A short story I posted on Stormfront earlier this year.
Harold Rice was mortified when he first saw his name on the list. And not just his name, but his address, telephone number and email address. At first he couldn’t believe it, but there it was, in black and white, two-thirds of the way down the roster of some eight thousand names, right between a Mr Steven Raynor and a Mrs Sharon Rowlandson.
So that nationalist forum post he’d read had been correct: someone had leaked the details of all the members of the British Party, and now they had been published on the internet, for the entire world to see.
Harold sat there in the morning light his living room, stunned, staring at his computer screen. After reading the forum post, he did a quick web search and found a ream of newspaper articles about the leak. He clicked on the first result.
‘British Party members list revealed!’ its headline gleefully announced, followed by the triumphant sub-title, ‘Over 8,000 racists’ details laid bare.’
His horror only grew as he scrolled farther down the page.
Among the piece’s frequent cries of ‘racist’, ‘Nazi’ and ‘Islamophobic’, Harold learned that the list had been handed to the paper by an undercover informant who had posed as a Party activist for the last several months. How this informant had gotten hold of the list wasn’t disclosed, but his own inclusion on it, as well as that of several others on the forum, proved its authenticity beyond doubt.
Harold was further alarmed by the fact that the article contained a prominent link – replete with emboldened exhortations to ‘Click here! – to the data dump site to which the list had been posted.
He clicked the link to test it. It went to the same place the forum post had.
A shudder ran through him. Just how many people were going to see my name on there? he worried to himself.
Becoming evermore perturbed, he went back to the article.
Scrolling down he saw a section detailing some of the more well-known persons on the list. Among them were a somewhat famous former footballer; a reality TV star, and a beautiful young female classical violinist, who had formerly been labelled as one of Britain’s great rising talents. The article’s author – an Abdia Rashid – stated that the paper had contacted all three of the celebs in an attempt for them to ‘explain their connections to Britain’s foremost neo-Nazi party’. So far it hadn’t heard back…
Harold was just grateful that his lack of importance spared him this extra space in the spotlight.
Then came the comments section.
As this was a ‘liberal’ newspaper, Harold knew better than to read them. However, his curiosity unfortunately got the better of him.
Their content didn’t surprise him in the least.
The uppermost message, with 242 up votes, simply read, ‘Fuck nazi’s! [sic].’ The next was, ‘Good!Hope people like this desrve [sic] to be named and shamed, hope they get what they deserve!’ The third was about the violinist. It read: ‘I cant [sic] believe I bought that bitches [sic] CD. I always knew there was something up with her. Im [sic] going to fuckin burn it right now!!!’
And on and on it went. There were a few supportive comments, mostly left by people with guest accounts, but they had all either been buried with masses of down votes or hastily deleted (you could tell they had been positive from the ‘Go fuck urself racist scum!’ replies). After reading first page Harold, couldn’t stomach any more, and exited the browser tab.
Harold tried to remain calm, but, as was often the case, he didn’t do a very good job. He noticed he was breathing rapidly and had broken out in a light sweat. It was only a few seconds before he cracked.
‘I knew it!’ he cried, visibly trembling now. ‘I knew this would happen!’
It was true. Ever since joining the BP two years ago, Harold had a feeling this day was going to come. It had seemed like the right thing to do at the time. The only thing to do, in fact (legally anyway), to help stop the rot that was destroying his people and country. But he began to regret it the moment he received his membership card in the post. What if someone were to find out? he had asked himself. Dad, mum, friends, work… He would be ostracised from his already-small social circle, lose his job, perhaps even be disowned, made a pariah.
Thus he kept quiet about the whole thing. He ignored the invitations to local meetings and leafleting sessions. He hid his membership card, even though he lived alone. And a year later he binned his renewal form. He hoped that would be enough to let the whole affair die. But clearly he had been wrong. All he could do now was hope it would blow over.
That day at work soon proved that wasn’t going to be the case. After only a couple of hours at his desk, Harold realised something was amiss. He saw he was getting frequent sideways glances from co-workers, and, that whenever he returned them, the person in question would quickly look away again. When he went for lunch, no one sat with him, and, when he said goodbye to the receptionist at the end of the day, she just looked down at her desk and pretended to be busy with something.
