Charlottesville: Avoidable Tragedy? OPEN THREAD

From The New York Times:

On Sunday, Charlottesville tried to recover — as the police, in particular, came in for criticism.


But others, including Mr. Kessler and Ms. Caine-Conley, openly wondered if the violence could have been prevented.

“There was no police presence,” Ms. Caine-Conley said. “We were watching people punch each other; people were bleeding all the while police were inside of barricades at the park, watching. It was essentially just brawling on the street and community members trying to protect each other.”


Sensing there might be trouble, the city tried to deny Mr. Kessler’s group a permit for Emancipation Park; officials wanted the gathering in a larger park, where they felt they could better control the crowd. But on Friday evening, a judge sided with Mr. Kessler. Mayor Signer would later lament on Twitter that it was a fateful turn of events.

“This is EXACTLY why City tried to change venue to McIntire,” he wrote.


But according to many witnesses, the police waited to intervene. Ms. Caine-Conley called it “fascinating and appalling.”

Mr. Kessler, too, complained.

In a statement, he said the authorities had “exacerbated the violence” by failing to separate his followers from counterprotesters. He said his group had “networked with law enforcement officials” months ago on a plan for maintaining safety, which he said was not followed, and he called the police “underequipped for the situation.”

Racism in any form is contemptible. The murder and attempted murder by a person allegedly associated with white supremacist groups is appalling. That said, there was plenty of violence coming from the “liberal” protesters too—with the apparent approval of many on the Left. As The Atlantic notes:

Antifa’s violent tactics have elicited substantial support from the mainstream left.


When the masked antifa activist was filmed assaulting Spencer on Inauguration Day, another piece in The Nation described his punch as an act of “kinetic beauty.” Slate ran an approving article about a humorous piano ballad that glorified the assault. Twitter was inundated with viral versions of the video set to different songs, prompting the former Obama speechwriter Jon Favreau to tweet, “I don’t care how many different songs you set Richard Spencer being punched to, I’ll laugh at every one.”

The violence is not directed only at avowed racists like Spencer: In June of last year, demonstrators—at least some of whom were associated with antifa—punched and threw eggs at people exiting a Trump rally in San Jose, California. An article in It’s Going Down celebrated the “righteous beatings.”


Antifa’s perceived legitimacy is inversely correlated with the government’s. Which is why, in the Trump era, the movement is growing like never before. As the president derides and subverts liberal-democratic norms, progressives face a choice. They can recommit to the rules of fair play, and try to limit the president’s corrosive effect, though they will often fail. Or they can, in revulsion or fear or righteous rage, try to deny racists and Trump supporters their political rights. From Middlebury to Berkeley to Portland, the latter approach is on the rise, especially among young people.

Revulsion, fear, and rage are understandable. But one thing is clear. The people preventing Republicans from safely assembling on the streets of Portland may consider themselves fierce opponents of the authoritarianism growing on the American right. In truth, however, they are its unlikeliest allies.

When given the opportunity to denounce left-wing violence, Governor Terry McAuliffe apparently passed on the invitation.

Cooler heads must prevail or a lot more people will die. Leaders on the Right and Left must continually condemn violence if we are to avoid war.

Regarding Confederate Monuments
Weekend Caption Contest™ Winners Week of August 11, 2017
  • Scalia

    Stanford University is offering a course on white identity politics and will explore the possibility of “abolishing whiteness.”

    Pundits proclaim that the 2016 Presidential election marks the rise of white identity politics in the United States. Drawing from the field of whiteness studies and from contemporary writings that push whiteness studies in new directions, this upper-level seminar asks, does white identity politics exist? How is a concept like white identity to be understood in relation to white nationalism, white supremacy, white privilege, and whiteness? We will survey the field of whiteness studies, scholarship on the intersection of race, class, and geography, and writings on whiteness in the United States by contemporary public thinkers, to critically interrogate the terms used to describe whiteness and white identities. Students will consider the perils and possibilities of different political practices, including abolishing whiteness or coming to terms with white identity. What is the future of whiteness?

    • jim_m

      We are just a few years away from public calls for a white genocide

    • pennywit

      It looks like an interesting course if it’s done right.

