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Is anyone on A2K involved with Antifa?

 
 
Reply Fri 28 Apr, 2017 11:39 pm
Ok, so we talk a lot about politics. There is a lot of back and forth, name calling and fun generally poked at each other. I'd like to start by saying I absolutely, without any hesitation, would protect anyone here's right to free speech.

I have no problem with people's rights to freely assembly and address grievances either real or perceived. If you have something to say, you should be free to do so without fear of reprisal or arrest (obviously there are a few restrictions on this as I do not think trying to incite a riot should be protected).

But, it has to be a two way street, right? I would hope that you would also protect my freedom of expression and to peacefully assemble.

That's not what is happening now though. Antifa (Anti-Facist Action) was formed originally in Germany in the 1980's, its members taking the name of the communist paramilitary groups that engaged the Nazis in street-fighting in the 1930's. It now has active cells across the world, including in Germany, the U.S., Canada, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Czechia, and France. See what's been happening in Berkeley with the riots protesting Milo Yiannopoulos and Anne Coulter coming to town to talk. There were also a number of other riots involving this group around the US.

Anyone have any thoughts or opinions on these events?
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Type: Discussion • Score: 4 • Views: 1,548 • Replies: 19

 
hightor
 
  4  
Reply Sat 29 Apr, 2017 04:11 am
@McGentrix,
I doubt you'll get a full throated defense of these tactics by anyone here. But I also wonder how many people we're really talking about in the USA. A few thousand? Enough to disrupt a peaceful demonstration but hardly a grassroots movement of national import.

Maybe some people think that simply allowing self-styled provocateurs like Coulter or Yiannopoulos to take the stage somehow implies an institutional endorsement, not of their views but of their insult-spewing tactics. These sorts of alt-right verbal bomb-throwers openly admit to wanting to wake people up by mocking minorities, calling out "cucks", and making generally outrageous statements. I doubt the same sorts of anti-democratic demonstrations would be conducted against a more mainstream conservative speaker. Coulter and Yiannopoulos basically get these goons to do their work for them by waving a red flag and then watching the ensuing riot, tongue clucking about how repressive the left is. I think the term is "indispensable enemies".

I wonder if the same reactions would occur if these purposely confrontational speakers were invited to debate someone of equivalent stature rather than just being allowed to address an assembled audience, as if they were respected winners of the Nobel Prize or world renowned humanitarians.

No, I won't defend Antifa. I think they end up give some legitimacy to the right. They prevent others from hearing what these people have to say when in reality they should be letting them say what they want and then exposing their prejudices, misstatements, and lies.

I thought this Aljazeera article was more informative than most:

We can make racists afraid again
Lash
 
  2  
Reply Sat 29 Apr, 2017 04:38 am
This disturbs the hell out of me.

There are a lot of people online who support the antifa position that some speech merits a violent response.

Opposing opinions should be met with violence.

They cite some Supreme Court finding about "fighting words."

This is their excuse to beat the hell out of people because of their opinions. All Ann C or Milo have to do is show up. The worst thing is that the police don't intervene.

THIS is fascism. To me.
hightor
 
  4  
Reply Sat 29 Apr, 2017 05:33 am
The threats to people based on their political beliefs is nothing new, nor is it restricted to leftists and anarchists:

Quote:
A friend writes, “For basically the past six months or so I’ve been trying to tell my lefty friends in so many words, ‘Hey, there are a bunch of people on the Internet who are waiting for someone to tell them it’s okay to start shooting at you.’” He became concerned when a thread at the non-political firearms-enthusiasts website he regularly follows became filled with comments in all caps referring to liberals as enemies who must be shot. Developments both online and off following Donald Trump’s election have caused me to share his concern.

(...)

Then came February 1 in Berkeley and things really started getting scary.

