This Week in Fascism #15: Oregon Militias Mobilize for GOP

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Welcome, fellow antifascists! This week is our first milkshake-free column in a month, but we do have the Oregon GOP aligning themselves with vigilante militias and threatening to shoot cops, the beginning of a new #DoxxingAllYourBoys campaign promoted by comedian Kathy Griffin, and a kickass antifascist gay dance party outside a Drag Queen Story Hour in Pennsylvania. Without further ado, let’s begin!

Explainer: What’s the Matter with Oregon?

There’s always something strange and often racist going down in Oregon, but the latest news is worth noting because it shows the state GOP senators openly collaborating with far-Right anti-government militias like the Three Percent of Oregon and the Oath Keepers, to shut down a major cap and trade environmental bill that was due to become law. Other legislation which was due to be voted upon: gun control, mandatory vaccinations, the availability of drivers’ licenses for non-citizens.

If you aren’t familiar with the Oath Keepers or the III%ers, politically they are largely far-Right, paleoconservative, and heavily prone to embracing conspiracy theories, especially in regards to supposed internal and external threats to the United States that would necessitate an armed militia that can engage in some sort of far-Right uprising. Overall, they are essentially in-line with websites like InfoWars and groups like the Proud Boys. The Oath Keepers were out on the streets of Ferguson and famously split in 2015 after the vast majority of the group refused to support community efforts to protest the heavily armed police. Throughout 2017, both Oath Keepers and III%ers appeared at pro-Trump and “Free Speech” rallies up until Unite the Right, after which militia groups took a black eye for appearing at; later attempting to distance themselves from white nationalists and the Alt-Right. Throughout 2016 and 2017, members of the III%ers were linked to a variety of attempted bombings and sentenced to heavy jail time.

But back in Oregon, our current story all started Wednesday, when eleven Oregon GOP state senators threatened to walk out and deny the Senate a quorum. Governor Kate Brown responded that she would use the state cops to bring them back to Salem to lose the vote fair and square.

Up to that point, this was all politics as usual apparently, or at least politics with a precedent.  See, Brown had okayed a walkout by state Dems in 2001 and Democrats had famously pulled a similar move in Wisconsin against Scott Walker in 2011.  But here’s where it starts to go sideways, when state senator Brian Borquist makes the following threat against the state police on camera:

GOP state senators didn’t show up to work Thursday morning, so Brown called their bluff and directed the Oregon State Police to bring them back to vote. Next, GOP state senators fled the state, and became fugitives in Idaho. Far-Right militia researcher JJ MacNab tweeted that militias were guns up, when this post by Linn County III% lead Paul Luhrs was brought to light by antifascists:

We’ve known since at least mid-2017 that Oregon and Washington state GOP were using Threepers, Oath Keepers, and/or Proud Boys for “security” at events, but this new and open cooperation to shut down the government in order to scuttle legislation is what’s new here.

It’s also apparently extremely bad optics, which is why we haven’t seen nor heard from the Threepers since Friday, when Senate Republicans were forced to disavow the militia’s offer.

Although the GOP state senators had to distance themselves from the trigger-happy militias, the state cops may well have known the militias’ intentions better, because they recommended calling off Saturday morning’s special legislative session in Salem.

Maybe a dozen chuds showed up on Saturday, and then on Sunday the @OregonGOP Twitter admin thought it would be funny to post a picture of hundreds of people on the Capitol steps, making it look like an occupation could indeed be taking place. The reality was that this photo was from a previous week’s protest, and that maybe 75 people showed up to the capitol, sang the national anthem (badly) and “America the Beautiful” (even worse), and then left.

As of the time of this writing, GOP Oregon state senators are still in hiding.

This collaboration represents mainstream conservatives willingness to align themselves with far-Right paramilitaries, should it serve their political agenda. However, the ‘anti-government’ ideology of the militias should not be confused with an anti-state agenda. The militias don’t hate the state, just some of the people who currently are elected into power.

They see themselves as the legitimate defenders of the American Constitution, while they view the current regime as having betrayed their oath to defend the US “against all enemies, foreign and domestic.” Hence the name, the Oath Keepers.

The Three Percent of Oregon named themselves as a legend that only 3% of Americans participated in the American Revolution, and view themselves as the natural successors of the Founding Fathers.

The militias often recruit from current police and military, and often have ties to further Right hate groups. Below, see a video of Three Percent of Oregon Linn County Lead Paul Luhrs at an event with the Proud Boys, a hate group that has staged a number of attacks across the Pacific Northwest alongside Patriot Prayer.

For a more in-depth look at the Oregon militia movement, see Spencer Sunshine’s 2016 Up in Arms: A guide to Oregon’s patriot movement, available as a free PDF from Political Research Associates.

Doxxes

Wednesday, June 19, 2019

Chicago Antifa identified Ryan Lane Thomas of Fenton, Missouri, as a member of white nationalist group Identity Evropa, recently rebranded as the American Identity Movement. In the leaked Discord chats, Thomas used the name PlacidSeven – MO, where he posted pictures of his recent DIY home renovations and shared antisemitic propaganda with the group.

