On January 20, the day of Trump’s inauguration, Hex, a member of the IWW (Industrial Workers of the World) and the General Defense Committee of the IWW came to protest a speech by Milo Yiannopoulos at the University of Washington, Seattle.
In an act of political violence, an alt-right supporter of Milo shot Hex in the stomach, sending him in critical condition to the Harborview Hospital in Seattle. Luckily, Hex has recovered and was able to give this inspiring interview about the incident and his desire for restorative justice outside of the judicial and prison systems. Despite turning himself into the Seattle Police Department, the shooter was released from custody and so far has not been charged with any crimes. This contrasts starkly with the mass arrest of 230 protesters at the inauguration, who are now facing sentences of up to ten years. This is the reality of our current moment: those guilty of the “crime” of protesting against fascism and capitalism face draconian prison sentences, whereas someone who intends to kill and severely injures an anti-fascist gets away with impunity. This is why we must look outside of the legal system for justice.
This shooting also demonstrates the very real danger posed by fascists organizing on college campuses. Here in New York, alt-right “comedian” Gavin McInnes and neo-eugenicist Charles Murray have spoken at both NYU and Columbia in recent weeks. Both McInnes and Murray have tried to distance themselves from associations with neo-Nazism and white nationalism. However, McInnes’ true colors showed earlier this month when The Rebel sent him on a “fact-finding mission” to Israel. During that trip, McInnes said on The Gavin McInnes Show, “I’m becoming anti-Semitic.” He also defended Holocaust deniers, accused Jews of an unhealthy obsession with the Holocaust, and accused Jews of disproportionately influencing the Treaty of Versailles, in effect blaming them for their own mass-execution.
McInnes’ comments earned him rave reviews from both former Klan leader David Duke and neo-Nazi alt-right founder Richard Spencer. Even more vile comments, hidden behind a paywall, were uncovered by the news site Canadaland. McInnes revealed himself as equally racist toward Jews and Palestinians, saying, “Palestinians are stupid Rottweilers. And I had a Rottweiler before. And the way we would discipline him is we’d punch him in the face really hard.” He also accused “Jewish Marxist professors” of indoctrinating liberals with a hatred of white men.
On his own college tour, Charles Murray has insidious attempted to peddle his pseudo-scientific theories on class under the guise of “libertarianism.” Murray told students at NYU, “I know that you’ve heard that I’m a white nationalist. It’s real hard to be a libertarian and a white nationalist.” This, of course, is far from the case, as recent examples of fascist entryism to libertarian circles, and associations with Richard Spencer and fascist Augustus Invictus demonstrate. Murray himself has admitted to burning a cross on a hill in his Iowa hometown as a high school student. His “academic” career has consisted of promoting discredited ideas about genetic correlation with intelligence that are meant to justify racism as scientifically valid. His most famous book, The Bell Curve, was heavily based on research funded by the Pioneer Fund, a white supremacist organization, founded in 1937 by American Nazis and eugenicists. In spite of this, mainstream media sources like the New York Times have written dismissively of students who came to protest Murray, and smugly defended Murray himself with lines such as, “[The Bell Curve] did not advocate the practice of eugenics.”
The ideas of alt-right and fascist figures like Milo, McInnes, and Murray can have very real and violent consequences. This was demonstrated by the shooting of Hex, as well as by the murder of a black man by an alt-right supporter in New York last week. This is why we need to come out and continue to protest every time one of these white supremacists comes to recruit students on college campuses.