[By Ben Noble]
Obvious disclaimer: Violence is only legitimate in self-defense against physical harm. Hurt feelings from mean words don’t count. I find the tactics and rhetoric from both the right and the left disgusting. Having said that, the left gets a pass on their violence.
The leftist group Antifa has roots going back to 1930’s Europe and the American version of the group has been active since the 1980’s. Antifa is not a new development and they have been assaulting people and engaging in property destruction for a long time. If observing their actions wasn’t proof enough, in a recent expose by CNN called “Unmasking the leftist Antifa Movement: Activists seek peace through violence” where Antifa members admit that violence is on the table in reaction to free speech that they don’t like. CNN doesn’t seem to be so concerned about this. A more accurate title might be “Terrorists seek peace through violence.”
Calling out the left for their violent actions does not diminish any violence committed by the right. I will say that it appears that the only group the Alt Right / White Nationalists clash with is Antifa. Antifa, though, clashes with nearly everyone and has a dirty habit of reactionary de-platforming people they don’t like with violence and threats of violence. All this driving up membership in the Alt Right.
The violence in Charlottesville on August 12, 2017 at the “Unite the Right” rally was tragic and the driver of the vehicle that drove into the crowd of people should be put in prison forever. It is important that all sides of this event be considered. Antifa and Black Lives Matter, another leftist group known to act out violently and destroy property, showed up to the white nationalist rally ready to fight with shields, clubs, and mace. They make up the developing Alt-Left. Are the Alt Right / white nationalists prone to violence? Definitely. Then why in the hell would anyone be surprised when they throw punches back at the Alt Left when they engage them with force?
All of this knuckle dragging idiocy was allowed to bloom by the local government leadership and police. There is one thing that the diametrically opposed Alt Right and the Alt Left agree on. The local police stood by and allowed violence to develop out of the tense situation.
The Alt Right organizers had a permit to protest the taking down of a Confederate statue. The police and city officials knew the time and place the Alt Right were going to be and the they still could not or would not provide the security to prevent violence from breaking out.
Statement from the “Unite the Right” rally organizer Jason Kessler:
“The blame for today’s violence lies primarily with the Charlottesville government officials and the police officers who failed to maintain law and order, protect the First Amendment rights of rally participants, and provide for their safety,” Kessler said in a statement Sunday morning.
He said officers stood idly by as counter protesters “attacked participants of the rally” before riot police broke up the crowds.
Instead of maintaining law and order,” Kessler said, “the police purposefully created the catastrophe that led to a melee in the streets of Charlottesville and the death of a counter protester.”
Statement from BLM organizer of counter protest Hawk Newsome:
Another protester, Hawk Newsome, president of Black Lives Matter of Greater New York, told CNN affiliate WCAV the police response to “Unite the Right” was different than at rallies he’s attended in the past. He said the police in Charlottesville were too far away to prevent any violence.
“The police actually allowed us to square off against each other,” Newsome said. “There were fights and the police were standing a block away the entire time. It’s almost as if they wanted us to fight each other.”
Reading and hearing the reactions of the city and state leadership makes it sound like the events of August 12 were none of their fault.
Charlottesville mayor Michael Signer, speaking on CNN Monday morning, also defended law enforcement’s preparation in advance of the rally.
“We had on the ground here the largest deployment of law enforcement professionals in Virginia since 9/11,” Signer said. “As I understood it, almost a thousand officers were right here on the ground.”
He added that it’s the government’s responsibility to “set the conditions to prepare so people can peaceably assemble.”
By his own standards Signer failed is constituency completely. Whether the police intentionally stood down and let the violence escalate, the city council and Mayor Signer also made an equally bad move. Right before the rally was scheduled to happen they revoked the permit to hold the rally at the original location and moved it to a nearby park. Not only was this a violation of free speech, which the Alt Right even got a permit for, but it was a huge tactical mistake. The location was more difficult to secure, as even the police leadership admitted.
The leadership of Charleville had one job. Provide a secure place for a lawful rally and they couldn’t, or wouldn’t, do it with the “largest deployment of law enforcement professionals in Virginia since 9/11.” No one in the local government or police will be fired over this. The government gets a pass on violence.
Freedom of speech has two powerful effects. It allows for a dialog to occur that leads to the discovery of truth or compromise. It also allows for ideas to be debated peacefully. Shutting down and isolating a group of people that you don’t like only radicalizes them. This is the entire mission of Antifa. They are fundamentally anti free speech and open to the violence that follows. The left gets a pass on violence.
The only thing people seem to be able to focus on are the people saying racist and ugly things. Even condemning all sides for violence is considered condoning the violence of the Alt Right. No one can see the group that openly suppresses free speech, punches journalists, assaults groups they don’t like, and destroys property.
The left is cancer. The right is cancer. Live free.
Protesters blame Charlottesville police for not stopping violence: http://www.cnn.com/2017/08/14/us/police-response-charlottesville-trnd/index.html
Antifa (United States): https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Antifa_(United_States)
The Rise of the Violent Left: https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2017/09/the-rise-of-the-violent-left/534192/
Unmasking the leftist Antifa movement: Activists seek peace through violence: http://www.cnn.com/2017/08/18/us/unmasking-antifa-anti-fascists-hard-left/
WATCH: This Video Shows Violence From Antifa In Charlottesville: http://www.dailywire.com/news/19685/watch-video-shows-violence-antifa-charlottesville-robert-kraychik#exit-modal
CNN’s Tapper: People Need to Know That Antifa Has Assaulted a Number of Journalists: https://townhall.com/tipsheet/guybenson/2017/08/17/cnns-tapper-antifa-has-assaulted-a-number-of-journalists-too-n2370023
Trump calls KKK, neo-Nazis, white supremacists ‘repugnant’: http://www.cnn.com/2017/08/14/politics/trump-condemns-charlottesville-attackers/index.html
Inside a very violent alt-left group: https://www.thechronicle.com.au/news/inside-very-violent-alt-left-group/3213054/
ACLU: ‘Unite the Right’ rally should not have been moved by city council: http://www.nbc12.com/story/36090553/aclu-unite-the-right-rally-should-not-have-been-moved-by-city-council