After what happened in Charlottesville yesterday, I have decided that I need to do a political post today rather than wait for tomorrow. I already have a bunch in the queue and I do not feel like add to it. This might be long and most likely be rambling so bear with me; I’ll get to my point somewhere.
In case someone missed it, there were violent protests in Charlottesville. It all started when the city voted to remove a Confederate participation trophy (some would call it a statue of Robert E. Lee). Of course, such a move triggered the members of the authoritarian right. They decided to have a joint Klan and Nazi rally in defense of this participation trophy.
This, in turn, brought about a counter protest which included members of the authoritarian left. The two sides clashed and some violence ensued. At one point, some snowflake plowed his car through a crowd of counter protesters. It is said that the person was a member of the authoritarian right but be assured, he will be a Bernie Sanders worshipping baby killing liberal by Tuesday.
Mr. Trump’s response to what happened was asinine. One thing we know about Mr. Trump is that he has no problem with specifically calling out people and groups, especially left-leaning groups, with his vitriolic statements. His statement on this matter was quite balanced and did not call out any specific group. The takeaway from that is that when it comes to feelings of the snowflakes that support him (and Russia but that is a different matter), he does not take chances of offending them.
This comes to the whole point of this post. Hatred and violence by anybody for any reason other than self-defense is morally wrong and it should not be tolerated by anybody in a civil society. It does not matter who you are or what side is engaging in it. If there is hatred and violence, it is our duty to oppose it.
White nationalism and neo-nazism are amoral philosophies. Waving the Confederate flag is an act of hatred contrary to what the authoritarian right claims. Sure, the authoritarian right can hide behind a veneer of free speech and society has to respect their rights. That does not mean we have to accept their hate filled words. That does not mean they have the right to spew their hate without being opposed. They are not entitled to a safe space to spread their lies and propaganda.
Likewise, authoritarian left groups like Anti-fa and Black Lives Matter need to stop their violence and rioting. They are not helping matters at all plus it further motivates white nationalists and neo-nazis. While I strongly suspect there is incitement by the white nationalists, neo-nazis, and possibly the police, that is not an excuse for violence. If there is a need for self-defense, there is a right for a person to defend themselves (at least that is what the authoritarian right claims).
As a side note, it would not hurt if BLM makes it more clear that they are inclusive if that is indeed the truth.
It is absolutely critical that we oppose the hatred and violence of groups with whom we may agree with philosophically. When we do not oppose and act against them, it means that we condone those activities which make us just as guilty as if we committed them as well.
While it is helpful, we do not need to be out there with the protesters. There are other ways that we can oppose this hatred. We can petition our government to do something about the groups that spread a hateful message (of course, our government seems to be complicit). We can make our views known to the media or engage in online activism. There is much we can do to oppose hatred and violence and it is our duty to do what we can.