The left wing on the internet?

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Re: The left wing on the internet?

Postby linguoboy » 2019-12-09, 4:22

xBlackHeartx wrote:And I don't know what kind of Americans you're talking to if they say they've read Karl Marx.

The kind that went to pretty much any elite college in this country? I don’t think anybody graduated from mine (University of Chicago—maybe you’ve heard of it?) without having to read Karl Marx at some point. How can you hope to understand the critical approaches he inspired (and which are still common in academia) if you don’t?

xBlackHeartx wrote:All this thread is ME being PERSONALLY ATTACKED for being something that I clearly am not.

No, it’s you being criticized for intellectual turpitude. It’s unfortunate you’re taking that personally; you should be taking it to heart instead.
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Re: The left wing on the internet?

Postby md0 » 2019-12-09, 8:08

All anyone in this thread has done is call me a concern troll and an alt-righter for no reason in the entire universe.

In this thread, everyone ranging from a right-liberal to a left-anarchist and all political positions in-between called you out and you didn't offer even a slight defence of your stated positions. The accusation of concern trolling is the only reasonable one.

You know alt-righters often claim that there's a communist conspiracy in the country, right? They're probably just telling you that to make you think there IS a communist conspiracy in this country (of course, in their world, everyone who isn't them is a part of said conspiracy, they're not exactly known for being sane). And yes, a major talking point with them is that colleges and universities and the entire school system is trying to indoctrinate everyone into communism, which they seem to simply define as 'giving a rat's ass about something other than yourself'.

My background is partly in English Literature, and I've talked to people in the Humanities, not alt-righters. Both conflict theory (as in class conflict), and historical materialism are parts of the theoretical toolkit of literary criticism. I would be shocked if any Modernist Literature course doesn't at least include the Communist Manifesto and some Marxist literary critics like Terry Eagleton (whom I will take over most post-modernists to be honest). I mean, how can you talk about anything that happened in the last 150 years without considering one of the two main schools of thought that defined them?

All this thread is ME being PERSONALLY ATTACKED for being something that I clearly am not.

You have a very easy way to prove my accusations wrong: defend your positions against the argument against them, or revise them so that our criticism is not applicable. So far your behaviour is textbook concern-trolling.

I mean, how is accusing an obvious leftist of being a NAZI NOT CONSIDERED A BANNABLE OFFENSE?????

Wouldn't that be very authoritarian?
And to repeat, you failed to convince anyone, from the most right-wing users of this forum, to the most leftist users here, that you sincerely hold any of your stated positions. So, not obvious. If you are a leftist and none of us is right in questioning your intentions, then at least understand that what happened in this thread is a warning that you need to study and understand your positions better.
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Re: The left wing on the internet?

Postby xBlackHeartx » 2019-12-09, 9:02

And how do I prove that I didn't vote for Trump? Or that I abstained during the 2016 election because I didn't want either candidate to win? Or the horror I felt as I've watched the alt-right gain more and more power over this country? Or the fact that I've had black friends? Or that I've always supported equal rights? Or that I stopped being Christian because I didn't support homophobia???

How about this? YOU prove TO ME that you aren't part of the alt-right. What proof can you offer me of your life off this forum? Tell me. Tell the whole freaking forum that YOU are what you claim to be. From what I've seen, you're all acting like alt-righters that are just trying to provoke people just for a laugh. And that certainly wouldn't be new behavior for Linguoboy, as anyone who's been using this forum for a while should know.

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Re: The left wing on the internet?

Postby Saim » 2019-12-09, 9:38

xBlackHeartx wrote:From what I've seen, you're all acting like alt-righters that are just trying to provoke people just for a laugh.


Who is "you all" here?

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Re: The left wing on the internet?

Postby md0 » 2019-12-09, 10:00

xBlackHeartx wrote:And how do I prove that I didn't vote for Trump?

Who asked for that?
xBlackHeartx wrote:Or that I abstained during the 2016 election because I didn't want either candidate to win?

Who asked for that?

xBlackHeartx wrote:Or the horror I felt as I've watched the alt-right gain more and more power over this country?

Who asked for that?

xBlackHeartx wrote:Or the fact that I've had black friends?

