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Is ‘Antifa’ resembling a new fascist regime in America?

Robert Naylor, Contributing Writer

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To begin this article, I must identify what being a fascist truly means. As many of you probably know, fascism arose between World War I and World War II with epicenters in Germany, Italy, Japan, and Spain. During this time, popular fascist ideals in Germany revolved around socialist policies: the bolstering of public education, an expansion of welfare and pensions, and increased taxes on big businesses. Along with these decisions came the more disturbing aspects of the fascist ideology, including the dogmatic dictatorship, “purification” of the national race, and an expansion of territory.

Why am I starting an article with this explanation? Simply put, many on the left have likened President Donald Trump’s democratic election to the rise of fascism in America. I think that these accusations are quite foolish, as Trump bears little resemblance to those movements nearly 70 years ago.

I am very critical of anti-fascism, or “Antifa,” since certain aspects of their image are worrisome. To illustrate my concerns, I will explain to you how they are beginning to bear similarities to the fascism of Germany in the 1930s.

  1. The Nazis, prior to their full control of Germany, had individuals that were nicknamed ‘Brownshirts,’ who would wear uniforms to instill a sense of cooperation in ranks. The uniformity of Antifa protestors matches these qualities, as many of them wear similar ‘uniforms,’ dressing in all black, with faces covered in either red or black bandanas and balaclavas.
  2. The Nazis were also notorious for censoring freedom of speech, mostly seen in the arts surrounding Jewish culture (they deemed it Entartete Kunst, or degenerate art). As we see with Antifa, when Milo Yiannopoulos organized a speech at UC Berkeley earlier this year, thousands of members of Antifa gathered to shut down his speech in violent riot-like protests. This replicates the shut-down of freedom of speech in Nazi Germany.

I’m not just worried that this fringe group of the left misrepresents the liberals of America, but I’m concerned as to how it is affecting the future of our political sphere. I have been a proud Trump supporter for a while now, and I have to admit that we will have to be the opposition to these violent protests. In order to end this national madness, Trump supporters need to take the moral high-road.

As a person who suffered from a spinal cord injury to the neck area, I worry for the day that I attend a Trump rally myself. I do not really feel like testing out the waters to see if my neck injury holds up from a random uppercut. Seeing as the Trump administration will be in office for the next four to eight years, I strongly feel that our side needs to reevaluate how we deal with Antifa in the future. If we are going to be around for a while, we must find ways of organizing these events before we have to resort to martial law-like strategies.

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The weekly student newspaper of Bucknell University
Is ‘Antifa’ resembling a new fascist regime in America?