What's the deal with antifa?

snowhite

Member
Aug 7, 2018
196
As a non-american, I used to think they're the good guys. It's literally in their name, right? But it seems that they don't have a great reputation with even the Democrats. Noam Chomsky apparently called them 'a major gift to the right', presumably because their violent activities help right-wingers paint all of the left as dangerous militants.

I'm rather conflicted. While I'm a Gandhian and believe in non-violence, even Gandhi advocated for violent resistance against the nazis. The question of course is — are antifa activists hurting their own cause by their chosen methods of protest? Are their activities helping the right-wing recruit more people to the fascist cause?

At the moment, I'm tilting towards the thought that America is at a dangerous tipping point, and one must fight fire with fire. But I would appreciate more nuanced opinions.

Edit: my thoughts were sparked by this tweet-

Initially I dismissed her as another right wing trans-hating person, but apparently she's followed by Natalie Wynn (ContraPoints), so now I'm confused. EDIT 2: I found out that Natalie follows her for opposition research, which makes sense.
 
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Dirt McGirt

Avenger
Oct 29, 2017
2,201
It’s bullshit propaganda from the right to label anything non fascist as antifa and make antifa an equivalent evil as nazis.

Basically „but look at antifa“ while the right commits atrocities all he time.
 

God_Of_Phwoar

Banned
May 29, 2018
2,345
Near London UK
They barely exist. It's propaganda, and a way to create an imaginary "enemy" by potentially labelling anyone against White Supremacy as some kibnd of threat.
 

Sheev

Avenger
Oct 25, 2017
427
Because apparently people are just expected to sit back and do nothing to defend themselves from the violent right.
 

Red Arremer

Member
Oct 26, 2017
8,401
Antifa does not kill people.
Fascists and white supremacists do.

Antifa's violence, which is honestly tame compared to that of the nazis, also makes the nazis scared. That is good.
The problem is that a lot of conservative and even liberal media portrays antifa being as bad as nazis by making them equivalent with their rhetoric, which is bullshit. Furthermore, Antifa does more than just counter-protesting and milkshaking fascists.
 
OP
OP

snowhite

Member
Aug 7, 2018
196
Personally, I'm all for punching nazis. But I'm curious why antifa doesn't have strong support amongst the liberals. Apparently lots of civil society organizations have issues with their methods.
 

Dark Knight

Member
Oct 25, 2017
5,361
It’s bullshit propaganda from the right to label anything non fascist as antifa and make antifa an equivalent evil as nazis.

Basically „but look at antifa“ while the right commits atrocities all he time.
Yep. I can't think of a single news story in recent times of notable violence by Antifa, but do you know what group I do think of when I think of recent stories of mass violence? The right sees Antifa as one of their scapegoats due to the essence of what they are - those who may end up inflicting violence upon fascists as the fascists, the right, press us even harder.
 

signal

Member
Oct 28, 2017
18,667
I don't know if it's just media framing but I feel like there is antifa everywhere else and then antifa portland, the latter of which actually does fight?
 

Akira86

Member
Oct 25, 2017
9,201
anti-fa works at your local coffee shop, while white supremacists and fascists infiltrate your police departments, militaries, and commercial airlines.
 
Oct 25, 2017
11,389
They're barely even a fucking thing and they aren't unified behind anyone specifically. Nazi's and centrists who want to pretend like they're smarter than politics like to point at them so they can say "See! Both sides!"
 

Burt

Member
Oct 28, 2017
2,566
~60% of Americans have a negative view of black people banding together for the purpose of saying "Police, please don't kill us", and I'm pretty sure there's a "neutral" option to split the remaining 40% with.
They're barely even a fucking thing and they aren't unified behind anyone specifically. Nazi's and centrists who want to pretend like they're smarter than politics like to point at them so they can say "See! Both sides!"
This literally, truly, 100% encompasses everything you need to know about antifa
 

Osahi

Member
Oct 27, 2017
2,073
Even though they are suposedly on my side and fighting for the causes I believe in, as a European I have to say Antifa/black block does more damage to the cause than good.

Over here they are known to try (and often succeed) to turn peaceful protests into violence (smashing windows, burning cars, ...), ... the only effect it has is that the protest is being nullified and that right-wing politicians get all the arguments to dismiss the real protesters complaints and cause. Seen this happen many times with big left-wing protests and general strikes here in Belgium the past few years. Chomsky is right.

In some of their tactics they show themselves to be as anti-facist as the Democratic Peoples Republic of Korea is Democratic.
 

Triscuitable

Member
Oct 27, 2017
2,280
Personally, I'm all for punching nazis. But I'm curious why antifa doesn't have strong support amongst the liberals. Apparently lots of civil society organizations have issues with their methods.
It's because "antifa" isn't an organization. It's a label used by centrist and right-wing groups to point the finger and say "see? Liberals are bad, too!" Never mind that "antifa" is short for anti-fascist, and in spite of that, right-wing groups happily use the term to describe those who oppose them. I think that says more about them than it does this supposed ultra-violent boogeyman.
"Antifa" is also a fucking ridiculous word. I refuse to accept it unless we call Trump and his supporters "Neona"
"Fascist" is a big boy word.
 