      • Scalia

        Sure, so long as we follow that up with a black identity politics course that pursues the idea of abolishing blackness. I wonder how many liberals will sign up.

      • Retired military

        ” if it’s done right.”
        And therein lies the rub.

  • Scalia

    China implements UN sanctions against North Korea, as Trump trade probe looms:

    In an unprecedented move against North Korea, China on Monday issued an order to carry out the United Nations sanctions imposed on the rogue regime earlier this month.

    China made the announcement amid not only Pyongyang’s escalating war of words with the United States regarding the North Korea nuclear missile program, but also as President Trump was reportedly set to order an investigation into China’s trade practice — a probe which could lead the U.S. to levy its own sanctions on Beijing.

    Trump has sought China’s help in dealing with North Korea, as China has remained one of the last defenders of dictator Kim Jong Un and could apply enormous financial pressure should it turn on the North Korean leader.


    Just hours before Trump was believed ready to announce the trade investigation, however, China’s Commerce Ministry on Monday announced that all imports of coal, iron ore, lead concentrates and ore, lead and seafood from North Korea would be banned.

    There was some disagreement about when the sanctions would go into effect. The Associated Press reported the ban would start at midnight on Sept. 5, but Reuters wrote it could begin as early as Tuesday.

    The U.N. Security Council unanimously approved the tough new sanctions on Aug. 5 in a bid to punish North Korea for its escalating nuclear missile programs. The sanctions include a ban on exports valued at more than $1 billion.

  • Scalia

    Franklin Graham: ‘Shame on Politicians’ for Blaming Trump

    Franklin Graham, president of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, sharply criticized politicians who are blaming President Donald Trump for the violence in Charlottesville, Va.

    Graham’s comments came in a posting on his Facebook page.

    Three people were killed and 35 injured after protests by white supremacists and counter demonstrations became violent, McClatchy newspaper reported.

    “Really, this boils down to evil in people’s hearts,” Graham said. “Satan is behind it all. He wants division, he wants unrest, he wants violence and hatred. He’s the enemy of peace and unity. I denounce bigotry and racism of every form, be it black, white or any other>

    Graham called on the nation to come together and turn to God.

    “We are stronger together, and our answers lie in turning to God,” Graham said.

    And he added: “Continue to pray for peace and for all those impacted by Saturday’s tragedies.”

  • Scalia

    Candidate to be first female Navy SEAL officer quits after a week: report

    A woman aiming to become the first female Navy SEAL officer quit about a week into the initial training, Task and Purpose reported Thursday.

    The unidentified female candidate dropped out in early August during a three-week course in San Diego that began July 24. It was the first assessment of potential SEAL officers before they can be sent on to more grueling courses, according to the website, which cited “multiple Naval Special Warfare Command sources.”

    Two women, whose names were not released to protect their privacy, entered the famously difficult SEAL training program this summer more than a year and a half after the military allowed female troops to serve in combat roles.

    The candidate who dropped out was enrolled in the Navy SEAL Officer Assessment and Selection program. If she had completed the program, she would have faced an officer selection panel and the Basic Underwater Demolition/SEAL program, or BUD/S, a six-month training course for the elite special operators.

    And the “initial” week is nothing compared to what follows, including “Hell Week.”

    • Well, she lasted probably 6 3/4 days longer than I would have. So good on her, and may the SEAL folks never make their training easier.

      The more you sweat in peace, the less you bleed in war.

      • yetanotherjohn

        You think you could have lasted a quarter of a day?I know I couldn’t.

        • 5 1/2 hours inprocessing, medical checks, next of kin paperwork.
          15 minutes to change clothes, hydrate, ect.

          Then 15 minutes before I go “Screw this…” and go ring the bell.

          Yeah, I think I’d manage a quarter of a day, lol…

      • Scalia

        So long as they don’t loosen their standards….

        • They’ve established a level where their graduates have the best possible chance to survive. Lowering their standards wouldn’t do much except increase the body count.

    • pennywit

      I think this is one of those circumstances where she deserves kudos for trying. Not many people are willing to take the chance.

      • Vagabond661

        Yes. Just don’t dumb down the process. If they can make it, welcome them in. They deserve it.

      • Scalia

        SEAL training is one of the toughest out there. Most men drop out after the very tough preliminary training. Hell Week is far worse. It is truly a great accomplishment for any person to complete.

