Houston Defends Drag Show Against Christian Fascists

Houstonians gathered outside drag show at Hamburger Mary's defending the entrance from fascists.
About the Event

On Sunday, July 10th, 2022, Protect Texas Kids, a hate group led by self-proclaimed Christian fascist Kelly Neidert from North Texas, attempted to disrupt an all-ages drag show brunch event at Hamburger Mary’s downtown Houston location. Having discovered their plans beforehand, local Houstonians rallied together in a counter-demonstration to defend the event. A crowd of about 100 local Anti-Fascists and members of Houston’s queer community mobilized around the venue to guard the entrance, dwarfing the roughly dozen bigots who yelled across the street from behind police and their barricades.

While the fascists’ tiny group stood around occasionally rambling into megaphones, queer Houstonians were drowning them out with our own chants, dancing to music, and staying cool with water, super soakers, and drinks provided by Hamburger Mary’s. The drag show was able to go on as planned, and the fascists were escorted out by police shortly after the drag brunch ended.

large crowd defending a Drag Show against christian fascists.
A crowd of over 100 Anti-Fascists guarding Hamburger Mary’s in Downtown Houston

Kelly’s attempt to disrupt this event with her group was the latest in a series of actions they have organized against trans and queer gatherings. In general, the group pushes age-old homophobic myths about pedophilia in the queer community as an excuse to show up to events and harass people. They are typically based in Dallas and North Texas, where other Anti-Fascist groups have mobilized against them before. This is one of their first notable appearances in Houston to date, aside from a small group of them trying to counter-protest this year’s Pride Parade last month. We hope after how poorly their rally went, that it will be their last. As far as we know, Kelly and others traveled here from North Texas specifically for this event, despite their turnout struggling to reach a dozen people. While planning the rally, Kelly claimed that “Antifa” in Houston “isn’t very active and it’s likely they won’t show up.” She continues on to say “If they do, I think we will outnumber them.”

an email from kelly neidert reading "I've been told by some of my Houston friends that the antifa group there isn't very active and it's likely they won't show up. If they do, I think we will outnumber them."

Some of the same fascists who came to Hamburger Mary’s on Sunday also participated in a Houston White Lives Matter rally in December 2021, where they had a similarly low turnout despite bringing people in from across the state on both occasions. Among them was Ronald Murray Jr, a Neo-Nazi we recently exposed for his actions in the Houston area. Ronald gave an interview during the event and shouted slurs over the megaphone. Kelly and her crowd had no problem hanging out with these Neo-Nazis until the cameras started rolling at which point she made an effort to stand farther away from them. Regardless, it was clear they felt welcomed to Kelly’s event and knew they would be safe on her side.

Some of the more explicit Neo-Nazis from the crowd. One giving a Sieg Heil salute (right).

 

At past events Protect Texas Kids have invited Proud Boys to attend, which we also witnessed this time around. Alongside the actual “Protect Texas Kids” membership, a few non-uniformed Proud Boys were seen in addition to the contingent of Neo-Nazis mentioned above. Neidert claimed our own call to action caused the Neo-Nazis to attend. This is a ridiculous claim for a self-proclaimed Christian fascist to make who has appeared on a holocaust denial podcast and who buddies up with Proud Boys. The only difference between Ronald Murray and Kelly Neidert is a swastika necklace and years of unpaid child support. Members from the fascists’ side attempted to walk towards the venue repeatedly, including three Proud Boys who were forced back to their side and a “radical centrist” who immediately was booed away. Of course, the cops made no attempt to stop them from coming over, and the community had to defend themselves.

One of the Proud Boys (left) who attended the rally.
Attempts to Police the Counterprotest

There were many attempts to police the community defense of Hamburger Mary’s, from both the cops and from people within the protest. Cops forced us into an increasingly small area, keeping us off curbs, and eventually set up barricades to make a “pathway” that split up the protest in two. The police put up barricades on the fascist side as well, but laid out theirs on the street, giving their tiny group plenty of room. They placed our barricades on the sidewalk, which reduced the room we had even more. As mentioned earlier, the cops made no effort to protect anyone from the fascists. They only intervened when fascists who came over to our side were at threat of getting hurt by the much larger crowd they were harassing. Their role at the protest was clear – to pacify our crowd and keep the fascists safe throughout their demonstration.

As often seen at Houston protests, policing of the crowd also came from selfproclaimed “organizers”, who had not organized this event but still attempted to co-opt it. These peace police scolded people for dressing in masks so they don’t get doxxed by fascists, told people to stop militant chants that the rest of the crowd was fine with, and tried to get people to stop waving any signs they didn’t like. These “organizers” made no effort to get in contact with us to help organize or coordinate the event, and instead tried to position themselves as leaders of a crowd that largely came out because of our call to action. Their justifications were that they wanted the event to be a safe place for the community even while ordering around the trans and queer people who actually organized the event – and that they wanted to present queer people in a positive light to the children in the fascists’ crowd who are being indoctrinated (there were about 2 or 3 kids in their crowd total). Despite their concerns for “safety”, they were nowhere to be seen when cops were boxing us in or when fascists tried entering the crowd. Outside of this small group, however, nobody else seemed to have an issue with the more militant members of the crowd. Instead, people in bloc and those who directly confronted fascists were often thanked, the crowd joined in on militant, anti-cop chants, and people asked to take photos of signs with slogans like “these queers bash back”. Ultimately, the peace police gave up on their efforts to control the counterprotest when the threat of nazis and cops became too clear to ignore.

The ‘sacrificial’ role that march-and-vote peace police continue to sloganeer about illustrates the fundamental logic and limitations of liberal ‘bodies and spaces’ politics. Peace policing directly contradicts and undermines our own capacity to truly take up community self-defense is fundamentally repressive and serves as willing counterinsurgency which directly benefits the fascists, cops, and the capitalists they protect.

Only a burgeoning revolutionary subjectivity and practice can hold its own against the surge of present and rising fascism. As the class is recomposed into a fighting force capable of liberating itself and smashing capitalism, such a revolutionary subjectivity & practice must be upheld.

Conclusion

The counterprotest stretched far beyond our own membership and relied on the other organizations and individuals that belong to no group to succeed. We want to thank the nearly 100 people who came out to defend our community and Hamburger Mary’s for keeping the drag brunch running despite the pressure. We also want to thank the numerous groups and organizations that came out, including (but not limited to):

Belly of the Beast Media Collective

Space City Anarchist Organization

Houston United Front Against Fascism

Houston DSA

Sunday showed that Houstonians are strong, resilient, and do not accept hate towards our neighbors. The counterprotest ended up being a celebration of queerness as we kept each other safe from fascists and pigs, and a reminder that our queer community is rooted in protest and rebellion. From Stonewall to Houston’s protests against Anita Bryant that started Houston Pride, to Sunday at Hamburger Mary’s, queers will always bash back and will look beautiful while doing so.

Pre-Event Press Release:

You can view the press release we posted prior to the event here:

https://screwstonafc.noblogs.org/post/2022/07/10/houston-community-stands-against-christian-fascist-harassment/

White Supremacist Behind Houston Nazi Flyers Exposed as Ronald Murray

Header image of Ronald Murray and his Nazi flyers
Update 6/22/22

We have updated this article to clarify that Ronald Murray no longer drives his sister’s white truck. At this time he is only known to be driving theTan Acura SUV registered to his brother-in-law mentioned later in this article.

Summary
Ronald Lee Murray Jr. has been responsible for flyering Houston and other cities with Neo-Nazi propaganda through a variety of white supremacist groups he has been a part of. He has also played leadership roles in many of these organizations and attended a hate rally at the Jewish Anti-Defamation League building in Houston this year. Ronald has a giant swastika tattooed on his back and has been seen wearing a swastika necklace and a Nazi SS hat. He currently lives in northwest Houston, Texas.
Ronald Murray’s Political History and Activism

Ronald is known to have been a member of the National Socialist Organization, 14 First the Foundation, National Socialist Movement, White Lives Matter, and the Aryan Freedom Network. He served in leadership positions for 14 First The Foundation from 2020 to 2021. The group largely participated in flyering similar to those recently seen throughout Northwest Houston, although the group always had a seemingly small membership. In 2021, the group merged with the National Socialist movement briefly after Murray attended an NSM rally in Phoenix.

