Mimsy Were the Borogoves

Editorials: Where I rant to the wall about politics. And sometimes the wall rants back.

A direct line to the Charlottesville riots… from 1938

Jerry Stratton, August 16, 2017

The correct response to the Charlottesville riots is to arrest the perpetrators, give them a fair trial, and put the guilty in jail.

It is the same as the correct response to the violent rioters in cities across the United States since last year’s election, and the violent rioters who “protest” when a speaker the left disagrees with is invited to speak at a college.

Police have literally been asked to stand down in some cases and let the rioters attack and destroy, as in Baltimore last year.

That we haven’t followed the correct response in those cases is why we have the Charlottesville riots.1 There is a direct line from the previous riots to this one. It runs from Seattle through Tucson, Dallas, and through every other violent left-wing fascist rally since the election last year. The direct line is the unwillingness of the authorities to arrest, charge, and imprison violent thugs rather than just make token statements and maybe arrest a handful.

Leftist “protestors” have been burning, stoning, beating people up, and even killing police officers for almost a year. The press hasn’t tied these rioters to the violent rhetoric of leftist politicians; they’ve gone out of their way to exonerate the actual rioters. So take it with a grain of salt that supposedly-right violence2 now has “a direct line to the president”.

I have often said that we shouldn’t have laws we aren’t willing to enforce; conversely, we should enforce the laws we have unless we are willing to repeal them. I can see no reason to repeal the laws against assault, arson, and murder.

When violent thugs see that they can get away with violence by coloring it as protest, it’s no surprise that you get more violent riots.

President Trump was completely right to denounce violence from both sides, because both sides were violent in Charlottesville, and one side has committed an outsized share of the violence for most of the year. We cannot stop violence like what happened in Charlottesville unless we take stopping violence seriously. The way to deal with the Charlottesville thugs, from both sides, is for the police to arrest those who break the law, and for the cities and counties where they broke the law to give them a fair trial and put the guilty in jail.

The longer we allow violence to continue without repercussions, the more violence we will get. Both the fascists of the antifa movement and of the white nationalist movement are a tiny minority in American politics today. But reward their violence with indifference—or, in the case of the antifa, praise from the press and politicians on the left—and they will grow. It’s time we stopped pretending that riots are protests, that criminals are not criminals. No matter what sides the rioters claim to support.

It’s not a strange world when people calling themselves anti-fascist burn books, beat up people they disagree with, and glorify killers. H. L. Mencken saw it as early as 1938—and in the context of Social Justice. There is very little new under the sun. Remember, it wasn’t the German government that burned books. It was German students, trying to silence voices that disagreed with them.

What makes this a strange world is that so many in the press and on the left let them have their fantasy.

Social Justice… will take us, soon or late, into the stormy waters of Fascism. To be sure, that Fascism is not likely to be identical with the kinds on tap in Germany, Italy and Russia; indeed, it is very apt to come in under the name of anti-Fascism. And its first Duce… will not call himself a dictator, but a scotcher of dictators. — H. L. Mencken (The Baltimore Sun, November 6, 1938)

In response to The Wisdom of Partisan: Throughout history, the people willing to split the baby have been the people who win. Can we break that thread?

  1. Perhaps literally so, as there seems at the time of writing to have been no attempt to police this riot.

  2. Robert E. Lee was a Democrat; the KKK is an organization started by Democrats to defeat—and terrorize—Republicans.

  1. <- Divisive double standards