The saga of what happened when Milo Yiannopoulos came to speak at the flagship campus of the University of California has since become foundational, not just with the alt-right but with quite nearly the entire right. Alt-right provocateur Yiannopoulos was turned back by violent protests, which culminated in the burning of a portable generator. Stuffed down the wingnut memory hole are the events that preceded the mêlée. The violence was, in fact, preceded by peaceful protests by approximately 1,500 Berkeley students, until they were waylaid by a tiny handful of off-campus “Black Bloc” and “antifa,” or anti-fascist, cadres who believe racist speech licenses violent resistance. It was also preceded, less than two weeks earlier, by the shooting of a Milo protester in Seattle, by a gunman who has yet to be charged with any crime.

The Battle of Berkeley accelerated the construction of a body of mythology: the left has escalated its resistance to Trump into literal war, so Trump supporters must be prepared to resort to violence to oppose it.

How afraid of this should you be? The most interesting answers to that question do not come from the left. They come from concerned voices on the right, who’ve been monitoring the chatter with mounting alarm, going public with pleas to liberals to still the antifa renegades before bodies begin piling up. The most convincing evidence that they have a point comes in the ensuing comment threads, where the need to prepare for armed force is taken as gospel.

WS

I consider it closer to soccer hooliganism than fascism.
0 Replies
 
hightor
 
  2  
Reply Sat 29 Apr, 2017 05:45 am
@Lash,
"Knock the crap out of him..."
Below viewing threshold (view)
Lash
 
  1  
Reply Sat 29 Apr, 2017 07:48 am
@hightor,
I seem to remember that Trump was going to be sued for incitement to violence, but I haven't heard more about it.

Of course, these antifa are equally guilty. Why aren't all these speakers in court?
0 Replies
 
hightor
 
  4  
Reply Sat 29 Apr, 2017 09:11 am
@oralloy,
That's a very ugly sentiment.

You really want live gunfire at political demonstrations? You think it would just stop there? Next thing the thugs will come armed — it's self defense, right? How will you feel when someone behind the wheel of a concrete truck plows into a demonstration?

I almost know your answer — "I'd love to see someone run over a bunch of protesting liberals."
PUNKEY
 
  3  
Reply Sat 29 Apr, 2017 09:16 am
"they should be letting them say what they want and then exposing their prejudices, misstatements, and lies."

Most sensible sentence said so far.

Protesters against the expression of ideas are violating free speech, IMHO.


0 Replies
 
oralloy
 
  -3  
Reply Sat 29 Apr, 2017 09:52 am
@hightor,
hightor wrote:
I almost know your answer — "I'd love to see someone run over a bunch of protesting liberals."

Liberals do often frustrate me. How can people fight to do the wrong thing all the time?

But I respect their right to protest peacefully, even when the message of their protest is patently ridiculous.


hightor wrote:
That's a very ugly sentiment.
You really want live gunfire at political demonstrations?

Well the violent thugs don't seem to be being prosecuted thus far.

Yes, it would warm the cockles of my heart to see these violent thugs gunned down.

(I have a similar view of violent BLM protesters.)


hightor wrote:
You think it would just stop there? Next thing the thugs will come armed — it's self defense, right?

Aggressors are not allowed to claim self defense.


hightor wrote:
How will you feel when someone behind the wheel of a concrete truck plows into a demonstration?

Hopefully the driver is gunned down before they harm anyone. But regardless, maybe increased violence will finally force the government to start prosecuting these violent thugs.
0 Replies
 
McGentrix
 
  1  
Reply Sat 29 Apr, 2017 10:40 am
@oralloy,
oralloy wrote:


What I desperately want to see is some of these violent thugs attack a conservative march, and get gunned down in self defense.

You have no idea how much I would love to see that happen.


