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Sun Aug 13, 2017, 06:25 PM

Sanctioned violence against the left has a long history in this country but retaliation is illegal

I know this post is too long so I apologize but I had to put my thoughts on where we are historically in a context. When drump got elected I was in the middle of reading a history of abolitionism in this country and saw a lot of parallels. Many of you know examples of this history but to point out a few facts from the mid-19th century that I think are relevant to today:

The first famous abolitionist, William Lloyd Garrison was nearly beaten to death by a mob while another, pastor Lovejoy, was murdered, both in northern states. While there were a few examples of whites successfully fending off slave catchers for the most part northern whites in the 1830s and 40s favored slavery.

The Dred Scott decision and Fugitive Slave Act reinforced the institution and also the power of southern states and the view of blacks as inferior. Whites in the north were required by law to help capture runaways - a slap in the face to abolitionists and not unlike the many laws floating around today like those seeking to make it ok to drive into protesters that are basically there to remind any dissenters whose country this is, in their minds anyway.

Of course the deaths of black people did not figure into the equation for most whites before the Civil War and only for a short time during Reconstruction after. Nat Turner's rebellion led to the deaths of many innocent blacks in retaliation, but most slaves weren't usually killed in antebellum times due to the fact that they had monetary value. After the war, the KKK and lynchings helped enforce white rule - with state laws and white juries giving legal sanction to murder. I'm sure people can easily recognize analogies today.

Many if not most historians would agree that the single event that precipitated the Civil War was the attack on Harper's Ferry. The reaction didn't just come from the U.S. government in putting it down and hanging John Brown, but from southern states that began forming militias and talking about secession. Three years before, the cane beating of Senator Sumner (celebrated in the south) followed with a clear message: disagreeing with us and our way of life justifies violence. That attitude continues today from the POtuS to his trump-aligned terrorists. Brown's use of violence was met with a furious response while his foes had the backing of the state. As some on here have noted, imagine if Muslims or Black Lives Matter had done what the nazis did yesterday.

If there are examples from the left where laws sanctioned violence I am hard pressed to find them. Has there been leftist violence in this country? Yes like the Wisconsin university bombing and the Weathermen, but they were met with a determined federal government that used any means necessary to stop them. I don't expect to see any similar response to the modern white supremacists (the Order and McVeigh were exceptions for obvious reasons) until they do greater violence and maybe not even then - for purely political reasons.

After Charlottesville I admit a desire for revenge and have a certain sympathy for the antifa young people (if I was their age instead of retired I might join them). If it comes down to our democracy versus fascism then you have to fight. But one thing history points to is that we are not allowed to use their same tactics and the thug in the White House will use any excuse to become the dictator he wants to become. I admit I don't have the perfect answer to all this but answering them with further violence right now is not an option. So I have volunteered for our local Democratic Party and will be attending a candlelight vigil tonight.



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Reply Sanctioned violence against the left has a long history in this country but retaliation is illegal (Original post)
Bradshaw3 Aug 2017 OP
Weekend Warrior Aug 2017 #1
Bradshaw3 Aug 2017 #5
Thomas Hurt Aug 2017 #2
Alpeduez21 Aug 2017 #3
Bradshaw3 Aug 2017 #4
Docreed2003 Aug 2017 #6
Bradshaw3 Aug 2017 #7
Docreed2003 Aug 2017 #8
marked50 Aug 2017 #9

Response to Bradshaw3 (Original post)

Sun Aug 13, 2017, 06:38 PM

1. Thank you for sharing this...

 

I hope tonight is somehow a magical evening for all of the people attending vigils.

POtuS lol

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Response to Weekend Warrior (Reply #1)

Sun Aug 13, 2017, 07:34 PM

5. Thank you, I appreciate it. n/t

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Response to Bradshaw3 (Original post)

Sun Aug 13, 2017, 06:54 PM

2. Self Defense is legal and necessary anything else works against us.

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Response to Bradshaw3 (Original post)

Sun Aug 13, 2017, 07:02 PM

3. Don't forget all the anti-union gov't supported violence

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Response to Alpeduez21 (Reply #3)

Sun Aug 13, 2017, 07:33 PM

4. For sure. It wasn't meant to be all inclusive

Just the fact that this march was about the Lee statue and their hate is directed almost always at people of color so this was aimed at that history .

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Response to Bradshaw3 (Original post)

Sun Aug 13, 2017, 07:54 PM

6. An enlightening post, thank you for sharing!

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Response to Docreed2003 (Reply #6)

Sun Aug 13, 2017, 07:59 PM

7. Thanks and I like your avatar

His machine 'killed' fascists.

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Response to Bradshaw3 (Reply #7)

Sun Aug 13, 2017, 08:32 PM

8. Thanks! Indeed it did!

The world could use a few more Woody Guthries today!

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Response to Bradshaw3 (Original post)

Sun Aug 13, 2017, 08:45 PM

9. This is a concise summary of our really disgusting history as regards to

the things that describes our divisions in the past.

I can not, at any time, say that we, as a group of people, do not have our failings at understanding. What we need to do for the future is present something that may help us move to something better. This is where I felt I need to respond. Read on for what I mean,

I had a brief conversation with my brother yesterday, who I would describe as basically as a decent person. His concept of the conflict in Charlottesville was that it was a response to the removal of the stature of Lee and that the mayor of that city was at fault for the incident. He described Lee as someone who was just trying to protect the concept of "States Rights" and therefore his treasonous transgression was justified and why should people object to a statue of him, or more precisely, that it was okay for people to object to it's removal.

All I could do in response was to try to inform him that there was more to this than what he thought and that he should look further into the subject about Lee and States Rights This was an effort to have him learn about how Lee was a slave supporter and the "states rights" thing was just a way to make the repulsiveness of slavery of the Confederacy more acceptable to the uneducated American populace.

Now this commentary is nothing more than an attempt to point out that many people really don't have clues about the history of things and that they base their actions and understanding on somewhat simple concepts, and that includes history.

We need to realize this before we can really change peoples minds and that is a bothersome task, because we usually can't erase that stuff from their memory, their local influences, or their current impulses.

What we need to do is quite simply try and put what is going on into something that they can relate too in some sort of human empathy or compassion.

"Forget what has happened in the past."

"What would you think if the thing that had tried to oppress you was exalted, and I don't mean something as obscure as "taking your freedom away", which has no meaning if it denies someone else's humanity"

We need to get others to think, truly, beyond themselves and into thinking of others beyond their tribe. The tribe is the human race and not some subset, as we have behaved.

Arguing with others on the basis of the past is fraught with historical arguments.

Argue on the basis of compassion, empathy, and understanding. And realize that it may not change someone else's mind.

This post is not meant to disparage the OP generator, it is just something that struck me as I read it in the context of my conversation with my brother and that maybe there is more that we can do--without counting on history.

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