Escalating protest tactics

Discussion in 'Politics, Etc. (Archived)' started by garcia1000, Mar 7, 2017.

  1. garcia1000

    garcia1000 Guest

    Hey everyone,

    One controversial subject recently is the escalation of protest tactics. A good example is punching some neo-Nazi guy. Another example would be some racist person who was shouted down and someone knocked over a professor.

    If we take the view of protesters, we could guess that self-identified political activists were willing to use extreme tactics because they believed them to be effective for recruiting popular support. But if we take the view of an average person, extreme protest tactics decreased popular support for a given cause because they reduced feelings of identification with the movement.

    Here's a boring link. Here's a more interesting link. Here's an unrelated link. What do you think about the recent protests?

    Preemptive Stalin-boilerplate:
    Why did garcia1000 choose this topic, instead of 100 other topics that he could have chosen? That in itself says something.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 8, 2017
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  2. Batlad

    Batlad Well-Known Member

    Thank you this is an interesting topic. I didn't read everything but enjoyed the 'interesting link'. It would be nice if there were follow up studies that didn't rely on questionnaires but could also ask about actual engagement with the causes in question. Although shifting public support could be powerful enough in the end. I'd also like to know how to channel that public support into change, but I guess there's other platforms for that (indivisible guide?).

    One short fall is the narrow scope of the types of protests described 'liberal' protests. I'd be very interested to see the study repeated for 'conservative' and non partisan styles of protests.

    Edit: also tangentially related, more for discussion than protests.
    http://www.ted.com/talks/megan_phel...the_westboro_baptist_church_here_s_why_i_left
     
    Last edited: Mar 7, 2017
  3. garcia1000

    garcia1000 Guest

    Let's discuss this topic!

    Are extreme protest tactics useful? What about less extreme tactics?
     
  4. keithburgun

    keithburgun Administrator, Lead Designer Staff Member

    My position on this is, it is technically not a good thing to be employing aggressive violence against anyone in any circumstance. However, I also acknowledge that it's sort of easy for me to say that, given that I am not nearly as personally threatened by alt-right/Nazi/KKK/Trump type stuff. I can totally understand how PoC and members of other marginalized groups would feel personally threatened and that they have no choice but to employ violence.

    You stating that it says something does not diminish the fact that it does actually say, or at least suggest something.
     
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  5. SwiftSpear

    SwiftSpear Active Member

    It's dehumanizing to assume that someone showing up to a Milo talk or a trump Rally wants to do you harm simply by being there and saying "offensive" things. These people committing violence presumably are so deep in their echo chambers they can't imagine any legitimate or sensible reason why anyone would publically disagree with them aside from pure evil. Have you seen that video of the woman in the "Make Bitcoin great again" hat getting maced in the face while she's being interviewed? Many of these assaults are clearly not defensive. It's "this person is such scum I have to do something about it" style fanaticism.

    Obviously the extremes on the other side are not preferable. However, it definitely feels like it's the leftists who want to nanny and bully the center block right now.
     
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  6. Erenan

    Erenan Well-Known Member

    Agree completely with SwiftSpear here. These are not defensive implementations of violence. They want to make them out to be defensive but they're not. If you feel threatened that's understandable but violence is only called for when you are reasonably afraid of imminent death or significant bodily harm. Surprise attacking someone giving an interview in front of a camera doesn't qualify, and frankly being a POC or member of another marginalized group doesn't actually change that. (And these attacks probably do more harm than good anyway.)
     
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  7. keithburgun

    keithburgun Administrator, Lead Designer Staff Member

    How do you know they are not? What do you think their real rationale is?
     
  8. SwiftSpear

    SwiftSpear Active Member

    All the videos I've seen showing instances of violence at protests show leftists committing non-self-defensive violence. Maybe there are also instances of it being the other way around, maybe or maybe not there is video out there of that as well, but there are several videos of leftist violence that are not even remotely close to self defense. For me the anti-progressives have done a WAY better job of documenting outright unprovoked violence against their side than the progressives have.
     
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  9. Erenan

    Erenan Well-Known Member

    Where were these super powers of open-mindedness when we were talking about defending one's property against the government trying to seize it with violent force? I seem to recall you thought anyone who thought it was unacceptable for the government to come in and just take your stuff with physical force was living in some kinda fantasy universe or something. And yet for some reason you can understand why POCs and other minorities would feel like they have no choice but to initiate a violent encounter with people who aren't doing anything at all to them.

