Cornel West & Rev. Traci Blackmon: Clergy in Charlottesville We...

In this Democracy Now interview, Cornel West and Rev. Traci Blackmon say that they and 20 University of Virginia students owed their lives to AntiFascists and Anarchists who protected them from thousands of white supremacists. Police stood aside to let neo-Nazi protestors attack the antiprotestors.

screen grab from the video

Cornel West:

The next day, for example, those 20 of us who were standing, many of them clergy, we would have been crushed like cockroaches if it were not for the anarchists and the antifascists who approached, over 300, 350 antifascists. We just had 20. And we’re singing "This Little light of Mine,"…

The antifascists, and then, crucial, the anarchists, because they saved our lives, actually. We would have been completely crushed, and I’ll never forget that. [emphasis mine]

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So do I, but they decided to stop defending protesters who brandish weapons.

I take that back. They do not have good intentions.

AntiFa doesn't initiate violence. They are there to protect people from White nationalists a fascists.They don't carry weapons like the right-winged hate groups do. They are not a terrorist group. Police more often than not fail to protect the left-wingers in rallies and protests. They are almost outnumbered. I don't think that you are going to find anywhere where AntiFa killed or severely injured anyone. They are not anarchists. Anarchists are anti-government groups. You can always find a few rogues in any protest group.

In no way do I, or does the ACLU, defend the acts of violence. Rather, it is defending the right to assembly and speech.

Perhaps Antifa acted defensively for those church people but they, undoubtedly, also acted, and continue to act, as a goon squad. Go watch videos. It is just a matter of time before they are labeled as a terrorist group.

Also, WTF is Anarchism anyway ? It is great in theory, just as communism is. In reality it doesn't and can not work. It makes for a hip cultural scene though.

Do not compare ANTIFA to the Allied soldiers that fought in WW2.

Do you object to comparing Antifa to the militant leftist movements in Germany, Italy and Spain before World War II? It's my understanding the US movement is similar.

Had you lived in Germany during this period, what would you have done to oppose Fascism? Would you have stopped short of violent resistance? Would you also have opposed Resistance movement violence in occupied countries during WWII? 

On the other hand, Hitler is said to have credited the antifascist resistance with hardening the Nazis.

Anarachism (wikipedia) "Many types and traditions of anarchism exist, not all of which are mutually exclusive."

In response to your suggestion that Antifa, at Charlottesville, acted as a goon squad, Tim Wise provides some perspective.

This is not to say I always find the tactics of Antifa to be helpful or strategic, because I don't. But to suggest, as the president did, that they are in some way the moral equivalent of those they were protesting — or perhaps even worse because at least the neo-Nazis had a permit! — is an act of moral inversion so putrid as to boggle the imagination. Whatever one thinks of Antifa tactics, there is simply a difference, and not a small one, between people who call for the purging of people of color and Jews from a nation, and those who fight back against people who call for those things. And if we say there is no difference between advocating genocide and oppression and resisting those who advocate genocide and oppression, then we are headed quickly to a place that puts equal moral condemnation upon the leaders of the Warsaw ghetto uprising as with those they were fighting. 

Keep in mind, the white supremacists said they would be coming to Charlottesville with weapons. Virginia is an open-carry state and they announced beforehand they would be prepared to take advantage of this fact, either for self-defense (their insistence) or to intimidate those who might stand against them. As such, and knowing that the fascists would be armed with guns, with knives, with clubs and other implements of war, for Antifa not to have brought something with which to fight back would have been to court an especially one-sided disaster. But however much mace stings and urine-filled balloons may stain one's clothes, to suggest they are equivalent as tools of terror to semi-automatic weapons or vehicles is to confuse spit wads with atom bombs. [emphasis mine]

If This Is a Civil War, Pick a Side: Donald Trump, White Nationalis...

Numerous Neo-Nazis marched brandishing weapons, including semi-automatics.

image source

Gun being fired.

image source

In all the photos, the only weapon I that I saw, which must have been brought by counter-protesters, was a bow that one guy carried over his shoulder.

If I knew the opposition looked as these fellows look, I would run, not walk away from the parade route, or sit down to be hauled away by the police. If those men carry such powerful weapons, they may not intend to pull a trigger, but with that bunch, who knows what terrible thing they would do. 

If antifa is nonviolent and without weapons who can criticize them? If they expect to go into a situation with all those testosterone-rich men facing them, I would have trepidation. Let the police deal with them.

When we had threats of violence from Aryan marchers, we set up a parade route across town from theirs. It turned out, we had more participants than they. We also had the strategy of people pledging money for how many Aryans marched and for how many blocks. We used the money to help fund our campaign to teach tolerance. 

  

Well if thats all you saw then that must be all they had.

Their weapons are rocks, balloons and bottles filled with urine or feces and pepper spray / tear gas

Oh my god, Ruth, really?  Equating antifa bullies with guys storming the beach at Normandy?  Antifa thugs, seeing a WWII vet with a "make america great again" red cap would gladly flip over his wheelchair, because obviously he's a fascist nazi asshole. 

Antifa was lucky to have Charlottesville, where they got to face actual fascists.  Otherwise, you think they show much distinction between who is an enemy and who isn't?  Antifa will physically go after anyone who has different political views to intimidate them and shut them up.  That's actually, you know, kind of fascist.

But you also said "That said, nonviolent resistance isn't just morally superior, it's more effective" which I agree with, I would love to see a massive non-violent antifa movement.

Antifa thugs, seeing a WWII vet with a "make america great again" red cap would gladly flip over his wheelchair, because obviously he's a fascist nazi asshole. 

Really, Jerry? Have you evidence of the behavior you ascribe to Antifa? I've read of Antifa disrupting NeoNazi meetings, but not of harassing citizens for wearing MAGA caps.

Antifa will physically go after anyone who has different political views to intimidate them and shut them up.  That's actually, you know, kind of fascist.

The Southern Poverty Law Center doesn't classify Antifa as a hate group precisely because they don't do this. This sounds like stereotyping to me, because it's contrary to everything I've read and it's such a broadside condemnation. If they really attacked and intimidated everyone who didn't share their views, wouldn't they attack almost everybody at once. It's not even plausible to me that a small group like Antifa would be trying to shut up, intimidate, and physically attack the entire vast population who don't approve of violent resistance to Nazism.

Right because the SPLC is so objective and believes in civil liberties. As I have pointed out in other posts, there are former Muslims on the SPLC hate list because they spoke ill of Islam. People that grew up in Islamic countries that turned against the religion. They are now the targets og Muslim extremists thanks to the SPLC.

Actually Jerry is correct. They - ANTIFA - are a bunch of thugs that would harass a ww2 vet if he is a Trump supporter.

Our security is  more at risk because of right-winged extremist that it is from Muslims. I guess it doesn't matter to you that the FBI said that very same thing. Jerry and John. Let's get Make America Great caps and attend a protest where AntiFa is and I will prove to you in person that you are both wrong. They want harm us. I guarantee it. Then after the rally let's quickly burn those infernal despicable caps. Then let's see who attacks who when they see us destroy those caps. Got it?

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