  • Scalia

    Oakland Raiders running back Marshawn Lynch sits during national anthem at preseason NFL game:

    Oakland Raiders running back Marshawn Lynch sat during the national anthem over the weekend, ahead of a Saturday preseason game against the Arizona Cardinals, the AP reports.

    The NFL player was photographed on top of an orange cooler with a banana in Glendale, Ariz.

    Last year, San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick sat and kneeled during the national anthem and protested police brutality.

    Lynch previously backed Kaepernick, telling comedian Conan O’Brien in September 2016, “I’d rather see him take a knee than stand up, put his hands up and get murdered.”

    “If you’re really not racist then you won’t see what he done, what he’s doing, as a threat to America, but just addressing a problem that we have,” Lynch said at the time.

    Raiders coach Jack Del Rio says he didn’t know about Lynch’s plans ahead of the game, according to

    “On Marshawn, talked to Marshawn trying to make sure we’re on the same page,” the coach said. “He said, ‘This is something I’ve done for 11 years. It’s not a form of anything other than me being myself.’ I said, ‘So you understand how I feel, I very strongly believe in standing for the national anthem. But I’m going to respect you as a man, you do your thing. We’ll do ours.’ It’s a non-issue for me.”

    • jim_m

      Marshawn Lynch is perfectly happy if blacks kill other blacks. He is only upset if white people get in the way of their self-genocide.

      • Scalia

        Yes, they’re “outraged” over police officers who kill black criminals—officers who are later acquitted in many instances because the outrage was misplaced (the officer didn’t do anything wrong), but they’re not making a lot of noise about black-on-black crime.

        Jamelle Bouie wrote a laughable piece wherein he insists that general community protests against crime equals black outrage over black-on-black crime. He even calls Juan Williams a conservative!

        When the overwhelming majority of blacks are killed by other blacks, and when black leaders can only throw hissy-fits over mostly innocent police officers, methinks that the “outrage” is political. Complaining about black-on-black crime takes too much of the time they’ve devoted to criticizing Republicans (who hold no power in black communities).

    • pennywit

      I, for one, am glad to live in a country where I have the right not to stand and salute for the national anthem, the flag, or the Pledge of Allegiance.

      • Scalia

        And I’m also glad to live in a country where we can criticize the jerks who misplace their outrage.

        • Vagabond661


          No one buys into the Looney Left’s crocodile tears. Screaming that Trump wasn’t specific enough in his statement while giving Obama a pass on not saying Islamic Terrorists.

          Branding all conservatives with white supremacy while saying all Muslims are not terrorists.

          Bacteria on Mars is life but a baby in the womb is a mass of cells.

          They are blind to their own hypocrisy.

  • Scalia

    Hillary Wants to Preach:

    Hillary Clinton wants to preach. That’s what she told Bill Shillady, her longtime pastor, at a recent photo shoot for his new book about the daily devotionals he sent her during the 2016 campaign. Scattered bits of reporting suggest that ministry has always been a secret dream of the two-time presidential candidate: Last fall, the former Newsweek editor Kenneth Woodward revealed that Clinton told him in 1994 that she thought “all the time” about becoming an ordained Methodist minister. She asked him not to write about it, though: “It will make me seem much too pious.” The incident perfectly captures Clinton’s long campaign to modulate—and sometimes obscure—expressions of her faith.

    Now, as Clinton works to rehabilitate her public image and figure out the next steps after her brutal November loss, religion is taking a central role. After long months of struggling to persuade Americans that she is trustworthy, authentic, and fundamentally moral, Clinton is lifting up an intimate, closely guarded part of herself. There are no more voters left to lose. In sharing her faith, perhaps Clinton sees something left to win, whether political or personal.

    LOL!! Hillary, may I suggest a topic for your first sermon? Why don’t you call it How to Extinguish Bimbo Eruptions.

    • Retired military

      The Church of Satan has disavowed her already.

      • Scalia

        Yeah. They’re upset at her for losing the election.

    • SteveCrickmore075

      or ‘Cherry Picking from the Ten Commandments’.

      • Scalia

        Your HTML tags are askew.

        Clinton doesn’t cherry-pick the 10 Commandments; she ignores them altogether.

