Between Antifa and Evergreen

Think Antifa is defending an open society? Think again.

Interesting to note that I feel absolutely no reservation about posting anything against neo-Nazis, or the KKK, or Trump. Nothing could be easier.

To call out Antifa and the intolerance on Left, however, always gives me pause, because I know it opens me to becoming a target of that intolerance.

As I’ve previously written: given a choice between Hitler and Stalin, I choose FDR. Not because I think the American system is perfect. Obviously, it is very far from perfect. I’ve been a critic of America for thirty years. I just think it’s not going to be reformed by violence. I think MLK was right.

For some time I have contemplated the fact that MLK’s dream that one day we would all be judged by the content of our character is as alien to the antifascist Left as it is to the racist Right. The two sides, in fact, are in complete agreement that race (gender, and all the rest) are the true measures by which a person should be judged. They just disagree on the orientation of the moral scale.

Yes, I get it that point of saying Black Lives Matter is to counter a condition in which they don’t. It doesn’t quite play out that way, though, people being the tribal, rank-conscious, beings that they are.

This gets to what I consider the virtue of the American system, as dreamed of by MLK: it doesn’t give that tribal, rank-conscious, mind anything to hang on to.

Complaints about the lack of moral equivalency between neo-nazis and antifa, as I see it, only provide further demonstration of how divorced from reality ideological thinking is. Perhaps this sort of ideological naivete had its place in history, but I don’t think anymore.

I’ve lost track of the number of times I’ve seen people quote Timothy Snyder’s drop dead obvious warning to beware of militias. Newsflash: that’s what Antifa is. Explicitly.

I’ve also seen Popper’s Paradox passed around to justify violence against “Nazis” on the grounds that these Nazis threaten the existence of free speech in an open society. Makes me want to scream, actually, because there is no chance of real neo-Nazis gaining power at this point and shutting down free speech. Meanwhile, people are rationalizing the right of Antifa to beat people senseless for carrying a sign.

That this violence is presented as a defense of the American system is particularly daft. Antifa is not carrying black and red banners for nothing. Their intent is not to protect open society, but to end it.

All you need to do is look at Evergreen college to see what an ‘antifacist’ open society looks like: utterly self-righteous children shouting down anyone who doesn’t agree with them. It is kangaroo courts presided over by drama queens, kept from laugh-out-loud absurdity only by the ever-present threat of violence.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *