Shane Burley: Trump’s antifa tweet is right-wing catnip — with potentially troubling consequences

Here we have a presidential declaration that legally means little but politically means a lot.

NBC News, June 3, 2020

As aggressive protests sweep the country, President Donald Trump answered calls for action with, rather predictably, a tweet: “The United States of America will be designating ANTIFA as a Terrorist Organization,” he wrote Sunday.

The word “antifa” refers to a loose collective of militant anti-fascist protesters. You find them often at far-right rallies or standing in solidarity with those protesting the death of George Floyd. But among Trump’s base, antifa inspires a great deal of fear and revulsion.

Put those two things together and you get a declaration that legally means little but politically means a lot — and, ultimately, will likely put some people in danger, all while inflaming existing political and cultural divides at a pivotal moment. Already, we are seeing some of this, with rumors about fake antifa activity proliferating on social media, with no evidence. In at least one case, a fake post was actually created by a white nationalist group for the express purpose of sowing discord and paranoia.

Read more

Written By
More from Agency
Anarchists, Activists, and Left Publishers Respond to Facebook Censorship and Bans of Independent Media from Social Media Platform
For Immediate Release: August 20, 2020Contact: Anarchists, Activists, and Left Publishers...
Read More