The “sovereign citizens” movement, whose followers believe that the corrupted government has no jurisdiction over them, has expanded beyond its traditional following of white people with racist leanings, reports the Kansas City Star. Experts see a surge in the number of nonwhite sovereign citizens across the country, including within an African-American branch called Moorish sovereigns. “It's a new world,” said J.J. MacNab, an author who tracks anti-government extremists. “And Missouri is like ground zero.”
The common denominator between sovereign citizens and more left-wing black separatists, MacNab said, is the sense of being powerless and having no voice. Bob Harris, who teaches law enforcement officers about domestic extremists, acknowledged the irony of a movement with white supremacist roots being joined by African-Americans. “The sovereign citizen movement has really become a melting pot,” he said.