Ronald Murray (Right) at an NSM Rally in Phoenix
Ronald Murray (Right) at an NSM Rally.

Soon after the merger, 14 First seemingly ceased to exist and its website became inactive. At roughly the same time, White Lives Matter (WLM), a white supremacist network that operates throughout the U.S and Canada with a small presence across Europe, began re-emerging in public telegram channels after a few years of inactivity since their original appearance in 2016. Murray seems to have been involved in the Houston area chapter since its new beginning. Later on, he joined the Neo-Nazi group Aryan Freedom Network (AFN) and repeatedly flyered for them as well. His most recent case of flyering was promoting 14 First the Foundation, but sometimes White Lives Matter flyers are found mixed throughout. Formerly Murray used the telegram name “Ronald 14 First”, but now uses the name “Racist Pamphleteers” to highlight his frequent flyering sessions. Below are some screenshots from his Telegram activity.

It seems Murray continuously hops from group to group as he attempts to find a place for explicit Neo-Nazism within a fascist movement that increasingly rejects the imagery of old-school Nazi skinheads. 
Ronald appeared to play a very involved role in the White Lives Matter rally that took place in Houston this year at the ADL building. He maintained a front and center presence at the rally and was one of the only people there not masked.

 

Ronald Murray's back swastika tattoo at White Lives Matter Houston Rally in 2022
He also likely used his sister’s white truck to charter members to and from the rally, which was witnessed by attendees. He has been seen flyering in a white truck as well, which he admitted to on the news on at least one occasion. However, to our knowledge, Ron no longer drives his sister’s white truck. It should also be noted that, while Ron does appear to do a heavy amount of flyering, there are also other members of his group(s) who may occasionally flyer as well in an assortment of different vehicles. Most recently, Ronald distributed Neo-Nazi flyers around the Northside of Houston in a tan Acura MDX SUV which is registered to his brother-in-law Alvin B. Daugherty. The SUV is the vehicle Ron drives regularly and is the same vehicle caught on Ring camera footage by victims of recent racist flyers in Houston. Ron used to live with his sister and brother-in-law at their home in Cypress. Ronald’s brother-in-law, Alvin B. Daugherty, is a retired Deputy Sherriff from the Harris County Sheriff’s Office. Although Ron no longer lives with them, it has been reported to us that some non-white neighbors have had prior disputes with the Daugherty household where Ron was living. It has also been reported that Ron has been seen occasionally coming and going to the house throughout the last few months.
Ronald Murray's Tan SUV is pictured in front of his apartment, compared to the same vehicle seen in Ring footage by victims of his racist flyers. A National Socialist Movement (NSM) sticker sits on the back windshield of the vehicle.
Ronald Murray’s Tan SUV is pictured in front of his apartment, compared to the same vehicle seen in Ring footage by victims of his racist flyers. A National Socialist Movement (NSM) sticker sits on the back windshield of the vehicle. Plate number FPS9676.
Personal Information
 

Ronald Murray has since moved to an apartment in a nearby region, potentially hiding out from police who had reportedly come looking for him at his Sister’s address before. He has an active warrant out for his arrest for missing child support payments and has a prior criminal record for a marijuana possession charge.

Visit our Pastebin page to view his address and other details.

 
Printable Flyer
Printable Flyer PDF Here  (Previewed Below – Address only visible in PDF)

Anti-Fascists Disrupt White Lives Matter Houston Rally

Torn up White Lives Matter signs

About the Event

In the past few months we’ve seen an uptick of attempts to attack Jewish establishments by white supremacists in Texas. Recently, a synagogue was burned down in Austin after a series of anti-Semitic actions by the Goyim Defense League. There has also been an increase in the distribution of antisemitic propaganda throughout the U.S. by various groups. This week, we’ve seen another attempt to threaten the Jewish community in Houston.

