The first time I put on the black mask and took part of the Antifa movement was in 2011 when I was 17. For a year and a half, I immersed myself in the anarchist subculture and attended a variety of rallies and protests all throughout Southern California while part of the black bloc. But then, I left the movement when I realized Antifa “activists” were more interested in fighting people with whom they disagreed than combating true fascism and extremism. Now, I’m a conservative activist, advocating on behalf of college students who’ve had their First Amendment rights violated on campus.
Last month, I donned the black mask once more, going undercover on election night in Washington, D.C. I wanted to see if anything had changed since I left the movement in 2012. Sadly, it has, but not for the better. In fact, the Antifa of today is more organized and more dangerous than the Antifa I marched with in California. And anyone who thinks a Biden Presidency will help decrease Antifa violence is dead wrong.
When I was part of the movement, Antifa was still a fringe faction. Yet, four years ago, the mainstream left and Antifa became soft allies in their shared hatred and opposition to President Donald Trump.
Many mainstream left-wing reporters, like CNN’s Don Lemon, defended Antifa on national television, while MSNBC’s Joy Reid compared Antifa to the Civil Rights movement’s Freedom Riders. At the same time, CNN gave Kamau Bell a TV special titled “United States of Shades” where Bell called an Antifa group the “good guys.” That night, one of those “good guys” fire-bombed an ICE facility in Washington State.
It seemed that every time Antifa violently beat a peaceful conservative on the street, they could always count on the left-wing mainstream media to act as a free professional PR team to defend and justify their violence.
It is that same support from the legacy media which helped launch the fringe faction onto the national stage, and now, Antifa is here to stay.
Take for example my experience on Nov 3rd when I went undercover with Antifa. There were few avowed Biden supporters in the black bloc. Instead, Antifa chanted “F*** Trump” and “F*** Biden” as I marched behind a banner that read “Burn Down the American Plantation.”
Antifa’s enemy has always been American society, and that includes much of the Democratic Party and the legacy media which falsely believe Antifa to be their ally.
While on the ground, I was shocked to see journalists take marching orders from some black bloc anarchists. I saw numerous people, with the word PRESS marked along their chests, attempt to take pictures of the black bloc but stopped when some of the agitators demanded they leave. And those who refused to self-censor were assaulted and threatened because the true free press is the enemy of Antifa.
And in the end, if Biden does get sworn in on January 20th, Antifa will grow because he will continue to perpetuate the lie which fuels Antifa. Joe Biden and Kamala Harris will continue to spread anti-American propaganda that America is systematically and structurally racist when it was that same America that elected them.
No, a Biden presidency won’t decrease Antifa violence. If anything, the violence is just getting started.
Gabriel Nadales is the author of Behind the Black Mask: My Time as an Antifa Activist and the Student Rights Advocate for the Leadership Institute.
The views expressed in this opinion piece are the author’s own and do not necessarily represent those of The Daily Wire.