Winning The War On Hate

Who Says We Have To Fight?

Image Credit: ABC News

One year removed from Charlottesville, I’d like to think there’s a better way around this situation, and the movements these hate groups continue to fuel and spawn.

Why are these white supremacists being confronted?

On the morning of that fateful Saturday in Charlottesville, Twitter erupted with calls to action for a counter-protest. Antifa led the charge to recruit a vigilante force to stop the white supremacists from gathering that Saturday afternoon in Virginia.

Tempers remained hot. The night before, violence erupted on the park’s knoll. The gauntlet laid down at the statue of Robert E. Lee. A monument slated for removal that mobilized the march and protest in the first place.

The mission to save Confederate monuments is a ruse. An excuse and diversion by white supremacists to flex their muscles, provoke their opponents, while standing in society’s face.

Unite the Right believes in the cause to preserve these statues, but they also gambled their demonstration would lead to battle.

I took to Twitter, voicing my own solutions:

“Why confront these people? Leave them alone, and ignore them. Let them worship at the foot of a statue — it’s whistling past the graveyard.”
“If there’s no one to provoke, there’s no one to fight.”

I received hundreds of views with a handful of likes and retweets. All from people of color. Unlike me, the targets of this hatred.

Their support and responses warmed me. If my ideas made sense to them, I thought I had a valid point of view.

Then came the lectures from Antifa members and their ilk. Justifying their calls for confrontation in the name of social justice. The run-of-the-mill history lesson that included Hitler, the Brown Shirts, and the SS. How no one stood up and stopped them.

I get it, but in proper context. I’m not convinced Antifa and their partner groups do. To compare this stuff to Nazi Germany is a cop-out and intellectually lazy.

Here’s my take:

Why attack this movement at the head instead of at the roots? Why wage a battle when it’s the war that needs to be won?
Image Credit: CBS News

If these rallies are turned into duds instead of rumbles, the disenchanted youth observing from the sidelines may think twice of joining. The guys already marching are members. The ones spewing hatred and racism continue to cross state lines to the next gathering. They’re all in.

The idea is to block their streams of recruitment. Let the brainwashed march, chant, and wave their torches.

It’s the guys on the fence. The onlookers and outsiders looking for direction. That’s the future of this hate. Hoodwinking Antifa into a fight is what these supremacists want.

And it’s a small price to pay for global coverage. No wonder they want to scrap. Look at their return on investment. The payoff in propaganda is off the charts.

These melees are often shared on broadcast television, YouTube, and various social media platforms. The violence, mayhem, and anarchy help to push their agenda. Why give them such a free and expansive ride?

As disturbing as these factions are and remain, why not leave them be? If someone is looking for a fight, why take their bait? Let them gather and worship at the base of a doomed statue.

I understand what the Confederate flag and monuments signify to both sides of this argument. More so to the marginalized in our society and the supremacist movement that feeds off of their plight.

We need bigger and bolder solutions. A stronger and smarter mindset. Why let a bronze sculpture and others like it, divide us? Let’s not allow our past to hold our future hostage.

Let Unite the Right obtain their permits, have their rallies, and begone. Angry militants waving flags and paying homage to a Confederate General provides quite an anti-climatic optic, if not pathetic. At least, I think so.

By ignoring the rally, the avenues for violence are cut-off. In turn, the opportunity to impress the disenchanted are diminished.

Supremacist groups feed off of the fear, essence, and anxiety in their adversaries. It’s a power that fuels their cause and vision. If the plug is pulled, there’s less of a supply to charge them up.

Street fighting, brute force, and hand-to-hand combat are all calls to action. To the lost and angry young man seeking an outlet, this vacuum of false leaders, bogus moralists, and big brothers provide a landing spot.

Through this fractured lens, the lockstep supremacist isn’t seen as a loser. To the disenfranchised, he’s a warrior, underdog, and outsider. Desperate for social connection, the confused finds these rebel movements romantic and appealing.

White supremacy symbolizes a tribal brand that’s underground, mysterious, and claims to understand them. Already viewing themselves as separate and outcast, it’s the identity politics of the supremacist crusade that entices them to join.

This is ground zero, not the public squares honoring Confederate history. The heart of this beast is where the stakes must strike. It’s up to society to win the souls and minds. To offer brighter and more promising alternatives.

Image Credit: Associated Press

With no videos to post and opportunity to go viral, how does this movement grow and spread? I understand it may never go away, but it can be stemmed and contained.

You may find this ‘pie in the sky’ reasoning. A flippant solution. Fine, we’ll agree to disagree. To me, the consequences of responding to violence by upping the violence isn’t working — and never will. Not in the long run.

One year later, we’re on the cusp of another rally. TV and cable news will show up to cover the event. Unite the Right doesn’t need violence this time around. If they get it, it’s an added bonus. Either way, their message will be broadcast all over the world, free of charge.

Television, print, and digital outlets will carry their water for them. This year’s rally could turn out to be the biggest public relations event this movement has ever seen.

And all I could think about are those misguided souls looking for a spark. In lieu of salvation and a guiding light we’re giving them this version of America?

Image Credit:

These movements and their splinter groups remain a social problem. The consequences of a society with freedom of speech, belief, and public expression come with the territory.

It makes no difference whether one accepts it or not. Just as another believes their marches are justified and causes to be noble, so do these guys. As warped as this thinking is, hitting them over the head with Kumbuya sticks won’t change them.

From smaller pools to recruit, the movement may someday die on the vine. As a collective society, we need to show more responsibility, restraint, and forward thinking.

I hate to say this, but a group of hateful, toxic, and unsophisticated white guys are proving themselves to be pretty smart. If not coy. Like other outlaw bodies before them, they know how to bond, band, and game the system.

We’re being played and need a new strategy. Let’s not lose our souls, future, and kids while we’re at it.