Instigator / Pro
13
1543
rating
8
debates
75.0%
won
Topic

THBT the Antifa movement is a destructive political movement, and has caused more harm than good.

Status
Finished

All stages have been completed. The voting points distribution and the result are presented below.

Arguments points
6
3
Sources points
4
2
Spelling and grammar points
2
1
Conduct points
1
2

With 3 votes and 5 points ahead, the winner is ...

Exile
Parameters
More details
Publication date
Last update date
Category
Politics
Time for argument
Two days
Voting system
Open voting
Voting period
One week
Point system
Four points
Rating mode
Rated
Characters per argument
10,000
Contender / Con
8
1458
rating
12
debates
37.5%
won
Description
~ 131 / 5,000

Rounds will go as follows:
R1: Opening statements
R2: First rebuttals
R3: Second rebuttals
R4: Closing statements (sans rebuttals)

Round 1
Pro
***https://www.debateart.com/forum/topics/2669/bye-motherfucker?page=1&post_number=2 Let this serve as a forfeit from Con, but in the spirit of good conduct I'll follow through with all of my rounds.*** 
 
Before I begin my opening statement, in order for those who look to adjudicate this debate, it is important to understand the context of the following terms that will almost certainly be used by either Pro or Con:

  •  Antifa - A political movement that is composed of militant left-wing-idealized individuals, who engage in various forms of protests against those who identify as fascist, racist, or on the far-right [1].
  • Fascism* - a form of far-right authoritarian ultranationalism characterized by dictatorial power and forcible suppression [2].
  • The political left (not to be confused with "liberalism") - A political group/ideology that is hyperfocused on the grounds of social equality and egalitarianism [3].
  • Societal progression (not to be confused with progressivism) - a normative concept and can be defined as the change or advancement of major conditions of societies and people's lives in a direction considered to be desirable based on prevailing values and goals of development [4].
Thesis: Antifa is a destructive, political movement that is unethical, condones violence, has furthered the political divide of Americans, and has had no effect in truly progressing American society, but rather implicitly regressing it instead. 
 
Pro stands on the following principles to support the motion: 
  1. Antifa, as a movement, condones violence. As we can see from many Antifa protests, it is no surprise that the use of violence is prominent. Antifa has also had a history of rhetoric that supports the assassination of President Trump (will cite this in rounds to come).
  2. Antifa has furthered the political divide of Americans. Antifa stands on the ground that those who support far-right politics are inherently bad people. Assuming that people are inherently bad is a guaranteed recipe for tension, and rather than choosing to protest a difference in opinion, they have chosen to condemn those for it.
  3. Antifa implicitly regresses American society rather than progressing it. I say implicitly because those who do protest on behalf of the Antifa movement firmly believe that their protests/actions cause a direct benefit to American society (be it awareness, seeking retribution, etc.). 
 The United States is no stranger to division. In the civil war, there was a division between the Union and the Confederacy, with both sides fighting on the premise of slavery. It was the bloodiest war America had ever fought, and serves as a horrific reminder about the cost of fighting an injustice against a fellow human. Nevertheless, America progressed. Up until the tumult of the 1960s, there was a division of skin color and gender; with Jim Crow laws and stigma towards the opportunity and roles of women more prominent in society than ever. Although there was no war fought on these laws, the everlasting tension and societal tug-of-war between Americans made it resemble a never-ending battle, with progressive idols like Martin Luther King Jr. and Germaine Greer on the front lines. 
 
The end goal of healing these divides was through progression. In order for these societal open wounds to heal, there must be a change in society so that we, as Americans, progress forward and change for the better. Whether it came through battles, loss of life, protests or newly made legislation, everyone knew that these divides would not make us progress as an American society. Since then, America society has changed for the better and the healing of these divides symbolize the importance of American unity.
 