Oh come on, I'm not even from the US and I know the connotations of this phrase. Also, who asked for that?

xBlackHeartx wrote:Or that I've always supported equal rights?

Who asked for that?

xBlackHeartx wrote:Or that I stopped being Christian because I didn't support homophobia???

Who asked for that?

How about this? YOU prove TO ME that you aren't part of the alt-right. What proof can you offer me of your life off this forum? Tell me. Tell the whole freaking forum that YOU are what you claim to be. From what I've seen, you're all acting like alt-righters that are just trying to provoke people just for a laugh. And that certainly wouldn't be new behavior for Linguoboy, as anyone who's been using this forum for a while should know.


We are not debating you here. This isn't about your character or deepest aspirations and fears. And it's equally not about me, my character, or my deepest aspirations and fears.

The point I engaged in this threat was when you called the Vox channel on Youtube a communist channel, which I maintain is wrong and you never seriously engaged with my points here:

md0 wrote:I remember that video and a) it was not defending antifa as such but it was a much milder version of both-sides-ism than what you usually get from US American Democrat supporting media, b) you really gotta cite your sources on them having admitted to being communists because Vox videos about socialism and communism are always antipathetic to them and they often signal support for regime change operations in countries that are supposed to be communist, and of course c) being antifascist doesn't mean you are a communist even if historically those two political ideologies overlapped - even in the 30s and 40s there were liberal and even moderately right-wing antifascists (eg the resistance to the Nazis in Greek span across two thirds of the political spectrum, including the centre-right).


Sure, I didn't trust your intentions from the beginning because I can notice patterns of behaviour, but since the only semblance of an argument was that "only communists use Marxist concepts, therefore Vox are communists", I did bring up how important Marxism is in sociology and the humanities and that studying and using concepts from Marx doesn't make one communist. You never engaged with that, you just went on about how anti-fascism is violent and so on, which is as much a diversion as your personal feelings about Trump, whom I haven't mentioned once.

So again, if you really hold sincere political opinions, be it left- or right-wing ones, study both them, and how to hold a political discussion without taking criticism of your arguments as criticism of your self. If you are so bad at this that everyone who posted in this thread thinks you are concern-trolling, the onus is on you to figure out why.
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Re: The left wing on the internet?

Postby xBlackHeartx » 2019-12-09, 11:11

YOU ASKED ME TO PROVE THAT I'M NOT A FREAKING WORTHLESS NAZI!!! What else can I say???? Yes, the holocaust happened and that's irrefutable, and its disgusting that anyone would deny that. And no, Jews don't rule the world, and the protocols of Zion are a hoax that plagiarized a book criticizing the rule of Napoleon III. And I've already said that I fully support civil rights. HOW DOES THAT NOT MAKE ME LEFT-WING?????

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Re: The left wing on the internet?

Postby Saim » 2019-12-09, 12:03

xBlackHeartx wrote:YOU ASKED ME TO PROVE THAT I'M NOT A FREAKING WORTHLESS NAZI!!!


When?

This seems to be saying the opposite, underline mine:

md0 wrote:We are not debating you here. This isn't about your character or deepest aspirations and fears. And it's equally not about me, my character, or my deepest aspirations and fears.

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Re: The left wing on the internet?

Postby md0 » 2019-12-09, 14:19

xBlackHeartx wrote:YOU ASKED ME TO PROVE THAT I'M NOT A FREAKING WORTHLESS NAZI!!!

No, I haven't. I asked you to explain why you think that the Youtube channel Vox is sympathetic to communism.
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Re: The left wing on the internet?

Postby linguoboy » 2019-12-09, 15:31

xBlackHeartx wrote:From what I've seen, you're all acting like alt-righters that are just trying to provoke people just for a laugh. And that certainly wouldn't be new behavior for Linguoboy, as anyone who's been using this forum for a while should know.

Here's what I see:

xBHx: Vox is communist
Everyone: Can you prove that?
xBHx: WHY ARE YOU ALL ATTACKING ME?