On Saturday, December 18, Neo-Nazis and white supremacists affiliated with White Lives Matter (WLM) organized a demonstration outside of the local offices for the Anti Defamation League. After weeks of planning, they managed to get a dozen Neo-Nazis to show up and stand in the rain with antisemitic signs. The Screwston Anti-Fascist Committee was informed of the event by another Anti-Fascist group, and within a day managed to organize twice as many people to protest against them. We were proud to stand in solidarity with everyone who showed up to fight white supremacy, both those in formal political organizations and those who went alone. The Houstonians who came out showed white supremacists that they are not welcome in our city, and that we will not tolerate bigotry against our neighbors. White Lives Matter was late to show up, and it was already raining by the time they had come. After a brief clash between the two sides, cops came to separate us and protect the fascists. The police were clear in their intentions, having openly stated that they were there to protect the Nazi’s right to “free speech”. WLM even admits to this, as can be seen in their gab post about the event:

It’s clear that the police don’t protect the people of Houston,but instead aim to make sure Neo-Nazis can safely organize events and spread their genocidal message.

The fascists in WLM forgot to bring umbrellas, so their signs ended up getting washed out by the rain. After about an hour of trying to show off their faded and nearly incoherent ramblings to the few cars passing by and getting their shouts drowned out by our significantly larger crowd, the WLM members scurried away within the police escort. The event was a clear success for the Anti-Fascists, and Houstonians who showed up in solidarity with our Jewish neighbors. Not only did we significantly outnumber the WLM members and take their signs, but we got them to leave and drowned out their message, reminding them that antisemitism and fascism wont be tolerated in Houston.

About White Lives Matter

White Lives Matter is a decentralized network of white supremacists. They mainly organize in various regional telegram groups divided on the state level, and country level for groups outside the so-called U.S. After a few years of dormancy since they first appeared in 2016, the group got off to a rocky re-start in April after they attempted to coordinate rallies across the so called U.S. Their rallies failed to attract more then a handful of people at each location in the instances where they weren’t cancelled completely. Anti-Fascists infiltrated local telegram groups and vastly outnumbered the few fascist protestors who did show up. Now, their protests struggle to attract more then a dozen participants, and they mainly distribute white supremacist and white genocide conspiracy content in an attempt to indoctrinate white Americans and to terrorize marginalized communities. Most members of White Lives matter are explicit fascists, using usernames with references to the third reich and, in the case of many of the WLM members on the 18th, wearing swastikas, SS bolts, or other symbols of Nazism. They’ll sometimes try to obscure this fact to seem more respectable for the sake of “optics”, but as this event shows, they still have a hard time keeping hate symbols out sight.

Statement on the ADL and Zionism

The Anti-Defamation League was likely chosen as a target by “White Lives Matter” for multiple reasons. For one, it’s one of the most prominent Jewish organizations in the country and is featured prominently in many conspiracy theories about white genocide, so they intend to terrorize and intimidate all Jews by targeting it. They also likely chose it as a target in order to sow divison among the left —WLM seeks to bait their enemies into supposed hypocrisy so they can accuse us of being zionists, but there is no hypocrisy in our position. The ADL is a firmly right-wing zionist organization with a history of surveilling and maligning social justice movements and support of law enforcement, including sponsoring israeli trainings for NYPD. Loyal to the israeli settler-state, the ADL silences criticism of israel’s apartheid, ethnic cleaning and war crimes by targeting and smearing Palestinians and their Jewish anti-zionist allies as anti-Semites. While their purported mission as a civil rights organization is to combat antisemitism, they are unabashed in their public support of anti-Semites and right wingers in the US and elsewhere. 

    

The Screwston Anti-fascist Committee stands in solidarity with all oppressed people worldwide. We stand in solidarity with Jewish people in the US and elsewhere who are among the most frequent victims of hate crimes and whose communities are constantly under attack. We stand in solidarity with the millions of Palestinian refugees in exile who are barred from returning to their homeland by the israeli settler-state and those who are resisting  occupation and apartheid in Palestine. We do not support the ADL in any way and did not call this rally to defend the ADL specificaly.

