As Allahpundit wrote yesterday, a poll of college campuses across the country found 19% of students supported the idea of using violence to shut down a speaker they disagreed with. Today, Campus Reform published a video yesterday in which a pair of interviewers ask students at American University in Washington, D.C. what they think of Antifa’s use of violence.
The question here was slightly different from the one asked in the poll. The poll just asked if “a student group” could use violence to stop a speaker with no lead-in question. In this clip below, the interviewers first ask the students if they support Antifa. Most of them do. Then they ask a follow-up question about the use of violence.
Maybe Campus Reform left a lot of interviews on the cutting room floor, but it seems from this clip as if a lot of people they encountered were fans of Antifa and once they had signaled support for the group, they found it difficult to denounce their best-known tactic, i.e. political violence.
Some of the students seem a bit hesitant at crossing that line but others are convinced. One guy with a beard says, “[If] Black Bloc tactics and destruction of property and things like that can further the cause then I would be all for it.”
One thing I find interesting about this clip is that the two people who seem to have the most sensible reactions to these questions are both black women. One woman in a purple outfit first says she respects the “goal” of Antifa but when it comes to the violence she adds, “I don’t ever think violence is the answer.” She still hesitates to say Antifa should stop being violent but she comes the closest of all of her peers.
The young woman at the end of the clip (wearing a hat and carrying a skateboard) is even more skeptical of the idea of turning violence against anyone deemed a fascist. “Honestly, I think our generation, we use words incorrectly all the time, like racist and like stereotyping, those two tend to get mixed up,” she says. She continues, “So I think we do need to try and figure out what exactly counts as fascism before saying ‘Hey, that’s fascist you can’t do that.'” Well said, young lady. It’s a shame more of your fellow students haven’t thought through it this far.