I really hope you appreciate all the time md0 has put into painstakingly explaining this to you. And, once again, I hope you can take a step back, work through the negative reaction you're having to being challenged on what you've posted here, and figure out how to engage with criticism constructively. Because the real goal for all of us here is constructive engagement and it's a shame you can't see that.
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Re: The left wing on the internet?

Postby xBlackHeartx » 2019-12-10, 0:35

You all accused me of being an alt-right troll just because I don't support the antifa and I'm not that fond of Vox either.

As for the antifa, as I said, the only reason you all support them is because they're opposed to the alt-right, who are the ones currently in power. Its all part of a stupid logical fallacy that virtually everyone commits: in any dispute, one must be the good guy and the other the bad guy.

In the case of the alt-right, they came to prominence first. They were of course immediately labeled as bad guy characters. Then came the antifa, who didn't really appear until after Trump was put in power if I remember right. They're of course opposed to the alt-right, and it was already decided that the alt-right is evil. And in any dispute, there must be a good guy and a bad guy. Thus if the alt-right are the bad guys, the antifa MUST be the good guys, no matter what it is they do.

Face it, if their roles were reversed, everyone would be defending the alt-right and label the antifa as villains. First, the antifa would draw the attention of the public, and be labeled villains. Then the alt-right comes along to oppose them, and everyone would label THEM the good guys purely because the label of bad guy had already been given to the antifa.

Face it, you're the ones who are stupid and completely confused. You can't even fathom the idea that two people who don't like each other can both be evil!

And do I even need to prove that Vox is communist??? Is Trump popular with the alt-right? What's your source on that? Was Mao a communist? Was Hitler a Nazi? What proof do you have of that? Oh yeah, EVERYTHING THEY EVER SAID. Just watch a few videos of their channel, any videos, and their communist thinking is plainly obvious. They also regularly get accused of being pro-authoritarian, due to them repeatedly supporting censoring the alt-right to quash them. Oddly enough, they never even bring up the debate as to whether or not censorship really works. It certainly didn't help in Germany. At least there you can actually get in trouble if you deny the holocaust. Honestly their rise has more to do with youtube's stupid programmers writing algorithms that favor shocking and inflammatory content. I mean, thanks to them, we have millions of people in this worthless country that seriously think the earth is flat!!!!

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Re: The left wing on the internet?

Postby vijayjohn » 2019-12-10, 1:20

Personally, at the moment, I stick to this forum, another forum, Discord, and Twitter (I haven't been using Twitter lately, but I have it open and was pretty active on it over the past several months). Your mileage may vary, but I very rarely encounter anyone trying to push alt-right views. I used to use Reddit as well; both Twitter and Reddit can get pretty bad, but IME they are fine if you know how to navigate them. The way I do that is by a) avoiding conversations about politics on Twitter and sticking to conversations about linguistics as much as possible and b) posting almost entirely on language-related subs on Reddit and on certain other subs that I trust to be relatively inclusive like r/france and r/abcdesis (I've never been sure what the mods' stance on non-Desis posting in the latter has been).

As for antifa...it seems difficult to read the news less than I do, so I'm no expert on this, but...I can kind of understand your reaction to antifa because many people and some newspapers in the US report alleged attacks by antifa. However, from what I can see, there seems to be little evidence for antifa committing violence against people. There seems to be more evidence that antifa damages property and makes a distinction between that and personal violence. There may have also been instances where specific members of antifa committed physical violence against people, but this doesn't seem to be part of what antifa seeks to do.

Here's a relevant quote I think I can agree with:
Throwing a milkshake is not equivalent to killing someone, but because the people in power are allied with the right, any provocation, any dissent against right-wing violence, backfires.

EDIT:
xBlackHeartx wrote:And do I even need to prove that Vox is communist??? Is Trump popular with the alt-right? What's your source on that? Was Mao a communist? Was Hitler a Nazi? What proof do you have of that?

The Wikipedia article on Donald Trump states:
The alt-right movement coalesced around Trump's candidacy, due in part to its opposition to multiculturalism and immigration. Members of the alt-right enthusiastically supported Trump's campaign. In August 2016, he appointed Steve Bannon – the executive chairman of Breitbart News – as his campaign CEO; Bannon described Breitbart News as "the platform for the alt-right".

