A list of 5,000 “antifa” accounts on Twitter has been circulating today, with the fascist aim of purging these voices—an eclectic mix including liberals and even some conservatives, but mostly made up of anarchistic folks of many genders, races, cultures, etc. The responses on our side—the side firmly against fascism—are varied, but overwhelmingly, there’s been palpable and tangible solidarity. That’s crucial. We’ll need more and more of that—fierce, empathetic, unflinching solidarity. Taking the side of antifascism, and sticking side by side together.
What struck me more than anything was the shift this seems to mark. From such “antifa” lists being shared on shadowy, “fringe” platforms, or ones that mostly attract fellow fascists, to now being mainstreamed on one of the world’s biggest and oft-turned-to news platforms, owned by one of the world’s wealthiest people. This, in turn, mirrors what increasingly feels like the mainstreaming of the most explicit, virulent, violence-inspiring racist, transphobic, anti-Black, antisemitic, misogynist, homophobic, etc., sentiments on purportedly/formerly liberal, progressive, and/or “neutral” platforms, whether in the form of Chapelle’s jokes on Saturday Night Live or the vacuous “condolence” statement by Biden after the Club Q murders.
When it becomes “controversial” or scary or dangerous in a society to say one is against fascism; when it becomes “common sense” to see and treat antifascists as scary or dangerous, or more plainly, the enemy to be eradicated—we are already in fascism. It is the sea in which we must swim, or sink, as antifascists, not some surface or even subterranean phenomenon now.
Whether Twitter survives or not isn’t the issue. It’s whether whole categories of us—all the beautiful, varied identities, traditions, and experiences, and their rich and frequently millennia-long practices of communal care, mutual aid, and life-giving rituals, that are represented on that list of 5,000—will survive Christian fascism in the States and other fascisms globally.
#SolidarityIsOurBestWeapon, in all of its beautiful diversity of forms.
(photo: #AntiAntiAntifa sticker seen in Montreal’s anarchist bookstore)