  • Scalia

    Texas police chief asked to leave doctor’s office for carrying gun:

    A Texas police chief said he was asked to leave a doctor’s office because he was carrying his gun.

    Conroe Police Chief Philip Dupuis told The Courier he was wearing his badge, lanyard with identification and gun when he began to check in for his appointment at Texas Ear, Nose and Throat Specialists in The Woodlands on August 8.

    The receptionist reportedly took the officer’s information, then asked him to put his gun in his car. Dupuis said he refused, and was asked to leave.

    “It’s just bad,” Dupuis told The Courier. “My badge is clearly displayed. I have my lanyard on with ‘police’ on my ID card hanging around my neck. I had handcuffs. The lobby was full of people, and they asked me to leave because of who I am.”

    Licensed police officers in the state of Texas can legally carry guns openly, anywhere in the state. But private business or property owners can create “weapons-free” zones, according to The Courier.

    “These people have the right to do what they did and refuse my service,” the police officer said. “Legally, they can ask me to leave because I’m not there on official business.”

    Texas ENT Specialists posted a statement to Facebook following the incident, noting they apologized to Officer Dupuis and will “make every effort to ensure this does not happen again.”

  • Retired military

    Charlottesville: Avoidable Tragedy?

    So your saying that Charlottesville is like one of David RObertson’s columns?

    BTW anyone seen David, Bruce or Chico lately?

    • Scalia

      David seems to post in spurts. I’ve run into Chico on a couple of occasions on other sites (quite by accident). His profile showed that he posts very seldom nowadays. I asked him on another site what he’s been up to, but he never replied.

      Bruce? Beats me, but he has not been banned.

    • Who?

  • pennywit

    I think things will get worse before they get better. I’m near the point of throwing up my hands and tending my own garden while the rest of the world gets on with whatever it’s going to do.

    • jim_m

      Better buy a gun to keep the antifa out.

    • Brett Buck

      It’s not going to ever get better if we continue to permit “Identity Politics” to be a mainstream political concept. The mess in Charlotte (and Baltimore, and Detroit, etc), is solely and entirely the fault of the left promoting this crap since the 60’s, at least.

      One hallmark difference between the left and the right is that we treat tiny fringe groups like the Neo-Nazis and the KKK as the lunatics they are. We have to tolerate their existence, but they mean nothing to the right, they have no influence, and are universally condemned.

      The same types of groups on the left are just as crazy and should be equally irrelevant, but they are feted like a bunch of heros, and are driving the actions of the entire party. Their ideas dominate leftist policies, and are infusing themselves into society, with “affinty groups” and “diversity programs” that are masquerades for racism, sexism, ageism, and now “genderism” and are literally and proudly proclaimed to separate people into stereotypical mono-cultures. They are the new segregation, just as ugly and divisive as they always were. The difference is the people being segregated now *are persuaded to be happy with it*.

      It’s like the middle east, people are crushed with poverty and repression, but those in charge managed to convince them that it is blasphemy to want anything else.

      • Here’s where the real problem lies.

        The Neo-Nazis and KKK are creatures of the left. They are just insufficiently left. It’s a replay of the Communists declaring the Fascists to be creatures of the Right since their orthodoxy admitted of no enemies to their left.

        • Brett Buck

          That’s technically true (particularly the KKK which is literally the Democrat party militia), however, we are going to get tagged with these idiots and I have given up on trying to resolve that issue.

          More or less any group promoting racial division and identity politics is at least playing into the hands of the left, if not explicitly allied. The neo-Nazis, geniuses that they are, serve the ends of the same people railing against “white privilege”. Ramming a car into a crowd, even outting aside the fact that it was a vicious criminal act, was an absolute Godsend for the BLM crowd – for once the left didn’t have to make up a racial event from whole cloth, it really happened this time. Shame they can’t grasp irony.

          p.s. BTW, hate to say it, but Saramuchi made a pretty good point the other day – Bannon *did* tolerate some of these fringe groups to some extent, not the KKK or skinheads (as far as I can tell) but other fringe or near-fringe groups. While not actually embraced by the campaign, they also didn’t get kicked out, and I think that may have been a mistake.

          • It’s not a technicality. Acceding to the labels of the Enemy is ceding the battle.

