When did the Celtic Cross become a Neo-Nazi Power Symbol?

from: http://www.salon.com/news/feature/2009/06/15/neo_nazis_army/

Over a plate of chicken wings, he tells me about his path into the white-power movement. “I was 14 when I decided I wanted to be a Nazi,” he says. At his first high school, near Los Angeles, he was bullied by black and Latino kids. That’s when he first heard Skrewdriver, a band he calls “the godfather of the white power movement.” “I became obsessed,” he says. He had an image from one of Skrewdriver’s album covers — a Viking carrying a staff, an icon among white nationalists — tattooed on his left forearm. Soon after he had another white power symbol, a Celtic cross, emblazoned on his stomach. (emphasis mine)

Excuse me, but there is NOTHING to relate the Celtic culture, and specifically the so-called Celtic Cross with Neo-Nazism, white supremacy, or any of that ilk. I mean, it’s totally wrong to do, but at least it’s understandable when people mistake Viking or Norse symbols for “white power’ symbols. But the CROSS? (Celtic or not)

7 thoughts on “When did the Celtic Cross become a Neo-Nazi Power Symbol?

  1. Pingback: The Wild Hunt » The Racist Appropriation of Pagan (and Christian) Symbols

  2. Chas Clifton

    When? I don’t hang out with that crowd, but I heard a paper that discussed, among other things, the use of Celtic symbols by the racialist crowd delivered at the American Academy of Religion meeting in 1999. Therefore, it must have been happening more than a decade ago.

  3. lisa Post author

    Then I guess I get to be ignorant in public. Ah well 🙂 Worse things can, and have, happen.

    I just find it totally bizarre.

  4. Robin Edgar

    Try somewhere between 1933 and 1945 on for size Lisa. . .

    Just saying as they say.

    You might want to do some responsible research into the pre-Christian solar cross symbol which takes on one of its Christianized forms in what we now call the “Celtic Cross”. Since you clearly acknowledge that it is “understandable” that some people use Viking or Norse symbols for “white power’ symbols you might be a tad disappointed to learn that the same or very similar symbol was a symbol of Odin aka Woden and was known as Odin’s Cross. . . But don’t take my word for it, take the word of The Holy Nation of Odin Inc. In fact there are some archaeologists and historians who believe that early Christians modified or simply appropriated pagan stelae with Odin’s Cross carve into them for their own purposes. Like the swastika, which is a form of solar cross itself, the “Celtic Cross” form of the solar cross symbol, i.e. a cross contained within a circle, is actually quite universal and may be found in most parts of the world where ancient civilizations worshiped the sun.

  5. lisa Post author

    Thanks for the link — but that isn’t a Celtic cross. It’s a cross-quartered circle and the eagle seems to be an integral part of the symbol.

    An image search on google produces this example of a Celtic cross: http://images.google.com/images?q=celtic%20cross&oe=utf-8&rls=org.mozilla:en-US:official&client=firefox-a&um=1&ie=UTF-8&sa=N&hl=en&tab=wi

    Wikipedia, to use the source you provided, gives me this example and definition: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Celtic_cross. Which is similar to the page you sent me to, but not the same. Notably, what is similar is that the circle is quartered, but on the Celtic cross the cross is not enclosed within the circle, but expands beyond it. It is also usually depicted as having a longer base (like the common Christian cross) rather than being balanced like the image you sent the link to.

    The ‘cross’ symbol has a long history and many variations. I freely admit my ignorance. (Which is being rectified.) But I still must say that I find the idea that the Celtic Cross is a neo-nazi symbol is totally bizarre.

  6. lisa Post author

    I’m not at all disappointed that the Celtic Cross and Odin’s Cross are one and the same. Nor am I surprised.

    oh — and please remember that I was just making a comment, sharing an opinion. I was in no way trying to posit a position, or creating an article about cross symbols and their variations, appropriations, and/or functions. Doing ‘responsible’ research would have been required had I been doing anything other than sharing an opinion on my blog.

    Thanks for the link.

  7. Ronnie

    Hi lisa, just came across this quirky post. It is always cool to read something that writers have put effort into. Keep up the interesting content!

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