Something strange is happening this afternoon at the University of California at Berkeley.
Recently, Richard Spencer of Radix Journal and the National Policy Institute put up one of his myopic videos where he stands in front of a digitally placed background and talks at the camera. Here he brought up the “rich history of free speech” that Berkeley has had, referencing the 1960s SDS culture that was allied with the “free speech” and anti-war movements.
He then said that Berkeley fails to live up to those standards because of “political correctness,” the notion that many on the Alt Right attempt to peddle meaning that the disallowal of open racism, heterosexism, and transphobia means an attack on open discourse and marginalized voices. The Alt Right has seen a near renaissance over the last year because of a couple of factors. First, the term, which was coined by Spencer to indicate a “big tent” that included all those far-right ideological people who rejected modernity, has broadened even past its original core and now indicates a neo-fascist hipster culture that centers itself on social media and web boards. Over the last year it has used these tools to edge into mainstream discourse, dropping memes like #Cuckservative into the right-wing edge of GOP talk radio. The second factor is Donald Trump, who has largely mainstreamed a lot of their narratives about Islam, women, and immigration, and who they have jumped behind universally in an effort to ride media coattails. This has largely been successful for them as their numbers have swelled, and they have created a subculture with its own heroes, philosophers, jargon, and meeting points.
They want to make Berkeley another one of these meeting points today at 3:00pm. In Spencer’s video they have declared that they will make an “Alt Right safe space” at the Sproul Plaza on the Berkeley campus. This play on words comes from the idea, again, that the white male is the new persecuted class, one that should be protected like all others. They attempt to mock the “safe space” concept, which they do not acknowledge comes from the fact that many who have experienced serious assault and trauma often need spaces where certain behaviors are avoided so they can contribute to activist work on an (somewhat)even playing field. If pressed, they will likely accept the realities of sexual assault and PTSD, yet they still like to undermine concepts like “safe spaces” in an effort to delegitimize the suffering of people they do not want to see gain power.
The gathering, which has been generally ill defined, seems to promise to have Spencer himself present, yet is likely to be targeted at youth contingents behind things like the vacant White Student Unions. Millenials seem to be the Alt Right’s bread and butter, and Spencer, who exceeds their age, has made them his prime target by lowering NPI’s conference cost and bending his own elitist mindset to Twitter hashtags and “fashy memes.”
Those associated with the Alt Right have already been using this Safe Space language, mentioning it doing their weird Boycott Racist Sam’s Club campaign.
Whatever the population actually consists of, whether it is young fascists or older pseudo-intellectuals trying to hide their ideas falsely behind youth faces, Alt Righters promise to be coming out at the Sproul Plaza at Berkeley at 3:00pm TODAY!
They hope to talk about Alt Right ideas like race, Trump, and immigration in their safe space, and this may be the first step for white nationalist students in the area to begin organizing on campus.
We are putting the information below if you want to join them and show them that their “Alt Right safe space” has no safety at Berkeley.