Now, in this decade of the 21st century comes yet another divide. This divide is not a physical one, but rather a mental one. It is a divide of political ideology; a battle of the minds of Americans that has spawned the same kind of tension and fear that came with the tumult of the 1960s. Surprisingly, however, it has also spawned violence and brutality that had existed over 150 years ago during the civil war. 
 
Enter, Antifa (short for anti-fascist). Ever since the election of President Trump, the toxicity of the political left has spawned a movement that has chosen to never forget the outcome of the 2016 election results. It is a movement that seeks out retribution after the election of President Trump, and through this retribution the Antifa movement has birthed many active protests that are largely composed of violent rhetoric, as well as violent acts. They are also notable for their attire, as many protesters dress up in all black while hiding their faces from the press or police. 

In the mainstream media, you can see the visual horror of the Antifa protests that take place. For example, look at what happened in Portland, Oregon. Two protests were happening that day; one was an Antifa protest and the other was a far-right protest. Obviously, this sounds like a case of disaster, but if you look at footage of the event you will see that the far-right protesters were not prepared for the acts of violence that took place courtesy of Antifa. Far-right protesters were beaten up, and attacked with deadly weapons; chased through the city streets regardless of the protection by the police in riot gear. Some individuals were attacked with hammers, and 4 arrests were made from Antifa protesters carrying deadly weapons (aerosol cans w/lighters, knives, etc.). 

The concept of a peaceful protest is dead according to Antifa. The use of violence against those who disagree with Antifa is somehow justified, and through this the message of "anti-fascism" has been not only downplayed, but completely ignored by a regular spectator. There should be no need for police officers to show up to a protest in riot gear, just to ensure that no one gets killed. With Antifa, there is always a possibility, and because of this Antifa is a dangerous movement that needs to be stopped.  

At the end of the day, you get regression. Society regresses because there are a select group of people who are willing to use violence to get what they want. It's exactly what bullies do; they take out their aggression on people to get their fix. In this context, it is obvious that those who take part in Antifa protests are still upset about the 2016 election and because of this they protest not a message of peace, but anger as a result. When we resort to violence because of not getting what we want, it makes us seem immature, and through that immaturity we get more damage rather than solution. 
 
*Although I personally disagree with this definition as it falsely associates itself with conservativism, I have decided to bite the bullet and stick with this definition anyway for the sake of relevancy. Whether fascism should or should not be considered to be associated with the far-right is a debate for another day. 
 
[1] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Antifa_(United_States)
[2] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fascism
[3] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Left-wing_politics
[4] https://www.researchgate.net/publication/234080905_Societal_Progress





Round 2
Pro
I accept my opponent’s concession, and will extend my arguments with brevity. 

1). Antifa, while not a terrorist organization and has been unfairly as one by right wing media, has nevertheless been confused as one by the public and for good reason. When a movement uses or condones violence to spread their message, it obstructs the message of the movement. Ironically, fascism, which is a form of government/nationalism that most resembles a dictatorship, using violence to protest against that seems contradictory. 

2). It is clear that Antifa stands on the principle that those who support fascism or politics that idealize with conservativism are to be condemned simply for their take on ideology. Politics has never been about who’s right or who’s wrong, but rather coming together as a collective whole and solving issues in our country that we all can agree upon. When one side says “it’s my way or the high way,” all that side creates is tension and anger form the other. 

3). The concept of the peaceful protest has gone as far back to the establishment of the United States. Our founding fathers recognized the fact that those who believe in a cause should stand up and advocate for it, even when it challenges the status quo. That being said, it was never their intention to have those spread their messages through anger, violence, and condemnation. Ultimately, a tyranny or a dictatorship does all of those things to establish order, and not only does Antifa regress the foundations of the freedom of assembly, but becomes the fascist platform that they have so desperately tried to fight against. 
Con
Oh well ok, how's life?
Round 3
Pro
Antifa aside, life is good.

Also, I extend. 
Con
Ok then, same here. extend all his arguments.
Round 4
Pro
I extend further
Con
Well my nonexistent arguments extend longer than yours.