Conclusion

The counter-protest on December 18th may have been a victory, but it’s just one battle in the war against fascism. We must continue to organize against white supremacy and fight it wherever it rears its head. We ask the readers to cover up and deface any fascist propaganda they might see, inform Screwston Anti-fascist Committee or other Anti-Fascist groups, and to otherwise do everything you can to fight to keep your community safe from fascism, white supremacy, antisemitism, and bigotry in all forms. It’s only by working together and practicing care and solidarity towards those around us that all of us will be able to defeat fascism.

Email us at:         screwstonafc@riseup.net

Special thanks to Red Fog 161 and the Elm Fork John Brown Gun Club for helping make this event possible, and to the Houston Socialist Movement and Houston United Front Against Fascism!

Houston Nazis Doxx Each Other Following Anti-Fascist Actions

On Saturday, June 8th, anti-fascists exposed a realtor named Paul Preston as being the leader of a local Neo-Nazi Group called the Houston Goylers. On the same day they confronted him outside his home in Houston’s Near Northside neighborhood where he lives with his Neo-Nazi girlfriend, Ariel Gherman. Before news even had a chance to spread about the confrontation, active members of Houston’s Alt-Right were already well into an uproar of infighting and blame on Facebook. Weeks prior to the event, tensions were already running high between “AK Lane”, an Alt-Right woman who was dating a Patriot Front member, and Paul Preston. AK Lane had vaguely accused Paul of being a “Nazi LARPer with a Jewish girlfriend” (Ariel bears a commonly Jewish surname), and Paul had in turn been making jokes about AK Lane’s body and appearance for some time. Preston further inflamed tensions by implying it was preferable to date an attractive non-white woman over an opinionated fascist white woman, angering the more “principled” Nazis. This infighting, driven largely by the hopelessly dramatic Paul Preston, ironically rendered him helpless and friendless just a few days later when a large bloc of anti-fascists arrived at their doorstep. Demonstrations continued for well over an hour, with Ariel hiding inside with no one to call upon for aid.

After finding out the hard way that being a Nazi in the real world won’t be tolerated, Paul and Ariel took their anger back to the internet looking for someone to blame for this series of humiliating defeats – while others made laughable claims they could have done something differently to stop us. Over the next few days arguments among fascists flared and it was revealed by AK Lane’s boyfriend that she had previously threatened to doxx Paul Preston.

Upon seeing this, Paul and Ariel became convinced that AK Lane had been solely responsible for doxxing them. Incapable of believing that anti-fascists could collect such extensive information on their own, a number of stories began circulating online about AK Lane working with antifascists and doxxing her former friends.

In actuality, Paul had doxxed himself by posting pictures from his home office, and by identifying himself as Wooderson on film during a fascist “Texas Is Ours” rally in Austin the year prior. AK Lane had not, despite her threats, communicated any information about Preston but it ultimately didn’t matter. His unprincipled, panicked, childishly dramatic demeanor lead him to doxx AK Lane as Kathryn Powell, a name not previously known to us. Both Paul and Ariel made a concerted effort to distribute this information widely online, including photos of Kathryn’s work badge as a TMS Transit Specialist for TAPS Public Transit in North Texas. It’s unclear if that is her current or former employer.

Throughout the weeks following, Kathryn Powell has been the target of continued harassment from her former Nazi associates. Memes, jokes, and threats about her have been circulating across fascist social media circles and are being shared by fascists not even originally involved in these disputes. She is no longer dating her boyfriend from Patriot Front, who appears to have betrayed her by releasing her threats to doxx Paul Preston. It’s no surprise that the first people they are ready to betray are women. The Alt-Right is deeply rooted in misogyny, and they will always seek to blame their own failures and weaknesses on women first. 

Kathryn is still active in some fascist circles such as the “Othinn Folk” Nazi Pagan group which she administers on social media along with other Neo-Nazis. Paul Preston and his friends have gone out of their way to make a fake Facebook group where they make fun of Othinn Folk and Kathryn Powell herself. These events seem to have pitted Paul Preston and his friends in the Houston Goylers and Patriot Front against anyone who supports or tolerates Kathryn in other groups.