    It's very simple. If someone isn't posing an imminent threat to you (i.e., threatening death or significant bodily harm), then you shouldn't initiate violence against them. If someone's standing there giving an interview or a lecture or whatever, that just doesn't count as an imminent threat. Maybe if that particular person had told you recently that the next time they saw you they would kill you and you had no way of getting past them without them seeing you and you felt that the only way to protect yourself is to surprise attack them before they saw you, I'd buy that. So sure, it's possible that there's some weird edge case scenario where it might make sense, but I'm not aware of any reasonable argument for that in these cases. Feel free to tell me why you think it might be reasonable though.
     
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  10. Bucky

    Bucky Well-Known Member

    Cases where I think it might be appropriate:
    * They are themselves trying to incite immediate violence against me.
    * They are trying to convince a depressed person to kill themselves

    Cases where it's definitely inappropriate:
    * Everything else
     
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  11. RyanRothweiler

    RyanRothweiler Active Member

    I also think these people specifically want retaliation. I think the majority of this kind of violence / aggression / de-platforming shouldn't happen because 'don't feed the trolls'.
     
  12. SwiftSpear

    SwiftSpear Active Member

    Yeah, the progressive girl ironically wearing the "make bitcoin great again" hat was just begging someone to cut her down to size. What kind of idiot would wear a hat resembling the one a trump voter would wear?!?
     
  13. Lemon

    Lemon Well-Known Member

    I think Ryan meant that the violent leftists specifically want retaliation (to justify their violence)

    (but maybe he didnt idk)
     
  14. RyanRothweiler

    RyanRothweiler Active Member

    I'm mostly just confused by your post Swift.

    I guess I'll explain my point more.
    Milo Yiannopoulos. He says outrageous things because he wants people to be outraged. Rioting and violence is exactly that reaction he wants. So lets not riot when he comes to our college, lets just ignore him. His brand is predicated on a reaction from the other side.
     
  15. Erenan

    Erenan Well-Known Member

    I think that's true of Milo and probably true of Richard Spencer as well. Personally, I don't think that's what Charles Murray was after, nor the girl in the red hat. In any case, I agree that it's a bad idea to give them that kind of reaction. The rioting that shut down the Milo event only gave him more publicity. Punching Richard Spencer just gives him more attention. Etc. It isn't helpful.
     
  16. SwiftSpear

    SwiftSpear Active Member

    You can't just randomly assault someone because you disagree with the speaker who's event they happen to be at. I don't care if Milo is intending to piss people off, it doesn't justify violence against his supporters, let alone people who just happen to be interested in him.

    A year down the line we'll have right wingers bringing guns to these events and shooting the "protesters" who take it too far. We'll have this because they have to protect themselves. They have to protect themselves because the "protesters" have proven they are a legitimate danger.

    Violence begets violence. I'm COMPLETELY AND TOTALLY against the left wing protesters who initiated this. It was not the only option they had. It wasn't even a remotely good option. They're not the side who has massive stockpiles of firearms.
     
  17. Erenan

    Erenan Well-Known Member

    RyanRothweiler is also saying that the protesters shouldn't initiate violence against people like Milo or his supporters. Do you think RyanRothweiler claims that the violence is justified? I don't think he made that claim.
     
  18. Juli

    Juli Well-Known Member

    If a Jewish German citizen had assassinated Hitler in 1930, would that count as self-defense?
     
  19. Lemon

    Lemon Well-Known Member

    How does that scenario link back to milo or richard spencer?
     
  20. Erenan

    Erenan Well-Known Member

    Or Charles Murray or some random girl in a red hat?

    I mean, here's the thing. Even if you can argue convincingly that pre-emptive violence is justified against actual Nazis who actually want to kill you or something, that doesn't solve the problem. There is the additional issue that the people committing these acts of violence are not being careful about their targets. Charles Murray isn't a white nationalist or white supremacist or whatever. There was really no legitimate basis for violence against him and certainly not against Allison Stanger. This isn't an example of oppressed people fighting back. It's an example of people who mistakenly think they're fighting the good fight against oppressors because they've been misled. They hear "oh this guy is a white supremacist" and they assume it's true. No fact checking. No research. Just go with the mob.

    Disclaimer, I added the second paragraph of this post in an edit made after @Lemon liked it.
     
    Last edited: Mar 15, 2017
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