White Boy Summer Backlash: How Chet Hanks Unwittingly Empowered Extremists

Los Angeles, CA – Chet Hanks, son of famed actor Tom Hanks, inadvertently found himself at the center of controversy after his creation of the phrase “White Boy Summer” gained traction among extremist groups, as highlighted in a recent report from the Global Project Against Hate and Extremism (GPAHE).

Hanks introduced “White Boy Summer” in 2021 as a lighthearted response to trends like “hot girl summer,” aiming to celebrate stylish white boys who appreciate women of all races. However, the term was quickly co-opted by extremists, leading Hanks to address the situation after GPAHE’s report was featured in the New York Times.

In an Instagram post, Hanks clarified that the essence of White Boy Summer is rooted in positivity and love, condemning any association with hate or discrimination. Despite his efforts to redirect the phrase’s narrative, critics have questioned the need to elevate white men, pointing out societal privileges they already possess.

While Hanks emphasized that “White Boy Summer” is not intended to promote hate, GPAHE’s findings indicate that the term has been embraced by far-right groups as a call to action for white supremacy. The report noted a surge in the use of “White Boy Summer” and “WBS” on Telegram, a platform known to host extremist communities each summer since its adoption.

Furthermore, conservative figures such as Jack Posobiec have publicly embraced the phrase, underscoring its appeal beyond Hanks’ original intention. Posobiec notably displayed a White Boy Summer flag at a conference for Turning Point USA, a conservative youth organization.

Despite facing backlash, Hanks revisited the concept of White Boy Summer in a later Instagram post, engaging with his fanbase and reaffirming the term’s significance to his personal brand. As the debate surrounding the implications of “White Boy Summer” continues, Hanks finds himself navigating the complexities of language and interpretation in the digital age.