The article on Mao Zedong begins with:
Mao Zedong [...] also known as Chairman Mao and Mao Runzhi (courtesy name), was a Chinese communist revolutionary

The one on Hitler begins with:
Adolf Hitler [...] was a German politician and leader of the Nazi Party

The one on Vox does not even include any word with the letters <communis>.

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Re: The left wing on the internet?

Postby Saim » 2019-12-10, 1:38

Personally I heard about antifa before the alt-right, at least under that name.

I find the idea that the alt-right is „in power” in the US quite perplexing.

Don’t have much to say other than that.

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Re: The left wing on the internet?

Postby linguoboy » 2019-12-10, 2:06

I went to high school with a member of the antifa movement. He graduated a year after me, in 1989.
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Re: The left wing on the internet?

Postby md0 » 2019-12-10, 7:59

You all accused me of being an alt-right troll just because I don't support the antifa and I'm not that fond of Vox either.

As far as I can see, no-one accused you of being alt-right, but I did accuse you of concern trolling in order to promote an alt-light position. An enlightened centrist position if I may, a "classical liberal" position in Youtube terms. Should I have started with that? Maybe not, but I was being honest. I still tried to engage with your point and you ignored me at every turn. You are not doing anything to change my suspicion that you are not here looking for a honest political discussion.

FWIW, I am also not fond of Vox, and I'm not fond of them exactly because in their videos are dismissive of or hostile to many left-wing ideas that deviate from the established US Democrat platform (which for me is a moderate centre-right platform, not dissimilar to the liberal wing of our Conservative Party in Cyprus).

I mean, that's why I am really shocked you insist that Vox is even sympathetic to communism and that's why that's the only point I insist on asking you to explain your reasoning.

Then came the antifa, who didn't really appear until after Trump was put in power if I remember right.

I'm sure WW2 history is taught in the US, even if regional civil wars between fascists and antifascist fronts (e.g. Spanish, Greek) aren't. And to be fair, I don't expect that the battles to retake the streets back from fascists in the 80s and 90s will be covered in history classes. But certainly, WW2 was.

The antifascist movement movement is only a minute younger than fascism, and neither of them began just 3 years ago.
And while any consistent leftist has to be antifascist, not only leftists can be antifascist. Both in Spain and in Greece, moderate elements of the right-wing participated in antifascist activities. The antifascist movement in Cyprus was sadly not as strong, but those who participated in the 70s, today find themselves all over the political spectrum (demsocs, centrists, and liberal right-wingers).

Face it, if their roles were reversed, everyone would be defending the alt-right and label the antifa as villains.

No, we wouldn't. Opposition to fascism is akin to an immune system respond. We fight against what threatens us, our freedom and rights. In the absence of that threat, we enjoy our life.

Face it, you're the ones who are stupid and completely confused. You can't even fathom the idea that two people who don't like each other can both be evil!

You are right about that in general, but not in the particular. In this specific case, we have 80 years of history to tell us that fascism is bad, and opposing fascism is good, no matter what other politics we share or don't share.

Just watch a few videos of their channel, any videos, and their communist thinking is plainly obvious.

I do watch Vox, although less frequently than in the past. Their antifa video is, as a matter of fact, the one that made me distance myself. That video basically reinforced all right-wing ideas about antifa: they are inefficient at best or even just opportunist hooligans. The only thing that Vox did that Fox wouldn't do is to say that the news focus on (misportrayals of) antifa at the expense of "legitimate and peaceful" protesters.

This is why I'm so surprised you are so against Vox based on their antifa video. That video is shitting on antifa using politer words than what Fox would use. And they are less polite when they cover places ruled by nominally socialist parties, like Venezuela. Consistant with your identification as a progressive left-winger and your dislike for antifa, it would actually make more sense if you actually liked Vox since that's exactly their position.
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Re: The left wing on the internet?

Postby vijayjohn » 2019-12-10, 8:41

For whatever it's worth, I myself didn't know that antifa simply meant all anti-fascists; I thought it was a specific movement within anti-fascism or something. I also hadn't heard of it much in the US specifically except in the last few years. In general, I find the fuss over antifa in the US pretty confusing.

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Re: The left wing on the internet?