White supremacists, and in this case “Chad Nationalists” in particular, build themselves up as strong, disciplined fighters who put their “movement” above all else. In reality, these are fragile, childish white men terrified of being exposed and ready to throw each other under the bus at the first sign of trouble.

Houston Realtor Paul Preston Exposed as Nazi Group Leader

Summary

Paul Joseph Preston, often using the aliases Whit Wooderson and Woody White,  is a co-founder of a local white nationalist organization known as the Houston Goylers, and a frequent contributor to the Alt-Right podcast Exodus Americanus. He has participated in numerous white supremacist and Neo-Nazi rallies including the deadly Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville in 2017, the attempted disruption of the Houston Anarchist Bookfair in 2017, and the attempted disruption of Bingo Against Borders in 2018, among others. He works in real estate and holds a Texas real estate license. His license is sponsored by Applied Real Estate Technologies, LLC, which does business under the trade name ListingSpark. Paul lives with his white nationalist girlfriend, Ariel Gherman, in Houston’s Near Northside neighborhood where he owns a house.

Paul Preston and Ariel Gherman marching in the white supremacist “Unite the Right” rally in Charlottesville, 2017.
Paul and Ariel’s Information

Personal details moved to pastebin for now.

Paul Preston and the Houston Goylers

Paul Joseph Preston is one of the two original founders of a Houston-based Neo-Nazi organization called the Houston Goylers. The name is an antisemitic play on the name of the old Houston football team, the Houston Oilers. Goy is a Hebrew word that was historically sometimes used to refer to non-Jews, and is often used today by white supremacists and Neo-Nazis today to emphasize how not-Jewish, and in fact how anti-Jewish, they are. Among Houston Neo-Nazis, the Goylers are generally regarded as the “main guys” who organize as explicit white supremacists in Houston, alongside Patriot Front. In 2016 the Goylers boasted a membership of around 25 people, with about 10 of them reported as being highly active according to Paul Preston, though it is unclear if they have maintained the same membership over recent years.

Paul Preston uses the alias Whit Wooderson online (and variations like “Woody White”), and credits himself as “one of the founders of Chad Nationalism” as well. Like many other Alt-Right terms, Chad Nationalism is really just a meme-based rebranding of white nationalism, centered around building up one’s identity as an “alpha male” as featured in Chad memes online. Under his Whit Wooderson alias, Paul is also an administrator to the “Boartex of Power” Facebook group, which serves as a private social group for the Alt-Right talk show “Exodus Americanus”, a channel on “The Right Stuff” (TRS) fascist podcast platform. He has participated in a number of TRS podcasts under the name Wooderson, discussing the social activities of the Houston Goylers, his love of Confederate Flag regalia, work and life advice for fellow Neo-Nazis, and his contempt for everyone who isn’t a white, straight Christian male with racial slurs littered throughout. Here is a short clip of Wooderson laying out his beliefs on Exodus Americanus Episode 112:

Whit Wooderson listed as an admin for the private “Boartex of Power” Facebook group where Exodus Americanus listeners congregate.

On top of just talking on The Right Stuff podcasts, Paul helped organize “TRS Pool Party” meetups around Houston. These are basically just real-life social meetups for Alt-Right Nazis who listen to or are involved in the podcasts, but they have played a role in networking different fascist groups together and bringing in new members. Paul also joined the white supremacist group “Identity Europa” when they were around in 2016, and put up some of their flyers around Houston which FreePress Houston reported about at the time.

In 2017, Paul traveled to Charlottesville to participate in the Unite the Right demonstrations that culminated with James Field’s deadly car attack. During Friday’s torch-lit march, Paul could be seen dressed in a white polo shirt and khaki pants–the uniform of the now-defunct white nationalist group Vanguard America. He held hands and walked with his girlfriend Ariel Gherman (who sometimes uses the alias Ariel Sherman). You’ll remember last year we exposed Ariel for renting the house that the Texas Neo-Nazi contingent stayed in during their trip to Charlottesville. After our expose, Ariel was promptly fired from her job at a right-wing graphic design and media strategy firm, Harris Media (which has its own ties to international fascism), and soon after moved back to her hometown of Houston, where she took up residence with Paul. 

