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AntiFa ate my baby: Today in Tweets

Damn those AntiFa!

By David Futrelle

Seems like only yesterday that everyone to the left of Donald Trump was mad at the Nazis. Now for some reasons a lot of these same people are yelling about AntiFa. Nancy Pelosi has officially denounced AntiFa, and a piece in the generally liberalish Washington Post today declared that AntiFa are the “moral equivalent” of the literal Nazis they oppose.

Now I’m not exactly the most militant dude in the world but WHAT IN HOLY CRAP IS GOING ON. We are up against LITERAL NAZIS. One of them LITERALLY MURDERED A WOMAN with a car, and then the rest of them LAUGHED ABOUT IT and SAID IT WAS JUSTIFIED. They go to every so-called “free speech” rally they organize with the intent of doing bodily harm to as many people as possible. and unless we stop them it’s only a matter of time before they kill more people. So fuck this shit. Hug an AntiFa today.

On to the tweets. First, the dumb shit.

Now, some rebuttals. First, a good short thread on how the discussion has shifted from ACTUAL FUCKING NAZIS to endless hand-wringing about antifas.

And here’s a response to the Washington Post thing by a Mother Jones journalist who was there at Berkeley.

https://twitter.com/shane_bauer/status/902969494808625152

Some historical perspective:

More AntiFa stuff:

https://twitter.com/pixelatedboat/status/902790386619318272

https://twitter.com/daniecal/status/902542063543009280

I defended the honor of George Orwell against an Alex Jones employee.

Snopes also has a thing to say about the attempts to portray the fascists and AntiFa as somehow equivalent:

AntiFa may have dealt with a lot of undeserved shit today, but happily our dear leader Donald Trump was also dealing with some richly deserved shit.

https://twitter.com/fmanjoo/status/903027267940491264

Meanwhile, the creator of Pepe is taking the Pepe Nazis to court and winning:

https://twitter.com/MaxTemkin/status/902700195577823232

And here are some animals!

https://twitter.com/awwcuteness/status/902839313276252160

https://twitter.com/CuteEmergency/status/902748977531162625

https://twitter.com/MeetAnimals/status/903024790675611648

https://twitter.com/lordflaconegro/status/902687000544911362

 

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IgnoreSandra
3 years ago

@Leo

I’m not sure whether they are all gathering with immediate violent intent

Okay. Willful nazi sympathizing.

WHY THE FUCK ELSE WOULD THEY MARCH ON A CITY WITH TORCHES AND GUNS THAN IMMEDIATE VIOLENT INTENT? WHY THE FUCK ELSE WOULD THEY MAKE PLANS TO SMUGGLE WEAPONS IN? WHY THE FUCK ELSE WOULD THEY CANCEL A RALLY BECAUSE THE POLICE PROMISED TO CONFISCATE ALL OF THEIR WEAPONS IF THEY CAME? WHY THE FUCK ELSE WOULD ONE OF THEIR NUMBER HAVE PREPARED A CAR FOR USE AS A MURDER WEAPON BEFOREHAND?

No, there is no distinction. Violence against nazis in public spaces is self defense if you’re anyone but a blonde-haired blue-eyed able-bodied cishetero white man with 100% white ancestry, and defense of others if you are that man. White supremacists is one of the few situations where no matter what you have to do to stop them from being in society, you will almost never be morally or ethically wrong.

Policy of Madness
Policy of Madness
3 years ago

These are not the actual Nazis who killed 11 million, and they don’t yet have that political power. Some of them seem more like utter racist idiots trying to be edgy than an immediate threat, although some certainly are.

So you want to wait until they have that political power before you want anything done?

I’ll note here that antifa have been active since at least the mid-1980s. Has it occurred to you that you might be privileged not to live under an openly fascist regime right this moment because of the past actions of antifa disrupting their organizing? Antifa just started getting mainstream coverage yesterday, but that doesn’t mean they weren’t around before.

Bobbie LobBomb
Bobbie LobBomb
3 years ago

1920: That party with that Hitler fella…. They’re fringe. They’re not worth going to jail over.

1942: Defeating Nazis are worth dying for.

2017: Those Nazis are fringe. They’re not worth going to jail over.

Leo
Leo
3 years ago

@Policy of Madness
That’s why I was trying to use specific examples. Antifa haven’t just acted at Charlottesville where the Nazis were more easily identifiable, I’m not sure if the Alt-Right are all being counted as Nazis or not, and Lauren Southern has been with them. So that isn’t a hypothetical.

