A Texas teacher has been placed on leave after alleged ties to a white supremacist group came to light, HuffPost reports.
Stephen Arnquist was, until recently, a Japanese teacher at Dallas' Skyline High School. However, he is currently on administrative leave, pending the outcome of an investigation into his activities off-the-clock. Those activities allegedly include ties to a white supremacist organization known as "Identity Evropa."
Arnquist's alleged ties were brought to light by the Eugene, Oregon branch of Antifa, an anti-fascist group which itself faces accusations of violent activities. Activists from the group published an article alleging that Arnquist had ties to the group.
So, how did Eugene Antifa tie the teacher to the white supremacist group? It appears as if someone recognized his name, photo, or identity from communications among group members on the messaging and voice chat app Discord. Several such communications were screenshotted, archived and published by Unicorn Riot, described by HuffPost as an "independent media collective."
A user with the handle "Stephen - TX," later alleged to be Arnquist, made at least 28 posts in the Discord group which were "outed" by Unicorn Riot. In one post, he claimed to have lived in Japan for seven years. In another, the user claimed to now be a Japanese teacher "in the ghetto." In another post, he talked negatively about the racial makeup of his school.
"The school is 40% Black, 60% Hispanic school. The school was was 90% white back in the 70s. Walking down the hall by the auditorium looking at the band, choir, etc, photos year by year, it's... it's not fun."The user also described his nonwhite students as "unimpressive" compared to white students he had taught at other schools.
It wasn't just on Identity Evropa. A user with the handle "Arnquist" posted on neo-Nazi website Stormfront, and a user with the handle "Stephen Arnquist" posted on the white supremacist web forum The Right Stuff. Antifa also uncovered a blog post, allegedly written by Arnquist, in which he dog-whistles other white supremacists with coded language.
Arnquist's superiors in the Dallas School District put two and two together and determined that Arnquist is likely the person behind the posts. He has been placed on administrative leave pending further investigation. He has not responded to requests for comment.
Identity Evropa is described by the Southern Poverty Law Center as "the fashionable new face of white nationalism." Specifically, the group targets young, white men on college campuses, and was at least partially behind the deadly "Unite the Right" rally in Charlottesville.