A young rally organizer who is attempting to unite "moderates" and has, in many statements, explicitly rejected violence-prone "extremists" on both the left and the right, is being characterized by US Representative Nancy Pelosi and US Senator Dianne Feinstein as a "white supremacist." Major media outlets have seized on the description and are repeating it.
One problem with the description is that only one of the speakers at the rally is white. One speaker is transgender. Of the three bands performing, two are Black Hip Hop artists, and one is a white, country-western hip-hop fusion band. Most are open Trump supporters.
Joey Gibson, who is Japanese-American, will be holding the rally, called Patriot Prayer, in San Francisco this Saturday. Gibson says he is not interested in promoting Christianity or any other religion. The word "Prayer," he says, is a call for a "spirituality" which is greater than politics, and for open dialogue. Gibson has an extensive video archive of speeches in which he describes his views in detail (video below.) In all of them the rejection of white supremacy is a consistent theme.
Some videos show clearly that he has previously been attacked, unprovoked, by Antifa militants. He says his goal is to promote an atmosphere where peaceful dialogue can take place. Antifa is shorthand for "anti-fascists," a group spearheaded by Refuse Fascism, which views all Trump supporters and anyone who voted for Trump as a fascist and therefore fair game for physical assault. A poster at the "anti-fascist" website "It's Going Down" makes a clear equivalence between anyone wearing a red "MAGA" hat and a World War II Nazi (below.)
Gibson fears the country is headed toward violent polarization. By labeling the Patriot Prayer rally as one of "white supremacists," Pelosi, Feinstein, and media such as the San Jose Mercury News ensure that Antifa will descend on the rally, as well as thousands of peaceful protesters who believe white supremacists will be there.
Antifa condones the use of violence against Neo-Nazis, KKK, and white supremacists, and equates all Trump supporters with racists. Last Saturday in Boston, 40,000 "counter-protesters" and black-clad, combat-ready Antifa swarmed a few dozen participants of the Boston Free Speech rally, which also had strongly denounced white supremacists, KKK, and Neo-Nazis in the days before the rally.
Nevertheless, the media continued to label the ralliers as "far right" and "alt-right," implying these were almost as bad as white supremacists.
Included in the list of beliefs which made one suspect as an "alt-right," "far right," or even a third term, "alt-lite," according to the Anti-Defamation League's (ADL) analysis of the Boston rally, were those who:
"[propagate] the conspiracy theory that DNC staffer Seth Rich was murdered for political reasons."
The ADL also included in the category of right-leaning extremists those who:
"promulgate...the “Pizzagate” conspiracy theory,"
The Pizzagate theory contends that there is evidence of a high-level paedophilia ring in Washington, DC, first revealed by the leak of emails belonging to Hillary Clinton campaign manager John Podesta, by Wikileaks. Ironically, while describing the characteristics of "far right," "alt-right," and alt-lite, the ADL conceded that the Boston event was not a white supremacist gathering, writing:
"Unlike Charlottesville, the Boston event, as currently planned, is not a white supremacist gathering."
The Boston Free Speech rally instead turned out to be a mild-mannered affair, with many Black, Asian, and other minority participants, who listened to what seemed like mostly libertarian-leaning speakers. Ralliers held up signs promoting the US Senate candidacy of Republican Shiva Ayyadurai saying "Black Lives DO Matter" and "No GMO - Stop Monsanto."
Joey Gibson attempts dialogue with Antifa, Evergreen State College
Civil liberties attorney Harvey Silverglate, writing for WGBH, the Boston public television station website, lamented:
"Given the vast chasm between what the rally’s organizers claimed their purpose to be, and how Boston’s politicians and news media were characterizing the rally-to-be, it would have been extraordinarily interesting to hear what the speakers actually had to say. But the shouts of the vast crowd of opponents were so loud that it was clear that the speakers would not be heard..."
Patriot Prayer's Joey Gibson say on his upcoming event's Facebook page:
"No extremists will be allowed in . No Nazis, Communist, KKK, Antifa, white supremacist, I.E., or white nationalists. This is an opportunity for moderate Americans to come in with opposing views. We will not allow the extremists to tear apart this country. Specifically, Richard Spencer and Nathan Damigo will not be welcome."
Richard Spencer and Nathan Damigo are two notorious white supremacists. In another Facebook post Gibson says:
"If you are a good liberal and you are not satisfied with how much I have called out the extremists- I apologize I will get better at calling out the extremists: KKK, anti-fa, communists, SJW, Nazis, etc etc."
In an article preceding the San Francisco Freedom Rally, Thomas Peele and Casey Tolan of The San Jose Mercury News devote over 20 introductory paragraphs to California white supremacist Nathan Damigo, although Damigo is not invited to the rally and is in fact specifically denounced by Gibson. Nevertheless Peele and Tolan suddenly segue into a paragraph reading:
"In San Francisco, the Aug. 26 rally — organized by a group called Patriot Prayer — is planned within Golden Gate National Recreation Area and has already received a permit from the National Park Service. But after a coalition of elected officials — including House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, Sen. Dianne Feinstein and San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee — urged the parks agency to reconsider, the superintendent of the park said she would review the permit and announce a decision sometime this week."
The casual reader is left with the firm impression that Damigo is somehow associated with Patriot Prayer. The article is entitled "White nationalism on rise in California as Bay Area girds for rallies next weekend."
Two of the bands which will be performing at the Freedom Rally are rap groups, two made up of African-American artists, and one a fusion of "country-western rap."
Literature is already being distributed in California, published by the group BAMN, standing for By Any Means Necessary, with the headline reading:
"Charlottesville Never Again - All Out to Shut Down the Alt-Right and Nazis in SF and Berkeley - No Platform for Fascists and White Supremacists - Trump Must Resign or Be Removed!"
Antifa militants have threatened in published Youtube videos to do physical harm to Gibson. Pelosi and Feinstein could not be reached for comment.
Hip Hop Artists Performng at Freedom Rally, San Francisco Aug. 26, 2017
This content reflects the personal opinions of the author. It is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and should not be substituted for impartial fact or advice in legal, political, or personal matters.
ptosis from Arizona on August 23, 2017:
@Wesman Todd Shaw : you said it: straight white man. That sums it all up right there.
Wesman Todd Shaw from Kaufman, Texas on August 22, 2017:
It's all such a disgrace. My poor old dad is ashamed of how he used to call himself a democrat. It's to where no straight white man can vote blue without hating himself first.
You disagree with any little thing the democrats say, and like magic, you're a nazi, or in the kkk. The democrats are a disgrace.