I’m not squeamish about her getting beaten up just because she’s female, I do think the optics wouldn’t go over well.

I thought punching Nazis at rallies was precisely what Dali, and at least some other Antia, were advocating? Since the amount of force was not specified (I did ask), killing them would seem a possible outcome, that can happen if you punch someone. A bike lock was used as a weapon at Berkeley.

I’d only be eliding the two if the pre-emptive use of force were the only way to achieve freedom from Nazis.

weirwoodtreehugger: chief manatee

Nazis and others on the far right have murdered a hell of a lot more people than Heather Heyer. Who cares if she’s the only one killed at a protest so far?

As long as we continue legitimizing them, they’ll continue to get bolder.

Policy of Madness
Policy of Madness
3 years ago

I’d only be eliding the two if the pre-emptive use of force were the only way to achieve freedom from Nazis.

You keep talking about pre-emptive even though other people have pointed out time and again that Nazis are violent and violence against them is not pre-emptive. You don’t seem inclined to debate that, you’re just ignoring it like it hasn’t been said. What gives? Are you aware that your position is kind of indefensible, and that’s why you’re not bothering to defend it?

Antifa haven’t just acted at Charlottesville where the Nazis were more easily identifiable, I’m not sure if the Alt-Right are all being counted as Nazis or not, and Lauren Southern has been with them.

Like I said, antifa has been around since at least the 80s. They’ve been disrupting Nazis and the KKK for decades and are one reason why these groups have previously been trying to organize in the dark. Antifa are not some kind of fire-and-forget missile, they are intelligent humans who can use their brains to tell whether a march was organized by Nazis. You’re also drawing a line between the alt-reich and the Nazis which is pretty unwarranted.

I’m not squeamish about her getting beaten up just because she’s female, I do think the optics wouldn’t go over well.

And God knows that optics are all we should fucking care about. It’s all you seem to care about.

Leo
Leo
3 years ago

@kupo
Yes, but I didn’t think they had all openly advocated genocide.

@IgnoreSandra
It’s in no way sympathising to wonder what their immediate aims are.

But we’re not just talking about Charlottesville, are we?

I’d think another reason for all the weaponry might be to intimidate, and that they regard it as part of their regalia/symbolism. I’m no American, so, attitudes to guns are a bit baffling to me. Did he prepare the car beforehand?

Alan Robertshaw
Alan Robertshaw
3 years ago

“I hate it when people say I’m pro genocide, I’m completely neutral on the issue”

Unfortunately, at the risk of channeling Bush, this is one cause where if you’re not with the anti fascists you’re against them.

It’s that thing about neutrality siding with the oppressor, or condoning the things we walk past.

Leo
Leo
3 years ago

@Policy of Madness, Bobbie LobBomb
Right, and we’re not ignoring that history, which is why they’re rightly seen as a threat. It’s also why they might not be able to gain political support again, not in the same way, because there was a before and an after. Do most Republicans really like Nazis either?

Sure, but it’s the use of a specific tactic I was asking questions about, not Antifa’s existence and work as a group.

@weirwoodtreehugger
They have, but it has bearing on whether their intent at rallies is immediate violence.

@Policy of Madness
Again happy to use a phrase other than pre-emptive. My queries (it’s not even an argument as much as a request for clarification) are entirely defensible as a) I’m not sure if a bunch of Nazis standing in front of a statue are an immediate threat (a threat, yes) b) other marchers were being included as targets.

I was not trying to draw an unwarranted line between the Alt-Right and admitted Nazis, in at least some cases there doesn’t appear a distinction, but I was asking for clarification as to whether the Alt-Right are to be regarded as legit targets in themselves. It does influence how it will come across, the optics of Antifa beating up an admitted, identifiable Naxi are different to those if the Nazi is pretending to be a free speech protester for today.

I care about the optics because I want to see long-term progress, because I care about what happens to people otherwise. The Dems will never change unless they have to.

Leo
Leo
3 years ago

@Alan Robertshaw
Yes, but you can be with Antifa without thinking hitting someone with a bike lock -whether the person in question did something to merit it or not- is a good move tactically.

Edit: Ah, now I getcha. Yes, genocide does not seem to phase them, they are vile. I think there’s a distinction though between whether a ‘meh’ on genocide, while claiming not to personally want genocide, represents the same threat as someone calling for it.

