Be careful about trying to convey to someone that you are ‘ok’ with the common hand gesture while scuba-diving, or anywhere else really; you may be mistaken for a white supremacist. A New York City-based group launched a database in 2000 to “help law enforcement officers, school officials and others recognize signs of extremist activity. It has grown to nearly 200 entries” reports Fox News.
Thirty-six new symbols were just added in the “Jewish civil rights group’s online database of symbols of racism and anti-Semitism used by extremists.” In addition to the ‘ok’ hand gesture, bowl style haircuts, and the “Moon Man” from McDonald’s advertising campaigns in the 1980’s are amongst the 36 new additions.
Apparently the “ok” hand symbol “became fodder for a 4chan trolling campaign to dupe viewers into thinking the fingers formed the letters ‘W’ and ‘P’ to mean ‘white power” but the Anti-Defamation League says extremists “also are using it as a sincere expression of white supremacy.” One example of where it was believed to have been used as a symbol of hate was when Australian Brenton Tarrant flashed the ‘OK’ symbol during a courtroom appearance. He was arrested and charged with killing 51 people at mosques in New Zealand in March.
The haircut known as the “bowlcut” is another thing we must now stay away from. Not for the fashion faux pas, but because it means you are a mass murderer. Specifically added to the list by the Anti-Defamation League is the “Dylan Roof Bowlcut.” Why? Because that’s the haircut the young white supremacist Dylann Roof sported during his trial. Roof shot and killed nine people at a historic black church in Charleston, South Carolina in 2015.
The Anti-Defamation League CEO Jonathan Greenblatt said in a statement, “Even as extremists continue to use symbols that may be years or decades old, they regularly create new symbols, memes and slogans to express their hateful sentiments.” Let’s just hope our barbers are keeping up with the latest styles preferred by racists, murderers and white supremacists.
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