          • Brett Buck

            I don’t buy your premise, but even if I did, winning a minor semantic point, true or not, could easily result in lack of communication of a far more important point.

            You can go to France, speak semantically correct English, shout it even, and no one will understand you.

          • We must not allow the progtards to define the terms of the discussion. Doing so is ceding the debate before it begins, as shaping the Question inevitably shapes the answer.

  • Brian Brandt

    Excerpt from Jim Goad’s column today in Taki’s Magazine –

    The [Charlottesville] rally’s planners had jumped through every possible legal hoop to ensure that the rally would commence without a hitch. Once they were issued a permit, it was revoked by the coffee-bean-colored Wes Bellamy,Vice-Mayor of Charlottesville. Wes never seems to miss an opportunity to remind you of his blackness. Among the groups he has joined (and even
    led) include 100 Black Men of Central Virginia, Young Black Professional Network of Charlottesville, and Charlottesville/Albemarle Alliance of Black School Educators. In case you missed it, Wes Bellamy wants you to know he’s black.

    In tandem with his love of being black, Bellamy appears to hate white people. Over the years, Charlottesville, VA’s current Vice-Mayor has posted the following gems on Twitter (republished unedited and uncorrected):

    I always feel sorry for the black kid growing up around alooooot of white people…

    white chicks the devil

    Lol funniest thing about being down south is seeing little white men and the look on their faces when they have to look up to you.

    I hate seeing white people in Orangeburg


    White women=Devil

  • Wild_Willie

    I believe this is a stupid tragedy that most assuredly could have been prevented. The Mayor stated ‘This is exactly why we wanted a different venue’ and then he said ‘He lays the blame on Donald Trump’. Seems like he didn’t get his way with the court so a ‘stand down’ order was issued to the cops. All supposition of course but the motive of the left has been clearly demonstrated, they hate losing anything.
    I pray for the people that witnessed such tragedies that they find resolution in their hearts.

    No matter what steps are taken, unless a miracle happens, the left let the violence out of the barn with a lot of hate. In my experience, the precedent is set. Maybe Sessions can file some serious charges on ANTIFA and it will be tampered some, but I don’t feel confident the left will settle down.

  • That which is engineered is by definition avoidable. The counter protesters arrived armed and masked. There was no effort made to keep the two groups apart. This was the outcome the organizers of the counter protest and the city leadership wanted.


      I believe the Nazis, KKK members and the rest of the white power groups were far more armed than the groups that showed up to protest the presence of this scum in Charlottesville.

      As someone opined on one of the cable news discussions, “What would happen if hundreds of black people showed up to demonstrate with weapons slung over their shoulders?”

      • Scalia

        And if they weren’t armed, the scum on your side would try to beat them into submission.

        Funny how they were armed to the teeth but they never fired a shot.


    I took Trump two days to call out a collection of Nazis and KKK members, but it only took him 54 minutes to criticize the black CEO of Merck.

    Of at least 372 murders that were committed by domestic extremists between 2007 and 2016, 74 percent were committed by right-wing extremists. Muslim extremists were responsible for 24 percent of those killings, and the small remainder were committed by left-wing extremists,

    Of course, Trump cut funding to groups that were investigating the incidence of domestic terror attacks committed by right wing extremists.


    • Scalia

      I took Trump two days to call out a collection of Nazis and KKK members, but it only took him 54 minutes to criticize the black CEO of Merck.

      Must be nice to be able to drive the president around.

      Anyway, he called out EVERYBODY in his initial statement. Of course, you couldn’t care less because you’re just looking for an opportunity to criticize Trump. You don’t call out the numerous leftist violence, so I guess you’ve also got your priorities.

      Since you apparently think that left-wing violence is okay, your criticism of Trump is empty.


        Considering the timing and context of the Charlotesville attack he was remiss to not call out white extremism.

        Apparently me and many others from both parties felt the same.

        Who applauded his remarks? Most of the extremist web sites.

        • Scalia

          English must not be your mother tongue. Trump condemned everything immediately. You’ve got your panties tied in a wad because he included the violence committed by your side.

          Some Republicans are so terrified of being called “racist,” they’ll say anything to satisfy punks like you.