Alan Robertshaw
Alan Robertshaw
3 years ago

There may have been people on Stormer who didn’t openly call for genocide, but it’s not like they called out their fellow travellers who did.

If your attitude to genocide is indifferent “Meh, I can take it or leave it.” then I think you’re pretty much on board with the idea.

Personally though I doubt there’s a single Nazi or alt-rightist who isn’t in favour. It’s pretty much their core philosophy. Even if they’re not building camps yet, they’re happy for the people they don’t like to be killed in more subtle ways.

Alan Robertshaw
Alan Robertshaw
3 years ago

@ leo

I do understand what you’re saying about optics. The thing is though, such considerations only apply if you’re trying to persuade people. But there’s no argument to be had with Nazis. What’s the compromise?

“We want to kill every marginalised person”

“How about a quarter of them?”

“Half?”

“Deal!”

So unfortunately it’s not about winning the debate, it’s about winning the war.

Leo
Leo
3 years ago

Also, being happy for people they don’t like to be killed in more subtle ways is potentially kind of a big difference to open genocide, because bog-standard Rebuplicans are definitely fine with that, too. Dems can be, too.

The compromise isn’t with the Nazis, it’s with the ‘moderate’ Dems (and ideally, the socialist sympathising ones) who won’t like it if they read Antifa beat up a free speech protester. Hence the focus is indeed on winning the war. It’s much bigger than these Nazis.

Alan Robertshaw
Alan Robertshaw
3 years ago

@ leo

potentially kind of a big difference

It’s certainly perceived differently, and that’s probably the problem.

But if I can kill someone by giving them an injection, or alternatively kill them by denying them an injection, the end result for that person is ultimately the same.

Leo
Leo
3 years ago

@Alan Robertshaw
Yes, exactly, really, though I suppose the example could be a tad more precise – it can be seen as ethically more culpable to kill someone with action (giving the injection) than allow them to die through inaction. But I do get the point. So, moral arguments (not necc. all tactical ones) for Antifa showing up with the intent of pre-emptively using force against these Nazis at rallies, do potentially apply to Republicans as well. Republican ideaology kills even more surely than that of these Nazis, given the former have more political power. They demonstrably represent a threat, and that can be shown historically as well. They can be as impossible to reason with as admitted Nazis, in some cases, though that’s perhaps more a tactical than moral consideration.

cornychips
cornychips
3 years ago

Hence the focus is indeed on winning the war. It’s much bigger than these Nazis.

I’m not sure how many things are MUCH bigger than nazis!
.
If this war is against facism….then Nazis are kinda the problem.

ETA: I missed the part about THESE nazis. Move along folks! Nothing to see here but some of THESE nazis.

Alan Robertshaw
Alan Robertshaw
3 years ago

@ leo

it’s with the ‘moderate’ Dems (and ideally, the socialist sympathising ones) who won’t like it if they read Antifa beat up a free speech protester

But again we have this problem:

“We’re not going to support anti fascists if they go around swinging bike locks.”

“Ah, so if we stop with the bike locks you will do something about the Nazis?”

“No.”

The thing is we have now seen lots of ‘respectable’ people coming out against Nazis when they try to congregate. But that seems to be a consequence of Charlottesville. So in terms of ‘optics’ then maybe it did work?

Bobbie LobBomb
Bobbie LobBomb
3 years ago

@Leo you say that we’re not ignoring the threat. But is this so? What does it mean to ignore the threat? We had Sebastian Gorka wear the medal of a Nazi allied organization to the inauguration and explained it away. We had Bannon, who published articles about ‘renegade Jews’ and explained it away. They’re out, but the man who chose them are in. The philosophy still sits at the Resolute Desk. Meanwhile, you’re equivicating around the question of ‘how thoroughly does a person have to endorse genocide before we get worried’? This is exactly what ignoring the threat looks like. You’re doing it right here, right now, and you’re doing it passionately and with a sense of righteousness. Exactly in the way it’s been done before, and just like it always empowers genocidal regimes. You, like so many, are actively turning your back on the lesson we need to learn. And the cruel, gallows humor is that you’re casting aspersions on those who aren’t. Those who remember the lessons of history are, in your estimation, the bad guys. Unbelievable.

Leo
Leo
3 years ago

@cornychips
It’s not just a war against that, though, is it? The problem of white supremacy goes beyond them.

‘These Nazis’ as distinct from the ones in WWII.

