why antifa and violent resistance isn’t wrong

August 17, 2017
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By Jesse Chase, AFROPUNK contributor

Some think that Antifa counter violence to alt-right violence is wrong. Trump has adopted the meme of the “alt-left” by condemning the Antifa and the alt-right since Charlottesville saying they are both to blame. Meanwhile Cornell West praised the Antifa for saving the lives of clergy from being “crushed like cockroaches” by the white nationalists on Friday night. Is it the alt-right, the left or the spectator’s indifference that is the problem? Is non-violence the answer if all it does is disarm the oppressed?

The extreme right and the extreme left are both ready for violence and that should come as no surprise. On the left we have Malcolm X’s “by any means necessary” and that it’s not violence when it’s self-defense. It could also be argued that nonviolence is racist because it disarms the oppressed who need to defend themselves. This is what gave birth to groups like the Black Panther Party after the Civil Rights era saw their leaders, Malcolm X and Martin Luther King Jr, both assassinated. The BPP were intolerant of America’s tolerance of racism.

On the other hand, the alt-right believes that they need to defend their culture and preserve what they’ve built on “their” land. But everyone should recognize that the white nationalists are wrong because this land was stolen from the original Indigenous nations through genocide and continued to build on racial capitalism, slavery, and murder. Oppressing others isn’t freedom.

“Everybody wants to be a fascist” sounds like it could be a game show featuring the alt-right vs the Antifa. Or is the fascist asshole also the reactionary spectator of the media spectacle. Let’s think about Felix Guittari’s psychoanalytical theory that “everybody wants to be a fascist” and how the Antifa’s “violent” awareness doesn’t desire revolution like the alt-right turns desire into the blissful pleasure of violent ignorance. The Antifa recognizes limits to its power, the alt-right doesn’t. Knowledge is power so the Antifa should logically be the winner. But why does everyone want to be a fascist? What kind of logic is this? There is always a slave-master relation to this logic because of the Hegelian slave-master dialectic that operates it. Think of Hegel’s dialectic as thesis, anti-thesis and synthesis. If it was up to white nationalists they would control this entire process. But the Antifa is the anti-thesis born to oppose and resist against the thesis of white supremacy.

If we continue to decolonize dialectics and the history of this white supremacist ideology we see that Aristotle created the syllogism for dialectics so that he could think with abstraction and then have an easier time discussing and investigating the truth. But what’s true for one person isn’t universally true. There’s always a bigger picture. And this came at the expense of the concrete, non-abstracted, image based consciousness. The concreteness of reality was, for Aristotle, not tangible enough for his manipulation and exploitation. Aristotle was also a racist and a misogynist. His patriarchal philosophy continued on through Christianity to justify genocide, slavery, colonization and outright war against the Other that was considered corrupt and not beautiful – these values also came from Aristotle.

Today we see the brink of the collapse of white supremacy as America and the EU are both strained and dependent on their war based economies via the production of weapons and the military industrial complex. That way they reify entire economies for the production of war. This reflects the dialectical logic of the systemically racist society today. It depends on unlimited war. The only way these countries can maintain themselves is by war. America has been at war for 222 of the 239 years of its creation. This is the reification of the concrete for the production of abstraction, thereby subjecting the concrete to violent abstraction with more production of violent abstraction and the vicious cycle continues. There’s no healing, this isn’t a remedy and it doesn’t lead to any dialectic truth because it is built on the oppression and resistance of concrete reality, on the streets and in consciousness. Violent opposition, imperialism, murder, they are all symptoms of a twisted slave master logic gone too far.

So technically there are three objective kinds of fascists, 1) the alt-right’s abstracted ignorant fascist built on the abstraction of the concrete, 2) the indifferent reactionary spectator that takes no responsibility to critique and eliminate white supremacy and 3) the concrete woke “fascist”, which is resistance, which is what was always there, which is truth, love and light and that which only puts on the illusory mask of fascism when there is a need to defend itself. This need is a desire to produce defense according to the economy of available decisions to be made. Maybe Guittari was wrong about everyone wanting to be a fascist but it’s just that we haven’t dug out of this shit, out of racism, far enough to take the war mask off full-time. White supremacy is after you, be responsible. No slaves! No masters!


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