A pacifist minister reflects on the antifa who protected protesters from Charlottesville's armed Nazis


#1

Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2017/09/07/outsourcing-the-sin-of-violenc.html


#2

I’m not sure if infiltrated is the right word. It connotes that there was a time when law enforcement wasn’t full of closeted Nazis…maybe, “they’re feeling emboldened to come out of the closet within law enforcement”


#3

This is important.


#4

Brilliant metaphor!


#5

Niemoller at Tweet length.


#6

When I was a kid I took a hard line pacifist stance.

I took beatings, after beatings, while my dad (heartbroken) told me to stand up for myself.

What I eventually learned (the very hard way) is that it never stops, in fact it escalates, until you are willing to fight back. You don’t have to be a bully to stop one, you do have to be willing to bring the same violence the other side does to the table - because they won’t give a fuck.


#7

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#8

cecidit ne fututorum

When some people in my age bracket started to look for Kevin that was about tall some of us decided that we were not going to be intimidated.
Some asses were kicked and most of the dudes who had taken themselves too seriously came to those of us who did the ass kicking and they were repentant. Forgiveness was provided but we told them to watch for their kids and make sure they did not go full retard like they did.

Oh the stupidity of the late teens


#9

I love the idea of non-violence, of Ghandi’s ahimsa, as an ideal.

I wish it were universally viable.

I think the reason it was effective against the British, philosophically speaking, is that the Brits’ objective was control; their willingness to use force and violence was a tool to enforce that. When the Indians stood up against that, allowing themselves to be hit, it forced the soldiers to see their humanity, to confront what they themselves were doing and the terrible things they’d have to do to pursue that objective.

The reason why it’s not effective against fascists, is that fascists are fundamentally unable to recognise the humanity in others, see any ‘weakness’ as further evidence of their own superiority, and would genuinely enjoy nothing more than to inflict violence upon someone helpless.


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#10

It worked out pretty good for Gandhi. But then again, he didn’t only take a beating. If only you could have organized the entire third grade into Satyagraha…


#11

illegitimi non carborundum


#13

I think you unintentionally missed a word in there, but otherwise find myself agreeing with your differentiation between non-violent protest against those in seek of power (and capable of realizing the humanity of the oppressed) vs. non-violent protest against those who would seek to exterminate you would they could. Thanks for that delineation, particularly in light of the ongoing “to punch or not punch a nazi” debate; I hadn’t seen it expressed like that before now.


#14

I think you unintentionally missed a word in there,

I thought I’d edited before anyone saw. Rats!


#15

Have we really sunk to the point where this would happen out in the open during a daylight demonstration?


#16

I think most of the traditional martial arts philosophies have this one down - resist, defend, defuse, where possible - educate.
Having said that, as authoritarianism & it’s many flavours are attempting to re(de)fine itself in this modern age, I think it may not be a bad thing for the traditional ideas to take a more proactive approach while not departing from their core philosophies.


#17

I’m being told again and again by people I thought I respected that if you resist violent Nazis either by meeting their violence with violence or by denying them a platform to speak, then you are the actual fascist and bad-guy.

If that’s true, then I have learned a bizarro-world definition of “fascist” that I think most Americans should embrace.


#18

From what I’ve seen, yes, and still sinking


#19

Tone arguments to protect whom of what exactly ?


#20

I can tell by the Nazis, and having seen some fascist demonstrations in my time. Also, some guy murdered a woman with his car.


#22

History. In some cases, peoples direct experiences dealing with fascists. Fascism is by definition a violent ideology and in the past they have shown little reticence to carry out that violence, on both a personal AND a state level when given the opportunity.