@Bobbie LobBomb
I’m not saying not to be worried. I’m asking about tactics.

@Alan Robertshaw
Yes, I think in terms of optics, including the Nazis themselves blowing it by not even pretending not to be Nazis, Charlottesville and the protests afterwards really worked. Of course it was down to the attack, as well.

If Antifa stop with the bike locks, ‘respectable’ Dems might not do anything about Nazi rallies, but they are more likely to look favourably on Antifa, then Antifa and leftwingers in general have that ‘in’ to win them over ideologically. If they’re panicking about violent commies or whoever, we lose that. Even us vegans got lumped in, and we didn’t even do anything this time!

(as daft as that sounds, remember when it happened with Corbyn, the apparently incredibly dangerous commie vegetarian? We won people round by convincing them he was nice and normal, I think. That, and red scare tactics just aren’t that effective here in the UK)

Sinkable John : Pansy Ass Pinko, Regicidal Beast-of-Burden
Sinkable John : Pansy Ass Pinko, Regicidal Beast-of-Burden
3 years ago

Full disclaimer : only reason I don’t swing bike locks is because I’m nowhere near fit to be in the thick of it, physically speaking. There’s other things I can do and it looks like I may have to rethink my plans for September as France is headed into a storm.

At any rate, in what world is it “good optics” to be “someone who doesn’t punch nazis” ?

It’s a fucking no-brainer. One of those very few clear-cut cases where you’ve got pure fuckin’ evil on one side and there’s just nothing else to do for decent folks than to be on the other side. There’s not really any way around it, and it seems most have figured that out now. So the optics question is going to be a moot point eventually, if it isn’t already.

kupo
kupo
3 years ago

I’m not saying not to be worried. I’m asking about tactics.

What tactics do you deem appropriate, then? Wringing our hands? Muttering, “oh, my!” at the television? The Nazis are actively violent against us, both in their political actions and in physical confrontation. Why is violence in our own defense wrong?

If Antifa stop with the bike locks, ‘respectable’ Dems might not do anything about Nazi rallies, but they are more likely to look favourably on Antifa

If they’re not going to take action, then why should we give a fuck whether they look favorably on us?

Edit: They should fucking care whether history will look favorably on them.

Edit #2: If you don’t think they’re advocating genocide you haven’t been paying attention.

Bobbie LobBomb
Bobbie LobBomb
3 years ago

@Alan Robertshaw There are some who call for peaceful relocation of non-whites. But it bears remembering the the Third Reich’s final solution wasn’t their first. At first, they figured they could relocate non-‘Aryans’ to Madagascar. Then, they figured there could be a reservation in Poland. Finally, the moderates, in a ‘pragmatic’ move, conceded that extermination was less costly. So. Today’s ‘Peaceful Relocation’ is absolutely tomorrow’s genocide.

Axecalibur: Middle Name Danger
Axecalibur: Middle Name Danger
3 years ago

@Leo

I take the point about optics being what the media wants to see, rather than what’s there to see

Awesome! Problem sorted, glad we had this chat… There’s a ‘but’, isn’t there?

I think it’s still better to try not to give them anything to see, though, or rather to give them something obvious to see that will come over well

Black 👏 people 👏 and 👏 allies 👏 were 👏 called 👏 terrorists 👏 for 👏 marching 👏 and 👏 singing 👏 church 👏 music! Dr King was more hated than anyone except Kruschev in 1963 (and he didn’t become liked until after he died, whoops). I’m sorry, everyone, for keeping on bringing him up, but the parallels are just too apt. There is no such thing as ‘giving them nothing to see’, cos their ‘sight’ is inherently white supremacist

PeeVee the (Perpetually Ignored, Invisible but Noice) Sarcastic
PeeVee the (Perpetually Ignored, Invisible but Noice) Sarcastic
3 years ago

Leo’s defending of the indefensible is making me nauseous. Literally making me nauseous.

kupo
kupo
3 years ago

I’m sorry, everyone, for keeping on bringing him up

Don’t be. Bring him up ad nauseam until people stop holding him up as this shining example of pacifism and well-liked protester.

Bobbie LobBomb
Bobbie LobBomb
3 years ago

@Leo

I think there’s a distinction though between whether a ‘meh’ on genocide, while claiming not to personally want genocide, represents the same threat as someone calling for it.

