White supremacy is the belief that White people are superior to people of other racial backgrounds. It is also a political ideology that advocates the social, political, historical and industrial dominance by Whites. White supremacy is most common where there is a significant White population, particularly Europe, North America, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa.
The political ideology of white supremacy dates back centuries and was marked by the disenfranchisement of Non-Whites, who were banned from holding public office and government jobs. The most extreme examples involved the holding of non-whites as slaves (notably African-Americans). The conflicts between Slave and Non-Slave States was ultimately one of the causes of the Civil War. The Emancipation Proclamation of 1863 marked the beginning of the end of slavery, however, the the promotion of white supremacy was still common by prominent figures. Lawyer and historian Madison Grant wrote in his 1916 book "The Passing of the Great Race" that Whites were responsible for humanity's greatest achievements, and that the mixing of races was "race suicide." Many U.S. states even banned interracial marriage until it was deemed unconstitutional in 1967. The two most prevalent white supremacist groups in the United States today are the Aryan Nation and The KKK or "Ku Klux Klan, " the group most closely associated with the white supremacist movement. The Order and the White Patriot Party are two now-defunct white supremacist groups that existed in the 1980s in the U.S.
Though not as prevalent, white supremacy groups are still present today. The militant approach of such groups continues to attract close monitoring by law enforcement, although most groups have slowly evolved from hate and discriminatory groups to those that wish to preserve genetic purity, and retain positions of political power by Whites. Most of these groups use the Internet to recruit, as it provides a way to reach all corners of the globe while maintaining anonymity.