By: Dylan Brennan, Columnist
The events at the University of California, Berkley, last week are symptomatic to the problems that are seeping from the bottom of the barrel, and quickly at that. Since Trump has been elected, the process has been accelerating so fast that the barrel overflows from time to time, as seen at Berkeley. So this time, it’s the birthplace of the Free Speech Movement turning back on its roots and using violence to prevent free speech.
The protesters claimed that it was their duty to shut down Nazis, ignoring the fact that Milo Yiannopoulos is both gay and of Jewish descent, let alone ignoring that those who are calling him the Nazi are the ones burning books and using violence to suppress different opinions. And let’s not forget that they put hammers to ATM machines and put graffiti on the walls of independent businesses that read “Liberals get a bullet too.” Oh, and I almost forgot that out of all the innocent men and women they pepper-sprayed, launched fireworks at and beat unconscious in the streets, none of them were Yiannopoulos himself.
This is getting more and more common across campuses in America, and I don’t want those west coast lunacies to spread to our corner of the east coast. These people are having a heavy debate (and I use the term lightly) about the ethics of punching Nazis. Well clearly, according to their definition of what a Nazi is, that is giving them carte blanche to use political violence against others. That is the literal dictionary definition of terrorism. Don’t dare give these thugs and criminals an inch, because they’ll take more than just a mile. In a hypothetical sense, if I — and I do — see these people burning books and assaulting people because they aren’t part of their political movement, and I punch them because they’re the Nazis, this will eye-for-an-eye out into a civil war.
While foolish celebrities like Sarah Silverman and “Trainwreck” Director Judd Apatow cheer on these riots from their ivory towers, even calling for military coups, know that we as college students are on the proverbial front lines. I have very heated problems with many who have come to this campus, from Tim Wise to Laci Green — who was scheduled to appear in the fall but canceled her appearance — but I don’t start riots over them. If Milo or any other right-wing speakers come to this campus, please do the same for all our sakes.
Nobody can confirm that Winston Churchill ever said “The fascists of the future will call themselves ‘anti-fascists,’” but I can certainly confirm I’m saying it now, and I hope you will too.