Back in February, right-wing author Milo Yiannopoulos was expected to speak at UC Berkeley alongside immigration-reform advocate Ann Coulter. However, the event was cancelled due to an outbreak of violent riots which caused over $100,000 in damages to the campus of UC Berkeley. The perpetrators? A group of “activists” by the name of Antifa, or “Anti-Fascist Action.” Their stated motive? To violently resist those who they claim are promoting so-called American Fascism. The unofficial uniform of Antifa consists of all black clothing, and wearing masks which cover the face; thus concealing the identities of Antifa members. They have notably used physical violence on numerous occasions to attack journalists, citizens, and those with views that they deem counter to their own far-left ideological viewpoints. It is interesting to note that a major component of Fascism is the implementation of “forcible suppression of political opposition.”
People on the right have been pushing for Antifa to be labelled a terrorist group. Not for the sake of ‘delegitimizing their voice,’ as Arthur Co-Editor Josh Skinner wrote in his piece titled “Let’s quit it with the T-word,” but because Antifa fits the definition of terrorism perfectly, which is ‘the unlawful use of violence and intimidation, especially against civilians, in the pursuit of political aims.’ Because of this, the FBI labelled Antifa a domestic terrorist group in 2016. Heck, even the left-leaning and widely discredited cable news network, CNN, struggled to portray Antifa in a positive light, stating in a piece on the group that they were simply “activists seek[ing] peace through violence.” CNN later changed the title of the piece – removing any mention of Antifa’s Orwellian goal of “seeking peace through violence.”
With Milo Yiannopoulos’ expected return to UC Berkeley fast-approaching – during his planned “Free Speech Week” event – there is the looming threat of another outbreak of violence. The mayor of Berkeley, Jesse Arreguin, has recently called for Antifa to be labelled a “street gang” by the city’s law enforcement. The request came after an incident on Sunday, August 27th in which members of Antifa attacked a small gathering of President Trump supporters among other civilians, seriously injuring 5 people in the process while 13 Antifa members were arrested. Left-wing activists believe that if Yiannopoulos’ event gets shut down, then the violence will cease, however, he isn’t the one committing these violent acts – it’s Antifa. Perhaps they need to be shut down instead.