Thomas also posted a disturbing video to YouTube, in which he shows off a handgun in his glove compartment while outside his child’s school, then walks into the school in order to demonstrate the “vulnerability open to Sandy Hook elements.”

The school appears to be Meramac Heights Elementary School. If you would like to warn them about Ryan Lane Thomas, you can contact them via their Facebook page.

Colorado Springs Anti-Fascists exposed American Identity Movement Leader Jeremy Riesberg as being the head of the white nationalist organization’s Colorado chapter. Riesberg claims to have been a “Bernie bro” who became a full-blown antisemitic National Socialist after reading race scientist Kevin MacDonald.

Even more curiously, despite being the state-level leader of a white nationalist group and an avowed National Socialist, Riesberg is married to a Black woman, with whom he has a child.

Thursday, June 20, 2019

Proud of Your Boris exposed Proud Boys Elder Joshua Hall as an employee of US Communications of the Gulf States in Mandeville, Louisiana. Hall not only serves as a leader of the hate group, but also served at the web registrant for their short-lived attempt at a social network, ProudBook.us, last year.

You can contact them by calling (985) 727-7095, or by emailng sales@businesssound.net.

The Knoxville Radical Alliance exposed Corey Scott Whittman, aka Dr. Cocopuff. Whittman is a longtime white nationalist organizer formerly with the Traditionalist Worker Party. He is currently a member of the Legion of St. Ambrose.

Friday, June 21, 2019

Rose City Antifa released an article on Proud Boy Jacob “JD” Stockton, of Portland, Oregon. Stockton has participated in violent rallies across the Pacific Northwest since June 2017.

Stockton works at USA Pawn, 18449 SE Stark St, Portland, OR 97233. You can call them at 503-912-0600 to inform them of their employee’s ties with a hate group.

A group of antifascist researchers launched a new site, PhillyProudBoys.com, dedicated to exposing the Philadelphia-area members of the far-right hate group.

Following the debut of PhillyProudBoys.com, antifascist researchers quickly released the employment information of Philadelphia Proud Boys Sergeant-at-Arms Aaron Wolkind-Whallon.

Wolkind-Whallon is a Technical Support Specialist at Aerzen USA, in Coatesville, Pennsylvania. If you would like to inform them of their employee’s fascist ties, you can call them at 610-380-0244.

Knoxville Radical Alliance released a one-page handbill featuring the names and faces of local neo-Nazis that they’d identified as planning to disrupt the Pride parade on Saturday.

Saturday, June 22, 2019

Still working from information made available by PhillyProudBoys.com, activists released the employment information of Philadelphia Proud Boy Jobel Barbosa on Saturday, after he’d shown up alongside other Proud Boys at last week’s Pride parade, attempting to intimidate attendees.

Jobel’s dox was promoted by liberal comedian Kathy Griffin, who noted, “They done messed with the WRONG bunch.”

Barbosa is a mechanic at Jaguar Land Rover Willow Grove in Jaguar Land, Pennsylvania. If you would like to inform them that their employee, Jobel Barbosa, is a member of an anti-trans hate group and recently attended a Pride parade hoping to intimidate members of the LGBTQIA community, their phone number is 215-443-5900. You can also tweet at dealership @JagLandRoverWG and their parent company, @PiazzaAutoGroup.

Sunday, June 22, 2019

Haleyville Anti-Rapist/Anti-Fascist Action released a dox of Corey Middleton, of Wilmer, Alabama. Middleton shares propaganda from antisemitic neo-Confederate group League of the South, and identifies as an Asatru racist.

Middleton is a Laborer-Operator at Allen Construction, a California-based company with branches in several states. If you would like to inform them about Middleton’s far-Right ties, you can call them at (805) 884-8777, tweet to them at @BuildAllen, or contact them via their online contact form.

Actions

A coalition of activist groups turned out to support Drag Queen Story Time in South Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, this week.

Antifascists activists, after receiving intel that showed that the neo-Nazi group the Bowl Patrol discussing this particular event in their Telegram chat, coordinated with local organizers and showed up prepared to defend their local drag queens.

(The Bowl Patrol is named for the haircut of white supremacist mass shooter Dylan Roof, and its members seek to inspire the same sort of mass shooting that Roof perpetrated.)

However, unlike previous Drag Queen Story Hours across the country, the far-Right failed to show for this particular action.

“We got a gay dance party going on on the sidewalk,” one antifascist activist told This Week in Fascism.

Call to Action

Philadelphia Proud Boys Sergeant-at-Arms Aaron Wolkind-Whallon is still employed at Aerzen USA, in Coatesville, Pennsylvania.

Call them at 610-380-0244 or tweet them at @AerzenUSA to tell them about their employee’s ties with a hate group.

Sample tweet:

Hey, @AerzenUSA! One of your employees, Aaron Wolkind-Whallon, is a member of the Proud Boys, a hate group. Are those the values your company represents?


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This Week in Fascism
A weekly roundup of the latest and greatest happenings in the anti-fascist world. Each column will feature an “Explainer,” delineating some new fascist trend, a roundup of the doxxes and the deplatformings, and feature the calls to action, ways that you can help your local anti-fascist crews beat back the rising tide of fascism worldwide.