Video shot recently near the entrance of the Minneapolis Institute of Art, recorded and posted on social media, shows protesters chanting just outside the entrance as a white man in a hooded sweatshirt talks to Minneapolis police officers.
Moments earlier the man had raised his right arm at the protesters in an apparent Nazi salute. Later, inside the museum, a scuffle lead to one man being knocked down.
There were no arrests and nothing was damaged. But the fight last weekend inside the museum between protesters and members of a so-called alt-right group is a form of conflict observers believe will be increasingly more common in the current political environment.
Experts who track extremism say the number of white nationalist groups in the U.S. is growing, along with more vocal opposition to those groups.
"We're seeing more people who are really a part of the ideology, but who don't actually join brick and mortar hate groups," said Mark Potok, spokesperson for the Southern Poverty Law Center, which tracks hate groups and the conflicts around them. "What they really tend to do is lurk, invisible and anonymous on the internet until that day that they decide to take some actions."
Potok said he believes radical right wing groups have been energized by the election of Donald Trump as president and believe Trump, who has called for tougher enforcement of immigration laws and a crackdown on potential terrorists entering the country, adds legitimacy to their prejudices.
While some welcome the increased activism from people who want to fight racist ideologies, there's worry the response to by activists to get physical is inappropriate.
Violence "really does have no place in our society," said Jessica Gall, the Anti-Defamation League's associate regional director in Chicago. "It only serves to draw more attention to these types of haters and hate rhetoric and it frames them as victims."
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