In the summer of 2017, Paul attended a white nationalist “Texas is Ours” rally in front of the Texas Capitol in Austin. With his organization “The Houston Goylers”, Paul participated in the attempted disruption of the Houston Anarchist Bookfair in September 2017, alongside Patriot Front and other fascists. He also was one of the white nationalists who attempted to disrupt the SURJ Bingo Against Borders event at a Houston bar in August 2018. He was caught on camera daring onlookers to “Take my picture, try to get me fired!” Aside from trying to disrupt various left wing events, the Goylers focus mostly on physical fitness training and do a lot of group activities in private, such as going on “Hate Hikes” with Patriot Front members and other Nazis.

There are a number of things which we will feature below that help prove Paul Preston is the real person behind the “Whit Wooderson” alias:

Realtors, White Supremacy, and Gentrification

Paul and Ariel live in a house Paul owns in the Near Northside, a historically Latino and Black neighborhood in central Houston, just north of downtown. It was the site of the 1978 protests and rebellion following the police murder of Jose Campos Torres. It’s also a neighborhood which, like much of inner loop Houston, has been struggling with gentrification and displacement, especially since the construction of the Red Line MetroRail in 2013. Additionally, the Near Northside has been the base of Paul’s real estate business activities. 

Paul currently holds a real estate license sponsored by Applied Real Estate Technologies, LLC, which does business as ListingSpark. It’s unclear whether Paul is an employee of ListingSpark or just an independent contractor. In either case, Texas law makes ListingSpark legally accountable for all the actions of the agents it sponsors. Sponsoring the license of an open Neo-Nazi like Paul or any of his associates therefore creates a huge liability for ListingSpark or any other sponsoring brokerage. 

The Fair Housing Statement by ListingSpark states that they “fully support the principles of the Fair Housing Act … which generally prohibits discrimination in the sale, rental, and financing of dwellings, and in other housing-related transactions, based on race, color, national origin, [and] religion,” and that they “are committed to, creating and fostering an environment of diversity throughout their … organization and franchise system.” Additionally, Section 531.19 of the Rules of the Texas Real Estate Commission prohibits real estate license holders from indicating “any preference, limitation, or discrimination” based on race, color, religion, national origin, or ancestry, among other characteristics. Article 10 of the Texas REALTORS® Code of Ethics (of which Paul is a member) contains a number of anti-discrimination provisions as well. But how can they expect an openly white supremacist Neo-Nazi to abide by these Fair Housing and non-discrimination laws?

Before his current gig with ListingSpark, Paul was the co-owner of Bayou City Properties, LLC, together with Daniel Nelan Starr. During that time both Paul and Daniel had real estate licenses sponsored by Granite Point Realty. The registered address of Bayou City Properties was 1205 Morris Street, the very house that Paul purchased in 2018 and for which he used Daniel as the real estate agent.

Dan Starr clearly had a close relationship with Paul and is still Facebook friends with Paul’s openly fascist account “Woody White,” and he “likes” or interacts with some of Paul’s Nazi posts. Dan Starr’s wife, Olivia, is also Facebook friends with Ariel Gherman. Dan Starr still owns and lists a number of other properties in the Near Northside as well, but appears to currently work for an Austin-based real estate company called Jovio.

Dan Starr’s facebook profile, where you can see he has friended “Woody White”

Below, we can see Paul Preston’s realty friend Dan Starr jokingly post “WE STAND WITH ISRAEL” in the comments of one of Paul’s posts complaining about Donald Trump supporting Israel.

The presence of an openly white supremacist real estate agent on the Near Northside, along with his other realty connections, is an enormous threat to all the non-white people still trying to hang on in this neighborhood. Like all U.S. cities, Houston has a long history of racial discrimination, segregation, and white supremacy in the real estate and housing industries, from redlining neighborhoods for disinvestment; blockbusting and white flight; discrimination in lending; and many other practices–both overt and subtle–used to arrange urban space to reflect and reinforce the larger racial hierarchies in society. The recent efforts at gentrifying the Near Northside follow this legacy closely. 

