Super Happy Fun America

Super Happy Fun America (SHFA) is best known locally for their first event, the Straight Pride Parade of August 31, 2019. However, SHFA is simply a re-branding of the alt-right and white supremacist formations that have been organizing in Greater Boston since early 2017.

Super Happy Fun America (SHFA) and CORR (Citizens Organized to Restore Rights) formed a coalition in 2022.  While they are not an obvious pairing, as leaders from both groups have indicated, each has different strengths. It appears that SHFA brings militancy and experience with violent confrontation, and CORR brings numbers and organizing skills. SHFA has a long history of violence, attracting Nazis to their gatherings, Proud Boys attend their CORR meetings and their president, John Hugo, routinely invokes calls to violence. CORR is a Christofascist/Christian nationalist organization committed to organizing various unaffiliated groups to support extremist candidates for local seats of government. Their “big tent” philosophy is an effort to increase their numbers resulting in a mishmash of philosophies, a rich variety of fringe ideas, and a formless stew of half-baked and factually inaccurate political ideologies. They have described themselves as a “force multiplier” that is forming a networking hub for a wide range of right-wing groups that focus on different issues. 

In June 2019, RM rebranded as SHFA with their announcement of the “Straight Pride Parade.” At its helm were Mark Sahady, John Hugo, Samson Racioppi, and Chris Bartley, community activists and journalists were quick to point out these same individuals have ties to the violent alt right. As with all public actions, the Boston Police Department provided protection to the white supremacist action and subsequently initiated a police riot against the thousands of people in attendance, resulting in more than 30 arrests and many injuries against LGBTQ people and their allies.

SHFA’s major themes have been opposing Black Lives Matter, praising police departments immediately after police killings in other cities, advocating to “re-open” Massachusetts, and support Trump’s re-election campaign. Their actions continue to attract an array of para-military, far-right, and overly white supremacist groups and individuals – sometimes openly displaying Nazi paraphernalia. Click here to see images of people attending SHFA events.

Relevance to the New England Landscape:
  • SHFA works to make far right and white supremacist ideologies palatable to more mainstream individuals. “There are mainstream Trump supporters on one side of the far right, and there are explicit Neo-Nazis and white nationalists on the other side,” said Ben Lorber, a research analyst with the progressive think tank Political Research Associates. “Super Happy Fun America is one of these groups that’s perfectly built to allow those two sides to come together.”
  • SHFA is run by individuals with clear and demonstrated ties to violent white supremacist groups such as Patriot Front, American Guard, III%ers, and more.
  • SHFA’s passive and suspected active collaboration with police creates conditions for state violence against ordinary people standing up for racial justice and liberation
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New England Actions since 2017: