Brookings resident outed as host of white supremacist podcast

Published: Mar. 16, 2023 at 6:48 PM CDT
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SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (Dakota News Now) - A Vice article recently unmasked a 29-year-old from Brookings as a “Neo-Nazi Podcaster.”

His name is Riggin Scheer, and his podcast is called Achtung Amerikaner, where he says he is advocating for white people by hosting members of organizations associated with a supremacist movement.

“On my website, I advocate for white people, specifically for people of the upper Midwest. We refer to ourselves usually as Amerikaners, in reference to Germanic Scandinavian heritage,” Scheer said.

Scheer discusses a wide variety of topics on his website, from what he calls the Ohio disaster coverup to hosting long-time Neo-Nazi Billy Roper, as well as interviewing members of the Ku Klux Klan.

“The argument that people in the media give is that people like me are rude to members of others races or are discriminatory. My argument is, if being discriminatory is the problem, why are these others groups not censored in the same way that I am, and the answer is simple. Discrimination isn’t actually what anyone cares about. What they care about is making sure that white people don’t have a sense of unity and don’t have a sense of shared purpose, and that’s the purpose of my site now,” Scheer said.

Prior to the Vice article, Scheer was an employee of Bell Brands USA. Since its release, Scheer says the article was passed on to family members, and he was let go from his job.

“In this country, we are — at least in theory — supposed to be allowed to speak whatever we want as long as you are not advocating for illegal activity or violence, but apparently, that is not the case. If you say certain things that are lawful and legal you get fired, and if you say others things you don’t, those things are entirely based upon whether or not you are the correct race or you have the correct political opinions. I think that’s unjust,” Scheer said.

As a result of the news that Scheer’s podcast is taking place here in South Dakota, several organizations have formed a coalition to speak out against white supremacy, including South Dakota Voices for Peace.

“As soon as I read it, I got sick to my stomach, and my first thought was of my son, being a 9-year-old Jewish boy — what kind of hate he’s going to experience in his future when someone so close to home is perpetuating such disgust,” said Jen Dreiske, the deputy director of South Dakota Voice for Peace.

Matilda Oppenheimer, the treasurer at Mt. Zion Congregation in Sioux Falls, is one generation removed from the Holocaust. Her grandparents are believed to have been killed in a concentration camp before her father escaped during WWII.

She believes Scheer’s podcast is dangerous.

“He’s using words, not necessarily actions, but who is he inciting into action? It’s horrible to think about it. It’s the kind of thing that keeps one awake at night,” Oppenheimer said.

We asked Scheer directly if he agreed with the article calling him a racist and a Neo-Nazi.

“I don’t identify as a Neo-Nazi, and I also don’t view the term racist as being a useful term. I don’t know what that term even means. It appears to just be something you use against white people who object to that sort of characterization of our people and our history,” Scheer said.

“It doesn’t matter how you spin it. At the end of the day, he’s a racist. He’s a white supremacist. He can glamorize it however he wants, but at the end of the day, what he talks about and how he frames his feelings about anybody who is not like him — it is dangerous,” Dreiske said.

Scheer went on to add that he believes Vice’s goal when they released the article was to scare him into shutting down the website. He says he will not do that and instead plans to produce more content.

Meantime, Dreiske hopes to soon hold a roundtable discussion to continue fighting back against hate.