That is minimizing the threat. Drawing a distinction between genocide enthusiastic white nationalists and genocide indifferent white nationalists is indeed saying we should be significantly less worried than we need to be. One may be snapping selfies at the ovens while the other is merely reading blog posts about it. But what they both have in common is ‘I want a white nation, and genocide is fine’. That’s alarming.

Leo
Leo
3 years ago

@Sinkable John
I’m not condemning you for it, I’m just wondering if it’s the ideal tactic.

It can on occasion be better optics not to, because:
a) it may be considered excessive use of force to flatten someone who wasn’t immediately about to punch you. That’s not necessarily fair, but is still the case, especially when Republicans are already frightened of violent leftwingers.
b) the Nazis have learnt to take off their Nazi regalia, and put on their MAGA hats and go out there with ‘free speech!’ signs

People, including Rebuplicans, were already shocked at the Nazis in the open in Charlottesville, when that’s the case, you don’t need to throw a punch to make an impression. You can be on the side that’s against them without going out with the intent of beating them up.

@kupo
Which tactics? The other stuff Antifa and other protesters are doing. Use of force in immediate self-defence, peaceful counter-protest, mockery (incl. things like the dog poo protest), educating/explaining for people… I think all these things are preferable.

If they’re not going to take action, then why should we give a fuck whether they look favorably on us?

Because even if they won’t take action against the Nazis, you might be able to convince them to vote for a more leftwing Democratic candidate. Shift the Overton window, and that should have the effect of action against the Nazis.

Otherwise, what happens? You win this skirmish, history perhaps looks relatively favourably, but people go on supporting the same old candidates, and nothing really changes because the underlying problem that gave rise to the Nazis was still there, just like before. The system in its entirety is the problem.

@Axe
Yes, the media might well try to demonise Antifa anyway, but it’s harder to sustain that narrative when everyone can see that you’re all standing there chanting ‘No Nazis, no KKK, no fascist USA!’ and your opponents are clearly Neo-Nazis, than it is if you’re going out there to hit people (ostensibly) protesting about free speech with bike locks.

Social media can go either way, but does mean the truth can get out there easier.

kupo
kupo
3 years ago

Because even if they won’t take action against the Nazis, you might be able to convince them to vote for a more leftwing Democratic candidate.

Nope. Not good enough. In fact, right now they’re all talking about how they need to find a more centrist (read: right-wing) dem candidate because otherwise they won’t be able to get more of the centrists to vote for their candidate.

Fighting the Nazis is the only thing that’s good enough.

Axecalibur: Middle Name Danger
Axecalibur: Middle Name Danger
3 years ago

@Leo
I could just fuckin repeat what the fuck I just said, and it’d be a rebuttal to this too. That usually means summat

it’s harder to sustain that narrative when everyone can see that you’re all standing there chanting ‘No Nazis, no KKK, no fascist USA!’ and your opponents are clearly Neo-Nazis

Going back to public opinion of the civil rights movement in the 60s, ya know what survived the narrative? 10 years of nonviolent direct action. 10 years of police brutality. 10 years of red baiting. 10 years of FBI antagonism. 10 years of arson and lynchings and terrorism. It took over 10 years for the ‘white moderate’ to get onboard with the civil rights movement (if weakly). The narrative don’t seem too difficult to sustain to me…

Because even if they won’t take action against the Nazis, you might be able to convince them to vote for a more leftwing Democratic candidate

The fuck? This is a horrendous take. In so many ways. 1st, what @kupo said. 2nd, who’s they? Dem politicians or Dem voters? 3rd, more ‘leftwing’ than whom? 4th, presumably, seeing as you’re hoping for a more leftwing candidate, the last one wasn’t up to snuff for you. Fair enough, but why would stopping the nazi punching lead to this? Unless you can show that an increase in nazi punching correlates with fewer of less ‘leftwing’ candidates, I’m not sure why you’re so confident in the opposite effect

TreePerson
TreePerson
3 years ago

We have a situation where Boston is considered a violent alt-left riot orchestrated by communist Jews that destroyed the community,
when only 1 in 1000 protesters was arrested,
if there is just one arrest or thrown object the entire event is considered a violent clash with police,
and you know who takes advantage of that?
Nazis and police who use agent provocitors and false flags,
and violance from nazis is branded a leftist false flag we even have Charlottesville truthers.

It does not matter what happens it will be spun as a violent leftist riot,
if there is no violence they just use stock footage and when its fact checked obviously the fact checkers are lying.

