The Public Face of Antifa


Michelle Goldberg in Slate:

It’s certainly true that antifa refuses to eschew violence. According to CNN’s Jake Tapper, left-wing counterprotesters assaulted at least two journalists in Charlottesville. “The riot is our version of the strike,” said Anderson, even as he acknowledges a disconnect between some of antifa’s tactics and its goals. “Step one, broken window. Step two, we don’t know. Step three, classless and stateless society,” he said wryly. “I don’t think it works like that.”

But at a moment when Trump’s “violence on many sides” rhetoric has installed a one-dimensional image of antifa in the wider imagination, Jenkins insists that large-scale standoffs are only part of what the movement does—and not the most important part. Antifa also aims to shame white supremacists, heightening the social cost of involvement with racist organizations. “You’ve got to be proactive against them when they’re not rolling 500 deep,” he said. That’s where doxing comes in. In the wake of Charlottesville, he points out, Unite the Right rallygoers are being identified online, with lasting consequences. One has left college, another has been fired from his job at a Berkeley, California, hot dog stand. “These are kids who thought it was funny hassling people online and think they can get away with it in real life,” said Jenkins. “And then they learn the hard way: Real life is different than online.”

More here.