Want to throw a Nazi rally in a major American city? Make it sound like a campaign rally.
Alt-righter Joey Gibson and his organization Patriot Prayer staged a “Gibson For Senate Freedom March” in Portland, Oregon that resulted in police violence and several arrests.
Gibson and sympathetic alt-righters blamed counter protestors for stoking violence. Never mind that the violence-advocating Proud Boys, Gavin McInnes’s hilariously named alt-right group, helped organize the march or that scores of white nationalists attended it. As per usual, for law enforcement and the media, counter protestors—especially Antifa—were the problem.
It’s obvious that Antifa weren’t the true problem. Police, fully armed with riot gear, were. According to reports, one counter-protester was nearly killed by police clearing the way for far-right protestors. An Oregonian reporter was left bloodied. Now, Portland police may be facing not only public backlash but an official investigation into uses of force against counter protestors (aka not the Nazis).
Portland protestor seriously wounded by flash-bang grenade fired by cops clearing way for alt-right marchershttps://t.co/6OZ67Sgd2Z
— Raw Story (@RawStory) August 5, 2018
There was no rational (read: non-hateful) reason for this march. Gibson’s political career is based in attracting the gun-loving, far-right dreck GOP party officials love to ignore. His “freedom march” wasn’t intended to be a campaign rally. It was an organized show of force by a group that courts and harbors racists.
Like always, Gibson and his ilk will use this weekend’s events to portray themselves as victims. Their rights are being trampled, their voices shouted down. They don’t incite or advocate violence, they claim while open-carrying assault rifles—it simply follows wherever they go. And as long as they have police protection, they’ll continue organizing under the guise of “freedom.”