The “optics” are not a thing that can be influenced by the truth or even by the nonexistence of an event,
if the media wants a story abut violent clashes between puppies and the police they will make it happen even if it needs to be made from scratch.

Myoo
Myoo
3 years ago

@Leo

It’s about the optics rather than just whether they’re seen as having deserved it – beat up Lauren Southern, a young, pretty, white blonde woman who often seems to act as reporter (which makes her come over as a less direct participant, even though she is), I don’t think you’ll get a good response.

Lauren Southern raised money for a boat, crewed by white supremacists, whose mission was to stop refugees from coming to Europe. They failed, but make no mistake about it, they wanted those refugees to die.

This is the person you’re saying it would be bad optics to punch: someone funding a fucking death squad.

kupo
kupo
3 years ago

I hope this works:
comment image

Edit: Well, that’s tiny. How about a link to the article? https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2016/04/19/black-lives-matters-and-americas-long-history-of-resisting-civil-rights-protesters/?utm_term=.990add4a2611

Check out the poll a few paragraphs down.

Edit: My point is that people like Leo will probably never approve of *any* protest. It will all be going too far.

Scented Fucking Hard Chairs
Scented Fucking Hard Chairs
3 years ago

Leo is clearly of the oceanic variety.

Axecalibur: Middle Name Danger
Axecalibur: Middle Name Danger
3 years ago

@SFHC
*stares blankly*

*stares blacklier*

*finally gets it, giggles*

Bobbie LobBomb
Bobbie LobBomb
3 years ago

I think the unspoken question is “Will Nazis and their fellow travelers be defeated electorally therefore requiring the middle class to vote such and such a way, or not?”

For my part, I think that the precedent has been set. We’re going to see candidates put forth that are ever more right wing. Maybe a progressive Democrat will become our next president, but I don’t think this will be the end of it. The White Nationalist recruitment machine has to be fought. It’s tricky, because they can’t be allowed to further suppress the minority vote and electoral politics is important there. On the other hand, we can’t sit by while charismatic fascist leaders grow their base and liberals clutch their bodice whilst retreating to the fainting couch. They must be fought at every level. They pose an existential threat to too many. Because yeah…. they may not be the Nazi Party of 1933. But they aim to be. This cannot be allowed. And one thing we know from history…. the ballot box won’t be the thing that prevents it.

Sinkable John : Pansy Ass Pinko, Regicidal Beast-of-Burden
Sinkable John : Pansy Ass Pinko, Regicidal Beast-of-Burden
3 years ago

The point isn’t optics, the point is that people won’t start changing their minds now. Everyone and their lawyer’s picked a side by now, so there isnt really much to say about that anymore.

Whatever happens on our side of the fence, it will always be too rowdy for those who’d rather sit on it and wait it out to support whoever comes out on top. Always has been, and there’s no reason it’d change right now.

So you don’t have to worry about optics. You have to worry about that church about to burn, about that person about to get beat up, and about that Antifa who’s about to step in but would sure love it if, for once, they didn’t get blamed for it afterwards.

Edit : @SFHC, Axe

I don’t get it ._.

weirwoodtreehugger: chief manatee

It does not matter what happens it will be spun as a violent leftist riot,
if there is no violence they just use stock footage and when its fact checked obviously the fact checkers are lying.

The “optics” are not a thing that can be influenced by the truth or even by the nonexistence of an event,
if the media wants a story abut violent clashes between puppies and the police they will make it happen even if it needs to be made from scratch.

This is bringing back memories of the lead up to the Iraq war. CNN had on some pro-war general and someone who was opposed to the war. While the anti-war guest was talking, instead of showing him, they showed footage of Saddam Hussein in his full dictator regalia and carrying a gun.

So yeah, people and organizations who support the status quo will always, always find a way to paint social justice/anti-war/pro-worker advocates as violent and threatening. Even treasonous. It’s always been that way and always will.

Nina
Nina
3 years ago

(sarcasm) You know what’s a great strategy in terms of optics? Let’s all just sit idly by while the nazis get more and more violent until they amass a huge body count. Then we can smugly say, “I told you so”, and everyone will immediately see the light and become a leftie. There will be world peace and everyone will live happily ever after. And sure, we sacrificed a lot of minorities for the sake of optics, but I bet they were thrilled to be able to show the world the true nature of naziism with their death and bring along a new era of peace. Sometimes people need to be sacrificed for the greater good and optics.

