Myths about Antifa
Thanks to Melissa Smith for clarifying the sources of the word “antifa” and its context in our nation today.
Here is what she found:
Definition of antifa (Merriam-Webster)
1: a person or group actively opposing fascism, ex:
The groups (2017 Charlottesville) prominently featured about 100 Christian ministers in clerical garb, angry Charlottesville residents, peace advocates, Black Lives Matter activists, and self-styled anti-fascists who call themselves “antifas” …
— Peter Weber:
After [World War II], Antifas varied in size and composition across the former Reich, now divided into four zones of occupation, and developed in interaction with the local occupying power.
— Loren Balhorn 2: an anti-fascist movement
Antifa is the backlash to the backlash, a defensive response to the growing presence of right-wing extremism.
— Todd Gitlin
A political protest movement comprising autonomous groups affiliated by their militant opposition to fascism and other forms of extreme right-wing ideology.
Thank you, Melissa, for your definitions and examples!
Certainly, most Americans are anti-facist. That, by definition, could make them Antifas.
While there has been an attempt by extremists and some Republicans to equate members of Antifa with White Supremecist organizations, there is no equivalency in either structure or purpose.
Antifa has no central control structure, no hierarchy of command, and no agreed-upon plan of action.There is no official record of Antifa members.
While members of Antifa have been self-identified as part of peaceful protests as part of the Black Lives Matter movement, they have not been identified, in most cases, as part of the violence that often occurred after the peaceful protests ended or were disbanded.
It is often difficult to know whether a violent protester is Antifa or pretending to be Antifa to damage the reputation of Antifa.
Here are links to three articles that give facts about Antifa …