Postby Vlürch » 2019-12-10, 8:49

Not to sound like a dick, but could someone maybe suggest some predominantly left-wing sites? I can absolutely relate to xBlackHeartx's experience of bumping into the alt-right seemingly everywhere, and that was one of the reasons I started to be drawn to the alt-right in the first place back when I was drawn to it: they started showing up everywhere and took absolute control of The Narrative and using traditionally left-wing arguments to push oppressive and right-wing ideas even before the term "alt-right" even hit the mainstream. It got much worse when Trump became president, and it's been nothing but downhill since then.

Rambling about why the alt-right is so dangerous and successful in a spoiler:
► Show Spoiler


If there are any left-wing sites that aren't plagued by constant infighting, that'd be really nice. What I'd be the happiest about would be a site for all kinds of content and discussion that just happens to have a largely left-wing userbase but whose users and mods aren't outright Soviet apologists or militant anarchists... you know, something like 4chan or Reddit, just without the alt-righters shitting the site up and without all the internal arguments between leftists.

Another thing I'd be happy about would be a left-wing DIY music site, but I think the problem with that is that musicians tend to want to get rich and famous so that they can make a living by making music, which is an inherently capitalistic goal... not that it's a bad goal, but it's still annoying and turns everything into a pissing contest.

Do any even exist?
md0 wrote:Opposition to fascism is akin to an immune system respond. We fight against what threatens us, our freedom and rights. In the absence of that threat, we enjoy our life.

...except that right now the majority of people support fascism. The most popular party in Finland by far is Basic Finns, who have connections to the NRM (which is a banned Neo-Nazi terrorist organisation), and they just keep getting more and more popular every time there are polls or estimates. It's impossible to read Finnish tweets and not see absolutely batshit insane far-right tweets with overwhelmingly positive replies, and they far outnumber left-wing or liberal tweets and every left-wing or liberal tweet has overwhelmingly negative replies.

It's not just Finland, either. Is there any country in the world right now where antifascists are more popular than fascists among the people, even if the government is left-wing or liberal or whatever? I honestly doubt it, but it'd make me have at least some hope for humanity if there was at least one country where that was the case.
vijayjohn wrote:For whatever it's worth, I myself didn't know that antifa simply meant all anti-fascists; I thought it was a specific movement within anti-fascism or something.

Same, and it kind of is (at least in Finland)... one with only like a tenth of the supporters that fascist movements get, though, unfortunately, at least online. In real life anti-fascist counterprotesters tend to outnumber fascist protesters, but AFAIK the police usually treat the anti-fascist counterprotesters worse than they treat the fascist protesters. Thankfully Roihuvuori is apparently still a mostly left-wing place, and there are only (or at least mostly) left-wing and anti-Nazi stickers on street poles and graffiti and whatnot. Going just a little bit in any direction, there will mostly be right-wing and Nazi stickers on street poles and graffiti, though... :para:

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Re: The left wing on the internet?

Postby md0 » 2019-12-10, 10:06

vijayjohn wrote:For whatever it's worth, I myself didn't know that antifa simply meant all anti-fascists; I thought it was a specific movement within anti-fascism or something. I also hadn't heard of it much in the US specifically except in the last few years. In general, I find the fuss over antifa in the US pretty confusing.

If we go by etymology, Antifa is an originally German abbreviation for anti-fascism that has been used by predominantly European antifascists after WW2.

In my experience, you are more likely to use "antifa" to describe the unarmed, street movements from the 80s onwards, while for the organised, often state- or party-affiliated militia post-war you tend to use the full word "antifascist". For example, those armed party members and defecting conscripts soldiers who defended the Republican government (against the military junta) in Cyprus in 1974 are referred to as antifascists. The coalition of local residents and activists that attempted to defend the Nicosia Old Town from neonazis in the early 2010s through the use of marches, chants, and stickers would be called antifa. But I don't expect this distinction to be universal.

But in any case, antifascism is not new in the US either, even if the word antifa is.

I will get to some of the points Vlürch made later, too busy with homework at the moment to go through all of their post.
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Re: The left wing on the internet?