Of course, it’s much more likely that being passive will just help to normalize nazis and make everything worse, but oh well… It’s all about optics, right?

Bobbie LobBomb
Bobbie LobBomb
3 years ago

While we’re talking optics, let’s not forget Stonewall. A violent riot that had terrible optics. The media had a field day of condemnation and mockery. But I’m trans, not arrested nor institutionalized when I leave the apartment, and was able to marry my wife. This isn’t despite a riot and unappealing optics, but because of them. Optics played a role in the endgame, sure. But there wouldn’t have been a game at all without fighting in the street.

Axecalibur: Middle Name Danger
Axecalibur: Middle Name Danger
3 years ago

@Sinkable
Oceanic Leo => sea lion

PeeVee the (Perpetually Ignored, Invisible but Noice) Sarcastic
PeeVee the (Perpetually Ignored, Invisible but Noice) Sarcastic
3 years ago

You know what would be great “optics”, Leo? If they show that fucking clip of Deandre Harris getting the shit beat out of him by those poor, unassuming white supremacists/white nationalists_whatever the fuck they are. Over and over and over again.There’s your “optics”. These are the assholes that antifa and other protesters are in battle with.

Fuck that stupid word “optics”. That word is fast becoming a joke.

“Over the past 10 years (2007-2016), domestic extremists of all kinds have killed at least 372 people in the United States. Of those deaths, approximately 74% were at the hands of right-wing extremists, about 24% of the victims were killed by domestic Islamic extremists, and the remainder were killed by left-wing extremists.” -ADL

THESE GROUPS KILL. Not just Heather Heyer, but hundreds. Fuck “optics.”

And remember one goddamned thing- if these assholes didn’t hold their rallies, antifa and other protesters wouldn’t show up, because there’d be no REASON to.

I’ve lived long enough to remember the Civil Rights struggle, and how the “optics” always portrayed the ones who wanted them as the evil ones. I remember Kent State, where the “optics” were to blame the students for their own deaths. I remember some of my family member’s memoirs where their neighbors were apathetic to the suffering of Hitler’s many victims, and how the deaths of my distant family members affected them. (We’re Romany) And now I see this shit starting slowly to creep back into the thoughts of Americans, and I see you trying to handwave this shit away because you choose to believe the bullshit of poor fucking “oppressed” blonde alt-righters rather than the people actively trying to mitigate the harm these assholes are doing?

There ARE no “good optics.” There’s only what the people gullible to this shit choose to believe.

No, I’m not Antifa, per se. But I AM anti-fascist, and I will be until the day I die, because I’ve SEEN what fascists do, my family EXPERIENCED it first-hand, and those who want to excuse and give care and succor to these groups can FUCK RIGHT OFF.

/rant

SFHC: brilliant!

Croquembouche, extrenely mamal omen
Croquembouche, extrenely mamal omen
3 years ago

… On a slippery slope…
comment image

Leo
Leo
3 years ago

This isn’t fair. It’s not unreasonable to suggest hitting someone with a bike lock is a bad idea tactically. I’m not going to apologise for that, I wouldn’t expect someone to for being outright pacifist either, but I’m not even that.

@Kupo

My point is that people like Leo will probably never approve of *any* protest. It will all be going too far.

Except I explicitly approved of peaceful counter-protest, and the use of force in immediate self-defence, in my last response to you. I did not condemn going out with the intent of punching Nazis, either, I just don’t think it’s the ideal tactic.

In fact, right now they’re all talking about how they need to find a more centrist (read: right-wing) dem candidate because otherwise they won’t be able to get more of the centrists to vote for their candidate.

Dem politicians or Dem voters? 3rd, more ‘leftwing’ than whom? 4th, presumably, seeing as you’re hoping for a more leftwing candidate, the last one wasn’t up to snuff for you. Fair enough, but why would stopping the nazi punching lead to this? Unless you can show that an increase in nazi punching correlates with fewer of less ‘leftwing’ candidates, I’m not sure why you’re so confident in the opposite effect.

The point isn’t optics, the point is that people won’t start changing their minds now. Everyone and their lawyer’s picked a side by now, so there isnt really much to say about that anymore.

