UPDATE: As of Tuesday, Aug 22, the petition now has 236,000 signatures.
As of Monday, Aug 21., there are well over the needed 100,000 signatures to label the left-wing Antifa organization as a “terror group.” A formal response will now be required by the White House.
When President Donald J. Trump blamed “both sides” for the violent riots in Charlottesville, Virginia last week, he received tremendous backlash from media outlets who decided to completely ignore the presence of the radical left-wing group, Antifa.
Fact is, Antifa was in Charlottesville, Va. to counter-protest what they deemed a white supremacist rally, and as President Trump pointed out in his presser, they were there with bats and clubs prepared to fight.
Antifa, which joins Black Lives Matter as part of the Alt-left, is known to clash with many groups, including the police. But they specifically target Trump supporters who they deem to be white supremacists and neo-Nazis.
A person with the initials M.A. has posted The White House petition that would formally recognize Antifa as a terror group.
The petition states: “Terrorism is defined as ‘the use of violence and intimidation in pursuit of political aims.’ This definition is the same definition used to declare ISIS and other groups as terrorist organizations. AntiFa has earned this title due to its violent actions in multiple cities and their influence in the killings of multiple police officers throughout the United States. It is time for the pentagon to be consistent in its actions – and just as they rightfully declared ISIS a terror group, they must declare AntiFa a terror group – on the grounds of principle, integrity, morality, and safety.”
It has been posted on the White House petition site where the rules say any petition getting over 100,000 signatures in 30 days will be reviewed and receive an “official response.” The petitions had over 160,000 as of late Monday. It was posted on Aug. 17.
Antifa leaders continue to insist their aggressive tactics are only used to fight hatred and racism.
Antifa is a far-left militant political movement of autonomous, self-described anti-fascist groups in the United States. The term is loosely used to refer to anti-racist, anti-sexist, anti-homophobia, as well as anarchist and anti-capitalist groups. Unlike the traditional left, the ambit of self-described antifa groups is to “oppose” fascism in direct action. These groups are usually anti-government and anti-capitalist, and their methodologies and tactics are more aggressively violent and anarchistic than those of associated groups in the far left.
According to The Economist, the “word Antifa has its roots in Anti-Fascist Action, a name taken up by European political movements in the 1930s” which was revived in the 1990s, particularly in Germany. Peter Beinart writes that “in the late ’80s, left-wing punk fans in the United States began following suit, though they initially called their groups Anti-Racist Action, on the theory that Americans would be more familiar with fighting racism than fascism.” Antifa groups are known for militant protest tactics, including property damage and sometimes physical violence. Antifa focuses more on fighting far-right ideology directly than on encouraging pro-left policy.
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