Nazi Antifa thugs, emulating their Nazi forbears in Germany, recently vandalized the the New York Republican headquarters in New York City. They left a note saying this “attack is merely a beginning.” Maybe not in scale yet, but certainly in motivation, this should remind us (who know history) of the famous Kristallnacht in 1938 where Nazi paramilitary and German civilians vandalized Jewish stores and synagogues. “Kristallnacht” means “Crystal Night,” or more loosely translated, “the night of broken glass.”
Nazi Antfia thugs have the same motivation as those Nazis in Germany, to dehumanize and silence those whom they dislike. To Antifa the new “Jews” are conservatives whom they – falsely – characterize as “Fascists,” probably because they didn’t pay much attention in school and really have no idea what a real Fascist looked like back in the 1930s.
These thugs did their business in the dark or night. Hopefully some will be caught in these acts and justifiably prosecuted and put in prison where thugs belong.
In the meantime, some Republicans in Congress are pushing an “Unmasking Antifa Act of 2018.” The general idea of this law is to punish Antifa thugs who attempt to threaten, intimidate, or injure others while hiding their identity with a mask. The bill reads:
“Whoever, whether or not acting under color of law, while in disguise, including while wearing a mask, injures, oppresses, threatens, or intimidates any person in any State, Territory, Commonwealth, Possession, or District in the free exercise or enjoyment of any right or privilege secured to him by the Constitution or laws of the United States, or because of his having so exercised the same, shall be fined under this title, imprisoned not more than 15 years, or both.”
Some claim this is a violation of freedom of speech. I believe the Constitution does defend a right of free speech, but not a right to hide one’s identity while setting out to intentionally break the law, using force or the threat of force to silence or injure those one disagrees with. Physical assault is generally against the law in every state in America.
There once was another powerful group in America that used tactics of intimidation and physical violence while wearing masks to hide their identity. That was the Klu Klux Klan (KKK). We should treat masked Antifa no different than we would treat masked KKK thugs using violence and intimidation. They are morally identical regardless of what causes they claim to support. A thug is a thug. Period.
I fully support this idea that anyone using violence and intimidation and wearing a mask belongs in jail, not on the streets of America. It is one thing to protest and speak your mind. It is entirely a different thing to hide one’s acts while committing criminal deeds.
© 2018 Lawrence W. Kennon. All Rights Reserved.