Obviously, none of this helped Harold’s already-paranoid state, and, on the drive home, his mind churned. He tried to think of possible reasons why his colleagues had treated him like such an outcast, but he could only come up with one rational answer: They knew. The leak list story was likely all over the news by now. Someone else at work must have seen it, too, and spread it round the office like wildfire. What other explanation could there be?
God, how was he ever going to explain it to them? And what hope did he have for a promotion now?
All because of that damned list!
After getting home Harold went straight back to his computer.
He loaded up the same forum thread he had read that morning. It had over three hundred replies now, and some ten thousand views. More and more people who were named on the list had joined the discussion, venting their outrage that a) their personal details had been made public, and b) the national media’s response had been so contemptible. Harold couldn’t agree more. There were also several messages from guests making fun of those who had been ‘doxed’, as it was being called. They were mostly the predictable ‘Haha nazi scum’ and ‘You deserve it you fascist pigs’ type. Harold considered leaving a reply of his own but decided against it. He didn’t want to do anything to perpetuate matters; he just wanted this all to die down and go away.
Once he had caught up on the thread, Harold checked his emails. He was surprised to find that he had somewhat more than usual – two hundred and twenty-nine, to be exact – the vast majority offering him cures for erectile dysfunction or opportunities to claim his Nigerian lottery winnings.
Just another advantage of being on ‘The List’, he thought.
Harold was just about to blanket-delete the emails when he saw he had one from Jennifer. It didn’t have a subject line. He opened it. Like their relationship, it was disappointingly brief. It read:
I’m sorry. I won’t be coming over tonight. I can’t be with you anymore after reading that story about you. Hannah’s being calling me about it. Three people have removed me as a friend on Facebook already. I’m sorry it had to end like this. I liked you.
Harold checked his own Facebook account and saw that Jennifer had removed him as a friend. She had also posted a message declaring that she had now dumped him and apologised for going out with a ‘racist’. Several of her friends liked the message and left her replies telling her they were ‘with her’ and commending her for being ‘brave’. Harold went back to his inbox and deleted her email along with the spam.
Harold tried to act like it wasn’t affecting him, but deep down inside it hurt. Even though he had only been seeing Jennifer a month, he had high hopes. He had already started having imaginings about their settling down together, about…
Nevermind. No point thinking about that now. It was over. He wasn’t going to try to talk her round. He still had some self respect. If she were going to leave him over something like this, she wasn’t worth keeping anyway. That’s what he told himself…
With his mind made up to forget her, and his diary for the evening now emptied, Harold made some dinner and switched on the television. As usual, that was a mistake. The BBC was showing a discussion on the leaked list. It was chaired by a white female host, with a Muslim female guest – complete with sacred head rag – and a black male guest. The caption on the screen called the programme a ‘debate’, yet it was apparent that none of the three seemed to disagree with one another on anything. The woman guest said it was ‘good’ that the list had been made public, as Muslims had a right to know the details of people that could ‘pose a danger to them in Britain’. The black suggested the police consider ‘monitoring’ those on the list in order to prevent ‘hate crimes’. The host didn’t challenge either assertion. Harold switched the TV off in disgust.
After a day like the one he’d had, Harold was ready for an early night, but, before turning in, he noticed he had one more genuine email among the glut of spam he was still receiving.
This one was from work. From his boss, Alan Coates. The message was incredibly formal and nowhere near remarkable enough to warrant repeating verbatim. In the first paragraph Alan informed Harold that it ‘had come to [his] attention that Harold was one of the persons named on the leaked list of British Party members’. After reading that, Harold already knew what was coming. The next two paragraphs looked like they had been copied and pasted from a business book of clichés: ‘diversity’ this, ‘equal opportunities’ that. Standard BS. The fourth and final paragraph – which was comprised of a single sentence – related to Harold that, because of above BS, he was now no longer in Mr Coates’ employ. That was it. Not even a ‘We wish you well in any future blah, blah, blah.’ He was fired. He went to bed that night thinking things couldn’t get any worse.
Once again his optimism was misplaced.
Not needing to get up early for work the next morning, Harold pulled the curtains back at and saw a huge red backwards swastika staring back at him. He quickly dressed and hurried outside to find that the entire ground floor wall of his house had been defaced with graffiti. As well as the swastika on his window, someone had scrawled ‘Nazis out’ across the wall, and added another swastika for good measure on the front door. His car had gotten similar treatment. Another swastika was spray-painted onto its windscreen, while its doors had been repeatedly keyed.
