Members of Antifa ran wild on D.C. streets Saturday, in a protest organized to oppose a "Demand Free Speech" rally, smacking "Make America Great Again" hats off the heads of Trump supporters, dragging around aluminum newspaper boxes, and making vain attempts to burn flags as part of their crusade against "fascism."
Fox News reports that the trouble began late Saturday morning, as members of Antifa took to the streets around the "Demand Free Speech" rally, where a handful of far-right and alt-right speakers railed against being banned from social media platforms like Twitter and Facebook.
The rally itself, the Daily Beast contends, was uneventful. But the Washington Examiner, which was focusing on the opposition taking to the streets in protest, captured Antifa running wild on the streets of D.C., looking to clash with members of the Proud Boys who were present at the event.
Although the two groups did scuffle, Antifa seemed more interested in causing destruction and taunting supporters of President Donald Trump.
Lest they be caught in the act of committing a crime, though, Antifa's handlers distributed a sheet of rules to present journalists, essentially barring them from videotaping or otherwise reporting on Antifa. The list, published by the Examiner's Julio Rosas, included a provision warning reporters not to post any "incriminating" photos or videos of Antifa violence.
These are the rules for members of the press in order to go inside the #AllOutDC rally, which is the antifa side.— Julio Rosas (@Julio_Rosas11) July 6, 2019
One that suck out: "Please avoid publishing any potentially incriminating photos or video footage..." pic.twitter.com/Kn4piXC1sz
The letter threatens that Antifa would "remove" members of the media from permitted protest zones, however, as Rosas went on to point out in several filmed interactions with Antifa handlers, Antifa was protesting in an open, public forum, and could not bar coverage of their event simply because they feared bad public relations.
Rosas captured members of Antifa hitting hats off Trump supporters and clashing with Demand Free Speech rally attendees — including several Proud Boys — and a handful of clashes Antifa had with inanimate objects, including a pair of aluminum newspaper boxes that apparently got in their way.
The event, as public as it was, did not appear to have the desired effect of shutting down the Demand Free Speech rally. D.C. police were on hand to prevent incidents similar to those that have occurred regularly in Portland, Oregon, where Antifa rallies have gotten out of hand, requiring law enforcement to deploy tear gas, and which, just last week, resulted in the hospitalization of journalist Andy Ngo, who was hit with milkshakes, then beaten with fists when he tried to record Antifa on the streets of Portland.
D.C. police say they made no arrests, however.
In a sad coda to the day's failures, it appears Antifa's efforts to do the simplest of "Black Bloc" protest tasks — burn an American flag — also came to nothing.