As Atlanta Antifascists noted in their 2017 expose of a white nationalist lawyer and real estate developer, “Involvement in property development and gentrification has several obvious appeals to white nationalists. First, insofar as it builds white enclaves at the expense of communities of color, this parallels the larger-scale political goals of white nationalism. Second, it generates funds and material resources that may be put at the disposal of the racist movement. Third, being perceived as a successful businessperson can itself generate political capital and greater opportunities to spread one’s message.” 

To be clear, the serious problems of racist development strategies and gentrification, housing and lending discrimination, and the displacement and subjugation of communities of color is so much bigger than a handful of avowed Neo-Nazis in the real estate business–just like a handful of Neo-Nazis in law enforcement or the military are not the cause of the white supremacist and colonial/imperial function of policing and the military. The attraction of white nationalists and Neo-Nazis merely illuminates the white supremacist structure and function already existing in these institutions. The structural white supremacy that exists in these industries and institutions creates attractive work opportunities for overt white nationalists, lends them an appearance of legitimacy while they enact their white nationalist agenda, and provides fertile ground for recruiting people steeped in the same culture. 

#YangGang

On March 10th, 2019, Paul and Ariel, along with fellow Nazis William Fears and Joffre Cross (both currently under indictment for being felons in possession of firearms), attended a Houston campaign event for Democratic presidential candidate Andrew Yang. Paul later bragged on social media about getting memes signed by Yang and sent a picture he had taken with Yang to his dad. At first glance, white nationalists supporting an Asian-American Democratic party candidate is entirely incomprehensible, but there are several forces at play in this. First is the alt-right’s disillusionment with Trump, partly because of his lack of follow through with the border wall and his support for Israel. Organizing support for an opposition candidate is partly a way to punish Trump for these betrayals, an attempt to prove that he and other Republicans need the alt-right to win. 

Having given up on Trump, and presidential candidates in general in some cases, many people on the Alt-Right are “ironically supporting Yang” because they say they just want the free $1000 per month (from his platform focused on a universal basic income) to fund their attempts at activism. The funny Yang Gang slogan, ripe opportunities at endless Yang memes, the fashwave aesthetic of Yang’s hats, and the irony of white supremacists appearing to back an Asian candidate are all factors that have combined into a large support base for Andrew Yang by the Alt-Right.

There are other, more ideological, layers as well, such as Yang’s emphasis on the impact of automation and occasional discussion of demographic changes in the U.S., both white nationalist talking points. 

For his part, Yang has denounced the Alt-Right support, but has hardly done anything to make his campaign inhospitable to them. And signing his name on print outs of Pepe memes seems, at the most generous, extremely naive for someone who wants to run for president, and at worst looks a lot like when Trump feigned ignorance about David Duke and his endorsement of Trump. Additionally, the Alt-Right Yang Gang phenomenon creates opportunities for the muddying political lines and dangerous left-right cross-overs. Traditionally left-wing positions like a universal basic income can easily be co-opted by fascistic movements, especially when they exist in isolation of a larger political analysis of capitalism, the state, and fascism. 

But Charlottesville Was A Long Time Ago And I Thought The Alt-Right Was Dead?

After Charlottesville and the other big fascist rallies of 2017, much of the Alt-Right retreated from grandiose public displays–a reflection of their declining power and legitimacy and also a strategic attempt to regroup. They have made some strides in bolstering their tactics, messaging, and security, such as switching to more unannounced flash-mob style actions, flyering campaigns, and organization building. Our tactics have to evolve as well.

Unfortunately, the lack of a visible fascist spectacle has lulled some on the left into a sense of complacency on a false assumption that what can’t be seen either doesn’t exist or isn’t a serious threat. 

Also much of the left has simply been re-captivated with the spectacles of a new election cycles and official investigations of the president. While Donald Trump’s candidacy and election lent momentum and legitimacy to the Alt-Right and white nationalist politics more generally, an electoral defeat of Trump cannot, by itself, defeat an autonomous fascist movement that no longer believes in him. Radical, creative, and expansive anti-fascist movements are more important than ever.

When it comes to fascists, we don’t forget and we don’t forgive. Stay vigilant and stay anti-fascist!
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