Shocked, Harold immediately went back inside and phoned the police. A young officer, who couldn’t have been more than a teenager – turned up that evening and took a statement. The officer asked if Harold had seen who had done it and if there was any CCTV in the area. Harold responded negatively to both. The officer suggested Harold think about investing in some CCTV, then gave him an incident number and told him they would be in touch if they found anything.
He didn’t hear from them again.
Harold spent the next couple of days attempting to clean the graffiti off his house and car, deal with the insurance people, and generally try to prevent himself from going insane. The last of these wasn’t helped by having to contend with a phone call from his mother, who was demanding to know what had been going on with him. He had to go over the whole series of events with her again, which, to put it mildly, he didn’t relish. After recounting it all, he had hoped that he could at least count on some maternal sympathy, but instead he was subjected to a practical lecture in a you-only-have-yourself-to-blame-really tone. After several minutes of that, he just tuned out. As for what his father thought of the matter, Harold was none the wiser. He didn’t bother coming to the phone.
Whatever. Harold had more important matters to concern himself with anyway, namely what he was going to do about his job, or lack of one. To that end he made an appointment with the local solicitors regarding the possibility of taking legal action against his employers over his summary dismissal. He thought he had a strong case. After all, as he told the solicitor at his appointment, he had done nothing wrong. His only ‘offence’ was to have been a member of a legal political party. But apparently not. According to the solicitor, employees rarely won cases when they were involved with ‘hate groups’, as he called them. Thus the solicitor informed him that if he were to bring a case against Mr Coates, Harold would almost certainly lose, and furthermore it would likely cost him the bulk of his savings.
Naturally Harold decided against it.
That left him looking for another job, which he began to do in earnest. He applied for a couple of dozen that week, all similar posts to the one he recently held. He got rejected by all of them. Well, to be more precise, only three wrote back. The rest didn’t bother. Harold couldn’t understand why. But then he came across a news article stating that employers had starting checking new applicants’ names against the leaked list before arranging interviews.
His heart sank. So that was it. Harold Rice had now effectively been blacklisted, essentially barred from making a living.
If he’d read that article a week ago, Harold might have gone into another fit of maddened trembling, but now he felt oddly at ease with his current situation. The whole ordeal had been horrific, of course, and something he wished he had just avoided by never filling in that damned membership form. But it had also reminded him of one of the reasons why he joined the BP in the first place; i.e., the nature of the people who opposed him and those who shared his views. They didn’t believe in democracy (though they never shut up about how great it was), they didn’t tolerate dissenting opinions, and they would use any means available to them – including violent ones – to destroy the lives of those heretics who dared deviate from the politically correct orthodoxy. That such people were so antithetical to him only proved that Harold was on the side of right.
Unfortunately, being right didn’t put food on the table or pay the bills. Thus Harold racked his brains for a solution to change his string of ill fortunes.
In the end he could only come up with one recourse: move house and change his name. It was hardly the most heroic of responses to the barrage of discrimination he’d received, but it was the only practical action he could think of. Thus he visited the appropriate section of the Government’s website and requested a deed poll form.
Over the next few days while he waited for the form, Harold started to receive a new kind of nuisance email. These ones weren’t the typical spam, but rather vitriolic messages from so-called anti-fascist activists. Harold could tell by the names of the recipients that they were being sent to everyone whose email address had been on the list. He got quite a few of these, many of which he deleted out of hand; however, he did take the time to read one in its entirety. As you might expect, it was hardly the most eloquent offering, but it nevertheless succeed in having a lasting impression on him. It read:
Dear nazi scum!
This is just a friendly reminder that the leaked list of BP members will never go away. We anti-fascists will make it our sworn duty to post and repost this list everywhere on the internet over and over so decent people will always be aware of scum like you. Being part of a nazi party must have consequences and you WILL be made an example of. Enjoy having this dog you for the rest of your pitiful life. You will never be able to work again if we have anything to do with it. Dont bother running or changing your name. WE WILL FIND YOU. you will always be looking over your shoulder. And even when ur dead everyone will forever know you were part of a racist scum party. Your children and your childrens children will know what you were. No one will ever forget!
Initially Harold went to delete the email, but then changed his mind. Instead he clicked Reply, composed a response, and then hit Send. His message simply read, ‘Thank you.’
Then he shredded the deed poll forms and renewed his BP membership.
The next day he went leafleting.