I don't think they need gunned down unnecessarily. I think matching like force with like force. More on this later. Some of the video's are quite striking.
0 Replies
 
Walter Hinteler
 
  3  
Reply Sat 29 Apr, 2017 11:50 am
@McGentrix,
McGentrix wrote:
Antifa (Anti-Facist Action) was formed originally in Germany in the 1980's, its members taking the name of the communist paramilitary groups that engaged the Nazis in street-fighting in the 1930's.
Actually, the Antifa was originally formed in 1945 - between 137 (according to "Western" researchers) and 500 (accorcding to GDR researchers) existed in the Allied Occupied Zones in Germany.
These groups were prohibited at first in the US in the summer of 1945, shortly later in the British Zone at the end of 1945, because of their left-leaning tendencies. In the French Zone, the same happened months later. The Russians didn't like these groups either, but tried to "integrate" them in "anfifascist-democratic parties".

The 1980's Antifa-groups were founded by squatters and so-called "autonomous" with the main (first) reason to protect themselves against neo-Nazis.

The "Antifa" of the 1920's and early 1930's wasn't just the paramilitary of the Communist Party but that of the SPD and people like Albert Einstein, Käthe Kollwitz and Heinrich Mann ("the antifa of the brain-workers") as well.
Walter Hinteler
 
  5  
Reply Sat 29 Apr, 2017 12:04 pm
@Walter Hinteler,
But to answer your answer your question: I have been involved with Antifa (, as probation officer as well when I worked as a kind of street-worker, of the 1980's and later. - I did some history research on the anti-fascists movements here in Westphalia in the 1920's/earliest 1930's.
0 Replies
 
georgeob1
 
  1  
Reply Sat 29 Apr, 2017 12:58 pm
It appears there is general agreement here with respects to the so called "extremes here. However, as with most such things the devils are in the details.

Hightor has noted the 'extreme' views of some conservatives. We hear a lot of that lately, but some of those so called "extreme" views hold that things like late term abortions are close to murder, that the reach of our government into the affairs of individuals should be minimal, and that the willful failure to enforce some laws threatens all law. These are all long-standing principles in our law. When did they become extreme?

The device of endorsing freedom of speech and expression for all but "extreme" positions to silence reasonable political opposition has a rich history in the late 20th century, and it appears to be continuing into this one.
hightor
 
  2  
Reply Sat 29 Apr, 2017 01:29 pm
@georgeob1,
Quote:
These are all long-standing principles in our law. When did they become extreme?

It's not the views that have become extreme. It's the lengths to which people will go to silence either criticism or expression of those views which has become extreme.
Quote:
The device of endorsing freedom of speech and expression for all but "extreme" positions to silence reasonable political opposition has a rich history in the late 20th century...

Where have I suggested that the silencing of extreme positions is acceptable?
0 Replies
 
wmwcjr
 
  3  
Reply Sat 29 Apr, 2017 04:48 pm
@oralloy,
oralloy wrote:
What I desperately want to see is some of these violent thugs attack a conservative march, and get gunned down in self defense.

You have no idea how much I would love to see that happen.


I'm not surprised to read this from you. Out of a sense of decency, an empathetic, normal human being -- conservative or liberal -- would not love to see that happen. But that is not your nature. The fact that you would love to see it happen speaks volumes about you -- all of it bad. No wonder you're not respected by so many of the members here.

You are easily one of the most hateful members of A2K or, for that matter, one of the most hateful posters I've ever seen on the Internet. You're the same person who once posted a color photograph of the neck of the murder victim in the Amanda Knox case -- a young woman whose throat had been slashed -- and chortled over it. I contacted you by PM to mildly question your shameful barbarism, but you responded by saying it was necessary in your important ideological battles online! To this day I wish I had reported you to the moderators. I'm ashamed I didn't. So, I seriously doubt that you would ever have trouble with nonviolent liberals being subjected to violence at the hands of right-wing thugs. There have been instances of individuals who have physically attacked liberals simply because they disagreed with them, but what do you care? Have you ever disagreed with that? Your assertion that liberals are wrong about virtually everything and that conservatives are never wrong is truly absurd, and vice versa. That's not the way human nature works, buddy. Your political ideology is your god. (By the way, for the record, I voted for Evan McMullin, an independent conservative Republican -- not Hillary Clinton. So, don't even try to pin your "Evil Liberal/Progressive" label on me.) Sad to say, you were born several generations too late. Undoubtedly, you would have agreed with the violence of the Ku Klux Klan and probably would have been an active member.

