JASON RANTZ

Rantz: Seattle Antifa violence ruined a peaceful Justice for George Floyd protest

May 30, 2020, 6:05 PM | Updated: 6:41 pm

Seattle George Floyd antifa...

Rioters take over Downtown Seattle during a Justice for George Floyd protest.

What started as a peaceful Justice for George Floyd protest in Seattle turned violent thanks to fringe Progressive and Antifa activists. And their abhorrent behavior is being defended by bad-faith voices, pretending we’re under assault by white supremacists. Or, even worse, peaceful protesters who are fine with the destruction.

Americans have the right to peacefully assemble. This is beyond question. What folks don’t have the right to do is destroy property, assault officers, disrupt freeway traffic, or steal police weapons.

Yet portions of Seattle were trashed, burned, and destroyed thanks to a large group of Antifa members, anarchists and their enablers.

It’s Antifa dishonoring George Floyd

Pacific Northwest Antifa members — filled mostly with privileged, angry white millennials — and local anarchists have consistently co-opted peaceful protests for their own political agenda. They do it almost every May Day. Some are local to Seattle, some from around Washington, and some based in Oregon. These monsters don’t care about George Floyd. You think Antifa is above taking advantage of a George Floyd protest in Seattle? They’re simply exploiting national anger to push their anti-capitalist and anti-police agenda.

But Antifa and anarchists have their defenders and enablers.

We’re supposed to believe it’s white supremacists causing all the disruption. Media members, content to blame nationwide rioting and looting on President Donald Trump, forwarded a false story this morning that white nationalists are being fingered as the culprits behind the majority of the crimes we saw in Minneapolis.

Antifa supporter and Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison and other local officials, amplified by MSNBC homophobe Joy Reid, pushed the story. The claims were echoed especially after Trump blamed “ANTIFA and the radical Left.”

None of this was true. FOX 9 News Minneapolis reviewed the record and the claims were false:

The overwhelming majority of people arrested in connection with the Minneapolis unrest have Minnesota addresses, a search of the online Hennepin County Jail log shows.

Of the 45 people arrested for rioting, unlawful assembly, stolen property, burglary or robbery on May 29 and May 30 so far, 38 had Minnesota addresses, according to publicly available jail records reviewed by FOX 9.

Plus, the Mayor of St. Paul walked back the claims.

I’ll proudly and vociferously condemn white supremacist thugs and the scourge of their odious bigotry. But why ignore the actual culprits of the crime? You can be disgusted by white supremacists while also going after the people responsible for the crimes committed. This isn’t an either/or. But some in the media want to forward a “Trump’s America” narrative that is 100% false.

Is this what George Floyd would have wanted?

I imagine, nationally, there are some white nationalists who agitated. But let’s stop pretending that there’s some overwhelming number causing these riots. There’s no proof of that. Calling out Antifa, anarchists or any Black Lives Matter protester who is turning to violence doesn’t mean all protesters are guilty. It’s not even a particularly difficult, nuanced position.

And what’s sad is, before the looting and destruction and assaults on cops, there was near unanimous agreement that Floyd was murdered and that the cops should be punished.

But what’s worse: there’s a number of protesters who think the violence is justified, so they won’t condemn it. They’ll either give silent approval or flat out make excuses. And they bring shame to their message — one that George Floyd’s family said he wouldn’t support. But they won’t listen to that.

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