A Friendship With A Black Woman Inspired This Ex-Neo-Nazi To Renounce White Supremacy
Michael Kent: "I look at her as family."
September 26, 2017 at 7:53 pm
There is so much hate in the world; it’s nice when stories of love peek through.
Michael Kent was a member of a violent neo-Nazi group based in Arizona. Now, thanks to an African American parole officer named Tiffany Whittier, he can add the word “former” before "neo-Nazi."
In an interesting turn of events, Kent’s case was transferred to Whittier, who eventually helped him change his white supremacist views. Their relationship turned into a friendship that opened Kent’s mind.
Ex-neo-Nazi removes swastika tattoos after befriending African-American parole officer: "I look at her as family." https://t.co/qOL7PMY5Rf pic.twitter.com/Oe7kubR0fr— ABC News (@ABC) September 26, 2017
“If it wasn’t for her I would have seeped back into it,” Kent told ABC News. “I look at her as family.”
Whittier knew that Kent was a white supremacist, but approached him with an open mind. “I’m not here to judge him. That’s not my job to judge. My job is to be that positive person in someone’s life,” Whittier said.
Kent recently made his turn-around official by beginning the process of getting his swastika tattoos covered up through Redemption Ink, a non-profit that removes hate-based tats for free. The entire tat removal is expected to take 15 hours. Additionally, the former neo-Nazi has removed his Nazi flags from his home and replaced them with smiley faces.
Kent’s working life has changed as well. As a neo-Nazi, he was strictly about that “100 percent white” life. These days? He works at a Colorado chicken farm with mostly Hispanic co-workers.
“Before all this, I wouldn’t work for anybody or with anybody that wasn’t white,” said Kent. “[Now] we have company parties, or they have quinceañeras, I’m the only white guy there!”
Kent is the father of two children, and he hopes that he will be able to instill positive social values in them so that they don’t repeat his past mistakes.
“I don’t want my kids to live the life I lived and live with hate,” noted Kent. “I want my kids to know me for who I am now — a good father, a hard worker and a good provider.”