Postby linguoboy » 2019-12-10, 16:39

md0 wrote:But in any case, antifascism is not new in the US either, even if the word antifa is.

Yeah, the most prominent antifascist group in my high school days was a network called Anti-Racist Action. Inspired by similar groups in the UK, it began in the punk scene as a grassroots response to the appearance of racist neo-Nazis skinheads at punk venues. For what I hope are obvious reasons, nobody trusted the cops to take care of these guys so they self-organised. When neo-Nazis showed up, they beat them up in order to keep them from coming back.

So basically everything xBlackHeartx has been saying about antifa in his posts is completely wrong: Far from being a recent reaction to Trump, they've been active for at least forty years in their modern form. (As md0 points out, the original antifascists appeared at the same time as Fascism did.) Yes, they use violence, but only to counter violence. Until neo-Nazis started showing up to concerts and starting fights, there was no reason for them to exist. And where the neo-Nazis stayed away, they gradually disbanded. Now that neo-Nazis and other fascist and white nationalist groups are openly marching in the streets and attacking peaceful demonstrators, antifa groups have become more prominent again.

(Incidentally, none of this information is hard to find. You can read it in any history of the punk scene--and there are hundreds of them. There are scores of recent articles on the antifa movement which get the basic facts right even while many condemn their methods--for instance, this article from the Anti-Defamation League. Heck, this is all on Wikipedia, for Biafra's sake! Some of y'all need to start taking responsibility for your ignorance.)

What I think all condemnations of antifa have in common is that they start from the assumption that state-sanctioned violence (in the form of the police) is somehow neutral and trustworthy. But we have ample evidence that police forces in the USA (and elsewhere) are filled with white supremacists and Nazi sympathisers. They're not neutral, they're not trustworthy, and relying on them to combat fascism without first reforming them root-and-branch is an exercise in futility. I'm not opposed to the state having monopoly on violence, but it would have to be a more liberal and accountable polity than any of those currently governing North America.

In closing, enjoy this antifa anthem from way back before any of y'all were born: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-MkRuV0aCcI
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Re: The left wing on the internet?

Postby Vlürch » 2019-12-10, 20:13

linguoboy wrote:In closing, enjoy this antifa anthem from way back before any of y'all were born:

Fuck yeah Dead Kennedys! One of the bands my dad is really into, so I grew up listening to them. :D

But anyway, as for the rest of your post, it's incomprehensible to me that "antifa" is supposed to be a general term for all anti-fascists because I always heard it referring to specific (interconnected) organisations that are all part of the same specific kind of anti-fascist movement... I mean, I'm 100% certain I've heard/seen people say things along the lines of "I'm anti-fascist but hate antifa". If "antifa" is literally nothing but a synonym for "anti-fascist", that makes no sense.

And like, there are "antifa" Twitter accounts and whatnot that all use the same flag, but not everyone who calls themselves anti-fascist uses that flag. That flag also isn't included on the Wikipedia article on anti-fascism, but is included on the articles for the organisations calling themselves antifa ("antifa" is even a redirect page to organisations, and this article explicitly refers to anti-fascist groups), so if it was a universal anti-fascist symbol, it would logically be included on the main article and people who don't have connections to any groups would use it...? :?

I absolutely think violence against fascists is justified so I won't argue that as a reason to be cautious about identifying as "antifa" or using that flag or whatever, but I don't think (even accidentally) claiming connections to organisations you have no connections to is ever a good idea for several reasons.

xBlackHeartx

Re: The left wing on the internet?

Postby xBlackHeartx » 2019-12-12, 4:17

Are you all insane??? You're arguing that people deserve to DIE purely for their political beliefs! What, do you think anyone that gets brainwashed by a video on youtube deserves to get beat up??? Vlurch, you fell victim to this once yourself. Do you think someone should've attacked you purely because you were lead astray? Also, not everyone in the alt-right are actually alt-righters. Some are just idiots trying to shock people (like half of you), and some are undercover agents trying to infiltrate the alt-right!

You're all stupid and nuts. And why haven't any of you been banned yet when I've reported all of you FOR DEFENDING TERRORISM???? What kind of website is this now???

If you people like you are tolerated on this forum, I no longer want any part of it.


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