(en) The Internet Anti-Fascist: #37, Wednesday, 12 November 1997

Paul Kneisel (tallpaul@nyct.net)
Thu, 13 Nov 1997 12:36:37 -0500

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The Internet Anti-Fascist: #37, Wednesday, 12 November 1997 [was "This computer kills fascists"]



"The National Front have called a march in Dover on Saturday 15th November to whip up racist bigotry against the Roma ["Gypsy"] People who have come to Britain from the Czech and Slovak republics, seeking refuge from persecution. We will not allow the NF Nazis to march on our streets. Join the demo to stop the fascists' march."

Demo details, sponsors, and a map of the area are found at: <http://www.canterbury.u-net.com/Dover/>



Adrian Bridge, "'They steal -- not that I've met any myself':" Gypsy asylum-seekers in Dover face a wall of prejudice," _The Independent_, 10 Nov 97, via: <http://www.independent.co.uk/sindy/stories/A2610707.html>

"European Rights Center on [Anti-Roma] Events In Great Britain," no author (ERRC), 27 Oct 97, via: <http://www.geocities.com/Paris/5121/errc-gb.htm>

For a good look at the anarchist side of the anti-fascist movement, see the articles that the St. Louis IWW links to on its homepage via: <http://www.geocities.com/CapitolHill/6484/links.html>



I was talking to my friend Vicki Rovere, of the War Resisters League[1], the other day about Zundel's Holocaust Revisionist web site and the attempts to censor it. I just published a long article in _Computer underground Digest_ on the practical dangers and threat to civil liberties of relying on the cops and courts to control hate on the net.[2] As I was writing it I became increasingly aware of how easy it is to use Civil Liberty as an excuse for a quietist attitude on action-oriented hate propaganda.

Vicki pointed out to me that "pacifism" is not "passive-ism," particularly of the variety of non-violent resistance practiced by members of the WRL. But passive-ism continues to be a problem even among forces not pacifist.

The Dover anti-Nazi action scheduled for the 15th will, I suspect, be very unpacifistic. Yet even the anarchist movement has produced its own form of passive-ist ideology.[3]

The problem is particularly severe among free-speech absolutists. One standard absolutist view is that "the answer to 'bad speech' is good speech, and more of it."

This may be an excellent answer ... but only to questions related to censorship. It does nothing to answer the specifics of the "bad speech" nor to organize the "good speech."

I was heartened to read the latest article on the Zundel controversy by Alan Borovoy, the General Counsel for the Canadian Civil Liberties Association.[4] "In a democratic society that values freedom of speech," he wrote, "the goal with the likes of Ernst Zundel should be not to muzzle them, but to marginalize them. The law should let them speak, but the culture should ensure that they lack the influence to persuade."

Even here one danger still exists. That is to treat culture as disembodied and somehow separated from human activity. Borovoy is absolutely correct--Culture, not the State, must defeat Zundel and the forces he represents.

But we must organize that Culture.


[1] "War Resisters League," via: <http://www.nonviolence.org/wrl/>

[2] "Will 'Hate Speech' Become the 'Fifth Horseman of the Apocalypse'?" _CuDigest_, #9.80, 4 Nov 97, via: <ftp://ftp.nyct.net/pub/users/tallpaul/publish/cudigest/CD019.txt>

[3] See, for example, Murray Bookchin, "Social Anarchism or Lifestyle Anarchism: An Unbridgeable Chasm," via: <http://www.etext.org/Politics/Spunk/library/writers/bookchin/sp001512- /SocialBookchin1.html>

[4] "Culture, not the law, should muzzle Zundel," _Toronto Star_, 6 Nov 97, p. A29. available on-line at the Electronic Frontiers Canada web site, via: <http://www.efc.ca/pages/media/toronto.star.06nov97b.html>


-- tallpaul Fascism: We have no ethical right to forgive, no historical right to forget.

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