Right, these are fair points, all. I think though there was a bit of a shift after Charlottesville, for a moment there at least. I meant Dem voters, Axe. I’m not confident in the opposite effect, I’m not confident their minds can be changed, but if they can’t the situation really does look hopeless, so I think it needs to be tried, at least. I agree with Bobbie LobBomb that the opposition will carry on putting forward more and more rightwing candidates, and if that happens it’s not just about stopping the Nazis now but if you can keep on stopping them, or if there’s much world left to stop them in, after the nukes inevitably get used. The system is white supremacist, so unless that can be changed, there will carry on being Nazis.

I do think it’s going to be easier for leftwingers to convince them, if they’re not panicking over the idea of violent far leftists. Maybe it still won’t work, but worth a go?

@Myoo
Optics isn’t a question of deserving it or not.

kupo
kupo
3 years ago

It’s not unreasonable to suggest hitting someone with a bike lock is a bad idea tactically.

Context fucking matters. You’re speaking out against antifa. By definition you’re defending fascists.

Leo
Leo
3 years ago

I know the media will spin it anyway. But I think there’s a difference between acknowledging that they will, and suggesting that therefore there’s no point not going out with the active intention of using force. Let alone outright advocating going out with the intent of using force. After all, the media spin it in the first place because they expect painting protesters as violent to have an effect. So maybe going out and using force isn’t the ideal response. It might just play into their hands even more.

I accept the history, but not sure it really follows that because force was used and it panned out Ok in the end, that intending to use force is therefore the best possible tactic now (in different circumstances). There are cases where I think we might feel the force used wasn’t the best approach, too.

A. Noyd
A. Noyd
3 years ago

Leo says:

I take the point about optics being what the media wants to see, rather than what’s there to see. I think it’s still better to try not to give them anything to see, though, or rather to give them something obvious to see that will come over well

The media will present whatever they want you to see. Doesn’t fucking matter what’s actually there. And it works because it gets eaten up by so many incurious fools who are comfortable in their ignorance. Like you. You’re treating fascist violence as largely hypothetical because you have no fucking clue what the reality is. Gosh, that must be nice.

But if you’re going to let yourself be taken for a ride, you don’t get to tell others what tactics or optics to use.

Seriously. Shut the fuck up.

Leo
Leo
3 years ago

@kupo
No, I’m not speaking out against Antifa. I’m suggesting a specific tactic isn’t the best. I’ve expressed support for other tactics. It is not ‘you are with all of us on absolutely everything, all the time, or you’re against us’, that’s too black and white. It’s basically impossible with a disparate group, too. There’s no way Antifa all agree with each other on everything.

Robert Walker-Smith
Robert Walker-Smith
3 years ago

Every time I read someone gassing on about how the opposition to fascists and Nazis needs to be more genteel and nuanced, “Love Me, I’m a Liberal” by Phil Ochs comes to mind.

Nobody on the Right is expressing concern that marching with swastika flags chanting Blood and Soil! is a bad look.

Just for grits and shins I posted a question on Quora – about how do people still insist with a straight face that the Nazis were leftists when contemporary Nazis are bitterly opposed to all forms of leftism. Someone came back with, “oh, those people marching with swastikas aren’t real Nazis, they’re something else entirely. If they were really Nazis they’d be socialists.” That’s invoking No True Scotsman with vigor.

PeeVee the (Perpetually Ignored, Invisible but Noice) Sarcastic
PeeVee the (Perpetually Ignored, Invisible but Noice) Sarcastic
3 years ago

ONE person hit somebody with a bike lock. This is not a fucking universal antifa tactic, whereas those five assholes who beat up Deandre Harris? Yeah, those tactics ARE. Yet you only talk about the one instance with the bike lock…that’s the “optic” you’re choosing to wag your finger at everyone.

Leo
Leo
3 years ago

@A. Noyd
I know it’s not hypothetical. I’m not sure if all these Alt-Right protesters represent an immediate violent threat, though. If nothing else, it’s not always in their own interest to be. I have seen what’s going on because it’s on social media too, rather than just filtered through the mainstream media.

I’m not telling anyone what tactics to use, I’m saying ‘I’m not sure this is the best tactic, for these reasons. These other ones seem good, though’. People disagree, fine, but that doesn’t make it somehow totally unreasonable for me to have said it.

@Pee Vee
I wasn’t, though, it was because Dali specifically advocated going out with the intention of using force as a tactic. So I was saying I wasn’t sure it was the best tactic for that reason. I know not all Antifa do that.

There’s no point trying to talk to Nazis about tactics (why would anyone do that with the opposing side?), there’s not much point in trying to get them to stop being Nazis, they don’t listen.