with safer streets and more opportunities? The answer is so obvious: it’s a big fat “no.” We offer a simple solution: European countries for European people. If you don’t like us, get out.
These sentiments, unfortunately recently echoed by the Dutch prime minister, are hallmarks of the insurgent, European right. Lokteff frequently brings up another aspect of this rhetoric, which exaggerates incidents of migrant violence against women:
If the women who were raped got together and made their voices heard that they were raped by migrants, it could undo years of a massive cover-up in a matter of minutes. [emphasis added]
She fails to mention that violence against refugee homes has spiked across Europe, particularly in Germany.
For Lokteff, a cultural Marxist conspiracy against white identity is driving mass immigration. Marxism’s secret plan is “white genocide,” enacted through open-border policies that encourage the destruction of homogenous white communities. She argues that cultural Marxism’s meta-political warfare has guilt-tripped white people into privileging non-European identities over white ones.
The alt-right, from Kevin MacDonald to Lokteff, holds that Marxism’s ostensible egalitarianism masks an anti-white bias that will plunge white people into extinction. The ideal of a suburban home with a “white picket fence has been traded in for a tiny, carbon-neutral apartment in a diverse neighborhood swarmed with immigrants,” says Lokteff. Cultural Marxism emasculates white men, turning them into feminized “beta males” in “skinny jeans who hold signs that say ‘refugees welcome.’”
Contrary to Lokteff’s racist sensationalism, the actual rate of sex crimes has been more or less unchanged since 2005 according to the Swedish Crime Survey. No legitimate link between increased reports of sex crimes and mass immigration has been discovered; rather, the definition of rape has expanded, which is the proximate cause of increased reports.
Further, according to the Swedish National Council for Crime Prevention, the majority of criminal suspects were born in Sweden and come from Swedish-born parents. The vast majority of people with foreign backgrounds have little contact with the criminal justice system. According to these surveys, most crimes have socioeconomic, rather than racial, motivations.
Of course, Lokteff can denounce these findings as part of the cultural Marxist conspiracy. Instead, she isolates incidents of rape and crime as evidence of an overall pattern that simply does not exist.
The Ugly Obsession With Beauty
According to Lokteff, three things are ingrained into a woman’s head that will never disappear: beauty, family, and home. These values comprise the core of what makes white nationalism so appealing to right-wing women. In the alt-right, beauty is embraced — even obsessed over — as the primary force propelling a woman to live her best life.
This ideology has a pseudo-scientific foundation. The argument goes that women are biologically wired to desire a mate who can provide her with a safe and comfortable material existence until death. The surest way to accomplish this is by appearing as physically attractive to men as possible.
In almost every single interview and speech, Lokteff stresses how “beautiful” and “attractive” the people of the alt-right are:
They’re smart, beautiful women who understand that mass immigration is not working. . . . Nationalism has become the guy that everyone wants. All the girls are starting to eye the bad boy who is the nationalist. . . . European nationalists and the alt-right are a very attractive, very sexy bunch. It’s a eugenic process. Matches are being made left and right of beautiful couples. Now it’s time to procreate.
Following Nietzsche, Lokteff and the alt-right want a transvaluation of values that will replace cultural Marxism with traditionalism. They maintain that Marxism is waging a war against truth and beauty. This argument holds that nature makes some people better than others, producing social “winners” and “losers.” Now, the losers are teaming up to tear down the noble and aristocratic winners.
The alt-right believes that envy drives the entire left-wing movement. Lokteff derides feminism as “affirmative action for ugly people,” arguing that leftists “push ugly, fat-positive feminists as the beauty ideal and they say it’s natural for a husband to dress like a woman or have sex with another man occasionally to prove that he’s not homophobic.”
In his handbook, Friberg reiterates these points to valorize fascist femininity. His advice to the women of the alt-right is as follows:
Nurture your femininity. Realize that your feminine qualities are your greatest assets. Nurture and develop them. They are also your main weapon in the rather brutal competition which constitutes natural selection, and it is your primary strength in your interactions with men.
Lokteff’s argument is a non-argument. Whether it concerns race or gender, it has no empirical backing. She claims that innocent white people are increasingly victim to heinous crimes at the hands of biologically inferior subhumans, repeating the worst Nazi-inspired propaganda. When it comes to race, she relies on gross stereotypes and scapegoating; when it comes to gender, she makes anatomy destiny. She believes that people who disconnect sex from gender are deeply confused, brainwashed by Marxist propaganda. Her views on gender essentially regurgitate the rhetoric of Kinder, Küche, Kirche (children, kitchen, church), from 1930s Germany.
Lokteff claims that she just wants to be left alone with her fellow white Europeans to live in peace, arguing that if all races had the option to live in segregation, there would be less violence in the world. Unsurprisingly, she never articulates how we might achieve such a society — but we know from history that attempts to create all-white states quickly turn to ethnic cleansing and genocide. Discounting any possibility of internationalism or integration, Lokteff and her ilk condemn humanity to a racialized Hobbesian war of all against all. Her politics resemble nothing more than zoology: the idea of humanity is liquidated, and all that is left is warring subspecies of animals.
But this is nothing new: behind Lana Lokteff’s feminized politics is the same old bloated, beer-guzzling Stormtrooper who harbors violent male fantasies of protecting white women from the forces of “racial decadence.” What was once the threat of “Jewish Bolshevism” has become the threat of “cultural Marxism.” This should come as no surprise: after all, “alt” in German means “old.”