Richard Spencer got punched in the head and the liberal twitter all screamed: “Hooray!” A Nazi got punched. It’s as American as apple pie! Punching a Nazi is just fine!!! Let’s all set it to music and make something fun out of it!!!” Journalists everywhere immediately came out in favor of more violence, all to keep the ideas of people like Richard Spencer from ever being heard.
Of course, the fact that Richard Spencer isn’t actually a Nazi is glossed over just a bit in the leftist euphoria over finally sticking it to “the man”. And as we know, Richard Spencer and people who think just like him control the press, the major media, the academy, the education infrastructure, the civil service, and virtually every outlet for information in modern American political discourse, so of course it’s a great act of rebellion to punch someone like that. Hooray equalism!!!
It’s strikes me as particularly hypocritical, even for the left, to be perfectly willing to normalize open violence in order to prevent perfectly mild mannered Richard Spencer’s ideas from being ‘normalized’, on the unsupported premise that he’s an advocate of violence. OK. Fine. There have always been thoughtless people out there more comfortable with a punch than a discussion. No avoiding it really. But there are consequences to position like that.
One consequence which was connected indirectly, is that a black bloc protester got shot at the University of Washington. During a loud and raucous protest that was sliding over into violence, he assaulted someone who looked to him like a good victim – an over 30 year old Asian Trump supporter – and for his trouble the Asian man shot him. I know there is some nonsense about the guy being afraid of the protester’s tattoo in the press, but that’s all ex-post lawyer nonsense designed to sway the court of public opinion. He was there as a Trump supporter and knew exactly who he was shooting.
So now we have people defending themselves from minor assault by bringing about major assault. And I will guarantee that right now, in some dark corner someplace, the most radical of the black bloc idiots are ignoring their leaders and calling their like minded friends aside and saying that they need to “gun up” for the next protest in their own righteous self defense. “We have no choice man! We gotta! You think the Nazis are gonna hold back? Didn’t you see Captain America?”
Some time after he convinces his most idiotic brethren, some counter protest will show up someplace, someone will get nervous, and multiple shots will get fired, probably in both directions. It’s just a question of probability and repetition. And after that, the next time a black bloc protest shows up anywhere, the police and National Guard, who will only be there to keep the peace, will be nervous too. And then there’s no stopping it.
The "Nazis" (previously known in the press as law abiding, well intentioned , and civic minded white people who disagree with the progressive vision) will be doing the same thing. Not the smart or thoughtful ones, but as we know not everyone is smart and thoughtful. And with the recent rise of black bloc tactics at political protests, they would at least have more reasonable cause. I can fight off or run from any one man, maybe even 2 or 3. But I know there is nothing I can do about an organized group of several dozen if they intend to do me harm because I disagree with them. So what choice does a progressive heretic have today?
For a long time now we on the right have wondered whether the leadership on the left are cynically manipulating their rank and file or if they’re delusional true believers. I think it’s a mix of both myself. But the nice thing about seeing them as cynics is that if it’s true, they are not particularly pious in the religion of the left. They are far less likely to urge their supporters to violence for the sake of preventing the imaginary fourth Reich. If the left is ever going to fight an actual hot war, it will have to be a holy war. A war to defend their vision of themselves, as provided by their civic religion. Nothing else will give them the courage to risk violence.
And that means that to everyone involved, it will all subjectively seem like ‘self defense’. And the journalists, who are just about as devoted to the left as the black bloc protesters they’re covering, will continue to fan the flames until people start specifically shooting at them.
But none of this has to happen. This war could be fought in the war of ideas. Let Richard Spencer and the other talkers of the alt-right have their say. Invite him to college campuses. Put him on TV. Invite Jared Taylor, Peter Brimelow or John Derbyshire on the live Sunday talk shows. Agree to live interviews with Mike Cernovich or Vox Day. If nothing else it will give you the chance to ridicule them. If their ideas really are as awful as you think then they will die like the John Birch society and the Klan, which only really exist in the imagination of the SPLC.
And if their ideas actually do make sense, then what’s the harm in hearing them? If you really believe that the civic religion of progressivism is the future, then why not let it be tested? Only the weakest ideas can’t survive being challenged. And talking, which by the way is all that Richard Spencer ever wanted to do, is a lot better than what is going to come of all of this.