Mike Isaacson (shown), a founder of the Smash Racism “Antifa” organization in Washington, is quite clear: Violence is justified, if necessary to keep “fascists” or “Nazis” from organizing.
Of course, Antifa decides who is or is not a “fascist” or “Nazi.” And what we often find is that many of those smeared as a fascist or a Nazi are really neither.
According to Isaacson, the “justification” for the use of violence “is that Nazi ideology at its very core is founded on violence and on wielding power by any means.” Because of this, Antifa contends that those they determine are fascists or Nazis have no right of free speech, or freedom to assemble. Which explains why they felt justified in physically clashing with neo-Nazis and white supremacists in Charlottesville, Virginia, recently — a confrontation that unfortunately led to the death of one of the counter-protesters, paralegal Heather Heyer.
An example of this attitude in action was the attack upon the statue of Thomas Jefferson on the campus of the University of Virginia last week — a college founded by the author of the Declaration of Independence. The average American probably thinks of Klan members in white sheets, Adolf Hitler, and Benito Mussolini when they hear of white supremacists, neo-Nazis, and fascists. They would likely be surprised and perplexed to hear that the man who wrote, “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal” — Thomas Jefferson — was being associated with such vile ideologies.
But this is the reality of the situation we have with these violent leftists. Antifa activists assert their right to use violence to shut down what they call Nazis and the like, but we now know what we already suspected: many of them associate the Founding Fathers with fascism and Naziism. This is because they despise the foundations of the country, and to them an effective way to assault those foundations is to equate men such as Thomas Jefferson, George Washington, and James Madison with Adolf Hitler and Benito Mussolini.
Last week, when protesters at the University of Virginia shrouded Jefferson’s statue in black and hung a “Black Lives Matter” banner on it, they made allusions to last month’s rally in downtown Charlottesville, decrying the protection of the right to assemble peacefully by the local police.
The Cavalier Daily reported that the anti-Jefferson protesters even threatened violence against observers and counter-protesters who were taking pictures of their rally, telling them to “Stop staring,” and to “Start fighting!”
Tanner Hirschfield stated that some anti-Jefferson protesters even menacingly demanded his name when he was live-streaming the protest to Facebook.
Conservative speakers — who are clearly neither fascists nor neo-Nazis — have often been prevented from speaking on college campuses across the nation by threats of violence from the Left, simply because these radicals do not believe an opposing viewpoint has a right to be heard.
Why is this justified? Isaacson explained. “There is the question of whether these people should feel safe organizing as Nazis in public, and I don’t think they should. I don’t think anyone should think that someone who is intent on politically organizing for the sake of creating a state-sponsored genocide — I don’t think that is something that we should protect.”
This viewpoint is common among the Antifa movement, if not unanimous. At a recent march in Portland, Oregon, police monitors were attacked by Antifa protesters, throwing glass bottles and bricks. The police are frequent targets of the violence. Isaacson, who identifies as an anarchist, even claims that police departments are infiltrated by Nazis.
Antifa activists often come to events prepared for battle, wearing body armor and black masks and clothing to conceal their faces. The wearing of masks is reminiscent of a tactic used by the Ku Klux Klan. Many states even passed laws decades ago in an effort to curb the violence of the Klan. Whether these laws will now be used to combat Antifa remains to be seen.
Antifa is also similar to leftist militant street thugs in Italy and Germany in the 1920s and 1930s, who battled Fascist street thugs (the Black Shirts) and Nazi street thugs (the Brown Shirts) in violent clashes for political control of those countries. Of course, the presumption by the mainstream media and their allies is that these American Nazis are just more extreme versions of conservatives. "Nazi," however, is simply a shorthand way of saying “National Socialist,” just as “commie” is an abbreviated version of communist. Socialists are leftists; they are not on the “Right.” Hitler described his movement as socialist, and Mussolini once edited a socialist newspaper.
Unfortunately, such incidents have the end result of advancing the goals of those on the Left, whether they are National Socialists or others. Such violent confrontations only enhance the appeal of unbridled extremists, of whatever political ideology.
Image: Screenshot of Fox News Live interview on YouTube