Social Question

JLeslie's avatar

What do you think about this Meet The Press clip regarding how to fight against white supremacist groups?

Asked by JLeslie (59038points) August 22nd, 2017 from iPhone

The clip shows Chuck Todd interviewing Mark Bray and Richard Cohen.

Discuss.

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15 Answers

CWOTUS's avatar

Cohen is absolutely correct. Mark Bray is even stupider than I had previously thought.

janbb's avatar

I think they both make good points. I’m opposed to the violent methods of the antifa movement but I don’t think that Neo-Nazis or white supremacists should be legitimized. I don’t think that freedom of speech means that every campus needs to offer themselves as a venue for hate speech. On the other hands, I really respect the work of the Southern Poverty Law Center and their long experience opposing hate groups so I would tend to follow their lead in how to oppose hate. I do think the antifa’s resorting to violence diminishes their legitimate struggles but I understand Bray’s point that marginalized people when attacked need to defend themselves.

I’m impressed with the clip by the way. The tone of the discussion was very reasoned and intelligent.

josie's avatar

I’m with Cohen all the way.
You can’t give one group the right to silence another.
Once that principle is accepted, anybody with the most guns will assert the right to be the group that does the silencing.
Furthermore, Cohen is correct that when you try to silence people who have crazy ideas, they go underground and instead of giving speeches in the open, where you can see how crazy they are, they start setting off bombs.

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

I’m with Cohen as well. I’m also a little shocked when people equate non confrontational approaches with either legitimizing or siding with these hate groups. Direct confrontation only seems to escalate everything in the wrong direction.

Jaxk's avatar

Mob violence is never an acceptable response. It’s indiscriminate and uncontrollable. Once accepted as a legitimate response you never know who will be the next victim. The French Revolution is a good example of mob violence gone mainstream. When a mob starts looking for a victim, they will find one and it may not be who you think it should be. Think of all the people that have been called Nazis since Charlottesville. Hell they number in the millions. Do we attack everyone that gets called a Nazi. A mob needs no proof, just insinuation.

janbb's avatar

It’s interesting that all the veterans of WW 2 or Holocaust survivors that I am seeing are not in favor of remaining silent. “All it takes for evil to prevail is for good men to do nothing.”
Edmund Burke.

This does not mean I advocate violence, I don’t at all. But I do support peaceful protests against white supremacy.

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

I would too if we could keep them peaceful but we don’t seem to be able to keep things contained. How do you keep people from sabotoging the peace?

janbb's avatar

The march in Boston this week seemed to go without violence. I marched on Wednesday in a local town at a church led Unity march without violence. Certainly, a cooperative police force can help keep peace. And no participants bringing weapons helps.

MrGrimm888's avatar

I suppose I fall somewhere in the middle of the two. Violence should always be a last resort. But it is, unfortunately, an option.

@janbb brings up an interesting point. People who have gone through this before, WW2/holocaust/ nazi survivors opine almost unilaterally that these people must not be allowed to fester. That part I agree with.

Ideally we show up, and our numbers show our point. Almost like a petition. Except the supporters are tangible.

But, if the facists want to try to bully others out of showing up (like by themselves showing up armed) maybe it needs to be countered with resistance.

To me, these facists are terrorists. If the US government won’t fight them, who will? Our POTUS is clearly not going to do anything but stoke their fire…

If the government doesn’t want a “Gangs of New York” style street war in multiple cities, then they need to do something fast. Tensions are growing quickly. Fatalities have already occurred. At this point, there is an immediate need for a call of solidarity. But the divisive have been hard at work. The ANTIFA, and BLM groups are simply reactive to the nation’s issues. If the nation makes changes, those groups will subside. The nazis, racists, and xenophobics will not.

I can most clearly articulate my feelings about this by saying that there is no easy solution. At the moment, our nation’s most divisive population has wind in it’s sails.

I hate violence. It’s rarely anything but an escalating strategy.

Free speech is not really in jeopardy when it comes to silencing nazis. The entire country is at risk, if that cancer is ignored though…

JLeslie's avatar

@janbb My dad switched parties and became a Republican during his college years, primarily because he was not happy the Democrats were on the side of letting “Nazi” type groups speak and demonstrate at universities and other venues. This was in the 60’s. As you know, back in the 60’s Jewish people still had the Holocaust very much in the front of their thought process. I grew up with family and friends swearing off buying any German products, believing another Holocaust could happen anywhere, and Jews were very active in fighting for civil rights for African Americans.

My dad came back to the Democrats 45 years later in his 60’s.

JLeslie's avatar

I just found this searching for something else. A former neoNazi in an interview explaining why he was a white supremacists, and why he left it behind.

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

If you saw that movie it pretty well outlines what is being said. People who are in those goups are mostly driven there by fear.

JLeslie's avatar

^^I didn’t see the movie. I think we really need to look at underlying causes to prevent widespread hate groups in large numbers. I think it will be either more hate groups, or leaders being voted in promising an easier way to economic freedom. For years I felt destroying the middle class would get a socialists voted into the presidents seat, Trump was not what I imagined would happen, but he is still a backlash to the working class who have been having a tough time for a while.

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

Going down the youtube rabbit hole from some of these links eventually leads you to all kinds of pro-Hitler videos which is honestly unexpected. These groups seem to be adopting what the conspiracy nuts have been doing by raining propaganda all over the internet wherever they can get away with it. This is honestly scary to me because based on the number of people I run into that believe in conspiracy lore this is an effective tactic. I’m also shocked as the facts come out on the number of hate group members and their young ages. I still don’t like the idea of being directly confrontational because it just fuels their fire but I don’t think being passive is an option anymore. I don’t know what the best solution is either.

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

Trump did not surprise me, the middle and working class are struggling. There were african american union members who voted for him. People vote for what impacts them the most and when money problems are an issue you don’t vote for the person who did not bother campaigning in your town, you vote for the person standing in front of you promising prosperity whether it’s a lie or not. At least you know you’re not being completely ignored.

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