          • WHO’S THE BUSTER

            You are right, both sides were equally guilty and there is a moral equivalency between the Nazis, KKK and other assorted white power extremists and the horrible people that found them offensive.

          • Scalia

            No, the white extremists are a TINY minority, while leftist violence is applauded by your side. When you look the other way when your side commits violence, how about we look away when somebody attacks you?

          • Brett Buck

            The neo-nazis, KKK, Black Live Matter, etc, are all nearly indistinguishable in their goals and methods. The difference is that we all hate the nazis and KKK and people like you see their color-changed doppelgängers BLM as heroic freedom fighters.

            Nobody is going to be asking the leader of the skinheads to the White House, but someone sure did ask the leaders of BLM. You won’t see anyone in Congress doing a Sig Heil! on the floor of the house, but you sure saw “Hands up, don’t shoot!”

            The former President of the United States *actively cooperated/collaborated” with a hate group *that was advocating for violent attacks on police officers*. Attacks which they later carried out more-or-less successfully

            You lose. Isn’t there a rock for you to crawl back under?

        • Wild_Willie

          Obama has yet to call out the BLM and ANTIFA related to violence. On the matter of BLM, he asked us to understand them. The bottom line is Obama and those that follow him are really idiots. If you actually need someone to say white supremacy is bad, it just demonstrates how uneducated and foolish you are. I know this about them for decades as has most grown ups. I don’t need anyone to tell me it is stupid and bad. When is the left going to learn bad things and bad people just are. Always. BLM and ANTIFA included. You sir are an embarrassment to your group. I can go on but I am wasting bandwidth on you. ww

    • Sky__Captain

      “Of at least 372 murders that were committed by domestic extremists
      between 2007 and 2016, 74 percent were committed by right-wing

      Please provide the source for this outlandish claim.

    • Scalia

      Of at least 372 murders that were committed by domestic extremists between 2007 and 2016, 74 percent were committed by right-wing extremists. Muslim extremists were responsible for 24 percent of those killings, and the small remainder were committed by left-wing extremists

      No, You’re Not More Likely to Be Killed by a Right-Wing Extremist than an Islamic Terrorist.

      Right Wing Extremism vs. Islamic Extremism in the United States: A Look at the Numbers.

      The short version: Buster is stupid.

    • Retired military

      More than 400 African Americans were killed in Chicago last year by other African Americans. When will the democrats start denouncing that?

  • Paul Hooson

    Sadly, the president who has a fine Jewish son-in-law and a fine daughter who converted to the Jewish faith cannot find it in himself to condemn a neonazi who used an ISIS type terrorist tactic of killing innocent persons using a motor vehicle as a weapon.

    • Scalia

      You’re a tad late to the dance, Paul. The president HAS condemned it.

      • Paul Hooson

        Indeed, you are correct here on a second check. He only backtracked in other ways with his off the rails news conference today.

  • Paul Hooson

    Earlier today, Trump Tweeted this cartoon of a train hitting a CNN reporter, then deleted it. He obviously doesn’t think it too wrong to use a vehicle as weapon against those he disagrees with. He doesn’t have good sense at 71, and doesn’t seem likely to grow into this presidency like others before him and headed towards the junk heap of bad one term presidents.

  • Paul Hooson

    It’s an open thread, and I do more than just write jokes for the caption contest each week. Here’s a silly song I co-wrote many a moon ago about the death of Elvis…

    • Scalia

      Well, the musicians are good, but a singer you’re not. Moreover, the lyrics are terrible. Sorry, but I call it as I see it.

      • Paul Hooson

        I know I’m a horrid singer and songwriter. It did get radioplay in both Los Angeles and Portland. I love musical comedy…

  • PBunyan

    The one person who is almost entirely responsible for what happened was

    Terry McAuliffe, the most evil governor currently in the United States, possibly of all time.

  • Retired military

    “Cooler heads must prevail or a lot more people will die. Leaders on the Right and Left must continually condemn violence if we are to avoid war.”
    True but it appears as if the left only wants war and nothing else. 99% of the violence is done by their side. I don’t condone violence at the same time when someone is beating you over the head one quick way to get them to stop is a quick punch to the face.

  • Constitution First

    Cops who don’t keep the peace, aren’t cops, they’re participants. Another reason for CC.