Should Antifa violence be condemned?

I’ve been to more protests than some of you have had hot meals. There is almost always some bunch of shit-disturbers who want to mooch on the energy of the protest to advance their idiot agenda. Half a dozen, a dozen, something like that, urging destruction and disturbance for its own sake. In my day and place, it was a bunch of half-baked Maoists.

First time I saw TV cameras at any anti-war demonstration, I thought, well, good! Get people thinking, maybe they become relevant! Then I saw where the cameras were pointed. The shit-disturbers, every fucking time!

Antifas is just the latest incarnation. They got one thing right, the Man cannot arrest your leaders if you don’t have any.

In my view, violence from fascists isn’t the greatest danger from fascists. The danger from fascists is that they increasingly convert the state to a fascist one by propagating an appealing reactionary (some might say revolutionary, but I’ll leave that for the appropriate scholars to decide) populist message. It doesn’t take a large number of fascist to succeed either, all it takes is a number of voters who are willing to accept their message and tolerate their politics to put a country at risk. As I said elsewhere, the greatest danger to American democracy is the idea that that is not any danger to American democracy. There is a definite fascist rise right now in the USA, whether it will take hold completely is impossible to predict, I think, but to say it doesn’t exist or there’s no danger is foolhardy.

But never a few fit-looking guys with suspiciously short hair and well-groomed little mustaches yelling things like “Acid is groovy! Kill the pigs!”? Never?

HD, I don’t really know, and I don’t really know the Antifa side either, I just have my suspicions and am 100% willing to be shown I’m dead wrong.

I’m just not willing to do the legwork for people who say “This is a big problem” and don’t put up the facts.

Thank you for the warning. The consequences of a toddler analogy are sufficiently devastating that that’s the least you could do. :eek:

But I think you could take the antifa=toddler analogy further. Both lash out at what they don’t understand. Both live with mommy. Both scream when they don’t get their way. And both soil themselves.

Or their “cuck” fathers. Oh wait, that’s Jason Kessler, the fascist white supremacist.

So, no facts to support the idea that antifa is actually anything more than a handful of random malcontents.

I’m shocked.

Ah, is that a “whataboutism” or is it a “bothsidesarelamerism”?

No, that’s if you’re going to hurl childish insults at one group, then you might get some back at the side you support.

Now, if you want to return to non-childish discourse, then that’s fine with me.

P.s. - I support antifa in so far as fascism is bad. or wrong. Perhaps badong (again with apologies to Steve Oedekerk). And working against fascism is good, but needless violence should be avoided.

Really? You go to a peaceful rally against, say Racism, and you are not a innocent victim
if someone bashes your head open with a piece of hardened steel?

I know people who’ve been bashed in the head at a protest. Not hardened steel, but wood, which is better because its organic. A “baton”, I think its called. Can’t hardly seen the scars any more, but its not really the ones you can see that matter.

Trying to stop “childish insults”? How about policing the 35289724389743 threads on Trump where such insults are endemic?

Ah, is that a “whataboutism” or “bothsidearelamersism”?

Personally, I think of antifa as the left wing’s answer to the KKK’s Wrecking Crews or neo-Nazi street gangs. Yanno, kinda’ how TERFs are feminism’s answer to the incel crowd.

If you wear a mask to hide your identity while you beat people up, you are a bad guy. If you block the free expression of speech, you are a bad guy.

Antifaz are bad guys.

There was a time when tens of thousands of Americans were being paid to kill not only Nazis but large numbers of people who merely tolerated them.

The alt-White message is the Nazi message. It has not changed. Why should we tolerate that? Tolerating intolerance is intolerance.

The only way “antifa” are the bad guys is that they are criminally negligent with the optics. If they assault the alt-White or try to suppress their message, they are proudly carrying forth a tradition that is nearly 90 years old. But, they really ought to tone it down, because they are making the rest of us nazi-deplorers look not as good.

:dubious: That’s a very broad brush you got there. Exactly where are you drawing the lines around the category of “blocking the free expression of speech”?

For example, the well-known “Angels” counter-protestors show up at highly publicized funerals of soldiers and terrorism victims to block the sight of protestors from the Westboro Baptist Church rejoicing in the deaths. When the “Angels” surround the WBC protestors with big “wings” so their signs can’t be seen, they are “blocking the free expression of speech”: are they “bad guys”?

Or how about when protestors shout down or heckle or “no-platform” speakers in ways that are not illegal (and, obviously, don’t violate the First Amendment in any way)? Does that automatically make them “bad guys”, irrespective of what the speakers may be saying?

Remember, there is no constitutional right to undisputed or uninterrupted speech. And the etiquette issue of courteously letting other people have their say even when you happen to disagree with them doesn’t always override the moral imperative of immediately opposing and condemning speech that is disgustingly hateful.

Perhaps the ACLU could explain it to you

I do not concern the ACLU. I am not the government or one of those astroturfers who owns a dozen Congresscritters. I am just one ordinary person. The ACLU does not deny me the right to object to alt-White nazis, perhaps interfering with their efforts at expression.

For an ordinary person, tolerating intolerance is intolerance.

Who gets to decide what is intolerant?

That’s the problem.

Outlawing viewpoints no matter how odious is a very very slippery slope. It’s not just Nazis we have to worry about. They killed 40-60 million during the 20th century, sure but fascism only gets the silver medal. Marxism killed 80-100 million. Free speech, the idea that I may hate what you say, but defend your right to say it is to me, the most admirable cornerstone of classical liberalism. The free exchange of ideas is the greatest weapon agiainst Marxism.

I love that there are truly terrible and horrible and hateful people and 5hat 5hey are free and protected to say their terrible and horrible and hateful things.

I hated that guy that was just shut down on YouTube the other week (I can’t remember his name or website.). He was truly execrable. But I was glad he was there. It proves that we live in a free country that we tolerate and protect such hateful bullshit.

It is bad to shut down or silence opposing viewpoints, no matter how odious. Especially when they are odious.