Ordinarily, I would call you a despicable little toad who lives in his mother's basement; but that would be unfair and unjust to toads.
oralloy
 
  0  
Reply Sun 30 Apr, 2017 05:48 pm
@wmwcjr,
wmwcjr wrote:
I'm not surprised to read this from you. Out of a sense of decency, an empathetic, normal human being -- conservative or liberal -- would not love to see that happen. But that is not your nature. The fact that you would love to see it happen speaks volumes about you

Why thank you.


wmwcjr wrote:
-- all of it bad.

No. All of it good.


wmwcjr wrote:
No wonder you're not respected by so many of the members here.

The only people who tend to treat me with disrespect either tend to be scumbags whose respect I wouldn't want, or tend to be delusional and not like me for pointing out facts and reality.

I converse well enough with all the reasonable people.


wmwcjr wrote:
You are easily one of the most hateful members of A2K or, for that matter, one of the most hateful posters I've ever seen on the Internet.

Sometimes doing the right thing requires being mean to nasty people. I'm rather proud of the fact that I've made the world a better place.


wmwcjr wrote:
You're the same person who once posted a color photograph of the neck of the murder victim in the Amanda Knox case -- a young woman whose throat had been slashed -- and chortled over it.

One of my proudest moments. Quite possibly the one thing that I am most proud of out of my entire life.


wmwcjr wrote:
I contacted you by PM to mildly question your shameful barbarism, but you responded by saying it was necessary in your important ideological battles online!

Ideological battle? I was defending an innocent person from a sadistic lynch mob.


wmwcjr wrote:
So, I seriously doubt that you would ever have trouble with nonviolent liberals being subjected to violence at the hands of right-wing thugs.

Then you don't understand anything. Look again at those allegedly horrible posts of mine that you are talking about. They were all in defense of innocent people who were being brutally savaged.


wmwcjr wrote:
There have been instances of individuals who have physically attacked liberals simply because they disagreed with them, but what do you care? Have you ever disagreed with that?

If a non-violent person has been assaulted for their beliefs, then the attacker should be prosecuted. And the victim had the right to shoot their attacker in self defense.


wmwcjr wrote:
Your assertion that liberals are wrong about virtually everything and that conservatives are never wrong is truly absurd, and vice versa.

Liberals always support everything that is bad in this world. They are really quite annoying.


wmwcjr wrote:
Sad to say, you were born several generations too late. Undoubtedly, you would have agreed with the violence of the Ku Klux Klan and probably would have been an active member.

Just the opposite. I'd be the guy standing in their way and doing terrible things to them if they tried to get past me.


wmwcjr wrote:
Ordinarily, I would call you a despicable little toad who lives in his mother's basement; but that would be unfair and unjust to toads.

Now you're just being silly.
0 Replies
 
Finn dAbuzz
 
  0  
Reply Wed 3 May, 2017 01:10 pm
@hightor,
You are attempting to minimize a very dangerous practice because of the numbers of the agitators. You need to include in those numbers all of the people, including public officials, members of the media, and members of the public who if not condoning it, excuse and rationalize it.

0 Replies
 
Finn dAbuzz
 
  0  
Reply Wed 3 May, 2017 01:12 pm
@hightor,
Unfortunately this is what is likely to happen. If public officials and the police can't stamp out this criminality, vigilantes will try too. At that point the MSM that has largely been silent about this thuggery will go ballistic.
oralloy
 
  0  
Reply Wed 3 May, 2017 06:44 pm
@Finn dAbuzz,
Self defense wouldn't actually be vigilantism though.

Why would it be unfortunate if peaceful protesters defended themselves from vicious thugs?

If the media threw a tantrum, so what? Maybe said tantrum would result in the government doing their job and prosecuting the thugs.
0 Replies
 
 

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