Westbahnhof

The Fallen
Oct 27, 2017
5,603
Austria
"Antifa" is also a fucking ridiculous word. I refuse to accept it unless we call Trump and his supporters "Neona"
It's a German term standing for Antifaschistische Aktion, and I think it's kinda annoying that people seem to be unable to understand that it's not just a shortened "anti fascist". In English, it's still short for "antifascist action", the organisation. What's ridiculous about it?
 

mnz

Member
Oct 25, 2017
6,552
Slightly different question: Since when is it a thing in the US? It's basically a copy of European activists that have existed for decades (100 years if you go to the originals), they are even using the same insignia. But I feel like that name didn't have a meaning. The Seattle rioters weren't called that, for example.
 

saenima

Banned
Oct 25, 2017
10,333
Personally, I'm all for punching nazis. But I'm curious why antifa doesn't have strong support amongst the liberals. Apparently lots of civil society organizations have issues with their methods.
Because the USA is a very right leaning country. There is literally no leftist political representation. There are moderate conservatives and straight up fascists. Antifa is a reaction to the latter but it also makes the former uneasy seeing as they're so close together. Antifa is made up of empowered citizens and that scares the shit of the ruling class.
 

Bedlam

Member
Oct 26, 2017
1,598
It's become really fucking ridiculous how some right-wing nutjob politicians in the US started to reflex-like invoke the bs "but Antifa!" talking point at every opportunity while right-wing terrorists keep murdering people. What a brainwashed cult the GOP or the whole political right for that matter has become...

Antifa barely exists in the US. What the nubjobs mean when they say "Antifa" is "everyone who protests our shitty beliefs"
 
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Mekanos

Member
Oct 17, 2018
8,363
Personally, I'm all for punching nazis. But I'm curious why antifa doesn't have strong support amongst the liberals. Apparently lots of civil society organizations have issues with their methods.
Because liberals have spent decades eating up propaganda about MLK and the like being "peaceful protesters."
 

Zabo

Member
Oct 30, 2017
663
Punch of white young adults thinking they are saving America, but they are small in numbers and media shouldn't give them any attention. Makes people see left in bad light. European (still varies from country to country) antifa is more anarchist type of thing, they go against establishment no matter if it's right or left.
 

Televator

Member
Oct 25, 2017
5,300

Clefargle

Member
Oct 25, 2017
7,527
Limburg
Dude you’re falling for rep talking points. Contrapoints debated Blair White, so go watch that if you’d like to know about Ms whites ilk. But antifa doesn’t kill people and they are essentially counterprotesters in the US.
 

KtotheRoc

Member
Oct 27, 2017
19,909
The Right in this Country demonizes people who dare stand against them. In their minds throwing milkshakes at a Nazi is equivalent to one of them actually murdering a human being.

Basically, fuck the Republicans.
 

OniLinkPlus

Member
Oct 25, 2017
541
Antifascist protestors are the good guys. Democrats hate them because Democrats are just as bad as Republicans, they just pretend not to be. I honestly feel safer surrounded by antifa than being around cops, because cops in my city (Portland) have a nasty habit of siding with fascists and attacking innocent people (see the August 2018 rally where they opened fire on innocent peaceful protestors, sending many to the hospital, while a fascist group had a weapons cache in a nearby rooftop ready to fire on the left, and cops knew and hid that fact and refused to prosecute them), whereas antifa are members of the community there specifically to stop fascists from being violent against innocent people.
 

Wintermute

Member
Oct 27, 2017
579
Edit: my thoughts were sparked by this tweet-

Initially I dismissed her as another right wing trans-hating person, but apparently she's followed by Natalie Wynn (ContraPoints), so now I'm confused.
blair white is not a good person. just cause contra follows her is not an endorsement, nor would i imagine contra would wish it to be. follow != endorsement. i follow some right wing politicians and people to keep an eye on them, not because i like them. i'd look up blaire white's rationalwiki entry if you want an overview of why she is problematic.

also props to antifa ✊
 
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Khanimus

Avenger
Oct 25, 2017
15,115
Greater Vancouver
It's stupid fucking propaganda to demonize leftist movements that oppose right-wing bullshit that is sprouting up across the globe.

I've seen unironic "BUT ANTIFA" posts on this board as either bad-faith trolling or demonstrations of outright idiocy. People who spout this shit act like this is some secret society wreaking havoc across the US, meanwhile literal Nazi sympathizers are committing mass shootings in the name of the president. They're fucking morons.
 

SilentRob

Member
Oct 26, 2017
2,637
Do they even exist? Like" not liking fascism" isn't a group
I can Post a few pictures of my neighborhood where Antifa stickers and messages are everywhere ;)

Its not a Single organised Organisation or Group, its a movement but one that largely stems from europe.

Seeing the US failing to grasp (and scapegoating) Antifa has been fascinating the last few year. I already posted this some time ago but this was from a huge concert by some of germanys biggest Musical acts in Protest of right wing extremism:

 
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sredgrin

Member
Oct 27, 2017
4,370
Blaire White is like the Candace Owens of trans folks OP. She's a "one of the good ones" grifter
 

Ragnar

Member
Oct 28, 2017
341
This video should be required viewing for anyone conflicted about Antifa.

Also, to those who say that Antifa only makes the left look bad: The right are literally killing people on a daily basis. There's a resurgence and normalization of fascism, nazism, white supremacy, you name it. If you think that we should be peaceful and quiet until the boot is literally pressing down on our head, just so that the right won't get any more "ammo" (newsflash: their ammo is 5.56 mm) to leverage against the left, to ensure that we're seen as polite and harmless so as to not upset them, well that's on you. They're murdering people. And I'm sick of the responsibility of politeness and civil discourse being put on the minorities and the opressed, even as they're being beat to a pulp. It's a tactic as old as time. "Be nice or we won't let you speak."