How One Woman Stood Up to 300 Swedish Neo-Nazis.

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How One Woman Stood Up to 300 Swedish Neo-Nazis.

Tess Asplund, 42, an Afro-Swede, just 5 ft. 3 inches tall, got angry when she saw a group of Nazis from from the “Nordic Resistance Group” marching in Borlänge, a city in central Sweden.  So rather than just standing by and watching like the others she stepped into the street to stop them.

“It was an impulse. I was so angry, I just went out into the street,” Asplund told the Guardian. “I was thinking: hell no, they can’t march here! I had this adrenaline. No Nazi is going to march here, it’s not okay.”

Neo-Nazi groups like the “Nordic Resistance Groups” are proliferating across Northern Europe, while right-wing parties control the parliaments in Sweden and Denmark.  The Danish government recently announced it would seize cash and jewelry from migrants seeking asylum there (what’s next, gold fillings?) Meanwhile, there have been waves of violence against migrants in Germany, and the leader of the right-wing “Alternative for Germany” party — now the 3rd largest — advocated “protecting Germany’s borders” by shooting at refugees if necessary.

In Sweden, open racism has become “normalized”:

“Racism has been normalised in Sweden, it’s become okay to say the N-word,” she says, recounting how a man on the subway used the racial slur while shouting and telling her to hurry up. “But nobody paid any attention. I thought Sweden in 2016 would be more open minded, but something has happened,” Asplund says.

“I hope something positive will come out of the picture. Maybe what I did can be a symbol that we can do something – if one person can do it, anyone can.”


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