The Traditionalist Workers' Party tried to hold a rally in Sacramento CA yesterday. It's opposed to "economic exploitation, federal tyranny, and anti-Christian degeneracy," and is described by critics as white-supremacist. Not long after the TWP made its plans known, self-styled "anti-fascists" announced a counter-demonstration, and really something more than that. Some on the far left hold that groups like the TWP have no moral right to be heard, whatever the First Amendment says, and are in fact liable to violent suppression, presumably by "the masses," wherever they show themselves. Thus the TWP people found themselves outnumbered by approximately ten-to-one and got clobbered. In the end, ten people were hospitalized, including victims on both sides. More alarming than the "anti-fascist" attack on the TWP was their apparent desire to suppress media coverage of the action. At least one black-clad gang -- perhaps a typical anarchist "black bloc" demanded "no fucking cameras" while hassling some journalists. Whether this was to protect themselves from reprisal -- unlikely considering many of them were masked -- or because they felt that the TWP deserved no attention whatsoever is unclear. In footage at the local newspaper's website, one protester barks about "White supremacy in the media!" in possible rationalization of their tactics. While few tears need be shed for the TWP, or for the sake of their specific beliefs, their antagonists through such tactics surrender most if not all of the sympathy they might demand when cops clobber them. If we're supposed to worry about whatever threat Donald Trump might present to the media, we ought to be at least equally worried about spectacles like the scene in Sacramento.
The TWP's platform may be abhorrent, but as long as it's legal it ought to be protected better than it was in Sacramento. And while I suppose it can't be said often enough that racism is abhorrent, I can't help thinking that the protesters are trapped in an obsolete paradigm. How else could they think that white racism, abhorrent as it is, is the main thing they need to fight, and by implication the biggest threat to the country or society? Militant Muslims are perhaps less likely to hold public demonstrations -- and probably less likely to receive permits for such events -- but who actually believes that these "anti-fascists" would be as quick to attack such a gathering as they were the TWP rally? If I don't believe that, it's not because I think they're afraid of Muslims, but because too many 21st century "anti-fascists" haven't been able to wrap the menace of Islamic militancy around their traditional "anti-imperialist" narrative, according to which European or "white" imperialism, founded on a form of racism somehow unique to the West, is the necessary and sufficient cause of any atrocities in the developing world or any attacks on the developed world. Yet I should think that anyone so passionately opposed to "hate" would see something hateful in Islamism, or something hateful in Islam itself, presuming that our masked protesters are leftists in the old Marxist sense of the word. That issue aside, the Sacramento incident keeps alive the ironic narrative of 2016, in which everyone freaks out over the presumed latent violence of Donald Trump's supporters, while for the most part it's those supporters (apparently including the TWP) who are getting beat up. It seems to me that if the left wants to play this game, they'd better be wrong about that latent violence on the other side. If they're not, that violence will be blatant sooner or later, and when that happens leftists might not find numbers on their side.