Former Evergreen State College professor Bret Weinstein was interviewed today by Joe Rogan. Rogan opened the show by pointing out that Weinstein predicted that what he experienced at Evergreen could soon go beyond the campus. Many people on the left have mocked that idea for years but here we are three years later and we’re seeing a nationwide version of a campus “uprising.” So the natural question Rogan asks is this: What is coming next? Weinstein said he believes what is coming next could be much worse than anything we’ve seen so far.
“I have to tell you I’m not optimistic,” Weinstein said. He continued, “The people who are catching up to the fact that Evergreen has now spilled over into the world have not caught up to the fact that this is unstoppable at this point, with the current configuration. The absence of leadership is going to prevent us from doing what we should do.”
Later in the interview Weinstein explained that because the current protests are leaderless, there is no one with which you can even negotiate. This is what has happened in Seattle where the mayor and police chief don’t really have an opposite figure with whom they can discuss how to move forward.
The result is that the situation continues to deteriorate. “The next set of predictions are far more dire,” Weinstein said. “I would say we are headed for a collision course with history. We’re really staring at many scenarios that really end in some kind of civil war. And while I do think it is still possible to avert that outcome, I don’t know the name of the force that gets in its way.”
In Weinstein’s view, the anarchist Occupy movement has now fused with Black Lives Matter which, as he points out, doesn’t mean simply that black lives matter. It stands for much more than that including, at the moment, the idea that police should be abolished or at least defunded substantially. Weinstein considers defund the police to be “possibly the stupidest proposal I have ever heard.” He added, “I’ve lived it.” And indeed he has lived it and it wasn’t a good situation.
But Weinstein suggests that people who consider this idea so extreme that it can’t actually happen are missing the lesson of Evergreen. It can happen and it can happen very quickly. It did happen at Evergreen and in the past three weeks we’ve seen Minneapolis commit to disbanding its police force. Los Angeles has committed to significant cuts and New York’s leadership is suggesting a $1 billion cut to the NYPD, a cut which would necessarily result in a substantial cut to the number of police officers on the street.
Later on in the interview, Weinstein emphasized the point that America is not immune to real chaos. “This revolution that is beginning in our streets is no more coherent or desirable than Maoism. It’s going to be brutal in the Maoist way or possibly the way it unfolded in the French Revolution or maybe it’ll be some unique version and it’ll get its own name, but if we want the Republic to survive we’re going to have to prevent this from happening.”
Asked where he thinks this all ends, Weinstein replied, “There’s something in us, being raised in the U.S., there’s something in us that thinks that the Great Leap Forward in China can’t happen here. That what happened in Cambodia cannot happen here. That Nazi Germany cannot happen. And the Soviet Union cannot happen here. I don’t know what characteristic people think makes it impossible. I don’t think it’s impossible.” He concludes that the thing preventing it, if anything, is that America’s values as envisioned in the Declaration and the Constitution were honorable “even if we didn’t meet them.”
That’s only a fraction of what’s in this 24-minute clip and this clip is just a fraction of a longer 3-hour conversation which you can view here.