Friday, April 21, 2017

Nazis, Fascists, & the Battle of Berkeley

By jamesbaxley

The “Battle of Berkeley” continues to roll across American campuses. Hundreds of self-described anti-fascist protesters and supporters of President Donald Trump clashed in Berkeley on tax day. The “pro-free speech rally” by a group of Trump supporters ended with 13 arrests and a dozen people suffering the effects of pepper spray. According to an anti-Trump protester, the “protest” was “to make Nazis afraid” and the protester followed up by saying that “the ideology that they propose puts public citizens at risk.”

I think that the ideology of the Berkeley “anti-fascist” groups and Antifa puts people at risk not just physically but politically. The only way that President Trump’s policies can be stifled is if the Democrats regain control of Congress in the next election. The only real chance that the Left has to protect former President Barack Obama’s legacy is to regain seats in the Senate but as long as these riots, I mean protests continues then the chances dwindle more and more.

The Left thinks because the Right is in control, that is the Senate, the House, the Presidency, and now the Supreme Court everything that comes out of Washington including its supporters are Nazis and fascists and we know that fascists spew “hate speech.” But the problem is there is no such thing as “hate speech,” and “hate speech” isn’t the same thing as “fighting words” (I discuss this further down in the post).

The Left’s definition of “hate speech” is espousing an idea or opinion which the Left disagrees with. As long as what you have to say is along the lines of what the Left practices, then it’s okay. “Hate speech” usually offends a Liberal to such a point (triggered) in which they go frantically searching for a safe space.  

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Salman Rushdie once said that “Nobody has the right to not be offended.” He goes on to say “that right doesn't exist in any declaration I have ever read.” Rushdie proclaims that “If you are offended it is your problem.” So this begs the question, “Where does free speech stop and hate speech begin?”

 “Nobody has the right to not be offended.” 

But if “hate speech” really exists then there a simple solution to it. If it’s on the television, turn the t.v. off. If there is “hate speech” in a movie then don’t watch the movie. If there is a lecture which “triggers” you then don’t go to the lecture. It’s just that simple . . . no riots are necessary. 

The First Amendment doesn’t mention anything about “hate speech,” I guess it was because in the 18th century it wasn’t an issue. The Founding Fathers and the settlers of the united States were busy building a nation. There was no difference between free speech and hate speech then just as there is no difference today; the Bill of Rights protects all speech, whether you agree with it or not.

“Fighting words” do not equate “hate speech” either. These are two completely different issues. The United States Supreme Court defined “fighting words” as “a face-to-face insult directed at a specific person for the purpose of provoking a fight.”

The city of St. Paul has an ordinance called the Bias-Motivated Crime Ordinance. Sometime during the 90s, a white teenager burned a home-made cross in the front yard of a black family. The city decided to make the teen an example of its Bias-Motivated Crime Ordinance to punish the teenager. 

The case, R.A.V. v. City of St. Paul (1992) made it all the way to the Supreme Court in which the ordinance was ruled unconstitutional. Justice Antonin Scalia explained that the Bias-Motivated Crime Ordinance only applies to “fighting words that insult, or provoke violence, on the basis of race, color, creed, religion or gender." Scalia goes on with, “displays no matter how abusive, vicious, or severe, are permissible unless they are addressed to one of the specified disfavored topics.”

I want to say that we all know that incitement isn’t hate speech either. Shouting “Fire!” in a crowded theater isn’t a form of free speech because they’re crimes. It’s illegal to make a specific threat against a person and it’s illegal to incite a riot. With this being the case, Berkeley has been guilty at least twice of practicing actions which were unconstitutional by inciting.

The rioters at Berkeley and other college campuses are the definition of what fascism is. Using violence to shut the opposition down because the Left disagrees with what Trump-supporters (or anybody for that matter) have to say is a tactic used by fascists. The sad part of it is that the Left doesn’t even recognize that they are the fascists.

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